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adamOVD

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adamOVD last won the day on September 12

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About adamOVD

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  • Birthday 04/06/1983

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  1. I'd be fine with a slight drop in proof. I've got a "full flavored" vodka. I'm in the US though and my efforts are mostly to conform to the standards of the TTB. I do have a 7 plate 6" column though, and now I'm thinking of trying to make that work alongside a 6" packed column.
  2. I don't know if anyone cares, but I've been climbing up and down a ladder rebuilding my column and these are my observations. First I put the plates on the bottom. The plates stacked beautifully. When I run them on top they run a little dry. However I couldn't get the distillate to come off over 190. This was at the beginning of the run where 190 is pretty easy at my previous configuration. 189.6 was the best I could do using every trick I know. I really wanted this to work. I tried loosening up the packing as well with similar effect. I could hit 190, but not any higher. It's just such a huge jump from 189 to over 190, that I think running low and slow is my only option. If I decide to try SPP, which seems to be my only other option with this column, I'll check back in, or if I get my original double column idea up and running. Or maybe I'l run the numbers and l be able to justify buying a 6" column. Thanks for all the input though, and the education on running sequential columns.
  3. Well at least I understand why you lose so much efficiency running two connected columns next each other. It's pretty simple when you think about it. The lighter fractions can move up, but the heavier fractions cant move down, because they are isolated from the pot. Pumping hot high proof condensate from column 2 back to column 1 at a steady rate so it doesn't wreck the equilibrium of the first column seams like a challenge though. Super interesting stuff, but doesn't help me run my dinky column any faster. I was making things other than vodka, and was a bit behind in production, so I've just been running the still as is. But I'm mostly caught up now, and I'm gonna start tweaking things, one at a time. Starting with moving the plates to the bottom. I'll report back after I've played with a few things if anyone is interested.
  4. You should listen to @StillTalkingPodcast Those guys love the stuff.
  5. @Southernhighlander I am obviously no expert in still dynamics. I don't even understand why you would have such a huge drop in efficiency between columns. My best guess would be if the column was in a vacuum, or if you had a 'thumper' type reservoir under each column. I'd love to know though.
  6. @FijiSpirits I figured that's what you meant, but trying to do a self build on something like that and expecting it to work right away is probably a little over ambitious. I don't really understand how the transfer of vapor works between the two columns. The plates are perf plates and the packing is just copper scrubbers, just to give you more info. The goal is to get as close to doubling my output speed as possible. If I can do that, I can do one spirit run to one stripping run and eliminate a major bottle neck in production. I'll play with the configuration and start researching better packing materials, and see where it puts me first. Hopefully you've saved me a ton of time and effort.
  7. @FijiSpirits Thanks so much! Sounds like we are running pretty similar systems, but you have a lot more experience with it. Everything you said is super helpful. You are right that what is slowing the current column down is that it floods if I put too much heat to it. I can run a lot faster when making a gin base that doesn't have to stay above 190P. I'll play around with what you've suggested. Maybe I can gain the needed speed with just the one 4" column for now. I'm not familiar with what a sequential still design is though. @Southernhighlander I would like to just come off the top of boiler, but I'm also trying to figure out a safe way to support all this weight. I also switch the column out to make non neutral spirits in the same boiler. So the idea is to branch it off and have both neutral columns set up permanent. Supported by a table and attached to the wall. Then I can disconnect it and attach a whiskey head easily. I'd love to just buy a 6" column from you, but that probably won't happen any time soon. Here's a revised sketch. Do you think the larger piping under the columns will help provide "headspace" and combat flooding issues? The original plan was not to be making so much or really any vodka or gin, but its paying the rent for now and I'm trying to work with what I've got. Thanks again.
  8. Thanks for your input Paul! I'm still tweaking the design.
  9. If the bottom horizontal pipe remained 4" instead of 2" and was slightly angled towards the pot would it be better?
  10. @Southernhighlander Condenser on the right is for my larger stripping still (your bain marie). I am hitting 190. Pot is 55 gal filled with low wines. It has 3 elements and gets up to temp in 45 min. I run it at 21% power once it gets up to temp, and I get a little over a proof gallon an hour. I've already maxed my ceiling height, so I can't go any higher. I'm not sure how to make a 6" column work.
  11. This is my current vodka set up. It's a 4" column. Bottom sections are packed. It works great, but runs very slowly. At some point I will need to increase the output, and my idea is to build a second column like in the picture below. Does anyone forsee any problems or input with this design? Or have any experience running two columns from a single pot?
  12. It has a lot of unfermentable solids like ash. They still create isotropic stress on the yeast though. Blackstrap has a lot more than the table grade molasses most people typically use, and the percentage varies.
  13. Even using the same molasses, Ive noticed a slight variance between orders. Sometimes I will correct with sugar. Also maybe I misinterpreted what you were saying, but if your blackstrap is only about 50% sugar and you start at 20 Brix your best possible finishing gravity will be around 10 Brix, and your wash alcohol% will only be around 5%. It will also be a very slow fermentation starting that high. Your low wines after a stripping run might be around 36%.
  14. I just know that I used to filter beer through a lenticular filter that uses similar designed cartridges, just way bigger. They lasted a surprisingly long time even after plugging them up with a ton of yeast and hops. From what @richard1 says I'm afraid to pull the trigger on a stainless cartridge now though. One costs more than the actual filter housing. Also like Silk says it's just 5 micron filtration to keep stray particles from getting into the glass. I got it for insurance because I'm starting to distribute more. My real filtration happens before proofing. @MichaelAtTCW do you you have any input? I saw you reacted to a couple comments, and you've seemed very knowledgeable about equipment in the past.
  15. They are designed to filter out yeast and wine pulp, so I assume they should last a good long time if you're just filtering out random dust/ect particles. I'm still new to using it but am still on my first filter. Run about 1000 bottles through it. I soak it in pbw and then back flush it after each use. I'm thinking of just buying a stainless filter which I imagine would last forever as long as you keep cleaning it, and replace the gaskets. I would also be less worried about flavors leaching over from the filter from different products.
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