Vacuum and gravity “pull” sap down lateral lines. Friction “uses up” energy. The energy that is lost in this case is vacuum (gravity is constant). Reducing friction in the tubing system preserves energy and preserves vacuum further up the line. If making tubing larger or smoother due to cost or implementation issues, the next best way to reduce friction in tubing is to reduce turbulence, especially at fittings. This can be readily achieved through two simple modifications. The first method is to incorporate a bevel into the entrance and exit of all fittings. The second modification is to incorporate an arc where sap streams meet.
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Ten years ago, 3/16” diameter tubing was introduced to the marketplace as an alternative tubing to 5/16” diameter tubing. However, recent research shows that sap production in 3/16” tubing drops off as soon as the second year after installation due to microbial growth. A replacement for 3/16” diameter tubing in gravity systems could be 1/4” tubing. With almost twice the aperture of 3/16” tubing (0.049 sq inches compared to 0.0275 sq inches), 1/4″ inch tubing is less likely to plug from microbes yet is still able to create a full column of sap for gravity vacuum. Quarter-inch tubing is currently not available for maple producers but can be procured from other industries and, with modifications, will work for maple production.
At Leader’s Spring Open House, three top experts in tubing and woods management – Glen Goodrich, Mark Erlsten, and Jon Rybkiewicz – sat down for a little over an hour and shared loads of invaluable information on all aspects of installing tubing, tapping trees, and best woods practices.
Since 1958 the North American Maple Syrup Producers Manual has served as a basic reference source for the production of pure maple products. This 2022 edition provides up-to-date, science-based information and recommendations relating to all aspects of the industry. The guidelines presented will help users ranging from the hobby and beginning producer level to those well-established in the industry. In addition, the information herein will benefit foresters, land managers, Extension and outreach personnel, and others aiming to provide assistance to those in the maple industry. Numerous photographs, tables, a glossary and hyperlinks to selected source materials are included.
This publication is also available in print, at www.mapleresearch.org/ordermanual.
Comprehensive video on how to make the most of your sugaring season, covering tapping, tubing, and efficient boiling.
Dr. Tim Perkins presents an overview of recent research activities at the UVM Proctor Center at the 2020 Vermont Maple Conferences.
A collection of videos from the 2020 VT maple conference.
Adam Wild, the director of Cornell University’s Uihlein Maple Research Forest located in Lake Placid, NY, shares information about basic tubing design and installation for both gravity and vacuum systems.
How to collect the most sap possible using efficient techniques.
Increasing the yield of sap from maple trees is the goal of most maple producers. While getting there isn’t a matter of one simple thing, by
following best management practices and paying attention to detail it is possible to increase sap yields, often quite dramatically. Includes links to videos.