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Tom Lenerz

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Tom Lenerz last won the day on April 21 2017

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About Tom Lenerz

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  1. Tom Lenerz

    Rye fermentation yield

    The cararye is malted to have sugar that is non-fermentable, so your fermentation is probably complete. Most beers with caramel malts finish higher than 1.007. If this is about making alcohol and increasing yield, swap the cararye for something cheaper that converts. If you are happy with the flavor you are getting, note that it probably will have an impact on that.
  2. Tom Lenerz

    How to Pressure Test a still?

    The supplier should have pressure tested it for you before it was sent to you. It should have pressure ratings listed on the jacket and on the pot, if it is rated. If you are talking about testing your vacuum breakers and pressure relief valves, I have heard of people getting a second set to swap out and sending them out. At the brewery I used to work at, the owner would tear apart, clean and inspect the stainless PRVs we had. He would then hook just the valve up to a manifold with a calibrated pressure gauge and compressed air, and slowly ramp up the pressure to see at what PSI it popped at. He then recorded it and kept a log of all the different tests.
  3. Tom Lenerz

    Spirit Storage Vessels (Small Volume)

    Check out Fustis on Amazon. https://www.amazon.com/Eagle-WE722-Stainless-Fusti-Silver/dp/B01HRCP0VM/ref=sr_1_6?ie=UTF8&qid=1542655633&sr=8-6&keywords=fusti Or you can pull stems out of half barrels, tougher to clean, but they are a handy size to have.
  4. Tom Lenerz

    truck to grain/feed bin auger

    I'd recommend checking with a local farmer to see who they buy there bins, augers, elevators, etc.. from instead of direct from manufacturer. I contacted an ag millwright near me and and I had quotes for bins, elevators, pneumatic system and augers within a few days. Plus they might have a used one that will work for a fraction of the price.
  5. Tom Lenerz

    Dephleg hotter than column

    Could be way off base, but did you check the flow of your 3 way valves and make sure they are set right? It is tough to see but it looks like it could be possible to have the first 3 way valve bypassing the column, but the top of the column open, forcing hot vapor into the top of the column, instead of the bottom.
  6. Tom Lenerz

    Best way to neutralize a barrel

    I heard from a beer guy, that for "neutral oak" they steam the barrels, then bung them up. As the barrel cools down it pulls a vacuum in the barrel, sucking the wine out of the wood. Pull the bung and dump, and repeat until the liquid coming out is mostly water.
  7. Tom Lenerz

    To filter or not to filter...

    This is an important question. Also whiskey? or what type of spirit?
  8. Tom Lenerz

    Best options for cooling mash

    We run an external tube-in-shell heat exchanger, I like it a lot.
  9. Tom Lenerz

    Back Up Generator

    One of the main reasons to have a generator would be if you have a pump on-site for your fire suppression, if the power is out during a storm your building is unprotected for that duration.
  10. Tom Lenerz

    Return line Above or Below? that is the question

    Ours is below as well. It originally had a piece of pipe that returned it to mere inches from the bottom the kettle. With thick rye mashes we would get some backing up, so we shortened the pipe by about a foot, so it still goes well down into the liquid, but we haven't had the problem since.
  11. Tom Lenerz

    Boiler Installation Costs

    Did you double check that they quoted the right number of hours? If that takes one person 11 weeks to do they definitely aren't worth $150 an hour. Maybe it was supposed to be 45? 2 people, 2 and a half days makes a lot more sense, but even that seems high for that short run of pipe.
  12. Tom Lenerz

    Boiler Installation Costs

    I think it is common that install is usually the same or more as the equipment itself. If the first number is just the boiler, and the $85K includes materials needed for install then maybe? Are there more details on the installation quote, are they doing custom piping and welding or just threading pipe? Is it stainless or black iron, does it include insulation or not... Do they have any competition near you or are you in the middle of nowhere and there is a lot of travel time/expenses allotted? I know around us, all the trades are really busy, so prices for things can be high.
  13. Tom Lenerz

    Formula approval for Spiced Rum Required?

    This tool is handy... https://www.ttb.gov/formulation/do-I-need-a-formula.shtml
  14. Tom Lenerz

    Forking Forklift Questions

    See this thread, has a link concerning OSHA regs for forklifts in a distillery environment. Spoiler: it doesn’t have to be explosion proof. We had a gas inside at the brewery I worked at and it was ok, we have a gas here but only for outside (mostly for hills). Electric is nice if you remember to charge it because you don’t need to run to swap out tanks in the middle of something and the store is closed. Gas is nice if you are going to be on it non-stop as you can just swap out tanks if you have been using it for 9 hours straight (which we do during harvest).
  15. Tom Lenerz

    AODD hammer arrestor?

    Not an industrial one, but we use this one from TCW. We are happy with it. Only smooths the outlet, not the inlet so the suction hose still jerks around a bit. https://store.tcwequipment.com/products/tcw-pulsation-smoother