+ Reply to Thread
Results 1 to 8 of 8

Thread: Small Hand Pump Filter Press Question

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    WI
    Posts
    16

    Default Small Hand Pump Filter Press Question

    Hello,

    I have been using Orlon filter bags for years and find them really messy and wasteful of syrup, leaving my syrup somewhat cloudy, as well as clogging frequently. I am looking for a good alternative. I make around 30-40 gallons of syrup a year and do sell some of my product to the public. I am wondering if a small filter press would be the right way to go but have no experience with them.

    I'm sure many of you do have experience with filter presses and can give me some feedback. If the comments turn out to direct me towards a filter press I'm then curious if anyone knows of an outlet for any reasonably priced used units that may be available.

    Thanks much for the feedback.

    Jeff V

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2006
    Location
    Oneida NY
    Posts
    10,437

    Default

    If the Orlon filters leave your syrup cloudy you might have damaged the fibers by wringing it when you clean it. They should never be wrung dry. To use them, you want a few pre-filters on top, I used to use 5, then the Orlon holding them. As a pre-filter gets clogged up, carefully lift it out, while dumping the remaining syrup into the next layer. When it no longer dumps easily, I used to have hanger wire from above that I wrapped each around the wire then clipped it to hold and allow it to drain fully into the rest. Repeat as necessary. One method that some use is to mix in some maple grade DE then filter. The DE gets caught in the filter and is actually a perfect filter medium. To start, I suggest you get a new Orlon. Used properly an Orlon filter should produce perfectly filtered syrup. To save any remaining syrup left in an Orlon filter just hang it and let it drip dry.
    However, if you want to get a filter press, for 30-40 gal a year a hand pump model will do well. It will also use DE (Diatomacious Earth).
    Last edited by maple flats; 04-01-2020 at 08:52 AM.
    Dave Klish about 1320 taps in '15, doing fewer each year, about 450 planned for 2020 (and after?)
    2012 Mahindra 36 HP 4x4/ loader/cab/heat/AC:-)
    3x8 raised flue evaporator
    250 GPH converted to electric, RO by Ray Gingerich
    6.32 KW solar system, 1.48KW is battery backed up, all net metered
    http://s1041.photobucket.com/albums/...anssugarhouse/
    website: www.cnymaple.com

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Peru, Maine
    Posts
    627

    Default

    We make 30-40 gallons right now. Adding vacuum every year so we will be making more but I don’t care if we made 10 gallons......filter presses are worth their weight in gold. Syrup clarity is more important if you sell your syrup, if just for family and friends then as long as you’re happy it’s not a big deal. I don’t know anyone that bought a filter press and regretted it. They are fast and you don’t waste as much syrup. Keep an eye on the classifieds and Craigslist starting now through the open houses (whenever they have them) and again this fall for used equipment. A hand pump press would be fine for what you do and be a less expensive option. The optimizer is a piece of equipment that many who use regular filters seem to be really happy with and may help while you save your pennies.
    380 gravity taps
    2x6 Darveau Mystique Oil Fired Evaporator
    Wesfab 7” filter press
    IBC totes in the woods, 800 Gallon CDL bulk tank at the shack

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    WI
    Posts
    16

    Default

    This is what is so frustrating to me....we do exactly what you are saying your process is. We never, ever wring out our orlon filters. We use 4-5 prefilters and empty them out in the next one as they clog. We filter right off of the pan so our syrup is hot, and then we filter again before we bottle (heating to approx. 185 degrees). We actually did buy a new orlon for this season and simply rinsed it in hot water before we used it.....and we had the same issue with it as our other two orlon filters. It would not filter all of the syrup through it in a 3-4 gallon batch before it completely clogged (even using several prefilters). That tells me we haven't done anything wrong with our other filters as they are all acting the same. Just frustrated with it. I have not used DE but that may help.

    Thank you so much for your comments!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    Location
    Meadville, Pa
    Posts
    138

    Default

    I make a 5” hand filter press. You can filter 7 - 10 gallons before changing filters.
    The press comes with a drip pan, rubber feet, instructions, phone support, and 100 filter papers.
    Call for more information. 814-337-0103.
    Home of the machined 5 X 5 Hand Filter Presses Made in the USA
    Chairman of Lake Erie Maple Expo
    Dealer for DSD Stars, MemProTec RO'S, SUNRISE METAL SHOP, Bosworth Pumps
    Becker Vacuum Pumps

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Eden Prairie, MN
    Posts
    1,603

    Default

    We bought one of Daryl’s hand pump presses many years ago. It was a real game changer over our previous cone filters. It’s a well built press and Daryl answered all my questions when I called. As our production increased, the hand pump got to be a limitation. It a way faster than gravity filtering, but still a bit of work. To speed things up we replaced the hand pump with a pneumatic diaphragm pump. That’s a great upgrade. Very fast and easy to get clear syrup.

    We just had a record year and the 5” press is a little small for over 100 gallons so we may need to get something bigger in the future.
    John
    2x8 Smokylake drop flue with AOF/ AUF
    180 taps on sacks
    75 on 3/16 tubing with shurflo
    Eden Prairie, Minnesota

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    CAPAC MICHIGAN
    Posts
    734

    Default

    I also purchased Darryls press and hand pump, but after 1 year i upgraded to an air pump. i can press between 10/13 gallons per set of papers. it all depends on how bad the sugar sand is
    2x6 RAISED FLUE PANS
    by WF MASON
    650 taps on vac.
    100 on bags

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Hopkinton, MA
    Posts
    1,551

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by norman View Post
    This is what is so frustrating to me....we do exactly what you are saying your process is. We never, ever wring out our orlon filters. We use 4-5 prefilters and empty them out in the next one as they clog. We filter right off of the pan so our syrup is hot, and then we filter again before we bottle (heating to approx. 185 degrees). We actually did buy a new orlon for this season and simply rinsed it in hot water before we used it.....and we had the same issue with it as our other two orlon filters. It would not filter all of the syrup through it in a 3-4 gallon batch before it completely clogged (even using several prefilters). That tells me we haven't done anything wrong with our other filters as they are all acting the same. Just frustrated with it. I have not used DE but that may help.

    Thank you so much for your comments!
    Norman, I use an Orlon filter and filter right off the rig like you. I'm also boiling concentrate. I think I've spotted your problem and I have a couple of other suggestions to help. I think your issue is when you remove a pre-filter. Never pour the syrup from one pre-filter into the next one. That's the biggest bad gravity filtering advice I see on here. Instead, lift the pre-filter straight up, let the majority of syrup finish running through, but when it slows, move it to an empty 5 gallon bucket where you can continue to let it hang over the side with a clothes pin, but catch the remaining 1/4 cup of partially filtered syrup in the bucket. Let it drip while you continue boiling. No matter how hard anyone tries to pour the syrup from one filter into the next, niter goes with it. When you repeat that for each filter, you are just concentrating niter further and further down until it embeds in your Orlon. At the end of the night, the pint? or so of partially filtered syrup you collected from the pre-filters can go back into your front pan when you flood. I use a spatula to get every last drop saved.

    Here are some other suggestions:
    -Get an optimizer. Yes, it's that good.
    -Pull the very first pre-filter out after the first big draw of the day. Even if it doesn't seem clogged yet, it is. Pull it out and hang it. The first draw is always the nastiest and you want that stuff out of there ASAP. Otherwise that first niter is fighting you the whole rest of your night.
    -Replace the pre-filter you pulled out with another hot, wet pre-filter just before you begin the next draw. Do that for the rest of the night for each draw, constantly replace the top pre-filter. Never wait until the filter clogs. Sometimes it's unavoidable especially late in the season.
    -At the end of the night while you are cleaning up, let the last draw work it's way through the filters. I will lift them out and hang them and work my way down to the last or second-to-last pre-filter. You will see how much cleaner those bottom ones are if you've been replacing those top ones every draw.
    -Early in the season all of the syrup goes through. Mid and late season, there's a cup or two that won't go because the Orlon eventually loses effectiveness and the syrup has cooled down by this point. Pour that right back in your front pan.
    -Set the Orlon with 1-2 pre-filters over the back pan and pour the hot sweet from the back pan through the filters to flush out the sugar you don't want to lose. Make sure there are pre-filters still on the Orlon.
    -Take all the filters in and wash them with the hottest water your tap can give you.
    -Buy new filters every year. I'll reuse pre-filters, but it's good to have new Orlon. They get harder to clean and eventually clog beyond anything you can do.
    -Lastly, buy a second optimizer and double the amount of filters including the Orlon. Some clogs are unavoidable. You can slip up or you can have a really heavy niter year. There's a peace of mind that comes knowing, if things go south, you can slide the clogged set up out of the way and slide a brand new one right under the draw.

    I don't know exactly how many gallons I get through an Orlon filter per season because some boils I have two going, but it's safe to say it's in the range of 60+ gallons.

    You may have already bought your last filter and you are eyeing a press. I wonder about that myself, but this method has been good while I save.
    Woodville Maples
    www.woodvillemaples.com
    www.facebook.com/woodvillemaples
    Something north of 250 taps
    Mix of natural and mechanical vac, S3 Controller from Mountain Maple
    2x6 W.F. Mason with Phaneuf pans
    Deer Run 125 RO
    6 hives of bees
    Keeping the day job until I can start living the dream.

+ Reply to Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts