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Thread: Barrel or block?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2021
    Se Michigan

    Default Barrel or block?

    Last year was my first. Only have 6 taps so nothing big. I used a cement block with a steam pan. It worked well. This year I had the idea of using a barrel evaporator. Before I cut the barrel for the pans I am now second guessing myself and thinking I can simply sell the barrel as a barrel stove. Is a barrel stove any better than the cinderblocks? I would put sand in the bottom then line the bottom and sides with firebrick. Also, how long do you burn your barrels out to get the nasty out? Thanks for helping a newbie!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Wardensville, Wv


    I can give you my 2 cents. We started out with a block arch built on the ground. We filled the inside with earth and clay to make a ramp so the heat would stay close to the pan. It was significant amount of mass to bring up to temperature. I noticed right away when we went to a metal arch how much less wood/energy it took to put a boil on the pan. We never used steam pans, we had a flat divided pan. The whole contraption was a fire breathing monster, lol. The more you can do to keep the energy under the pan and contributing to your boil the more efficient you will operate, the fun is finding out how to do that without breaking the bank.
    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

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