GeekSpirits

Looking for suggestions on separating grain after mashing

80 posts in this topic

I recently borrowed my Son's Hydropress (he juices water mellons for beer) to try to separate more liquid from my rye mash.

A lot of work for nil gain.

In the centre of the press there is a water filled bladder. Hook a hose on and fill to 3 bar(approx. 45 psi)

It started pressing well but slowed to a stop. When I opened it up there was a nice solid 3/4 inch layer against the outside filter cloth but the rest of the mash was as wet as when I put it in. The mash had been compressed into an impervious layer.

(sorry about the sideways orientation)

20170401_183032.jpg.e66be5a8acb1b828aca2ae464da4283d.jpg20170401_175559.jpg.0be730e4012e767ea504ca3be7e9f3e4.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ideal I think is something more along the lines of a decanter centrifuge.  I went down this path before, as the prices have come down dramatically with them being manufactured in the east.

When you scroll through Alibaba, the keyword you want to search for is "pig feces".

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Can anyone point me to a place (preferably online) that would sell large sheets of this type (or something similar) of plastic mesh screen material?
I have searched the internet and just cant seem to find anyone selling this.  I am hoping that is because I dont know the right word/product to search for.

 

IMG_5097.JPG

IMG_5096.JPG

 

My though is getting something like this hopper:
http://www.hippohopper.com/self-dumping-hoppers/specialty-hoppers/dewatering-self-dumping-hopper/#/

and then lining the inside with an finer mesh material.  Pump out of the still into hopper, allow to drain/stain over night...

We are currently mashing rye flour and fermenting/distilling on the grain...

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Here is a link to what we use for de-watering our mash.  With a 1500 lbs grain bill it de-waters the mash in under 15 minutes.  We build a PVC manifold that we clamp to the top part of the hopper that spreads the mash out over the filter medium as it runs down the incline.  We build another PVC drain pipe up that hooks to both drains and extends over to our floor drains.  I have a video somewhere that I'll try to find.  We tank the bin out with the fork truck and dump into a 270 gallon tote that has the top cut off.  Farmer Brad picks up a few totes every Monday.  I'm getting ready to buy a second one as our grain bills will go up to 3000 lbs per once we start using the new column still.

http://www.idsfilterboxes.com/Self-Dumping-De-Cant.html

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I couldn't find the video but here are some pictures of our de-watering setup.  We used this to de-water over 125 tons of grain last year.

dewater2.jpg

dewater3.jpg

dewater4.jpg

dewater5.jpg

Dewater1.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

thus may have nothing to do with nothing but ill mention it anyway lol. we got our hands on tubes from a old aeration grain bin . these tubes are 4 feet long and about 2 feet in diameter like size of a culvert but made of heavy screen . the science is they lay on the bottom of the bin floor  one attached to the next till u reach the other side of the bin , the bin is filled with wet grain and air is forced thru the tubes and the grain is dried

.anyway they are very strong but also very fine holes so my plan is to use them to separate grain from the wash . set on a angle with a collection tub under it to catch liquid  , as i pump mash into the elevated end  and turn it continually the mash will roll in the giant tube, liquid  comes out thru the screen and the grain eventually rolls out the end . im not sure how many of these tubes i will need but im thinking by adjusting the rotation speed and the angle of the tube i    can find a sweet spot and a 4 foot section will do (i have ten of them but i sure hope i dont need 40 feet of rolling tube to make it work ). the steeper the angle the faster the grain will roll to end of tube the lesser the angle the longer it will roll in tube before reaching the end  this should make it a continual operation and more tubes could be added if volume needed to be increased .

 so does this sound like it will work , i should add the object of the game is to only extract to a moist grain level , so it can be fed out to neighbours. pigs ,  

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
2 hours ago, sonnyk said:

 With a 1500 lbs grain bill it de-waters the mash in under 15 minutes.

I think you shared your video with me in the past.  What type of grind are you using on your grain?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 hours ago, HedgeBird said:

Can anyone point me to a place (preferably online) that would sell large sheets of this type (or something similar) of plastic mesh screen material?
I have searched the internet and just cant seem to find anyone selling this.  I am hoping that is because I dont know the right word/product to search for.

 

IMG_5097.JPG

IMG_5096.JPG

 

My though is getting something like this hopper:
http://www.hippohopper.com/self-dumping-hoppers/specialty-hoppers/dewatering-self-dumping-hopper/#/

and then lining the inside with an finer mesh material.  Pump out of the still into hopper, allow to drain/stain over night...

We are currently mashing rye flour and fermenting/distilling on the grain...

 

I have some very similar marerial i scrounged from a local paper mill. I think it is used to de-water pulp in a belt press. Try searching "belt press" parts

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What you are trying to build is call a "DSM SCREEN" or "BENT SCREEN SEPARATOR" 

Normally made of stainless steel triangled shaped wire. It shaves the water off of the particles. There is no moving parts. They work very very good. 

The trick is the bend in the screen and the length. Normally only 4- 6 feet long and 30-48" wide. 

On your 3 pic pipe manifold, if you changed the design of you distribution system to a distribution box it would allow for more even flow and work even better. If you want stainless screen just google it and there many people who make these in the USA.

I am very much surprised that more people don't have these BENT SCREEN SEPARATORS. I guess no one know about them.

 

Questions, Just ask.....

515-559-4879

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

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.20170522_145726.thumb.jpg.cb27fd7b81235bd79576df1557331d04.jpg

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On 2017-5-23 at 3:38 PM, PeteB said:

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.20170522_145726.thumb.jpg.cb27fd7b81235bd79576df1557331d04.jpg

Hi Pete, 

Are you going to use the machine pre fermentation or later in the process? 

Do you also know what such a machine would cost in the ballpark?

 

Cheers,

 

Pascal

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

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.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Looks like a nightmare to clean and keep sanitary, especially if you are trying to separate pre-fermentation.  Cleary, there has to be a way to do it, otherwise it wouldn't at all work in a winery.  I would imagine a belt press that can be CIP'ed is going to cost a pretty penny though.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
On ‎5‎/‎24‎/‎2017 at 0:04 PM, Urrazeb said:

Hi Pete, have you added rice hulls to the traditional lautering? 

I had a quick look and it seems it'd be pretty hard to find a small belt press for a reasonable price. 

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.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
7 minutes ago, Silk City Distillers said:

Looks like a nightmare to clean and keep sanitary, especially if you are trying to separate pre-fermentation.  Cleary, there has to be a way to do it, otherwise it wouldn't at all work in a winery.  I would imagine a belt press that can be CIP'ed is going to cost a pretty penny though.

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.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Pete, have you added rice hulls to the traditional lautering? 

I had a quick look and it seems it'd be pretty hard to find a small belt press for a reasonable price. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hi Pete, we mash with 100% triticale and it acts very similar to rye. 

We use 10% rice husk by weight. The husks are soaked and rinsed in water prior to use to reduce absorption of the wort. They're added during the second enzyme rest. 

Our tuns gravity drain into the fermenters and no pressing of the grain is necessary, the run off is always clean but does take time to complete.

This method can be used for on or off grain ferments, off grain is better as the liquid is hotter and drains more freely. 

 

Proper initial liquification is the key. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have a question.  Why not distill on the grain and avoid all of the hassle?  My grandfather distilled great spirits from corn, rye and barley and he allays distilled on the grain.  He used the cook method sometimes, but he usually malted his own corn and distilled a great white dog from it, that made an excellent "Charter Whiskey" (Bourbon).  His spirits never had even the faintest hint of bitterness.  I don't understand why people go to such great extremes to separate the liquids from the solids when using corn and rye. It doesn't make sense to me.

1 person likes this

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Southernhighlander said:

I have a question.  Why not distill on the grain and avoid all of the hassle? 

I know for myself at least we do distill on the grain, but are still interested in separation options post distillation to reduce to volume/weight of spent mash we need to move/transport.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

HedgeBird,

 

Okay, I understand now.  I have a hog farmer who will be buying all of our spent mash, liquid and all and he will be picking it up every day that we distill, so I guess I'm lucky.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
30 minutes ago, HedgeBird said:

I know for myself at least we do distill on the grain, but are still interested in separation options post distillation to reduce to volume/weight of spent mash we need to move/transport.

After distillation makes a lot of sense because it is waste, so the efficiency of the process doesn't matter, but before fermentation or distillation seems like an awful time. I'm surprised nobody has talked about mash filters (see  http://www.meura.com/products-and-services/brewhouse/mash-filtration.htm) as they are actually designed for this application, but they sure are awfully expensive.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We separate grain mash post distillation with about a $100-200 investment in hardware.  This, obviously, does not include costs like pumps and hoses, which it is assumed you already have.

For example, 1000 pounds total grain volume in ~530g total volume reduced to roughly ~160-180g total volume of reasonably dry grain (or wet grain, however you want to look at it).

It is a very hands-on process, but we can process ~265g of stillage in about 30 minutes.  

It is not a perfect process and some small solids do not get caught.  Likewise, while the spent grain appears reasonably dry, you can extract liquid if you squeeze it with your hand.  

That said, it reduces the bulk tremendously, and makes it significantly easier to transport.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
11 minutes ago, Silk City Distillers said:

We separate grain mash post distillation with about a $100-200 investment in hardware.  This, obviously, does not include costs like pumps and hoses, which it is assumed you already have.

Care to share what method you are using Silk?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Anyone know how much nutritional value that the liquid from spent Corn and Rye mash has in it?  I imagine there is some nutritional value in it, especially for hogs, since they love slop.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now