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PeteB last won the day on May 23

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About PeteB

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    Tasmania, Australia
  • Interests
    Distilling, plough to bottle
    Professional Sand and Ice Sculptor
    repairing water mills
    Making biodiesel

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  1. For smaller volumes of spirit (that will fit on scales) the cheapest and most accurate way to determine volume is by measuring mass, density and temperature. Calculate volume from tables or computer program.
  2. I am in agreement with Silk City that some foam over early in the run is a possible cause. I have never used vinegar to clean but it would not surprise me at all if the vinegar reacted with the copper to give the greenish tinge, especially if it was some time since the cleaning. Was this the very first run with a new still? Could be weathering products on the copper, or weld byproducts, that apple spirit was better at stripping off than vinegar was. If not new what was the previous run? Apple spirit may have been better at stripping leftovers off than vinegar was. If there is any moisture left in my still it often drips blue or green from the condenser the next day, and I can be sure that the start of the next stripping run will be a greenish brown colour. It is just at the start of the wash run so it really doesn't matter as the spirit run will fix it. It would be interesting to understand the chemistry of what was happening but in the end if the spirit tastes and smells great then it is unlikely to be of concern.
  3. do you mean "mash" as in milled grain, malt and water pre-fermentation??
  4. Belt presses have pressure jets to keep the belt clean during operation. At cleanup just run a sterilizer. Also think wooden fermenters, they are not sterile.
  5. I often get suggestions about rice hulls. First problem is there is no rice grown in our island state Tasmania. Freight is just too expensive for the bulk I would need. Have tried many other types of husk but I am convinced that with 100% rye the bulk of husk needs to be huge. As you add more husk it soaks up sugar so the runoff might speed up but too much sugar is absorbed. A small amount of husk might work well to enhance barley lautering, but very skeptical about it assisting with rye. Have just been experimenting with 100% malted rye. I malt and dry my own. One of the 2 batches we have done ran off almost as good as barley malt. I think there are 2 reasons. Firstly with 100% malt the grain is not cooked as hot so the thin rye husk remains a little more rigid and aids drainage. The other thing that might have helped was the batch of rye still contained a small amount of moisture. When this was roller milled the husk did not shatter as it does when completely dry. The husk is in bigger pieces which also helps speedy drainage.
  6. Hi Pasca, I am using the machine pre-fermentation so I need to squeeze as much sugar as possible from the grain. The cheapest belt press I could find was USD 19,000 for Chinese built, but the physical size was too large. Eventually tracked down an older but unused Australian made V-Belt press for USD 8,000. Haven't received it yet. Will post photos when it is installed.
  7. Very good chance it is flocking (crystals forming) after it is bottled. What ABV are you reducing to? Typically, but not necessarily, under 45% you will get flocking. A few days is not normally long enough for the crystals to grow large enough to be able to be filtered out. I presume you are not chill filtering. Crystals will grow a lot faster at colder temperatures. Distillers in this part of the world typically leave diluted spirits about 6 weeks before filtering and bottling. If you don't like the idea of chill filtering because of the apparent loss of flavor, a compromise is to chill for a couple of days then allow to warm up to ambient for another couple of days. Crystals will form and maybe "steal" too much of your flavor, but as it warms up again some of those crystals will re-dissolve and you should end up with approximately non-chill filtered.
  8. Has anyone found any more information on the artichoke as in above thread? My Nephew has a lot of artichokes that he cannot sell because of their rough shape. I would like to have a crack at making some vodka from them. I imagine it is not much different from vodka from potatoes!!
  9. The filter cartridges I use with inline are sometimes a slightly different length. If they are a little short the sediment can go around the end. Does the canister screw on? It may not have gone on far enough to seat the cartridge ends. If you shake it you might hear it rattle if not seated. Mine has silicone washers that can be added or removed.
  10. 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.
  11. 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
  12. I think I have finally found the ultimate method of removing solids from my rye mash. Ran a test batch through a belt press at a local winery. Took about 1 hour for 1,000 litres. Usually takes up to 2 days with conventional lauter screen. Solids very dry so my alcohol yield should increase.
  13. As bluefish says, use weight. For your calculation the only volume you should put into alcodens is 750 mL and the only temperature is 60 f (assuming you are TTB) Also, do not bother measuring the temperature of your bulk spirit. With mass that is irrelevant, and it has confused you because you have put that 73.54 f into Alcodens to calculate the 1072 bottles. 1674.8 lbs should have filled only 1066 bottles at 60 f. You have actually filled 14 more bottles than you should. What you have done is filled the bottles with 750 mL of spirit at 73.54 f instead of at 60 f. There will be less than 750 mL in the bottle which is part of the reason you ended up with extra bottles. Also, throw away that measuring cylinder. For one thing it is calibrated at 20c not 60f. (was the 80 proof you measured at 20 c? ) Parallel sided glass cylinders are not sensitive enough to read to fractions of a mL unless they are very skinny. Even so, I still can't see how your measuring cylinder was 11 mL out. Don't do your volume checks with a measuring cylinder, use weight. 750 mL of 80 proof at standard temperature (US) 60f weighs 712.34g. (in air for TTB calculations only) An easy way I use is to stack say 10 cases of empty bottles with caps on your scale. Fill them all then re-weigh. If they are cases of 6 X 750 mL then the lot should weigh 60 X 712.34 = 47.74 Kg (94.226 lbs) more than when they were empty
  14. I don't understand why it has taken so long for this type of unit to become commercialized. Mike, I did ask you a couple of years ago on this forum if this type of unit was available. I don't think I worded my question properly because your reply was not as I expected. Chillers usually take the heat from warm liquid or air to cool it down then just waste that heat by dumping it into the outside air or underground. Other "heat pumps" take the heat from the air or ground and heat water such as in a domestic hot water cylinder, or heat your home. The air or ground is cooled but not put to use. Finally it appears as if manufacturers are building heat pumps that will do 2 useful jobs at the same time so in effect it halves your energy cost, although you do need a larger unit. In a distillery these units could produce cold condenser water and hot mashing water at the same time, for very little extra running cost above chilling only. = (almost) free hot water.
  15. You appear to be saying that the stillage left in the pot has an ABV of 10% !! I doubt that is what you mean.