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Hello from NC: Devil's Distillery

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Hey folks,

Working on a start up distillery in North Carolina. We're located right next to a Biodiesel Plant, and are occupying a former aluminum smelting building. We'll be working with local wineries, as well as farmers to produce brandy, port, sherry, and Sweet Sorghum liquor (wish we could just call it Sorghum Rum!).

Pittsboro, NC

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Welcome Chris

You got my curiosity when you said you are next to a biodiesel plant. I originally ran 95% of my distillery on biodiesel. Now converted much of it to unconverted waste fryer oil, much cheaper.

This morning I read an article about sorghum distilling. Surghum is a grain so I would assume the distilled spirit produces a whiskey, or did you just want it to rhyme :)


.......................Heartland Distillers was one of the first new distillers to open in Indiana since Prohibition. After starting out with its small-batch vodka, its founders have added spirits flavored with Chai tea, espresso and chocolate, and cherry vanilla. Hobson had dabbled in oak-aged bourbon and herb-infused gin. He teamed up with Colglazier to produce the world's first sweet sorghum spirit, called SorgRhum.


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Hey Pete,

yes, we are looking to run our boiler off of b100. I worked at the biodiesel plant for several years, and they run two 500K BTU hot water boilers off b100 and off spec biodiesel. I'm looking for about a 250K boiler for our operation, but for steam, which I am not as accustomed to.

There are two or three different products from the various sorghums out there. Grain Sorghum, or Milo, would be brewed like a whiskey, but with Sweet Sorghum you are pressing the actual cane of the plant for the juice. It's almost the same process as with sugar cane, except that with Sweet Sorghum Syrup there are no crystallized sugars as with sugar cane. So we would use the premium juice, or the finished syrup. Juice brix is around 15, and the finished syrup is in the 70-80 range. Just like rhum agricole, the liquor from the raw juice has a different flavor profile than the cooked syrup.

What equipment did you use to run off biodiesel and wvo?


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Chris, thanks for the info on sweet sorghum.

B100 runs well in domestic diesel gun burners, although the seals may eventually fail unless they are the correct type.

WVO may need pre-heating before the pump and definately just before the nozzle. Domestic burners can be modified and are far more reliable if the nozzle is changed to a syphon type. If you have time to convert one see altfuelfurnace@yahoogroups.com

A chinese company has been sending me prices for waste oil burners, very cheap. Unknown quality. http://machinery.alibaba.com/waste-oil-burner.html

My still is direct fired with a modified domestic gun burner. Runs on Biodiesel and/or waste veg oil (will also run on waste motor oil but I don't use it)

Water boiler runs on another gun.

The guns are putting out about 30 Kw each.

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  • 1 month later...

Good Luck,

You will have lots of ways to lower costs with reclaiming heat from the biodiesel.

I believe Carl has some micros in your area that I hoped to visit when I worked in Charlotte but missed out.

If you need any water chilling info, give me a shout!

Mike Gronski

MG Thermal Consulting

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