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Stumpy's last won the day on July 4

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About Stumpy's

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    Columbia, IL

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  1. Chiller Setup

    You should be fine without the air bleed. Generally, an air bleed is used for a high-point-press in the scenario that your system becomes air-locked. Generally, most distilleries (at least the ones that are our size) are running a small enough loop that that you generally shouldn't have to worry about that. Honestly, you could probably crack a valve on one of your process tanks to take care of any sort of air lock/dead head scenario. The check valve is nice to help with hammering and dead head. Imagine for a second that you are running your chiller loop and you shut it off. Everything will then drain to its lowest point without a check valve. That means that when you start up, say only the bottom 8' of your system has fluid in it so as soon as your pump fires, it is going to try to shove a ton of fluid into the air void above. This can cause issues with hammering and can eventually become destructive to not only your piping system, but also your circ pump. All of that being said, we run with a check valve and no air bleed, but do have a 15 psi PRV that connects our cold side to return side of the chilling loop, so it will kind of act as an air bleed as the system builds pressure. Long story short, your system will operate without either device, but for equipment reliability and repeatability, the check valve would be first priority with the air bleed/PRV as a second priority. These are just my $0.02 on how fluid systems work...please do not take them as gospel. Cheers! Adam
  2. At what point is a pot still too big?

    I'd agree with captnKB. We are currently running a 500 gallon pot and looking at adding a continuous column to run most of our whiskies on and strip a few of our products. After a few late nights with a spreadsheet and a few pours of bourbon, the only conclusion I could come to was that a big pot CAN (NOT WILL) run you broke. We are on our farm and have to burn propane instead of Nat Gas and have to run a fairly large water chiller. Our elec and propane costs are adding up quickly running this 500 gal pot. The quicker processing rate of the column (with almost no warm-up time) and the ability to use your beer as cooling fluid are pushing us in that direction.
  3. Hi All, We are on the hunt for 1 or 2 pallets of Idaho glass bottles (750 ml). This is a stock design made by Piramal Glass. If you happen to have any leads or a pallet to spare, please let me know! Looking to purchase ASAP! Cheers! Adam Stumpf (618)281-7733 adam.stumpf at stumpysspirits dot com
  4. We are also using a Kason centri-sifter. It is by far the best solution to separating grain from stillage that we have found thus far. Our farmer loves the quality of the grain he is getting off of it!
  5. reducing mixer noise

    It could also be the key coupling the motor to the gear reducer. We just dealt with that on our still. It was kind of a grinding sound with a squeak. We just pulled it apart, repaired the motor shaft, replaced the key and it's all quiet again. Not sure why the motor shaft wallowed the key-way out in the period of a couple of months, but it happened. Cheers!
  6. 550 Gal Jacketed Mash Tun

    Sorry, this has been sold.
  7. 4 head bottle filler

    We use the 4 spout Mori from TCW equipment with the pneumatic control option. Works like a charm!
  8. Cleaning Copper Still

    I'd be careful with the caustic...I've heard horror stories about caustic eating copper so have never used it. We use PBW or Raze in place of the caustic in your above cycle. Curious to hear what everyone else is using for their alkaline cleaner.
  9. New Make Blueberry Brandy

    This is still available. The winemaker is incredibly motivated to move this. ALL offers will be considered!
  10. Feeding the mill

    Yep, it was just an off the shelf 4" tri clamp hydrator that I bought on Pro-Brewer for $250. I guess I should clarify on the auger...it may work a bit better with our current milling situation, especially when using corn. We mill down to flour with a 3/32" screen. It works great for small grains but it is quite a draw on the mill when we run corn. The problem with that is that the mill's motor slows down and the grain moving through the tube loses velocity. With corn, sometimes we can only mill 1,000 lb per hour or so. If we run the corn much faster than that, we will clog the tube right as it comes out of the mill. I look a lot like the Pillsbury Dough Boy when I am done unclogging it. I'm currently drilling out one of our 3/32 screens right now. I'm drilling every other hole in every other row to 1/8. We'll see if that speeds up the milling process. I could also put a larger motor on but don't feel like pony-ing for anything larger than a 20 HP right now. The other benefit of the auger is that you don't have do deal with the air displacement issue that a blower creates inside your MT. The nice thing about the blower though is definitely lower startup costs and less maintenance.
  11. Feeding the mill

    You got it. It's an old-school Bearcat mill with a blower on it. We blow through a 4" grain tube that normally comes off a grain dryer on a farm. To keep dust down, we run it through a grist hydrator as it enters the mash tun and then use a wood shop dust collector (which you can see in the pic) attached to one of the accessory ports on the mash tun to collect any additional dust. I'm sure a cyclone would be a bit more effective but this seems to work nicely and we don't get much dust. Although I do think an auger may be a little better suited for a distillery... We do take the totes down and refill them. The forklift makes quick work of that. We have a couple of them so it makes it nice for recipes with multiple grains. We grow all of our own grain so we will usually fill super sacks right out of the grain cleaner. The day before we make a mash we'll fill the totes with all of the grain we will need out of the super sacks that way we can come in early in the morning, set the box on the mill stand and get our mash started.
  12. Feeding the mill

    We built ours out of wood. As you can see...I didn't want to spend a ton of $$$ on it! Haha. Stand is built out of wood, picked the mill up for $200 on Craigslist, spent $300 to get new screens made and then the cost of lumber. The hopper piece you see is off of an old roller mill we had laying in the scrap pile at the farm...I'm sure plywood would have worked there as well. The wood works perfect, although I'm considering making one out of metal just to make it a bit more presentable!
  13. Feeding the mill

    We built a stand for one of the boxes shown in the link: http://www.bulkcontainerexpress.com/p/BH574565-HB.html?gclid=Cj0KCQjwnubLBRC_ARIsAASsNNmaBQof6bn8QtG51BJG9y2wWPZHL4jsZ79LpTpXVj2e_Cw7d2UqjkEaArw4EALw_wcB We just set the box on the stand above the mill and use the slide that's built into the box for controlling the grain flow. We do 2k lb per batch this way and it works like a charm.
  14. Converting Tote to Stripping Still

    We ran one and it worked like a champ. It was a metalcraft 550 as well. Ours was jacketed. I would suggest welding a jacket onto the floor and running steam through that and jacketing the sided for cooling water. We even had the 550 connected to a 180 gallon tote that we used as a thumper and but a worm in another 180 gallon tote. It did a great job and we usually ran 90-100 proof low wines with it.
  15. We have some excellent new make blueberry brandy we are looking to sell. The wine came from a local winery that has decided to get out of the market. 252 wine gallons available at 113.0 proof (284.76 Proof Gallons). Wine was 7% ABV, 100% blueberry. Distilled through a 4 plate column w/ conservative cuts. Looking to get $20 per proof gallon but willing to accept offers. Samples available upon request. For more information, please email adam.stumpf at stumpysspirits dot com