RE: [Distillers] Re :: Clearing
- Hi Ryan, this information is offered as the way in which I have found the
process to this date works best for me. One thing is certain, I will change
things more as time goes by. Been at this hobby for a while now and run a
few batches through. The way in which I pitch the yeast, ferment and siphon
off the wash etc, has evolved over the time that I have practised this
hobby. One thing is constant; I am forever learning and trying new ways of
improving the process. I would encourage you too as well.
(1) Relax this is a hobby, if you stick to the 8kg of sugar,
approximately 20 litres of water (to make up a 25 litre wash) a packet of
turbo yeast, or whatever to recipe on the yeast packet says, it is bloody
hard to go wrong.
(2) I use castor sugar, it dissolves easier and here it's actually
cheaper than table sugar, go figure. I also buy in bulk (25kg bags.
(3) First I add the 8kg of sugar, using the garden hose on high
pressure a dissolve the sugar. This also has the benefit of adding oxygen to
the water. I stop adding the water at the half full mark. I then toss in the
turbo yeast and using the water from the garden hose again, I quickly stir
the lot together vigorously to the full water mark.
(4) I look to the weather forecast at this time of the year to try
and save the yeast fermenting in temperatures above 30 degrees Celsius. If
the temperature is below 20 degrees Celsius during the day, then use a
(5) I have tried clearing agents of different types. Now I just leave
the fermented wash sit an extra week or two after fermentation has finished
and wait for the solids to drop out of suspension. It will look like a weak
urine colour when it's ready. I hardy use a hydrometer at all these days,
only when I suspect a failure. Use your eyes, ears, nose and touch for they
are your best guide. Sure initially you don't know what to expect, but by
taking things slow, using your senses, taking measurements and writing
notes, you will notice things when they are going wrong.
(6) Leave the fermenting wash alone, once I have things bubbling away
as they should, (I look at them once a day for the first few days to make
sure they are bubbling) the next time I open the fermenter is when I am
about to run it through the still. If you find you are consuming more
alcohol than you are making, slow the drinking down or buy another
fermenter, whatever, get yourself ahead of your demand, it will take the
(7) When it comes time to transfer the wash into the fermenter, I
open the bottom tap on the fermenter and let it drain into the boiler,
trying not to get too may solids as this is what smells when cooking.
(8) I do a stripping run, its fast, the way I have things setup I
don't have to adjust anything. Actually the wife turns it on during the week
when all the neighbours are at work, this way the smell doesn't bother them.
When I have enough, I then run the boiler again slowly through the
refractionating column. The output is clean neutral 96% spirit.
(9) Then it's a matter of watering it back to 40%, because I use town
water I then run it through carbon, mainly to get the crap that is in the
town water supply out. Use bottled water if you can afford it.
It is then either used as is to make white spirit type drinks and liquors or
soaked on oak for a couple of weeks for brown spirits. (Scotch, rum,
Hope this helps, the beauty of these lists is that you can increase the
already steep learning curve by listening to what others say, sort the gems
out and ignore the rest, if it works for you, I am glad to have helped you
as others have helped me.
Yours in Spirit
From: ryanv75 [mailto:ryanv75@...]
Sent: Monday, 2 February 2004 2:27 PM
Subject: [Distillers] Re :: Clearing
I reread the package for the turbo yeast,and it said it will not clear
naturally. So i bought some sparkaliod. I put it in some boiling water
and added it to the wash. I mixed it almost 4 times the strength,
consideing I am using probably 10 times the yeast I am assuming to
normal wine. My gravity measurements almost defy logic. I started at
about 1.22 and two weeks later it stopped at 0.90. This is all at
23-21 degrees celcius. My wash took over twice as long as stated, but
because i tried to make it 20% as stated on the package, I also didnt
use an air pump. Will i have any problems by using so much finings ?
Will i have any problems because ive left my wash for 3-4 days after
it has stabalised at 0.90 ? Thanks again.
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