Posts Tagged ‘maple syrup’

Making Maple Syrup Part 1 – Tapping Trees


The first step in making maple syrup is getting some sap. So, here is a quick how-to segment on tapping trees for maple syrup.


1 bucket with lid (mine is 5 gal)

5 ft of 3/8 OD 1/4″ ID Poly tubing

1 3/8″ – 1/4″ reducing barbed fitting

1 1/4″ barbed – thread fitting

3/8″ drill bit

15/32″ drill bit (of whatever your threaded fitting needs)


some tape

Below is a video explaining how to set up a bucket and tap one tree. I’ll use a barbed tee as well but only because I’m putting multiple taps in one tree.

Tapping Trees


I was talking with Jaimie this weekend about the weather. We are both very excited that it’s warming up. Then, suddenly, it occurred to me that with the warm up would come prime sap season!

Happy Valentine’s Day Hon … I’ll be outside with power tools.

I’m glad it occurred to me because as soon as I drilled into the tree it started flowing as fast as ever. I was able to prep two new buckets, and finish washing up the equipment from last year, as well as putting two taps in one tree. Assuming I get time before it’s dark, I hope to get the remaining three trees tapped tomorrow.

The syrup was a hit last year and we were only able to give away half pints to our family. We would really love to have more to give away (not to mention more for Saturday morning pancakes!). So the only solution is to collect more sap. Last year we had two taps running for two weeks. This year I got an earlier start and we’ll have 6 taps in total. So, I have high hopes of a good output.

Maple syrup equipment


It’s about that time of year when it feels like there is no end to the winter. This is the time of year I start thinking about spring. The first time to prepare for this spring is maple syrup. So, today I got out the equipment from last year to check if over, start cleaning, and plan for new equipment.

New for this year, I’ll add two more sap collection buckets. I have a couple food grade buckets that I intend to make into sap collection buckets. When I do that I’ll make a quick video of the process. Also, I plan to get a propane burner to make the process of boiling down the sap much quicker.

In the mean time, here is the current equipment from last year. Instead of hanging buckets, I went with a tube and fitting method. I tap the trees with a barbed fitting and run a hose down to the bucket. Since you can leave the lid on the buckets it helps keep the sap clean. Also, it means you can have multiple taps run into one bucket to make collecting easier.

Here is the bucket end, the fitting has a 1/4″ barb on one end and threads on the other.

Here is the tree end, the fitting is 1/4″ barb on one end for the hose and 3/8″ on the other for inserting into the tree.

Syrup making day …


This weekend I set up the grill, in the empty woodshed (out of the rain), and boiled down the sap we’ve been collecting. I boiled down about 35 quarts over a day and a half. Unfortunately, the grill wouldn’t get it to a rolling boil, so it went slower than I had hoped.

Once it was down to a reasonable amount, I brought it inside to finish.

Once it had boiled down enough, I put it in jars and processed it in the canner just for good measure.