How Aerial Systems Work

Aerial tubing systems should set up so that at every step in the process the sap is flowing down hill or is under some sort of positive pressure. Dips in the line will reduce flow dramatically.
How Aerial Systems Work - Articles

Updated: August 24, 2017

It is usually best to plan the tubing system prior to installations; however, many producers will lay up their systems with minimal planning. This requires both experience and some patience, as most people will find numerous mistake after the system is in place.

In general a tubing systems consists of a storage tank with a mainline feeding sap. The mainline (also called conduit) is larger than the tubing and is designed to carry the production of many trees. Because it is more expensive than tubing, care should be taken to use it economically. Remember that while larger tubing is more expensive per linear foot, it is less expensive per unit of sap that it can carry. So when fewer mainlines can be sued to perform the same function, this is an economical alternative. Along the mainline are connected numerous laterals. These laterals perform the function of connecting groups of about 10 taps to a mainline. While producers often use lateral to connect 100 or more taps, the most efficient number is approximately 10 taps per laterals.

These laterals are stretched tight in a pattern that goes from tree to tree and that allows the tubing to be held tight by the sugar maple trees. At the end of a lateral, a special connector (numerous types can be used) is used to end the lateral. While or after this tubing is being installed, tee connectors are added to allow a place to add a dropline. Droplines are sections of tubing about 18 inches long that are attached at one end to a tree connector and at the other end to a spile. After the tap hole is drilled into the tree, this spout is tapped into the tap hole.

The sap runs from the tree through a spile and into the dropline, from there it does into the lateral through a mainline connector through the mainline and into the storage tank. When planning a system always discuss the system with your distributor and other producers Also consider using an artificial vacuum.