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Old August 28th, 2015, 03:28 PM
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Default Collecting Sap Tractor sinking

One part of my trails are just awful after 6 years of driving through with a 4X4 tractor. The ruts are 6" deep, and just fill up with water, and in some areas I almost bottom out with my tractor. I don't want to spend the money on a tracked vehicle. The furthest I have to go to collect sap is approx 80yds.
I have a water transfer pump, just wondering if I could jerry rig something. Any suggestions?
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Old August 28th, 2015, 06:34 PM
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Default collecting sap

Which is higher, the sugarhouse or where you need to pump from? If the net elevation is lower at the sugarhouse, just string a TF line, either all the way, or maybe just to a tank on the sugarhouse side of the wet spot you want to avoid. If the sugarhouse is up hill from the sap location, you need to pump it, or use vacuum and if necessary, a series of sap ladders. If the latter is needed, you might want to design it with a drain back into a container or 2 that you can carry, just to keep it from freezing in the line. A self priming pump will pull the air out and then pump the sap, as long as the lift does not exceed the pump's ability. That info will be in the pump specs, look for maximum lift.
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Last edited by Maple Flats; August 28th, 2015 at 06:39 PM. Reason: duplicate
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Old August 28th, 2015, 07:59 PM
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what about just drawing in stones and possibly gravel to collect? don't know what size tractor you have, but 6 inches isn't all that deep
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Old August 28th, 2015, 10:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Maple Flats View Post
Which is higher, the sugarhouse or where you need to pump from? If the net elevation is lower at the sugarhouse, just string a TF line, either all the way, or maybe just to a tank on the sugarhouse side of the wet spot you want to avoid. If the sugarhouse is up hill from the sap location, you need to pump it, or use vacuum and if necessary, a series of sap ladders. If the latter is needed, you might want to design it with a drain back into a container or 2 that you can carry, just to keep it from freezing in the line. A self priming pump will pull the air out and then pump the sap, as long as the lift does not exceed the pump's ability. That info will be in the pump specs, look for maximum lift.
The sugarhouse and the area where I have to pump from are just about level. However I have to pump 8 feet up into a holding tank once it gets to shack. Definetely need a pump of some sort.
I called a few construction companies in the area to see if they had fill they wanted to get rid of, so I could shore up the deep tracks,but all they have is clay, a big no thanks.
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Old August 29th, 2015, 12:37 AM
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I would call a big paving company that does Roto-Milling and see if they are giving the crap away. If you get the timing right they would rather give it away than haul it across town.
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Old August 29th, 2015, 02:03 AM
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dig a drain and dry out the ruts if possible. If you have any locust or cedar cut them into poles and lay them in the ruts and fill over with fill or dirt. Then lay some the opposite way and drive over them and run them in. Once the poles are encased in mud they will last for years as a type of paving. I have a ditch crossing made with locust poles that has been in use for years, it gets sloppy on top but is solid to run over.
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Old August 29th, 2015, 07:48 AM
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The first season in my sugar woods, I had a bulk tank collection point 360' away from the sugar house and 38' lower. I used an old woods road to get to the tank until spring thaw and then got my 4WD tractor buried up to the axle. That summer, I did just what Haynes suggested. Got some asphalt millings and put in a road. I laid down 6' wide geo textile right over the old roadway dirt and then put down about 4-6" of the asphalt millings. Those millings made a great road surface that is rock solid all sugar season. Two years ago, I did add a few buckets to one area that was too thin. But otherwise, after 12 seasons, the road is in perfect shape. That same summer, I also installed an electric line to pump the sap back to the sugar house. 360' of #10 UF wire and 1 1/4' black pipe. Takes about 20 minutes for a 1 HP pump to put 375 gallons of sap in the sugar house tank. The pipe does hold 23 gallons of sap, which I usually take out in 5 gal buckets after pumping.

If I remember correctly, I used about 4 loads of millings to put the road in. I did have to pay $70.00 for a 12 yard load.
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Old August 29th, 2015, 09:56 AM
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Get a cheap box blade or scraper blade for rear of your tractor and go over it a few times each spring. You can throw some grass seed on it too to help firm it up. If you do it every spring after syrup season it will give it plenty of time to settle and pack down.
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Old August 29th, 2015, 11:00 AM
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You said you only have 80 yards to the farthest point. That's not very far. Heres what I do, I call Cemstone and order 3'' recycle (crushed concrete) You would only need 2 loads. That's roughly 35 tons. Costs me $200 per load with delivery (9 miles 1 way) If you want to, dress it up with the smaller recycle and you have your own highway in the woods. In the real bad areas I lay down 10' of 12' chainlink fence, streach it and cover it with recycle. I know what your thinking, thats to expensive. Not really. Go to your local fence company and ask them to save it for you when they remove it from job sites. I paid a place $300 (scrap price) for 2,000' of 12' wide fence.
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Old August 29th, 2015, 11:42 AM
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The geo textile is real good stuff. The local timber companies around here use it and cover it with a couple inches of aggregate and run semi log trucks over it. My neighbor put a half mile road in with it 6-8 years ago and it's still good, but it only gets light use. A sugaring roads gets a lot of abuse. I wouldn't be surprised if tractor tires tear it up. I have one wet spot and a drain tile and the locust poles over it work great. Now doing a long run like that would be some work.
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