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Thread: Stainless steel tubing spiles?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Saratoga, NY
    Posts
    310

    Default Stainless steel tubing spiles?

    Anyone have experience using stainless steel taps for tubing? I see over on the SmokyLake site that they offer these in 50 packs for (presumably) 5/16" drops. I'm a small operation without plans to ever exceed a couple hundred taps on the line, I inherently like the idea of making the investment up front and then using material year to year...do they face any of the risks of increased microbial activity, though?

    Just looking for any hands-on experience, I'm also considering the check-valve style for next year.
    --
    2015: 8 bucket taps (7 red, 1 sugar) on DIY barrel evaporator
    2016: 13 taps (bucket and tube) on bock arch and hotel pans
    2017: 25 taps...same setup
    2018: 25 taps on 2x3 flat pan and resurrected barrel arch
    2019: 25 taps...same setup plus DIY 3x150gpd RO filter
    2020: 50 taps, all buckets...same setup with 50
    2021: Planning for 100 taps (50/50) on 2x4 divided pan

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2019
    Location
    Nashville, MI
    Posts
    448

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    I use the SS taps from Smoky Lake for my bags and have for the last three years. Once season is over, just boil and let them air dry. Then I place them in a zip lock bag for next year. I really like them.
    2004 - 2012 2x3 flat pan 25 to 60 taps
    2012 2x3 new divided pan w/draw off 55 taps
    2018 - didn't boil surgery - bought new evaporator
    2019 new SML 2x4 raised flue high output evap. 65 taps
    made 17 gal syrup
    2020 - only put out 53 taps - made 16.25 gal syrup
    2021 - going for 50 bags and 50 on tubing

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2016
    Location
    Peru, Maine
    Posts
    787

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    We never did it but talked about it. Our plan was going to be to have 2 sets and swap them out every year. The unused set would get a good cleaning and reused every other year. There will certainly be unseen microbial activity so a good cleaning is needed. Probably still not as good as a new tap.
    270 taps on 2 Shurflo's, 31 taps on 3/16" and 120 taps on gravity. 421 total for 2021 season.
    Mountain Maple S3 controller for 145 of the vacuum taps
    2x6 Darveau Mystique Oil Fired Evaporator w/ Smoky Lake Simplicity Auto Draw
    Wesfab 7” filter press
    IBC totes in the woods, 800 Gallon CDL bulk tank at the shack

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2011
    Location
    River Falls, WI
    Posts
    790

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    I didn't see how many were available, but I did notice that Bascom's has them listed under the used category.
    Second generation sap rat.

    Started taking over in 2012
    2012-2016: 300 buckets 120 on gravity tubing. Waterloo 2x10 wood fired. Averaged 105 gallons per season.
    2017: hoping for 300 on 3/16 with Shurflo and 50 buckets. New used 4x14 Algier wood fired cooker. 180 gallons of syrup

    2018: 300 on vacuum 2 buckets, finally got a splitter!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Saratoga, NY
    Posts
    310

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by motowbrowne View Post
    I didn't see how many were available, but I did notice that Bascom's has them listed under the used category.
    OH nice, I was just on Bascom's site - I'll check it out.
    --
    2015: 8 bucket taps (7 red, 1 sugar) on DIY barrel evaporator
    2016: 13 taps (bucket and tube) on bock arch and hotel pans
    2017: 25 taps...same setup
    2018: 25 taps on 2x3 flat pan and resurrected barrel arch
    2019: 25 taps...same setup plus DIY 3x150gpd RO filter
    2020: 50 taps, all buckets...same setup with 50
    2021: Planning for 100 taps (50/50) on 2x4 divided pan

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Saratoga, NY
    Posts
    310

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by mainebackswoodssyrup View Post
    We never did it but talked about it. Our plan was going to be to have 2 sets and swap them out every year. The unused set would get a good cleaning and reused every other year. There will certainly be unseen microbial activity so a good cleaning is needed. Probably still not as good as a new tap.
    Interesting, I'm not sure if I'd buy a second set if I'm investing in the one...if I have few enough taps, I should be able to clean them before the next year.
    --
    2015: 8 bucket taps (7 red, 1 sugar) on DIY barrel evaporator
    2016: 13 taps (bucket and tube) on bock arch and hotel pans
    2017: 25 taps...same setup
    2018: 25 taps on 2x3 flat pan and resurrected barrel arch
    2019: 25 taps...same setup plus DIY 3x150gpd RO filter
    2020: 50 taps, all buckets...same setup with 50
    2021: Planning for 100 taps (50/50) on 2x4 divided pan

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2015
    Location
    Saratoga, NY
    Posts
    310

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Pdiamond View Post
    I use the SS taps from Smoky Lake for my bags and have for the last three years. Once season is over, just boil and let them air dry. Then I place them in a zip lock bag for next year. I really like them.
    Cool, that's good to know...sounds like (from your signature) that you have a very similarly sized operation to me. I did 100 taps this year as well, 50 on buckets and then 50 on drops into 5 gallon pails.
    --
    2015: 8 bucket taps (7 red, 1 sugar) on DIY barrel evaporator
    2016: 13 taps (bucket and tube) on bock arch and hotel pans
    2017: 25 taps...same setup
    2018: 25 taps on 2x3 flat pan and resurrected barrel arch
    2019: 25 taps...same setup plus DIY 3x150gpd RO filter
    2020: 50 taps, all buckets...same setup with 50
    2021: Planning for 100 taps (50/50) on 2x4 divided pan

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Location
    Fort Plain, NY, Montgomery County
    Posts
    658

    Default

    When we had our farm, we bought the first batch of these from a supplier we know. They clean them in an ultra sonic cleaner. I just bought Ron several for his birthday.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Wardensville, Wv
    Posts
    132

    Default

    We bought 100 with hooks for buckets and had 200 on lines, 100 or so of which were on vacuum. I have nothing bad to say about them, I'll be adding another 200 for next season!
    2022 - 500 taps and hopefully an RO so so i don't have to throw out any sap!
    2021 - 48 Gallons - new pans, new arch, lots of new taps and tubing
    2020 - 32 Gallons
    2019 - 27 Gallons

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Location
    Altamont, NY
    Posts
    581

    Default

    I have used stainless spouts on my lines since I started. Originally I purchased them from Bascom’s. They were made by a company in VT which has since gone out of business. I bought another batch from Smoky Lake and actually prefer those because they have a lip to grab onto so they can be pulled out more easily.

    At the end of the season I soak them in hot water and use a pipe cleaner to remove any gunk on the insides. Boil then lay them out on a few cookie sheets and dry in the oven. Seal in ziplock until next summer. I like the fact I’m not throwing away as much plastic every year.

    I see Bascom’s stainless spouts for $1 each. Even though you’d have to pay shipping, I’d recommend the Smoky Lake spouts.
    Last edited by stoweski; 05-01-2021 at 06:37 AM.
    Leader WSE 2x6 w/hoods
    12"x20" Mason Finisher
    250 taps.. Majority on tubing
    14'x20' sugarshack
    Kubota RTV900XT
    Home built Auto Drawoff
    Leader MicRO 2 RO
    www.mallardpondmaple.com

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