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  1. 7 likes
    Jeff, Under a given set of conditions, there is an optimum cooking temperature and time to obtain the best quality of distillate and the best alcohol yield. I believe the question you have is about cooking small grains at high temperatures. There are a lot of ways to prepare grains for fermentation, but the simple goal of cooking is to gelatinize the starch granules, to make them available for hydrolysis by enzymes to convert to fermentable sugars but the complicated goal is to efficiently obtain proper gelatinization of starch, properly free up amino acids the yeast require, convert to fermentable sugars, reduce contamination and obtain a flavor extraction from the grains. The infusion mashing process we use, (simply cooking small grains at lower & proper temperatures), here at Wilderness Trail is designed around maximizing flavor first, energy second and time third. You do not have to boil your grains up to 210F and you certainly do not want to cook any of your small grains (wheat, rye, barley, malted barley, etc) in that range, again you can but it will not be the highest quality distillate you can obtain in the end if you do that. You can cook corn to 210F and it doesn't do much more than waste energy cooking it that high, part of the high heat is to sterilize the grains of bacteria and you take care of that around 190F and you only need to cook corn around 190F-185F for proper gelatinization, we cook our corn at 190F, it saves energy from going higher, we convert all of the available sugars and sterilize our grains, that is why you do it. For wheat the actual gelatinization range is 136F-146F but we start adding our wheat around 155-160F. For Rye the actual range is 135F-158F and we add and cook our Rye no higher than 160F for good reasons. Our Malted barley never goes in higher than 145F to preserve the enzymatic activity and to keep the grains intact. Think of it this way, gelatinization is like popping popcorn under water, its a dramatic change in the grains composition.. and throw in some smaller ductile grains like wheat or rye and you blow them apart under the same conditions as well as a lot of protein you don't want to break down. The reasons you do not cook grains beyond their proper gelatinization range is more about flavor than yield because if it is too rigorous, thermal decomposition of grain components will cause objectionable popcorn phenolic odors, yield is more impacted by poor grains, under cooking, poor conversion and yeast conditions. By using the infusion mashing process for small grains, you keep the branched chain amino acids and proteins in place with the grains that the yeast will use to properly make a flavorful result. If you boil your small grains, you are creating unbranched chain amino acids, degrading proteins and frankly blowing apart the flavor you are trying to extract. Small grains also get scorched very easy and there are Maillard effects that create all kinds of new chemicals from the high heat of small grains you don't want, plus why would you, the process doesn't require it. The yeast take these unbranched chain and Maillard effect's and turns them into higher alcohols (fusels) and other chemicals that alter the flavor and result of the beer & distillate. In short summary for our whiskeys, we cook our corn to 190F and hold that for 40 minutes, we cool to 160F by adding some water additions of the overall mashbill and add our wheat or Rye and hold that for 30 minutes, we add more water additions to get to 145F which is when we add our Malted Barley which rest for 30 minutes. We add the rest of our water additions for our ferm set and the chiller takes it down to 90F. We send that to our fermenters, which are set to hold at 85F for three day beer and 78F for 4-5 day beer. By shortening the initial cook of the total water, your initial cook is thicker, for us that is around 18 beer gallons and that allows you to use less energy to heat up the initial cook and reserve the rest of the water for cooling capacity as well as when you add your grains you are also using that to help cool your mash down. For example I mentioned we add our wheat at 160F but after the grains are added the temperature drops to around 150F+ and rest out to a little above 145F. We primarily make a wheated Bourbon but we also make a Rye Whiskey, which again even though the Rye will be the majority of grains, we still cook our smaller amount of Corn up to 190F and then cool it down to 160F before adding the majority of the mashbill of Rye. Infusion mashing is scientifically proven to offer a more flavorful distillate and smoother distillate, mainly for the reasons listed above. Shane Baker Co-Founder, Master Distiller Wilderness Trail Distillery
  2. 6 likes
    Thanks for the kind words, guys. What AC-DC and 3d0g refer to is that we've known each other for years on multiple hobbyist distillation forums. Starting with the old Yahoo Distiller and New Distiller forums (where I may still be a moderator) grown out of New Zealand home-distilling legalization, international hobby distilling forums have been a huge factor in developing and disseminating the theoretical and applied information that all of us now take for granted. Shortly after the turn of the century, there was so much awful, dangerous, and superstitious distillation misinformation running rampant, that it was seriously difficult to get good facts about our science/art. The situation was so bad that I wrote "Making Fine Spirits" (Amphora Society) just to give the beginner some trusted facts and procedures he could build on. While I can't prove it, I'm betting that most of the artisan distillers here started with information, first-, second-, or third-hand, that we hammered the BS out of in the hobby forums. Truth be known, I'm kinda proud of all of our efforts.
  3. 5 likes
    Hi folks, I recently discovered that the ADI forum has a "no badmouthing" policy. This doesn't sound bad, but in practice it allows sponsors of the forum to have any content they don't like removed, even objective reviews. After recently posting a negative experience with one of the forum sponsors, my post was removed and I was threatened by the sponsor with a lawsuit. But in the meantime I was contacted by several other distillers who have had even worse experiences with this particular company. I now know there are numerous lawsuits in the works against this company, which appears to be in the business of taking deposits and providing faulty, late or no equipment to its customers. Because of ADI's forum moderation policy, there are no candid reviews of this company on the forum. Presumably if other people have shared similar experiences they have been taken down. If I had known about other people's experiences, I would not have done business with them. Since this is the primary place where distillers talk to each other, having the ability to share negative experiences is absolutely critical to the industry. I asked Bill Owens to consider changing this policy, and he has not responded, so I thought it wise to post it here. Either the ADI forum needs to change its policy to allow for open dialogue and reviews of its sponsors, or we need to open a new forum that is not censored in this way. Thanks, Joel Vikre
  4. 3 likes
    First, he said he does not have the capital for that software, and I understand where he came from... I am not sure I agree with using the costly software for small folks starting out, a couple hundred dollars a month is great if it does everything and you have ten thousand a month coming in, but they don't do everything, they can't... You still have to do all the measuring, all the data entry, and you have to do it their way, they just do math and database recording... sure they fill out the reports, but in my opinion, you really need to do the reports yourself for at least a little bit, your name is still on them!... Oh, and from what I hear, don't try to go back and correct a mistake you found you made in one of those programs... worse than trying to correct something in your Retail POS system... I spend maybe an hour a week filling out basic daily log forms I created in excel for each kind of tracked activity: received fermentables, fermentations, transfers, stripping runs, whiskey runs, neutral runs, botanical runs, dilution, gauging and bottling runs, barreling and entry to storage, and removal from bond... In the beginning, it was well more than an hour, but you get good at it... those forms have no math, they are simple daily records that I print out a bunch of each type and keep in the distillery area, I do something on the list above, I fill it out by hand... (it is also a great thing to show people on tours to show the detail of records you keep to appease the government and why they should buy a bottle of something that is truly 'hand crafted!) Monthly, tonight, actually, I will take all those daily record sheets in my binder and last month's forms, and tally up totals.... I will go through my distillation records and total up any 'finished spirits' and open the 5110.40 "production", I will go through it and triple check everything.. I will go through my dilution, gauging, and bottling records and my 'removed from bond records and tally them up and I will fill out 5110.28 "processing".. I didn't fill any new barrels this month, so my 5110.10 'Storage' will have the same values that I ended with last month... I literally spent more time typing this than I probably will doing the reports tonight.... I have looked at putting my data into one of the lower cost systems like distillitrak. I probably will go with them eventually, but the startup is too time intensive at the moment, as the setup of vendors, every container, every ingredient, etc... are one thing, but every time you turn around to do something different, you have to go add this or that to your ingredients or vendors or items or whatever before proceeding, it really seems to hurt the artistic workflow of a small shop.... you should do it in excel sheets of your own making for a year or so, specifically so you know what the software you will likely eventually purchase is doing... The biggest reason I will eventually get a system is for more than 10 products and products at multiple proofs, that is where spreadsheets fail and a database shines... but even then, it will do things the operator does not understand, especially if the operator does not have an intimate understanding of how the daily records and monthly TTB forms relate to each other... OK, I spent an hour and a half writing this... time to do reports..
  5. 2 likes
    I bought five 1,000 gallon fermenters and a 1,000 gallon mash cooker from Corson Distilling. I've known them for the better part of 2 years now, since my first conversations with them, having equipment built, and using the equipment for about a year. I previously posted a review, which was taken down by the forum moderators at Corson's request. After my review, I received calls from several people who have had negative experiences with Corson, from receiving defective equipment late to putting down large payments and receiving nothing at all. Several of those people shared that they are filing lawsuits against Corson. Though Corson threatened me with legal action after my first review, there is nothing illegal about sharing my experience in a factual and dispassionate way. And I feel obligated to share my experience to help other distillers avoid the same difficulties. Thanks to ADI's changed forum rules, I hope that this review will remain available for people to see. 1. Delivery Delays Our equipment was delivered late, after much work on my part to encourage its completion. Well into the process I went to Boise in person because their communication made me worried they weren't making progress, to find they were essentially beginning work as I arrived. We ended up receiving the equipment several months after the delivery window, and only with an immense amount of followup on my part to ensure they got it done. 2. Design and Build Quality When we received the equipment, by and large the quality appeared to be good. There were a fair number of missing or incorrect parts, but they were very good about sending out replacements. Once we got the equipment on line, we found that there to be some design flaws on the mash/lauter tun. It was missing a sparge arm, the removable false bottom didn't fit in the tank, and actually broke during the first run, and the design of the rakes, motor and gearbox was inadequately powered to rake even a very small grain bed. The propellers for grain-in mashes also weren't able to keep the contents of the tank moving. Josh Corson and one of their technicians came out and fixed the false bottom, shored up the motor mounts, installed a sparge arm, and did some other minor fixes. After that, over numerous months, we worked with them to get a new gearbox, and to try and get a stronger motor. They did send some parts, but after a year of followup the lautering setup still doesn't work, and I ended up having to modify the propellers myself to get the agitator to work for grain-in mashes. There have been a few problems with the fermenters as well. First, though the design specifications were supposed to have 30% true headspace on top of a 1,000 gallon volume, they do not. Additionally, one of the fermenters developed a jacket leak. It turns out that when the tanks were originally built, Corson did not spot weld about 25% of the dimples on the cooling dimple jackets. So at the specified operating pressure of 15psi, the tanks have blown numerous spot welds, and developed a couple of leaks that we've identified so far. 3. Customer Service The biggest stress for me of this whole experience has been Corson's customer service. They respond to reasonable concerns and questions with anger, insults, and blaming the customer. The best way I can describe the experience is as gaslighting - they've made me feel crazy. We've gone through numerous account managers, who seem to leave as quickly as they come. But all along the way I've been blamed and belittled and made to feel insane for just asking them to build the equipment to specification and fulfill the warranty. When I presented the leaking jacket problem to them a couple months ago, they said I was free to send the tank back to them at my expense, and they would decide whether or not they would cover it under warranty. That of course would be much more expensive than just having it fixed on site. At that point I decided to post my review of them on the forum, after which they threatened me with a lawsuit and said they would no longer be honoring my warranty. I've subsequently fixed the leaking jacket and the propellers myself. In summary, I cannot recommend Corson Distilling. They did produce equipment for us, which we use every day, and I was initially pleased to be able to partner with a small American startup manufacturer. And they certainly made a good faith effort at the beginning to follow through and make things right. But the design issues, and most importantly the customer service, have made the experience overall a very negative one. I would welcome other people who have worked with them to share their experiences, positive or negative. Thanks, Joel Vikre Duluth Minnesota
  6. 2 likes
    not sure if this is relevant but we have a electric boiler that heats our hydronic water system have never ran it to produce steam but have used it to produce 200 degree water . at over a 1000 bucks a month to run it was shut off in no time , our power bills come in every 3 months so by time we got the power bill it was not good , almost a big brown splatter on the post office wall when i opened the bill , my opinion is dont use electricity do what you have to to avoid it burn the neighbours furniture to produce heat if you have to anything but electricity . lol tim
  7. 2 likes
    I applaud innovation and all this is potentially workable. At the same time, as I read through the posts, I am struck by the complexities and costs for a gallon of vodka a week, which probably will not be much better than a mid range shelf vodka (as already stated). If it's single malt then the complexity level increases quite a bit. It can take years to master a good grain recipe. So who is the market aimed at? Amateur home hobby distillers who do not care about time or costs seem to me to be only market; (and it well may be a valuable market). But I suspect that part of the home distillation hobby is not just for the liquor but for the "craft" value. Taking too much "craft" away diminishes the challenge and resulting satisfaction.Times are a changin', though; and this old bearded farmer knows better then to say never to any innovation. A younger, more tech hungry (and fast food trained) customer may be the niche. I don't know. I do know that your dialogue could be brought down to earth a little so we "simple" folk can better envision the product. Remember, some of your costumers are going to be looking their wives in the eye and listening to "YOU PAID HOW MUCH FOR IT??? To make WHAT??? You're going to put it WHERE??? WHY??? Science speak won't mean much then. Anyway, good luck.
  8. 2 likes
    Lots of threads on this site that compare the various distillery management systems. I would encourage you to also evaluate Hoochware - we use it and love it!
  9. 2 likes
    Just to let you know we have recently changed our terms of service for the forum which states that truthful reviews of vendors will be allowed on the forum going forward. However, posts that are vulgar, threatening harm, libel, etc. will be removed.
  10. 2 likes
  11. 1 like
    It'll be the death of me Southernhighlander, but fun while it lasts! There's nothing better than a good cigar and spirit pairing IMHO. Cheers!
  12. 1 like
    Larry Sputnik, Man that cigar whiskey glass thing you got goin on, is cool as shit. It looks like you are a guy who enjoys the finer things.
  13. 1 like
    Home distilling is legal in the state of MO. MO law plainly states that a person 21 years of age shall not be required to have a licence to distill spirits for his or her own personal consumption. An individual 21 years of age or older can make up to 100 gallons off distilled spirits per year in MO. Many people are home distilling here in MO. County Sheriffs here enforce state law and the Sheriff in my county does not have a problem with home distilling. Nor does the Prosecutor. I have spoken with the state ATC agent for our area and he and his agency have no problem with home distillers, as long as they fallow state law. The MO state Alcohol Tobacco Control (ATC) enforces state law. So John is distilling in his back yard and Nosy Nancy next door calls the Sheriff. The Sheriff checks it out and John is fallowing state law, so there's no problem as far as he is concerned. Nosy Nancy does not like that answer and so she calls the MO state Alcohol Tobacco Control. They have no problem with it, so Nancy calls the TTB. The TTB directs her to the MO state ATC who have no problem with it. So in effect, home distilling is legal here in MO. It's no different than the 29 states that have legalized cannabis. The feds are not busting pot shops and dispensaries in states where it is legal, so it is in effect legal in those states. The states Attorney General tried to stop the legalization of cannabis in AZ because it was illegal under federal law, and it went to court. Basically the judge said, precedent has been set by many other states and he denied the States Attorney general the ability to stop the legalization on the grounds that it was illegal under federal law. Since the founding, the states have assertied, at many different points in our history, that nullification was absolutely constitutional. Both Thomas Jefferson and James Madison believed in the rights of states to nullify federal law. since the 1990s, states have in effect nullified federal Marijuana laws. As far as I know the feds have not charged anyone in MO who is fallowing state law concerning home distilling. MO has in effect nullified federal law concerning home distilling But really, WhiskeyTango what business is it of yours or DaveFlintstones what Turbo does? Nobody likes a Nosy Nancy Anyway, last I heard, a Bill may soon be passed that will legalize home distilling at the federal level. That same Bill will lower your liquor taxes. Sounds like a good thing to me. What do you think? https://www.thenewamerican.com/usnews/constitution/item/24598-with-marijuana-votes-tenth-amendment-wins-big
  14. 1 like
    Turbo, I'm sorry if the comments made after me put mine into the wrong context. I simply wanted to know more about you. It's not my business to know any of those other questions regarding your licensure. With that said, I hope to engage in some insightful conversations with you throughout this forum. Thanks for joining. I look forward to your posts. Joe
  15. 1 like
    Same here. I have one direct element still and one baine marie.
  16. 1 like
    I don't know who is selling you the still (Corson?), but I believe that they are giving you incorrect info. From my experiance Silk City is correct "a boiler is a boiler". If you want to go electric without all of the hassle or aditional cost of a boiler and if you have not already made your down payment for the still, we can sell you a jacketed 250 gallon still with a built in electric heating system. Our built in electric heating system is a little more efficiant than an electrically fired boiler, becouse you do not have the heat loss that boiler plumbing has, however a natural gas boiler will save you around $5.00 to $8.00 per run on that size still, depending on how much your electric costs per kw. We also sell Rite propane and natural gas fired low pressure steam boilers, if you are interested. paul@distillery-equipment.com 417-778-6100
  17. 1 like
    An electric fired steam boiler like a Sussman or Reimers will probably be as costly to install and plumb as a gas fired boiler. In the case you might find it to be somewhat cheaper on the install, it's going to be a wash when you factor the increased operating costs. Itll be similarly sized when installed, and the same rules apply to steam boilers regardless of how they fire.
  18. 1 like
    See Part 3 of the TTB video series https://www.ttb.gov/spirits/proofing.shtml
  19. 1 like
    You should run it until you are sure you got all alcohol out i.e. the vapor temperature is reading 212F. Then maybe run a little longer in case your temp probe is not accurate. Also use some boiling stones, they can sometimes help with solids burning.
  20. 1 like
    Flex impeller pumps are nice because they self prime (so do AOD) but you can switch directions as well. The various brands of flex impeller pumps we have used can handle the solids to a pretty reasonable extent. Also compressed air is loud, expensive to operate (cost to power compressor vs direct electric cost), and you have the surging issues. The only real downside I see with flex impellers is high heat, both their resistance to it, but also the fact that they expand and can get stuck when trying to switch directions or start from a stop. We have a Jabsco RPD (lobe style, doesn't self prime) pump from TCW we use because we use it a lot in high heat applications. If I didn't need it for moving my cooking mash through the heat exchanger we would probably use a flex impeller. We use an AOD for spirit work.
  21. 1 like
    Any reason why you would want to go electric instead of gas fired? My 150g runs off 27kw and waiting two hours for it to heat up once or twice a day is a real bear. Electric was cheaper to start off, but these $500-700 monthly electric bills are starting to add up and will eventually cost more to run than switching everything over to steam.
  22. 1 like
    I asked a similar question of Paul Hall, Affordable Distilling, his answer is below. Some background first though. We get our water from Lake Erie and it is reasonably expensive. The temperature of the lake in August is 75 degrees. Most of my customers use tap water to chill their fermenters. Exactly how much chilling your fermenters need depends on a number of different variables including, but not limited to the temp of the air in the room, what you are mashing. Even if you are mashing the same grain bill the mash will build up different amounts of heat depending on which yeast that you use. Also it depends on what max temp that you are holding your mash to. Some people don’t let their fermentations get over 80 F while others let them get up to 95F. So there is absolutely no way that I or anyone else will be able to tell you exactly how many btu’s that you are going to use. If you can pump and use lake water that is free or if your tap water is really cheap then I wouldn’t worry about a chiller as long as the water is 72F or lower. If your water is expensive then and over 60f then I might use a chiller. If you think that you will have air temps in the distilling area over 95 f in the summer then I would get a 1 ton chiller. Otherwise a ½ ton will do the job no problem at all. If your tap water is really cheap you will spend a lot more running a chiller than using 70F tap water. Please keep in mind that your fermenters will take very little cooling energy compared to your still condensers and crash cooling corn or rye mashes when using the cook method. If your tap water is cheap you can use 68F or colder tap water for you condenser cooling and it will come out of your condensers hot. If you are smart you will run that free hot condenser water into 2 hot water holding tanks. Use the water from 1 tank for your next mash cook and the hot water in the other tank for cleaning around your distillery. The cooling specs for the 300 gallon stripping still are 55° F water in 150° F out at 3.4 gpm Max. For the 100 gallon still the input condenser water at 55° F and 150 ° F out with a flow of 1.2 gpm max. Many people in the industry use close loop chillers. I would never do that. I think that it is crazy to return 150 F water back to the chiller to cool it down to 55F. That is a huge waste of free hot water and energy. If you just have to have a chiller, I would chill a tank full of water, run it through my condensers and then use the free hot condenser water that comes out of the condensers
  23. 1 like
    Here is a picture of the new iStill Extractor Column. A revolutionary design to capture taste of herbs, fruits or other extractables to their essence. For above top shelf liqueurs, gins, absinths, Geists, and more: First five columns have been sold already. For iStills 100 and iStills 500 NextGen. We are currently designing bigger Extractor Columns for the iStill 2000 and 5000. Regards, Odin.
  24. 1 like
    No problem...I'm an Engineer and can fart 10MB at will!
  25. 1 like
    My partner and I have built an extremely successful tiny (1 L boiler) continuous still. Not quite as sophisticated computer wise as Mythbuster's, however, it works like a hot damn. Incredibly efficient. With our small test unit, we are easily able to output a virtually unlimited stream of excellent quality stripped product. The engineering challenge has become creating an effective 'just in time' system for keeping a fresh flow of the mash/wash for the still. I can see fantastic potential for this system, although I will admit when it was first proposed I was highly skeptical. Also, not much in the way of eye candy for the tours! Kinda boring to see $40 worth of glassware and a hotplate laying waste to an expensive still!
  26. 1 like
    Check out https://distillery-equipment.com Paul has been awesome with helping us through the entire planning phase. He's on the forum here as @Southernhighlander.
  27. 1 like
    Hello, When working with GNS, we found that some "rubber" material used for seals are not alcohol-proof even though the manufacturer say they are "fit" for alcohol use. There is chemically-speaking a huge difference between a 10% abv mash and 95% GNS. Based on our experience, material like nitrile, viton and teflon tape are not suitable when used with 95% alcohol for a prolonged period of time. We did a simple test by putting a small seal in a jar with a 50 ml of 95% alcohol for a week, then rectified the alcohol to 40% by using RO water. Attached is the result for nitrile, viton and teflon tape. Nitrile creates the most opaque solution. What rubber material should we go for to prevent this? We are about to do the same test with a silicon seal. Chris
  28. 1 like
    I have been making a single malt in a mash tank. I ferment on grain and found the grain all flowed to the top during fermentation which pretty much separated it out. Now that I do a finer mill (to get better conversion, went from 13.3 to 16.8), the grain has become hard to separate out easily before I distill. Any low cost suggestions? I ferment in a Letina 2000 liter White Wine Fermenters with Cooling Jackets—Closed Top—Conical Bottom tank and thought about putting in a false bottom to allow the grain to collect on the top which can be scooped out for the pigs. People think this would work? Other suggestions?
  29. 1 like
    Initially a 5500 watt ULWD -- this was for rums & malt whiskey. When we initially tried conducting a cereal mash w/ corn we used a burner and a serious rube goldberg agitator. The agitator didn't work too badly really (think of a dewalt gear reduction drill with a series of clamps and 2x4s to hold it in place and turned on). We did experience scortching during the strip. The gauge of the metal simply isn't thick enough. Our next step was to have a thick plate of steel cut for us to temper hot-spots but we took delivery of our jacketed still before it came to that.
  30. 1 like
    So what happened to the pieces of "rubber" you put in the alcohol? Were they dissolved, fell to pieces, or as I suspect, still look the same. If they still look the same then the high proof alcohol has probably dissolved some oily substance off the surface. That "oil" or whatever causes the louching = cloudiness. To progress this experiment further I suggest you put the same pieces of rubber in another test tube of clean alcohol and see if the same cloudiness forms. If there is no cloudiness and if the rubber is still structurally sound then your experiment demonstrates that it would be a good idea to thoroughly wash gaskets in high proof alcohol before they are installed.
  31. 1 like
    You are absolutely required to use a calibrated hydrometer for bottling, and I believe barrel transfers or any time product is leaving your bond.
  32. 1 like
    Calibration is typically either single-point or two-point. For single point, you use a calibrated hydrometer to read the proof and then compare that reading to the one given by the hydrometer to be calibrated. If the hydrometer you're calibrating is over or under, you record that and add/subtract that in the future to get a true reading. This is done at controlled temperatures - usually 60F - and typically aimed at the middle of the hydrometer's range. For two-point, you make readings at either end of the range instead of the middle.
  33. 1 like
    Starting and final gravities of fermentation. It's more likely that the TTB adopted the ASTM standard for high precision SG measurement than actually set the standard themselves - unlike for proof - where the standard was set by the IRS.
  34. 1 like
    I don't understand either. The rage in the above table is not for pure alcohol + water solutions. They all have SG of less than 1 So what could TTB require you to read with such accuracy? Original and final gravities come into this range but it is pointless measuring them to this accuracy because the theoretical alcohol yield is not nearly the same order of accuracy Liqueurs could be in this range but the SG is not going to tell much about the alcohol content
  35. 1 like
    Depending on what you are making, you might only need the first two. Durac B61891 is the model range I use.
  36. 1 like
    Hello everyone, I've actually introduced myself a few years ago when but haven't really been active since. Now my activity on this forum is about to skyrocket because I'm working at a distillery in Mo helping the distiller. I'm looking forward to the challenges this opportunity will bring! -mike
  37. 1 like
    *Edit: I stand corrected, whiskey systems does offer a $150 entry level. Have yet to inquire about what it includes, happy to report my findings back. I'm currently a month into Hoochware. We're a winery that just added a DSP. I handled IT at the winery, and after about 10 years of growth and the "software battles" to meet it, I can say that the distilling industry looks like the wine industry from about 5-10 years ago: Limited options; expensive; programs with "ideal feature sets" are very enterprise/ERP focused/priced; most options do a lot of what you may need - and quite a bit of what you don't; most options are about 10 years behind the rest of the world in the areas of UI/framework. I want a piece of software which is cloud-based, regularly developed/updated, and packaged in tiers which allow me to choose the level of feature sets that I require (and skip those that I don't). While some options are tier based, it's a far cry from feasible or accurately targeting the features I need. Granted, I'm unique in that: we're based in our wine cellar so I don't need all the fermentation tracking; we're 100% grape-based, and 99% of "grain operations management" tools are irrelevant; targeting 2-5 barrels/year of aged product in the next few years, "barrel management" is completely unnecessary;we're a control state so my startup phase can only take advantage of limited "sales force" features and account management since I primarily am only able to sell to a single wholesale account at first. Having said all that, I've looked at the following table, and Hoochware is the only one with a "lower price" and "bigger feature set" which touches on the cloud-based, modern ui, and constantly updated highlights that I'm seeking. Summary: no software is ever a silver bullet in any industry, and is always going to cost more than you want to pay. But for the right system, I'll pay what I need to - it's not ALL about the price, because like folks have noted, you can't always just put a price on your time. At this stage, the options are extremely limited and nothing is "totally" right...but from my experience thus far, I've got high hopes for Hoochware and it's working out great right now. Hope this helps. Company Website Target Likely Monthly DRAMS http://www.drams-software.com/brandy Enterprise Quote HOOCHWARE https://www.hoochware.com/ 199, no contract, 3 months free trial, no setup/termination fee ShipComplaint http://www-archive.shipcompliant.com/pricing 500 Foundations by American Spirits Exchange http://americanspiritsltd.com/services/distilled-spirits-foundations/ 500 Whiskey Systems https://www.whiskeysystems.com/WSpricing.html every level through ERP $150-$350 DistilliTrak http://distillitrak.com/ Low Level $75 for lifetime Mountain Moonshine ABS http://mountainmoonshine.com/alcoholblendingsoftware/orderinginformation.html Anybody $175 one time Stillhouse http://www.stillhousesolutions.com/pricing.html 375 Ospirits (orchestratred spirits) ERP 650
  38. 1 like
    The 250 gallon pot still has been sold. We have started manufacturing additional 500 gallon and 250 gallon pot stills. They will be available for delivery in the USA or Canada in September. If you would like to reserve one, please email me. (james@tetondistillery.com) Also, all motors are now also certified for use in Canada. The Canadian requirements are a bit more strict than the USA so we have switched motors to comply.
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    After rereading my original post I shortened it to the below, because I believe that I came on to strongly. I apologize if I offended anyone. The Scots Irish in me just sort of burst forth. Jo-el-eo is correct. This is a really bad situation. More people who may get ripped off, are placing orders with this company every week and there is no way to get the word out. For all of you who are looking for equipment. The company that we are referencing, that we cannot name on here, is a company that builds stills in the USA in one of the western states. If you fly out to their facility everything looks great, but they don't really have any references, IF A VENDOR CANNOT GIVE YOU AT LEAST 10 REFERENCES DO NOT DO BUSINESS WITH THEM. This company runs big full page ads in the Distiller Magazine. Their equipment looks really good in their pictures on their web site, but up close not so much.
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    We do something like what Mike at MG Thermal is describing. A 2500 gallon poly tank that acts as cold bank. Separate loops are fed from it; one for the still's defleg and condenser, another loop for the mash cooling heat exchanger, and another loop that goes to a 10ton water chiller. We keep the water around 60-65 fairly easily. We also use a medium sized forced-air radiator to remove btus from the still/defleg water on it's way back to the reservoir. The still and mash cooling loops are fed by fairly cheap Taco water circulation pumps. Not a terribly expensive set up and pretty modular (we can add more cooling power at any time without upsetting the whole setup)
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    Stillage is what remains in the boiler after a first run. Since it is full of taste and nutrients, and since it is low on pH, it has two basic uses: 1. It is put back in the mashing process (whiskey - sour mashing) or it is put back in the rum fermentation for additional taste, etc. This is called backset; 2. You let the stillage infect with bacteria and it is then called dunder. You could use kefir or yoghurt bacteria to get the infection going. In general a minimum of 6 weeks is needed to achieve a good taste profile. At relatively warm temperatures. Dunder has more taste impact than backset. I advice to put it in the boiler (1 to 5%) prior to the finishing run. If you add it to the ferment the risk of bacteria taking things over becomes too big. And even if they don't, one time there will be more than another time, so taste is not stable. Adding it to the low wines takes care of that problem. Just my two cents. Regards, Odin.
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    I got this yesterday so I haven't read it fully. It's a coffee table size book. Posting this as it would be good for a beginner as it has a lot of scientific info in it - chemical reactions, alcohol production and byproducts, aging, etc. Not thorough enough to to build your career off of but cool enough to have to show people. A lot of nice large photos in it to ogle.
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    Newbie question - If I am stripping "beer" to make whiskey or saving heads/tails cuts from a whiskey spirit run, at the end of the month do I include this in my calculation of "proof gallons of whiskey produced" on 5110.40 - Monthly Report of Production Operations? I understand that I would need to record them on my own daily report of operations, but is it considered "produced" according to the TTB, or do I only report the whiskey as produced once it is finished and ready for barreling/storage? As a second part to this question - do "unfinished products" such as heads/tails or stripping run materials need to be entered into "storage" on report 5110.11 or again, do I wait until the product is "finished" before entering them into this report? I assume that in either case, the ingredients would need to be recorded in part VI - "materials used" in the month that they were used, regardless if they resulted in a finished product or not... Thank you!
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    We hold ours at 190 with good results. More than you want to know at link below: http://digitalcommons.unl.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1118&context=foodsciefacpub The most important line is:
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    I am located in Kane, PA. CJ Spirits. And in answer to indy......the company both times cut me a deal and I can pass it on to somebody else. Plus, they are very nice to deal with and I don't want to ruin a good thing. Not sure if you are buying any barrels yet, but sometimes they can be tough to get. These guys are good to me, so instead of having them pay for shipping twice I try to sell them local.
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    Copper carbonate? It's green. You said you use soda ash, right? Maybe residual soda ash, not complete neutralized by the citric or rinsed out by the hot water reacting with the copper condenser. Have also heard of excessively gassy (CO2) charges can also cause lime green distillates.
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    Silicone should not be a problem, EPDM for example should be avoided, can get leachate in the spirit.
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    With over a dozen initial members that have pledged their support, we are in the final stages of forming the California Artisanal Distiller's Guild and officially launching our website www.cadsp.org. The primary purpose of the Guild will be to focus on important industry related issues like California distilled spirits tasting rooms. If you have not yet pledged your membership and support please contact me right away. Many of us have been working tirelessly on issues that will not only benefit our industry but also help California's struggling economy. We've been able to get some serious legislative support but we need all California craft-distillers' help and involvement to achieve our final goals! Join us... The California Artisanal Spirits Guild. Arthur Hartunian (napa valley distillery) info@cadsp.org
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    So we have everything pretty much laid out for you already OP but I'll rehash a little bit and consolidate. Typically you are looking at a 3 step conversion process to turn grain starch into fermentable sugars. Gelatinization – Process of solubilizing starch granules in water. Typically accomplished by grinding grain and heating in the presence of water. Liquefaction – Initial breakdown of solubilized starch. Converts starch into dextrins (random sugars) Saccharification – Final breakdown of dextrins into fermentable sugars. These have to be done in order or, in some cases, simultaneously. It is not a good idea to try to saccharify liquefied starch, nor is it a good idea to try to liquefy un-gelatinized starch. Enzymes do not assist gelatinization typically. They are generally used for liquefaction and/or saccharification. Liquefaction we are talking alpha-amylases. Of which there are thee main temperature ranges (already listed in above posts). The ideal part about using a high temperature alpha-amylase is that simultaneous gelatinization and liquefaction can take place at 80-90 C. Saccharification we are talking beta-amylases or glucoamylases (every enzyme that has “amylase” in it will work on starch because starch = “amylose”). Beta-amylases are common in brewing (as it is found in malted barley) and will work to produce maltose, glucose, and other unfermentable sugars. Glucoamylases are frequently used by distilleries because it will convert all dextrins (random sugars) into glucose. Additionally glucoamylase has a side 1, 6 activity which will allow further degradation of some sugars that were previously unfermentable. Beta-Glucanases on the other hand are a hemicellulase that will work to break down a very specific compound found commonly in wheat, barley, rye, and oats called beta-glucan. Beta-glucans can cause viscosity issues and gum up a mash or an immersion heater. This enzyme has little to no effect on starch and sugar conversions/yields. TL: DR. Alpha-amylase is used for Liquefaction, Glucoamylase is good for Saccharification, and Beta-Glucanase is generally only applicable to rye, wheat, or barley mashes. Please consult your enzyme provider for specific pH and temperature ranges of individual enzymes. Cheers! CDE
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    Did you get this sorted out? I'm trying to figure out the same thing. if I do 4 stripping runs, yielding 25 PG each, then combine them for a 100 PG spirit run, what's the best way to account for this in daily records? And then, I'm trying to figure out how to account for losses in distilling, if I distill my wash down till I'm getting 15% ABV out, and dump the wash, how do I account for the lost alcohol?