• Content count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

  • Days Won


Everything posted by Skaalvenn

  1. Another recommendation for Hoochware. We've been using it almost daily for about a year and it has almost entirely eliminated the headaches of TTB paperwork and inventory management.
  2. Just remember though that the still was under pressure thus the boiling point of the ethanol inside the still was also under pressure. A rupture would potentially cause all of the alcohol in the still to flash into steam, which is probably what happened as the report states the still launched out of the building. With that much ethanol steam entering a facility, it's going to find an ignition source somewhere.
  3. I wasn't replying in hopes for a lecture about safety. Just pointing out that the distillery you mentioned didn't blow up due to an ignition source. The still itself blew up from over pressurization due to a couple terrible design flaws, and possibly operator error as well. I think ignition with that magnitude of an accident is basically inevitable. You can't say "this is what happens if you have an open ignition" and then cite an accident which was not caused by open ignition.
  4. You might want to read into the report of what actually happened. Open flame didn't cause it.
  5. Wasn't trying to strike a nerve, just chiming in with the other person on how many of us go out there to try and be different...yet have the exact same story as everyone else.
  6. Don't forget the "we use only the finest grains" line even though they have never previously handled any raw grains or sent their grains out for analysis to see just how good they are. I like to joke and tell people that we're the oldest, largest and longest running distillery in the city. We're also the first and only distillery in the city, but that's beside the point.
  7. The only way I can comprehend this happening is someone hooked up the bottler to the wrong tank. We take one final sample from the bottling machine and ensure it meets quality, and to triple check that we are hooked to the right tank. All of our tanks, valves, hoses and filter housings are color coded to the corresponding spirit to avoid cross contamination of flavors and to avoid mistakes. The blue hose is for vodka, it goes to the blue filter which connects to the blue tank with the blue valve. This and all the clamps gets a final check by a second person.
  8. We treat our spent grain in almost the same sanitary manner as mash. I want to give the farmer the best product possible, and I don't want anything growing that shouldn't be growing. We dewater it slightly, but he's got his own separator. We pump it straight from the still into sanitized 275 gallon totes which he takes within a day or two.
  9. No need to be a mad scientist, but it certainly wouldn't hurt. Having at least a basic understanding of chemistry, biology and physics goes a long way in the industry because without that understanding, you're going to be doing a lot of guess work and trial and error. Can't tell you how many times I've gotten a call from a distiller that goes something like this... New distiller : "Hey, I'm having trouble with my conversion" Me: "OK let me see. What percent efficiency are you getting?" ND: "I'm not sure?" Me: "Ok, well how many pounds of grain to water?" ND: "Well I just chuck it in until it gets thick and then add enzymes" Me: "OK, what's your pH range for XYZ enzyme you're using?" ND: "I don't know man" Me: "What's the pH of your mash when you add them?" ND: "I don't know, I don't have a pH meter" Me: "What's the temperature range of your enzymes? What's the temperature of the mash when you add it?" ND: "I don't know, it's real steamy though!" That's the basic science 101 of our industry, and I'm really surprised how few people have any understanding of it. I'm not a scientist, I'm just a hack/nerd who's taken a few college courses and has a basic understanding.
  10. I'd like to know more about this. Personally I love the slight patina our copper has after a month of use, I'd be really interested in knowing if the coating will keep it at that stage.
  11. We are looking to purchase the following equipment. Please e-mail us at if you have any for sale. 4 to 6 spout bottle filler Pneumatic corker Stainless spirit holding tanks, approx 100-160 gallon (looking for prettier tanks like Letina, not the industrial style) Stainless 55 gallon drums Thank you
  12. Those Mori fillers look like an incredible deal. 6 spout, with base, filter and float for 4 grand? Any downsides?
  13. While I have zero personal experience, I have talked to a distiller who had nothing but good things to say about DYE. If you're going to rip a company apart (especially on a professional's forum) please at least bring some direct evidence as to why we shouldn't do business with a company. If any customers have anything good or bad to say, I'd love to hear it because it's a company which we have considered for our growth plan.
  14. Probably either minerals (your RO system not working well) or your water soluble ingredients fall out of suspension in the alcohol/water solution.
  15. I've tried one out and didn't care for it. We prefer a $30 heat gun from the hardware store. We just use clear shrink sleeves though.
  16. If your floor drains don't act as little islands in the puddle of water on the floor *laughs*, *cries*. (thankfully I didn't pay for mine, they were installed by the previous tenant so it's hard to complain about free floor drains)
  17. We typically vacuum with a good set of filters on it to keep airborne dust at a minimum.
  18. I'm not sure if it's just an optical illusion, but are the coils a bigger diameter than the top? (I can't see how this could make sense if it is, but that's just how the photos and sketch appears). This unit is made to simply drop vertically inside an IBC, correct?
  19. SOLD! SOLD! SOLD! SOLD! Selling only because we upgraded to an automatic labeler. Model is Race RL1. We purchased this about 2 years ago. It's a great labeler and there is nothing wrong with it. What you see is what you get, and it's everything you need to start labeling anything round from very small bottles, beer bottles, spirit bottles etc. Looking to get $900. Original price was $1,495. Located just outside Minneapolis, Minnesota. Will ship. SOLD! SOLD! SOLD! SOLD! SOLD! SOLD! SOLD! SOLD!
  20. You and I both, brother. Sticker shock every time I need or want to spend money!
  21. We ran into the same thing and consulted with our creative agency on what we could do. We decided on and were approved with "awkwardly hugged by oak" (I really should trademark that).
  22. If you have access to your own truck, I'd do it. If you are paying a trucking company to do it, I'd look at the costs per batch because it will add up over a year. Before we got our vodka mashing process down I had another local distillery contract a few batches. I think it cost me about $70 one way to move the totes, and I pitched the yeast once they hit my loading dock just to make sure I was compliant with the regulations. If we continued that process it would have been about $140/week which quickly adds up to $7200 in yearly production costs.
  23. Sale pending. Yeah, but like all things you pay for the time that goes into developing and engineering a product. I've always been really impressed with how well thought out Race products are made. Their customer service is top notch as well. I upgraded to a primera labeler to speed up the bottling line. It does a fine job, but there's a couple things that are not well thought out. For instance, the guides holding the spool of labels are held in place by a couple of weak magnets. I'm also not a fan of the foot switch to activate it, there should be a button built into the body of the thing!
  24. That reminds me...This summer I did have an issue of a few pallets of hazy bottles that I bought from a company that had over estimated their sales and the pallets had been in cold storage for a year or so. The top few layers of the bottles on the pallets had some sort of hazy residue on/in them. The supplier I purchased from came out and took some samples, sent them to a lab and it came back with something like atmospheric residue, likely due to the cold/warm with dust and humidity up here in the North. I refused the hazed bottles so I don't know much beyond that.