RicelandMeadows


2022 Maple Season Excitement
February 21, 2022, 2:31 pm
Filed under: February 2022 | Tags: , , , , ,

February 21, 2022

It is time to make maple syrup! We get excited every year for this season. There is one heck of a lot of work to do before the liquid gold is poured on pancakes, but this labor of love makes me smile every year. This year we frugally upgraded our maple sap gathering tank. Our old tank was galvanized and had begun to show the wear of many years of use. We bought the tank used ourselves and decided it was time to upgrade to stainless steel.

We looked into just buying a tank specialized just for this purpose. In fact last year at the close of our maple season, we ordered one. The manufacturer contacted me in late December to inform us that the rising cost of “everything” had caused them to have to more than double the cost of the tank. The new tank would have cost $3500.00 dollars! We cancelled our order. However, we still wanted to replace our old tank.

In the fencerow at a friends farm, I spied this old, small bulk tank. We made an agreement and I bought the tank for the cost of scrap. My buddy, who is a fabricator and welder, helped me rework the old tank. We welded the lids all in place. We cut a hole in the top panel to allow for this stainless steel drum. We drilled holes in the drum to act as a strainer and fill port for the tank. The barrel sits on four legs in the bottom of the tank making it removable.

The legs that the barrel sits on also hold a baffle on each side of the drum. This baffle is welded in the middle section of the tank and will hopefully prevent the slosh that comes with a big wave. The tank attaches to the sap sled/cart with a ratchet strap. A couple blocks give it more stability. It is possible that I will have to silicone caulk the top seams, but time will tell.

This project, the tank, the fabrication and welding cost me $250.00 and a dozen donuts. Sure, I have some time and some gasoline for automobile trips, but I am happy with this new rig. It accomplished our goal of switching to easy to clean and sanitize stainless steel on a farmer’s budget!

Our excitement continues as we set the maple syrup pans, clean everything in sight, tap the trees and complete other various tasks that must be done before we receive our sweet reward. Stay tuned, we will be sticky very soon!


2 Comments so far
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Good on you for finding a cheaper solution. If there is one thing I’ve learned living on a farm is it’s not what you make it’s what spend!! Or maybe it’s both! Can’t wait to see more on your maple syrup operation

Comment by Harry

Thank you! If you look around the BLOG some, you’ll find quite a bit to read from past seasons, but by all means, hang with us and watch for updates.

Comment by ricelandmeadows




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