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Discussion Starter #1
I can hear that song in my head now: There's a cute little girl she's a working there....... When I get back to the sugar shack.......

I have been tapping trees on my property for a couple years now and evaporating sap down to syrup the hard way. In buffet serving trays on an open fire. It took 10 hours a day to get 30 - 35 gallons boiled down to syrup.

So wanting to expand to get more than a couple gallons a year it's time to up grade the whole process.

First I purchased a hobby evaporator that will boil off 9 gallons of water an hour. 1/3 the time it took the other way. The evaporator will be here middle September.

Now a place to put it. How about a 12 X 16 foot sugar shack. That's the plan but could change in the process. But a 12x16 seems to be the best fit.

So to start the project I started up my Deer 1023e and headed down to the back lot.

First I had to move a couple small rocks. So on went the grapple. Here is one of the little critters:

DSC_0272.JPG

Then I had to move my compost piles from the shack location.

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Then scrape off the surface soil:

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I decided to place the shack on 12" on 1-1/2 inch crushed stone. So I dug down 8 inches so the stone will only be 4 inches above grade when done. I'm doing it this way because in real big rain storms the location puddles with water. I'm solving that with the crushed rock and drainage pipes that lead out the back corner into the lower woods.

Here is the excavation. I did all the work then put a laser level on it. I must be good:cool: because the entire area is level to within 1 inch.:good2:


DSC_0265.JPG

I'm hoping that the rock will get here by end of this week and I can build the base. I'll post more pics then.

When I get back from a short trip I'll build the floor base and Order the wood for the shack. I'm going to use rough cut pine from a local saw mill. They sell true dimension dried lumber for lower price than the stuff you can get from the big box stores.

That's it for now. My next post will be this weekend if the rock gets here. Other wise it'll be in about 3 weeks.


Steve
 

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Heh. I'm doing something similar.

I started building an evaporator out of an old 250 gal oil tank so I could use that instead of the buffet pans over a fire pit. My plan is to move that into my 10'x16' shed and build a new shed for yard tools.

So post lots of pics so I can steal some of your ideas! :laugh:
 

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Thanks for sharing the beginnings of your project. Looking forward to following along.

We did maple syrup for many year but on a very small scale. Just loved doing it as that time of year is so slow with the winter weather.
 

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How much ballast do you have in that ballast box? That 5 gallon bucket looks like it's down in there a pretty good way.

It does look like a fun job though. I love moving stuff with my FEL and/or forks. It just reminds me of playing with my trucks and tractors when I was little. You'd think that at 54 years old I'd be past that.
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
It was

How much ballast do you have in that ballast box? That 5 gallon bucket looks like it's down in there a pretty good way.

It does look like a fun job though. I love moving stuff with my FEL and/or forks. It just reminds me of playing with my trucks and tractors when I was little. You'd think that at 54 years old I'd be past that.
Empty the ballast box was. I took out some concrete blocks I had in the box and filled it with some of the crushed rock. Someday when I feel like doing it I'll empty it again and fill with about 7 bags of concrete.

The crushed stone worked OK for this job. The rear end was a bit light :pray:eek:n a couple loads but manageable.


Steve
 

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Deere Ol Man - Love the pictures and your project. Wondering if you're going to pour concrete on that 1.5" rock or just the rock as a high and dry self draining pad.

I'm doing a similar pole shop/ag building soon and was thinking 4" of rock, 3/4' minus. Wondering if I should do 5-6", a load of 1.5" minus followed by 3/4" minus? Then 4" + of concrete on top of that. Lot's of :rain: here and I only get on chance.

Keep us posted . . . . :cowboy:
 

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Empty the ballast box was. I took out some concrete blocks I had in the box and filled it with some of the crushed rock. Someday when I feel like doing it I'll empty it again and fill with about 7 bags of concrete.

The crushed stone worked OK for this job. The rear end was a bit light :pray:eek:n a couple loads but manageable.


Steve
I just have gravel in mine. With the extension it comes in somewhere around 1000 pounds. Don't think I could get much more out of concrete.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
High and Dry

Deere Ol Man - Love the pictures and your project. Wondering if you're going to pour concrete on that 1.5" rock or just the rock as a high and dry self draining pad.

I'm doing a similar pole shop/ag building soon and was thinking 4" of rock, 3/4' minus. Wondering if I should do 5-6", a load of 1.5" minus followed by 3/4" minus? Then 4" + of concrete on top of that. Lot's of :rain: here and I only get on chance.

Keep us posted . . . . :cowboy:
I dug down about 6-8 inches and laid rocks with a perimeter purf drain pipe then laid down 10 inches on stone. I'm going to build right on top of that. The drain pipe goes out the back corner and empties right into the woods which are lower than the gravel bed.

Stay with the thread and you'll see how I do it on this project.

Steve
 

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Discussion Starter #10
The bed is done

Was able to get the bed done. The drain pipe was a problem. I purchased what I thought would be good enough cause I was only going to have a few inches of gravel over it. When I was leveling the bed I crushed the pipe with the weight of the tractor. So we dug the pipe up and laid in the heavy duty stuff.

Here is the spousel unit helping with the leveling using the laser and ruler.

DSC_0279.jpg

The next job will be building the floor structure.

Maybe next week.

Steve
 

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I turned a 250 oil tank into an evaportator that cooks a 2x4 pan. They work incredibly well. Make sure you line it with fire brick.

Nice project. I need to build a sugar shack to up my syrup game. I'll be watching this thread.
 

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Was able to get the bed done. The drain pipe was a problem. I purchased what I thought would be good enough cause I was only going to have a few inches of gravel over it. When I was leveling the bed I crushed the pipe with the weight of the tractor. So we dug the pipe up and laid in the heavy duty stuff.

Here is the spousel unit helping with the leveling using the laser and ruler.

View attachment 232681

The next job will be building the floor structure.

Maybe next week.

Steve
"Spousal Unit" Yep, must be a Military background. Almost forgot that one.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Horse before the barn

Yup that's me. Getting the horse before the barn is built. Spousal unit wanted a little time off so we came north to the New Hampshire lake house. I did bring the fishing boat so we'll be doing a little of that. Pics later.

However we are going to pick up the maple sap evaporator from the manufacturer while we are here. That just so happens to be about 8 miles from the lake house. I'll have to store it in the garage until the shack is built. I'll be building the floor system in a couple weeks. I will be ordering the framing material in a week from the saw mill. Then the real fun begins. Barn raising time. Friends and a cookout. Then complete the fine details over the winter.


This was just to keep folks up-to-date.


Steve
 

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The center Attraction.

This is what all the building is for. It's not very big but will do a good job.

The shack is big cause I want room for when I'm making syrup then need to store all the stuff that is used to collect and transport the sap.


The maple arch. OK how do you rotate pics so they are properly displayed???

Steve

DSC_0353.jpg
 

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There's not much you can do about picture rotation sometimes. All you can do is make sure to use a phone in the correct orientation (bottom of phone to the right when taking a landscape photo) and previewing your post before posting. Sometimes I have to rotate an image 360 and save it on my computer before it'll post in the correct orientation. Previewing will catch and allow you to fix it before posted. Once it's posted, it is what it is. The staff can edit it, but we have to download it, rotate it, delete your original, re-upload the image to your post, then save it. This is why you don't see all the images that are turned on the forum corrected. It's not hard, but it is very time consuming, especially on a post with a bunch of pics.
 

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Discussion Starter #17 (Edited)
Set down blocks

My son came over and we set and leveled the blocks for the foundation. Then placed and squared the 4x4s for the base. This took some time to make sure all the blocks were level. Laser levels the a God send for this type if work.

It looks like some of the blocks/4x4s have space between them. They don't, it's that the 4x4s have rounded edges where tree bark used to be.

Steve

DSC_0348.jpg

Pictures taken the next day with the Spouse unit standing next to the temp electrical connection. The location for the shack if next to where we had a pool which had electric service run underground to it many years ago. It's a 12 AWG underground cable run 100 feet from the main box on the house. It will be re-routed to inside the shack when complete.


DSC_0349.jpg

Spousal unit and I built the basic frame and squared it. We will complete it when the rains is gone in a day or two.

DSC_0351.jpg

the obligatory pic with the John Deer at work...


DSC_0352.jpg
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Thanks

There's not much you can do about picture rotation sometimes. All you can do is make sure to use a phone in the correct orientation (bottom of phone to the right when taking a landscape photo) and previewing your post before posting. Sometimes I have to rotate an image 360 and save it on my computer before it'll post in the correct orientation. Previewing will catch and allow you to fix it before posted. Once it's posted, it is what it is. The staff can edit it, but we have to download it, rotate it, delete your original, re-upload the image to your post, then save it. This is why you don't see all the images that are turned on the forum corrected. It's not hard, but it is very time consuming, especially on a post with a bunch of pics.

Thanks dieselshadow,

The pic in question was taken with a Cannon camera. The cam was held sideways to properly orientate the subject with the camera format. In the future I'll take pics for posting holding the camera upright and then crop in Photo shop for posting. I think that will work.

Steve
 

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Nice project for your sugar shack. Which laser level are you using? Do you have a website link?
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Black & Decker

Nice project for your sugar shack. Which laser level are you using? Do you have a website link?
Black & decker, Crossfire.

Not sure which store I got it from but I think it was Home D. Google it and you will find.

It is several years old so I suggest you should looks round. They cost anywhere $80 to $200+. Mine was about $85. However for that you could get a newer model much better than mine.


Steve
 
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