Jump to content


Recommended Posts


A bit more on the iMasher. We feel there’s a huge market for pro mashing equipment. Mashing most often is the bottle neck in the whole distillation process, and many have asked us when we will enter that market. Well, as of now!

We will offer the iMasher in various sizes. 150, 250, 500, 750, 1,000, and 1,500 liters. And – taken from the basic design of the iMasher – we will soon introduce the iFermenter range as well. Available in the same sizes as the iMasher.

The iMasher can mash as well as ferment. But most pro distillers want to have one masher on multiple fermentation vessels. Mashing takes five hours, fermenting takes 5 days. So if you mash once a day and start up one fermentation every day, and you do that 5 days a week, you can distill 5 times a week. In that case … you need 1 masher and 5 fermenters. In our proposal that’s 1 iMasher and 5 iFermenters.

What the iFermenter is? Simply put, it is a tuned down version of the iMasher. A fermenter doesn’t need a stirring device and there is some money to be saved that way. The iFermenter will have a computer controlled water jacket for constant temperature of fermentation, though.

Okay, back to the iMasher, if you don’t mind. We just assembled her this morning. The iMasher 150 that is, with (a bit over) 150 liters of nett capacity. The stirrer is of the same design as the one on the iStripper. As is the engine driving it. The same, but on a smaller scale. A 120 centimeter ruther just doesn’t fit in a 150 liter mash tank, right? And we don’t need that many horsepower to drive the smaller charge on this particular type either. Where the iStripper throws (in combination with the reduction gear box) 20 bhp to the ruther, the iMasher 150 has “just” 5 bhp. The stirrer is as strong as five horses. We put a fuse in, so it automatically stops when resistance is met and the engine has to put in anything over 2 bhp, but please do not put your arm, ever, when the stirrer is on!

The iMasher 150 is equiped with a water jacket. The computer detects how much water is in the water jacket for heating as well as cooling. And if the level in the jacket is too low, it will open the water inlet valve and auto correct. Two 2 KW heaters warm the water jacket. Since the water jacket is a closed system, pressure will built up and above 100 degrees C temps can easily be attained. But heating in a closed system will develop pressure. So the iMasher is programmed in such a way that the heating will switch on and off, thus creating a sinoid that keeps the temperature of the water jacket between 0.5 degrees C.

There is a water outlet pipe as well. For multiple reasons. First, if you don’t want to use the iMasher for a longer period of time, you may want to drain the water out of the system. Second, the water outlet functions as a blow off valve. An additional safety feature. In the theoretical case too much pressure builds up, steam & hot water will automatically be releases through the water outlet and into a hose, emptying in the drainage system. The third functionality for the water outlet is cooling management. After mashing, you may want to bring the temperature of the wash down. In order to do that quickly, the iMasher will have fresh water enter via “water in”, while hot water is discarded via “water out”. For crash cooling (beer making?) as well as for small downwards temperature adjustments.

Managing the iMasher is easy due to the computer interface. First, you choose the stirring. How many rounds per minute do you want? You then select various temperatures, and how long you want to keep the mash at those temperature. The iMasher will take it from there.

For fermentation, you just dial in one temperature and keep it at that until fermentation is finisihed. And yes, if you want to use the iMasher for fermenting: it even has a water lock.

For easy discharging, there is a 2 inch ball valve at the bottom. For easy draining, there are three outlets. In the case of the 150 model, the topmost outlet will leave 20 gallons in the masher. The middle outlet tap will leave 15 gallons in the tank. The lower outlet leaves just 10 gallons in the tank. Just so you can choose. For instance, when you want to distill or ferment a clean beer, you may want to use the lowest outlet. If you want to distill/ferment on the grain, take everything out via the 2 inch bottom drain. There’s a sight seeing tube running vertically along the tank, so you can always see what’s the remaining liquid level inside.

In short, the iMasher allows you to program how you want to mash and/or ferment. And temperature, water levels as well as pressure are managed automatically.

Did I already mention it has four wheels so you can move it around? With brakes on them?

For a picture, please see: http://wp.me/p3pXcR-kw

Link to comment
Share on other sites

1500 liters is well past what's realistic for electric. You'd need somewhere north of 100kw, and that would necessitate heavy power, likely 480v 3 phase.

Dropping 480v 3 phase into a building that doesn't have it, and wiring something of this scale up, is going to cost as much as a steam boiler. In most places it will also cost significantly more to run.

Edwin - are the larger units provisioned with steam jackets and proportional control valves?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi Mike & Angelo,

Sorry for the confusion. The smaller mashers run on electricity.The bigger ones will be natural gas operated. In combination with a bottom dweller stirring device and a 4 cm thick bottom plate (one piece, not welded). If you want to get an idea of power management of the 1,000 and 1,500 liter units, please take a look at the iStripper posts:


Where we are progressing to, is towards the direction of a completely integrated set-up. Like this:

  1. 1,500 liter iMasher (natural gas fired) for mashing;
  2. 1,500 liter iFermenters (multiple) with water jacketed tanks for (if needed) faster cool down of mash and/or controlled fermenting temps with on or off the grain fermentation;
  3. iStripper: to strip (for vodka or gin) or to finish in one run (whiskey or brandy or gin): on or off the grain distilling;
  4. iStill 250 as a finishing rig for vodka or gin / for whiskey or brandy.

An "ideal" iStill set-up may look like this:

  • 1 iMasher (1,500 liters);
  • 5 iFermenters (5 x 1,500 liters);
  • 1 iStripper (1,500 liters);
  • 1 iStill 250.

This set-up allows you to (easily) make (and then distill) 1,500 liters of mash / wash per day, giving you like 1,500 liters of 8% "beer" per day.

Say the beer is like 8%, you can now use the iStripper, for instance with iCatalyst and one cleaning section, to turn that beer into around 180 liters of 60% pure spirit (whiskey prior to ageing) per run. That's around 900 liters or 4 barrels per week. A run with the iStripper will take a working day.

Another thing you may do is make a vodka. With the iCat and 3 cleaning sections, the iStripper will give you around 130 liters of close to 90%. The iStripper can do so in an 8 hours working day. You now dilute that to 400 liters of around 30%. That's two charges for the iStill 250 for a perfect vodka with automated controls for fores, heads, and tails. In this example you can do (with two people): one mash (iMasher), one strip run (iStripper) and two finishing runs in just one day. And if you have gotten some iStill training, you can do this just on your own, providing you have equipment to move the kilo's of grains around on your own.

And if you want to make gin, just take your vodka and progress from there.

Total investment? Well, we haven't calculated everything down to the dime, but for around 200 K you get a total lay-out, perfectly suited for 5 times an 8 hours working day week. With an output of around 240 liters of finished product (ageing not being taken into account) per day. That's 1,200 liters per week, which translates to 1,700 bottles per week.

And if you want to start up with less capital invested, just start with the iStill 250, and progress from there.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 1 month later...

An update on the iStill Masher. We finalized design and are building the first units. Size? 2,000 liters. Capability? Computer aided step-up and single infusion mashing.

The iStill Masher has a double boiler with water jacket. She's fired through natural gas heating, with additional direct steam injection. And yes, there's a large, computer controlled stirring device as well.

With the computer, you can check current mash temps, dial in pre-set temperatures and mashing times, etc. The combination of heating with a water jacket, means you can heat-up and cool-down rapidly as well as controlled.

The iStill Masher is designed to work perfectly together with our all new iStill One (previously also known under the work title "iStripper") and with the iStill Fermenter, and can be ordered as of right now. Just send us an email via sales@iStillmail.com so details can be discussed.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 2 months later...

Here's more info on the iStill Masher 2000. That's 2000 liters of nett mashing capacity. A bit over 500 gallons. Introduction price for orders in by November 2014: EUR 24,995.-. Natural gas fired, computer aided mashing, oil filled double boiler jacket for heating, and water jacketed for cooling.

Two 50 centimeter diameter manholes (21 inches). One for filling, the other for cleaning. Bottom dweller agitator design (> 20 bhp).

Variable costs for mashing 2000 liters / 510 gallons? Around $ 10.- per 2000 liter / 510 gallons mash on natural gas. No natural gas on you premisses? An upgrade to propane/butane is available. Here's for more info and for design: http://wp.me/p3pXcR-na

Link to comment
Share on other sites

This topic is now closed to further replies.
  • Create New...