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How far to go on stripping run


Towerguy

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Hello, this may be a newbie question, but has anyone calculated the point on a stripping run (by ABV of output) when it is no longer worth the time and energy to keep collecting? It seems that once you get to say, 10%, the amount of ethanol collected is relatively small, and much of this will end up in the tails cut anyway. Has anyone actually figured this out scientifically? TIA, John

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Honestly, this is as much a cost of energy question as anything. Propane in Hawaii cost $5.80 a gallon, and electricity is around $0.49 Kw/Hr. The COGS in Hawaii energy is very relevant and screams for more efficient energy options. I know guys doing PV solar and continuous and we are looking to start more parabolic solar pre-heating in 2015 to offset the energy. If you are lucky enough to be in a place with cheap energy, try going lower than 10% and see. If not, I wouldn't waste the money.

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Let's say that at 10% at the parrot, you've got roughly 0.5% in the pot. If you're mash starts at 10%, you're throwing away roughly 5% of your batch. How much do your raw materials and labor cost to make a batch? Compare that cost to the cost your energy and labor to run the still another hour or two to get to zero...

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It is all in the system. Everyones is different.

I will shut down a 25%, It works for me. The dephlegmater turned up, and the output temp is 190F (there is nothing left) and the flow rate coming off the still is so slow that it would that 30 min (don't really know) to fill a 750ml. It becomes so slow that I can recharge the still and make more money. The other thing is ... how much of that do you want? Kinda depends what your making. Also, I want to go home at the end of the day so thats another reason I cut it.

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Amongst other things it depends on the type of still you have.

if you cut an alembic pot off at 15% there is still about 2%abv in the pot. If your wash was 8% then you are throwing away 1/4 of your alcohol.

A column with many plates could have very little useful alcohol in the pot at 15% outlet

I run my alembic to 2%, my fuel is almost free (old cooking oil) and it is usually finished before 4 pm.

In my opinion it pays to run rye as far as possible because there are a lot of interesting flavours that come over late.

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  • 4 weeks later...

Amongst other things it depends on the type of still you have.

if you cut an alembic pot off at 15% there is still about 2%abv in the pot. If your wash was 8% then you are throwing away 1/4 of your alcohol.

A column with many plates could have very little useful alcohol in the pot at 15% outlet

Agreed, very dependent on still type and beer or wines in the pot. Our beer is 12% and we get more rectification that a typical alembic, so at 15% there is well below 1% left in the pot. And we are distilling grain in. We lose less than 5% of our alcohol that way.

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