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Country Discussion Topics
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Yoke -type of wood
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Brad W Wi    Posted 12-15-2003 at 04:23:37       [Reply]  [Send Email]
I got someone to make me a yoke for carring maple sap this spring. But what type of wood should it be made of? He suggested soft maple but I'm wondering if it can hold up. I'm thinking maybe ash. Can anyone help out?What were the old ones made of/

TimV    Posted 12-15-2003 at 10:09:25       [Reply]  [No Email]
Brad: Ash or hickory are the best choices, but I've seen yokes made from hard maple before. I suppose soft maple would also work--the wood isn't that much different.
Salmoneye: I hear you on the 5-gallon pails! We ran 2000 taps on buckets, and another 500 on tubing when I was a kid. 1986 was the last year we ran the woods, as my grandfather was getting up in age and it looked like a lot of work for him, particularly with lower syrup prices at the time. Hauling two 5-gallon (or even better, 7 1/2 gallon "pickle pails")through 4 feet of snow on bearpaw snowshoes is a whole lot closer to work than I like to get!

Wait wait...    Posted 12-15-2003 at 10:49:58       [Reply]  [No Email]
You had SNOWSHOES???



Salmoneye, The Envious

TimV    Posted 12-15-2003 at 10:57:50       [Reply]  [No Email]
I'm not sure if "envious" would be my first choice of words. Actually, the art of walking through a sugarbush with snowshoes on is apt to provoke quite a few choice words....... There's not a whole lot of choice when you've got more than a couple of feet of snow. In hard winters, we'd have 4' or more in drifts, and trying to get through that much without showshoes is nearly impossible. Of course, walking with two full pails of sap and a crust on the snow (just enough to make you break through it at every step) and an old pair of floppy-harness snowshoes comes pretty close to impossible as well! On the other hand, it could be worse. Our woods is reasonably flat. A neighbor's woods consists of two parts--half straight up and the other half straight down. Try walking up and down a 45 degree incline with all of the above (sap, snow, and shoes) and by the end of the day you're about ready to drop.

STOP IT!    Posted 12-15-2003 at 12:40:42       [Reply]  [No Email]
You're making me all nostalgic for the 'good old days'...*sniff*... ;-)

Pass me a tissue please...

Salmoneye, Who Never Saw Snowshoes Till He Bought Some Years Too Late

Brad W Wi    Posted 12-15-2003 at 07:29:48       [Reply]  [Send Email]
I like using pails it's the way I learned to do it. I have to carry 2- 5gal pails no more than 100 yards. I run 50 pails this year but will be doing 150 next year when I retire.There is nothing wrong with tubing but I'm a traditionalist when it comes to things I like doing.Thanks for your help on the type of wood

Salmoneye    Posted 12-15-2003 at 07:57:24       [Reply]  [No Email]
Not a problem...

I certainly learned on buckets too...Back in High School a couple friends and I ran 1300 buckets and gathered with a 250 gallon tank behind a Ford 9N...

Getting too dang old for carrying 2 full 5 gallon buckets while crotch deep through snow...


Les    Posted 12-15-2003 at 14:09:00       [Reply]  [No Email]
We never used no tractor or horses or oxen. Everything of ours was uphill of the sugar house except for a few right around it. We had pipe out...3 different lines. One was a "permanent" iron pipline which was more of a pain than it was worth. It was always freezing or breaking at a coupling or whatever.
Anyway, all of ours could be gathered and dumped into holders to run down hill to the camp. Gravity did most of the work. Later we had plastic pipe and tubing. Much more trouble-free. Just had to check and make sure the squirrels and mice hadn't raised he11 with it. Or it hadn't come apart somewhere.

Salmoneye    Posted 12-15-2003 at 04:35:42       [Reply]  [No Email]
Ash or hickory...

That said...How far are you carrying?...Most people just use a couple of 5 gallon buckets if they have to carry at all...

Have you looked at tubing?...Let me tell you what...If at all possible, I highly recommend it...

Brad W Wi    Posted 12-16-2003 at 03:20:10       [Reply]  [No Email]
All that complaining about carring those pails. I'm willing to bet none of you would trade those memories for anything, or if you could relive it would you even change it. The older you get the softer the memories are.

TimV    Posted 12-16-2003 at 06:24:28       [Reply]  [No Email]
Brad: You're right, of course. The times in the sugarbush were some of the best of my life. However, I don't know about the memories getting softer--I can still feel the frozen fingers, sore knees, and arms streched out long enough to scratch your kneecaps standing straight up! On the flip side, there's nothing like the taste of wax on snow, or coffee made with partly-boiled sap, or the feeling of accomplishment when the last bucket is emptied for the day. Sugaring is like life in general--take the good with the bad, and if the good comes out a little bit ahead, you're doing just fine.

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