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Thread: If you do everything right can you still end up with nitre?

  1. #1
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    Default If you do everything right can you still end up with nitre?

    If you finish the syrup to the proper Brix range,(66-68.9), filter it well, then bottle it between 185 and 190°, can you still end up with nitre?

    Thanks

    Gary

  2. #2
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    Jan 2017
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    Williston, VT
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    You might not have any niter problems with only 50 to 100 taps.
    Ken & Sherry
    Williston, VT

    2017 - 13 gallons on 65 taps (12 buckets, rest 3/16), 2x4 flat bottom, modified cargo box sugarhouse
    2018 - 90 gallons on 418 taps (gravity lines), Leader 30"x10' Vortex Arch & Max Raised Flue with Rev Syrup Pan, New Sugarhouse
    2019 - Burned through alot more money: heated kitchen, 2x2,000 and 375 gal ss sap tanks, CDL1200 RO, Bauch Vac Pump, More taps, etc., etc., etc.
    https://www.facebook.com/pumpkinhillmaple/

  3. #3
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    Murrysville, Pennsylvania
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    You will still get niter. Perhaps your buildup in your pans won't be that bad if you clean them out frequently (every boil or so). However you will absolutely have nitre in your syrup. Its unavoidable and a natural byproduct from the boiling process. That is why you have to filter. And even with the best gravity filtering methods using pre-filters and high quality orlon filters, you will still have a small amount of nitre settle out of the syrup over time. Using diatomaceous earth (filter aide- special maple grade) helps a ton, especially when used in filter presses and vacuum filters.
    D. Roseum
    www.roseummaple.com
    ~100 taps on 3/16 custom temp controlled vacuum; custom nat gas evap with temp and level controllers; homemade RO; SL SS filter press
    2021: 27.1 gallons

  4. #4
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    This is an interesting topic.

    I don't doubt that there will be nitre in the syrup. That isn't what I call a nitre problem since syrup should always be filtered which should address any problem, particularly if you are using a filter press.

    My point is that I never even noticed nitre when I had only a small pan and less than a 100 taps. On a larger operation you'll have the serious nitre showing up in the syrup pan and I've heard about nitre problems in the flue pan too, particularly in the later season. The nitre can be so extreme that the plates of nitre impede flow through the float box and may be crusted around the end of the flues too. That's when you can have a real problem. I think that this level of problem typically occurs when you upgrade to vacuum and RO which results in a lot more niter minerals passing through the evaporator. Without RO you will need insane hours of boiling to get the nitre nuisance problems in the evaporator. The other problem I always had with a small divided single-pan evaporator was that the extreme boiling times in a single pan would result in very cloudy dark syrup which is why most people finish the syrup in a separate setup.

    A good question for our research experts is whether vacuum/RO systems experience more nitre problems because of concentrating higher volumes of lower sugar sap -

    Specifically: Are sugars and nitre mineral concentration in raw sap proportional? When your sugar drops off does the nitre stay the same, or maybe even higher? Therefore, when we squeeze the 1% sugar sap in the last boils of the season are the nitre mineral concentrations even higher?


    Ken
    Ken & Sherry
    Williston, VT

    2017 - 13 gallons on 65 taps (12 buckets, rest 3/16), 2x4 flat bottom, modified cargo box sugarhouse
    2018 - 90 gallons on 418 taps (gravity lines), Leader 30"x10' Vortex Arch & Max Raised Flue with Rev Syrup Pan, New Sugarhouse
    2019 - Burned through alot more money: heated kitchen, 2x2,000 and 375 gal ss sap tanks, CDL1200 RO, Bauch Vac Pump, More taps, etc., etc., etc.
    https://www.facebook.com/pumpkinhillmaple/

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2016
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    chester, ma
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    Quote Originally Posted by Swingpure View Post
    If you finish the syrup to the proper Brix range,(66-68.9), filter it well, then bottle it between 185 and 190°, can you still end up with nitre?

    Thanks

    Gary
    I think you're asking about nitre in your bottles? Can you explain what your concern is? Filtering and bottling finished syrup is standard operating procedure and does not result in syrup with significant nitre in the bottle.

    Gabe
    2016: Homemade arch from old woodburning stove; 2 steam tray pans; 6 taps; 1.1 galls
    2017: Same setup. 15 taps; 4.5 galls
    2018: Same setup. Limited time. 12 taps and short season; 2.2 galls
    2019: Very limited time. 7 taps and a short season; 1.8 galls
    2020: New Mason 2x3 XL halfway through season; 9 taps 2 galls
    2021: Same 2x3, 18 taps, 4.5 galls
    2022: 23 taps
    All taps on buckets

  6. #6
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    chester, ma
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    That said, the filtering and bottling process is a finicky one, and you may wind up with nitre in some of your bottles until you get the kinks worked out (I certainly did). Making syrup is like cooking, it doesn't always come out the same, and it takes time to develop the skills to get the consistent results you like.

    GO
    2016: Homemade arch from old woodburning stove; 2 steam tray pans; 6 taps; 1.1 galls
    2017: Same setup. 15 taps; 4.5 galls
    2018: Same setup. Limited time. 12 taps and short season; 2.2 galls
    2019: Very limited time. 7 taps and a short season; 1.8 galls
    2020: New Mason 2x3 XL halfway through season; 9 taps 2 galls
    2021: Same 2x3, 18 taps, 4.5 galls
    2022: 23 taps
    All taps on buckets

  7. #7
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    Mar 2016
    Location
    Central Wisconsin
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    And if you do end up with a small amount of niter in your own personal syrup, big whoop. Best thing I've done for a hobbyist is go to the settling method for ridding the syrup of niter.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
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    Williston, VT
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wannabe View Post
    And if you do end up with a small amount of niter in your own personal syrup, big whoop. Best thing I've done for a hobbyist is go to the settling method for ridding the syrup of niter.
    I once had the opinion that unfiltered (or less filtered) meant more robust maple flavor. That changed when I got my first filter press and realized the huge boost in quality. The filter press is the single most important piece of equipment for creating a quality product in my sugar house. A filter press is also used to filter the sweet during mid season pan cleaning and makes an even better and more consistent finished product. There are some small moderate priced filter presses for hobby operations and I recommend one.
    Ken
    Ken & Sherry
    Williston, VT

    2017 - 13 gallons on 65 taps (12 buckets, rest 3/16), 2x4 flat bottom, modified cargo box sugarhouse
    2018 - 90 gallons on 418 taps (gravity lines), Leader 30"x10' Vortex Arch & Max Raised Flue with Rev Syrup Pan, New Sugarhouse
    2019 - Burned through alot more money: heated kitchen, 2x2,000 and 375 gal ss sap tanks, CDL1200 RO, Bauch Vac Pump, More taps, etc., etc., etc.
    https://www.facebook.com/pumpkinhillmaple/

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2021
    Location
    Parry Sound Area, Ontario
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    Quote Originally Posted by TapTapTap View Post
    A filter press is also used to filter the sweet during mid season pan cleaning and makes an even better and more consistent finished product. There are some small moderate priced filter presses for hobby operations and I recommend one.
    Ken
    What is the “sweet”?

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    Williston, VT
    Posts
    411

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Swingpure View Post
    What is the “sweet”?
    Sweet is anything in the evaporator. It's name is to indicate that it's sweeter than the input sap.
    Ken & Sherry
    Williston, VT

    2017 - 13 gallons on 65 taps (12 buckets, rest 3/16), 2x4 flat bottom, modified cargo box sugarhouse
    2018 - 90 gallons on 418 taps (gravity lines), Leader 30"x10' Vortex Arch & Max Raised Flue with Rev Syrup Pan, New Sugarhouse
    2019 - Burned through alot more money: heated kitchen, 2x2,000 and 375 gal ss sap tanks, CDL1200 RO, Bauch Vac Pump, More taps, etc., etc., etc.
    https://www.facebook.com/pumpkinhillmaple/

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