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Tom Lenerz

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Tom Lenerz last won the day on June 13

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About Tom Lenerz

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  1. Depending on your cook process, it is likely starches will continue to break down. As a result finished gravities can and often are below 1.000. The only way I could see a mash getting more dense (increased gravity) is if you lose alcohol. It seems more likely that your sampling procedures explain the variance.
  2. I agree, adding more standards of fill options would be useful, but I would consider more larger options. 3L & 5L would allow for bag-in-box, and 19L & 20L would allow for kegs. Having a set of standards is important though for sure.
  3. Did you temperature correct your sample? Earlier in the fermentation it will be hotter, and therefore read lower then if the same sample is cooled to closer to the calibration temperature on your hydrometer. Also a potential cause, were your first or second samples actually a representative sample?
  4. We sharpie the head with the number, and then print a cardstock label with all the details from whiskey systems and staple that on. If the barrel gets wet, we can always reprint the label as the number is still on it.
  5. I think it is going to be related to size. Larger distilleries and breweries will have a lot more process piping than smaller ones typically. Process pipe is essential for automated processes and can be used to lower labor costs. If everything is piped there is the initial investment of buying the piping, valves and manifolds, but in the long term you don't have to pay people to physically haul hoses around. Sounds minor, but if you are doing the same thing everyday, at a large scale it just makes too much sense. Also you don't have to worry about hoses splitting or having hose barbs shoot off. If you are only moving 1,000 gallons of mash, its a costly mess if that happens, but not in comparison to moving 30,000 gallons.
  6. This forum section was literally made for, and consists of the post that you linked in your post.
  7. A set of smaller tubes in the shell (or tube-in-shell) has much more surface area = more cooling capacity than a tube-in-tube like you are describing in the same footprint. The most efficient in surface area in a physical footprint is a plate exchanger. The disadvantage is particle size and ease of cleanliness, its easier to clean and pass larger particles through a tube-in-tube than a tube-in-shell or a plate exchanger. We use a tube-in-shell, 4 pass with 3x 3/4 inch tubes. It works awesome for 30 gallon beer, but can be plugged if you aren't careful. It would be much harder to plug a 1.5 inch or 2 inch tube-in-tube, but much less efficient and more expensive to get the same cooling rate.
  8. Not an answer to your question, but in my opinion the warm up part of the day is when you are most prone to incident and the stills should be attended for safety.
  9. My biggest suggestion is filter closer to bottling proof. Also it is a lot of filter cartridges, are you washing them in-between uses? What type of water are you preparing them with? Hard water can put Ca & Mg ions in the cartridge which will cause problems after filtration. I'm also not sure your temp and the time at the temp is making an impact on your filtration process. We've in general had bad luck with cartridges for a number of products and are more and more switching to pads. However on our rye, we do a single, room-temp filtration through 5 micron cartridges with no problems.
  10. We've done 75 rye/25 malt, and currently do a 66 Rye/22 Corn/12 Malt. For both we do raw grains with hitempase and bring to around 185 for 20 minutes, cool to 148, add malt and biogluc and amylo 300, rest for 30 minutes then knockout to fermentation temp. We've never had foam issues on rye and have never used fermcap or antifoam.
  11. Hey HedgeBird, we have one of these pumps attached to our Mori filler from TCW. They have the air hose going to a regulator, and the regulator has a quick disconnect on it. For the liquid side, they have two short pieces of hose, about a foot long, clamped to the pump and then tri-clamp fittings on the other side.
  12. There is about a page worth of information, including a diagram for "Charge Still" in Fundamentals of Distillery Practices. Also you could call Vendome and ask them to build you one.
  13. While this answer has a bit of a luddite tone to it, I am in agreement to some extent with this sentiment. For my first 3 years of distilling operations I tracked all the records needed manually. I created spreadsheets to assist, but it was still a lot of pen to paper and then entering things into the spreadsheet. We consistently see questions regarding regulation, record keeping and other compliance issues on these forums. People often are overwhelmed by the amount of information they need to familiarize themselves with when starting a distillery, and having a one-stop shop in distillery software compliance can be tempting. The issue is it is still a tool, and you need to understand all the rules and regulations (and most importantly how to correctly read the rules and regulations) in order to be compliant. I always strongly recommend that you spend the first year or more learning the rules, reading the CFR and creating your own record keeping system so you have a strong understanding of all the elements before jumping into a tool.
  14. https://issuu.com/artisanspiritmag/docs/artisanspirit_issue021_web The article you are looking for is in this issue, it specifically calls out the legal issues surrounding "volunteer" labor. Starts on page 110. In addition to labor laws, you also have to consider insurance, food codes and occupational hazards (OSHA).
  15. If you want to improve your yield, you should collect lower than 20% abv. Meerkat has it covered, all the alcohol you estimated is accounted for, its just that you left it in the still because you had about 500 gallons of mash at 2.5% abv, down from your 600 at 8.5%.
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