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    Sydney, Australia
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    Making the best spirits. Solving problems.

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  1. 3% with a clean water rinse. A 3% solution is around pH 3.8
  2. I swear by the Anton Paar range. Simple, reliable and mostly idiot proof. But it always comes down to cost, available support in your region.
  3. Depending on which Organic organisation / country you certify with, they have differing levels of non organic ingredients allowed. I am not sure what the USDA specifies. But, in principal; The botanicals are considered ingredients, but their small quantities may make them exempt from being organic input. Pesticides and other agrichems will pass through a still. As I think the USDA uses the 5% rule (5% of ingredients can be Non organic, but not GMO), if you secure a Organic CERTIFIED NGS you will be good to go. Do speak to the organic certifiers, they will know whats allowed and what is possible. Customers do care about OC. It also gives you a solid differentiator. OC production is more expensive, mainly due to the additional costs of process cleaning, paperwork, more manual labour, less chemicals.
  4. Always hard to tell as they have not changed the design in hundreds of years.
  5. These are old Whisky still I guess from the UK. The tradition in the UK is to OIL the stills with boiled linseed. Today you can use a general purpose silicon spray, often sold to polish stainless etc. I dont personally like the use of lacquers, as the too break down with the heat and yellow and flake. There are some commercial copper 'preservers' that are oil or wax based, usually with some Benzotriazole included which is a fantastic corrosion preventor for copper. Always test things first, as most commercial polishes and coatings are not designed fo rthe higher temperatures. My advice with new stills is to thoroughly clean and polish them after installation (finger prints and sweat marks), let them age for say 1-2 weeks then apply a silicon oil.
  6. Are you sure the still is only 13 years old? Holsteins have been TIG brazing and welding for sometime, well over 13 years, with soldering reserved for only sensitive joints. Prior to that they did used varios Tin-silver-copper (Sn-Ag-Cu, or "SAC") solders. SAC solders have fallen from grace in food service, due to the high melting point and cadmium residues. The photos you posted seem to indicate silver leaching in the solder. But its hard to tell. Generally I never recommend Nitric Acid as a cleaner or pacification wash as it reacts with the silver and tin more so than say Citic or Sulphuric. I usually recommend citric for pacification washes. Another puzzling aspect is the brown stain of the corrosion, indicating presence of Iron. Is your water very hard? But it could be some other odd tin/silver salt. I have seen this when the weld/joint is contaminated with iron from tools or sanding disks. Unlikely for Holstiens. Unless the leak is affecting the still operation (doubtful) I would ignore it. Repair is complex and really needs an experienced expert. Resoldering with like solder is your only option. To remove the legacy solder sufficient for a clean TIG would be impossible. I would be sending the pics to Holstiens and getting on the phone. They must have a published repair procedure.
  7. Reverse osmosis can effectively remove most if not all ethanol from a spirit or gin. Commercial rigs are common in the wine industry for lowering the ABV of certain wine styles. However, any method used to remove the ethanol from say a gin will impact the gin's flavour, as many of the flavour components are filtered/distilled out with the ethanol. The process above puzzles me as well, as many of the botanicals will be removed with the ethanol. Do some research into the THC oil scene. They are using a lot of CO2 extraction methods, as well as messing with various other food grade solvents. Here is a list of approved food grade solvents (some are utterly scarey) https://www.canada.ca/en/health-canada/services/food-nutrition/food-safety/food-additives/lists-permitted/15-carrier-extraction-solvents.html
  8. DYE of China. Exceptional price and quality. Highly recommended. https://www.dayuwz.com/
  9. 3-5 uM for spiced or gold rums 5um for dark (or you will loose colour) 1-3 uM for white rums. But check flavour post filter. A 5uM filter will remove 99.9% of charcoal sediment.
  10. You need damn good eyes to see anything smaller than 0.5uM. I always suggest 0.5uM as the final bottling filter as its sterile, that is yeast and most other spoilage microbes will not pass through 0.5uM. I have good resukts with cheap poly spun water filter cartridges. Use one per batch, but purge with product frst for say 50 litres and return to the tank for re-filtering. If your still getting particulates IMMEDIATELY upon bottling in the bottles, then there is contamination, work through the following; Are the bottles clean, corks as well (dusty corks are a common oversight) Is the bottle wash water equally clean Is there contamination in the downstream filter hoses, or the bottling head. The is most likely a bleed in the filter canister or the filer membrane, where unfiltered liquid is getting around the filter. Some general questions; Does the particulate settle out eventually? Does it get worse after bottling? If you bottle filtered distilled water, do you get the same contamination.
  11. TY for the explanation, a fascinating subject. I am a Chemical Engineer by profession, so I get your process. CBD seems to be a complex cocktail to seperate. But you answered my question with vacuum distillation.
  12. Even with LS, you should consider some sort of cooling for your ferment, even if only for the spike. Happy yeast is a quick and complete ferment.
  13. The general definition for Vodka is that it must be made from a neutral spirit of AGRICULTURAL origin, diluted from no less than 95% ABV. A very broad definition indeed. As we say, if it rots you can make vodka from it.
  14. Depends on the country. Sugar is illegal in Australia, but not the addition of acids. Sugar is legal in France, but acids are prohibited in most regions. As sugar is usually 3-4 times the price of grape juice, its usually grape juice concentrate that is added to bolster the sugar levels. GJC is mainly fructose, where as cane sugar is sucrose. The later being harder to ferment.
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