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Does it worth, 15K for 320 gallons pot still?

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Hello,

I was offered a 320 gallons pot still made from 320 gallon Wort Boiler.
Current price is 15K

- stainless Steel inside,
- copper jacketed
- 6" copper column, 10 feet tall
- 18kw heating coil
- adjustable reflex head
- Stainless Steel Condenser
- 3-phase Controller

Seller is a local guy, so it is about a trip on my truck, so shipping would cost nothing or close to nothing.
 

Does it worth to pay for this 15K? I am afraid that electricity based heating will be costly and overtime eats all saving on steam vs. electrical heating

If still becomes mine, I would add the onion head, one plated compartment, and potentially gin basket and probably agitator.

Once I get all required licenses, I am planning to distill flavored spirits: different brandies, whisky, gin, grappa, etc

I will go and check it tonight, but I would like to get initial estimate.

Thanks

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is the jacket heated or is that just insulated .  not sure where ur from but to heat a 300 gallon vessel with electricity would be very expensive around here . if you do the math on how many hours of run time it will take to strip and then a low wines run and a high wines run then figure out how much electricity that many hours would take and compare it to what 300 gallon batch would yeild . you may be shocked . 

tim

 

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It looks more like a 100 gallon still with a mis-matched 300 gallon kettle.  By the time you get all the additions done your talking about, you may very well be close to the cost of a new 300 gallon still that has the features you want already and none of the negatives this still has.

To elaborate on still sizing.  Most people call a still 100 gallons or 300 gallons because it can hold 100 or 300 gallons of mash.  But if the still can only process 100 gallons of mash in an 8 hour period, then its effectively only a 100 gallon still no matter how large the kettle is. 

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Winnie,

 

For a 300 gallon still you need a 66,000 watt heating system to run in a reasonable amount of time and you have to have the electrical capacity to support that.  The heating systems for my 100 gallon stills is 22,000 watts.  Also for a 300 gallon still you should have a 12" diameter column.  The column on that still looks a great deal smaller than that and the condenser is certainly too small however I see that you are going to change that.  Also that thing is ugly.  Still if it has a heating jacket that can be used for steam and it actually has a 300 gallon operating capacity it might be worth it.

  Please post the inner diameter and height up to the top of the jacket and I can tell you exactly what the operating capacity is.

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Thank you all for your prompt responses. I scheduled an appointment to this Sunday to see the still and the rest of the equipment, mash tun, fermenters, mixing tank bottle filler, etc .

That is a distillery goes out of the business. I will get as much information as possible as well as will make all sizes measured.

Thanks

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I'm a sucker for a great deal, but if they are asking $15k for that piece of work, I highly doubt anything else is going to be worth it.

Can you even run that still in a single day?  18kw on 300 gallons is a 5 hour heat time (optimistically), probably another 8-10 hours running time if that's a 6" packed column with a dephleg, probably another hour or two if you want to collect tails.  Condenser looks way undersized to be able to support fast stripping, not that those heating elements will do anything fast.  Sounds like a fun day, get in at 5am, leave at 10pm.  Like the folks above said, put in a few modifications, and you are in the territory of a new still, exactly the way you want it.

Adding an agitator to that still is a cool $5k in labor and materials, and I'd argue it's throwing good money after bad.  New heating system, column, condenser.  

God I hope you didn't already buy that thing.

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Silk,

It's easy to see that you know what you are talking about. My calcs. give results that are very close to yours. My calcs show a heat up time of between 5 and 6 hrs and a run time of 11 hrs with no reflux but only if the column and condenser are changed.  With enough reflux in a 12" column to average 130 proof and with a much larger condenser, he would able to do the run in 13 hrs after operating temp is reached so he is looking at 13 hrs of run tim and a 5 to 6 hour heat up time, so that is 19 hrs total and that is with a new condenser and line arm and with a heating jacket.   

Winnie,

Silk is right this is not a good buy, plus that thing is ugly and I don't think that you could ever make it pretty without spending a lot of money  Also whoever built it had no clue about correctly sizing the column and condenser, so it may have other design issues.  Whether you purchase from me or one of my competitors you are much better of going to a reputable distilling equipment company.  paul@distillery-equipment.com

 

 

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I visited a distillery today, took more pictures and made some measurements.

Still:

Stainless steel. About 66 inches tall, about 4 fts in OD diameter. Still has an insulated jacket, so insulation level is about 2.5 inches wide and it is a copper outside, so ID diameter would be about 60 - 62 inches. Column is a copper 6" wide, 4 fts tall. It also has a stainless steel shotgun condenser that is 4" in OD diameter and 4 fts tall. According to the seller, it has 5 pipes inside . Connection for in/out water is 1/2" hose connection. Heating element is 3 phase 18 kWatts. According to the seller, it takes about 4 hours to heat the still (with column and condenser) up before it starts produce "heads".

Price: 15K

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Forgot to mention, that it comes with pump,  that is used for dumpling out and pump mush into the still as well as for re-circulation of the mush in the boiling still. Do not have picture :(

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Other equipment he is willing to sell - do not have price, yet.

2) Stainless steel rectangular mush tun 4 fts x 8 fts x about 4 fts tall with 1.5 - 2" TC drain, and has some pipes on the side.

 

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3) Stainless steel round fermenter, about 4 fts in diameter, about 4 fts tall, 1.5 - 2" TC drain on the bottom. Lid is some half size open/close functionality

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Interest in filling and grinder. Let me know $$ when you have it.

 

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I just got the numbers of how much other listed equipment will cost - that is actually the equipment from the guy, who wants to sell whole distillery - I asked about it in the topic below/above in the "Beginners". So the numbers are:

Stainless steel rectangular mush tun 4 fts x 8 fts x about 4 fts tall with 1.5 - 2" TC drain  - $2000
Plastic canonical fermenter, 275 - 300 gallons, with 2" TC drain and 2" TC sample drain - $800 each
Grinder mill, 240V - $1000
Stainless steel round fermenter, about 4 fts in diameter, about 4 fts tall, 1.5 - 2" TC drain on the bottom - $800
Gravity based stainless steel six spouts wine/spirit bottle filler - $1500

And still, 320 gallons with 6" column/4 fts long, 4" shotgun condenser / 4 fts long / 18kwatts heating element - $15000

Does it still worth to buy? Still or other equipment? Thanks

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No.

The mill and bottle filler may be listed at a fair price.
The other equipment seems to be listed at full retail price, but its not what most of us would want in our distilleries.
As has you have already been told - The still itself is way over priced, not properly designed, has way more negatives than positives and is lacking any required safety features.

Used equipment is always available.  Distilleries are always going to be going out of business.  Your not missing out on some great opportunity by passing on this.

 

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Heck no. That still homemade still looks downright dangerous. I would not pay 1500 for that thing let alone 15K. 

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The plastic tanks you can buy new for the same price (probably including shipping), the still is - as others have said - a hard pass, the stainless tanks are used dairy tanks which are widely available so you might as well find the ones you really want instead of those hamajang, the bottle filler is the only one worth buying if you can get the price down.  Given the condition of the other stuff, I'd look elsewhere on that too. 

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