This week we started boiling in the new sugar shack. There is no instruction manual for building all this stuff from scratch so its always a work in progress.
From the video you will here a couple of things I will change for next year :
- re-build the manifold out of copper
- raise the two 55 gallon tanks and put a fill location higher.
- Add a filter on the input
- double the number of trees tapped to 40
- possible have a custom pan made
- Add redundancy on important tools
that last one bit us. I have (or should I say had) only one hydrometer which is used for testing the syrup. I dropped it 1/4 inch in the test beaker and it cracked. Without we were out of luck.
We checked around but did not find anywhere local that stocked them so called a friend around the corner who has a much larger operation and he had one we could borrow.
He taps almost 5000 tress and processes 2000 gallons of sap. Next year he is looking to double the size of his operation. I took a couple of photos of his evaporator. It was an impressive setup but like ours you could tell it was a work in progress.
Back at our place we worked late into the night.
Our setup requires we pay attention. We got busy for a little bit and had a boil over on our last pan and lost about a gallon of syrup. In the end we are up to about two gallons and we have only one week left that we can work. So we may end up a little short.
Thats why I would like to add another 20 buckets next year. I want to make sure we can hit our 5 gallon target. We might hit it this year but I kind of doubt it. Probably will be between 3 and 4.
Its always a learning process and eventually we will figure it all out… then we will change it and have to learn it all again 🙂
In the video I mentioned I would not be posting a finishing video this year as I had done one last year and the year before. Here is last years video