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Thread: Electric float

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    ohio
    Posts
    106

    Default Electric float

    I'm looking at getting a new evaporator and was wondering about electric float control. Has anyone any experience with them and would you recommend them? Thanks in advance for any help.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Apr 2019
    Location
    Nashville, MI
    Posts
    944

    Default

    I haven't ever seen an electric float control, unless you are referring to a float switch, like when a head tank gets low and it will kick on a pump to refill the head tank.
    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 ga.l syrup
    2021 - Didn't work out
    2022 - 25 taps on bags / 8 taps on 3/16's line - late start

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Mar 2011
    Location
    North Grenville, Ontario
    Posts
    976

    Default

    I had a look at one of these when I was ordering my new evaporator. I decided not to get it , it’s super expensive and one more thing to clean and foul with niter build up.
    My float box has never really failed on me so don’t think it would be worth it.
    https://www.cdlinc.ca/wp-content/upl...el-control.pdf
    600 taps on vacuum
    Lapierre mechanical Releaser
    CDL electric releaser
    2.5 x 10 CDL Venturi ( new for the 2024 season )
    Home made modulating auto draw off
    Homemade RO 2 x 4" membranes
    CDL 16 x 16 bottler
    Wesfab 7" filter press
    Delaval 73 vacuum pumps

    12 hives of bees

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Vermont
    Posts
    189

    Default

    I guess to answer the original question I need more information on what you are looking for (are you getting a 3x10 evap or a 6x16, what level do you concentrate to, raiser flue to drop flue, are your woods heavy on niter or light, how much syrup a night are you looking to make, are you good with wiring because these will have a issue one day, are you getting burner cut outs for low level, anything else im missing)

    I'll tell you my story.

    Seen them and refused them in part when I got a new evap last year. It should work fine for the flue pan feeding, but from that transition to the syrup pan when (not if but when) it gets clogged with niter chunks it will (not may) be a problem. My issue with that is that because its not overly visible (to see when its clogged) and the syrup is coming out there in not much time to say o F*#K. Everyone's experience is different of course but the only why I would use one between the flue and syrup pans is if were 3 inch minimum (I do not have an over large evap at 5x14 but I get a lot of niter flakes) and had a glass pipe so I could see when it was clogged. Just a heads up the burner low level cut outs work great for a flue pan but are useless for a syrup pan. Now if I was looking for a smaller evap and only concentrating to about 8% and didn't get much niter I wouldn't worry much, it would work fine. I know large producers that have used them with success, but for me it didn't fit and I'm glad I didn't go that route.

    All a long response to say sure I'd recommend it if you want it and it fits your operation. No I didn't choose it for myself.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    ohio
    Posts
    106

    Default

    The bottom of my concentrate tank is approx 4 ft higher than the evaporator. When full you can add another 12 ft of head. The result is the concentrate has too much pressure for my float valve. I have to control the level in my evaporator via a manual valve which requires constant attention as the level of concentrate changes. This is why I am thinking an electronic valve might be a good idea for me if they actually work well.

    I am looking at either a 3x12 or 3x14 raised flue using natural gas. Currently running 10% but planning to upgrade RO to where I will have 20% concentrate. My niter seems to vary from year to year. This year not too bad, Couple years ago it was terrible. Electrical will be no problem.
    Last edited by ldick; 05-14-2023 at 03:46 PM.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2015
    Location
    Vermont
    Posts
    189

    Default

    Given the situation you have described. I would say (this is just a recommendation do whatever you would like with your money) go with the eclectic valve to feed the flue pan, and a regular float bow between the flue and syrup pans. It's a hybrid set up but will yield the best results for you I feel.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Location
    Williamsburg, MA
    Posts
    227

    Default

    I have been using one for over 20yrs. Would never go back to a float .Have less than $500 invested
    Paul & Serena
    Sugaring for over 50 years.
    4000+ taps on vacuum
    4 Airtech Vacuum Pumps
    4 X 12 Force 5 with D&G Pans
    Lapierre 1200 GPH RO

    www.paulssugarhouse.com

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    Princeton, MA
    Posts
    495

    Default

    I make a head tank controller for ac or dc pumps. Worked out very well last season, did not have to worry about tank level at all.

    Dave
    Mountain Maple farm
    2022 NAMSC award winning dark amber syrup
    2023: 320 taps, 70% red maples. Mountain Maple S4 diaphragm pump controller with automated sap transfer and text messaging
    Website:
    https://www.mountainmaplefarm.com
    https://www.facebook.com/MountainMapleFarm/

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Feb 2019
    Location
    Murrysville, Pennsylvania
    Posts
    480

    Default

    I built a controller for my natural gas evaporator that senses the head tank level and will shut off the gas if it gets too low. Huge safety feature I wouldn't want to be without. If the power fails and comes back on, it's designed to stay off until I manually reset it. No worries about gas leaks.
    D. Roseum
    www.roseummaple.com
    ~100 taps on 3/16 custom temp controlled vacuum; shurflo vacuum #2; custom nat gas evap with auto-drawoff and tank level gas shut-off controller; homemade RO #1; homemade RO #2; SL SS filter press
    2021: 27.1 gallons
    2022: 35 gallons

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