>Is a meat thermometer any good to get the temperatureIt may not be fast or sensitive enough. You really want something where
>of the fume at the head of the still ?
you can see the difference of say 78.4C and 78.8C if you're into doing the
high purity stuff. If however you're more at the lower end, and only
interested in say whether your vapour is 96C or 84C (eg like when running a
pot still), then it might be OK. But I'm tempted to say to stick to the
more accurate thermometers.
- --- In Distillers@y..., Tony & Elle Ackland <Tony.Ackland@c...> wrote:
> >Is a meat thermometer any good to get the temperaturewhere
> >of the fume at the head of the still ?
> It may not be fast or sensitive enough. You really want something
> you can see the difference of say 78.4C and 78.8C if you're intodoing the
> high purity stuff. If however you're more at the lower end, andonly
> interested in say whether your vapour is 96C or 84C (eg like whenrunning a
> pot still), then it might be OK. But I'm tempted to say to stickto the
> more accurate thermometers.Tony, I agree IF this is a new still. I ran a digital thermometer
accurate to .1 degree F that refreshed every 5 seconds when I first
built my still.
After a dozen or so batches, the thermometer died. By that time, I
knew the characteristics of my still so well that now I just run by
touch of the column, (to judge when the spirit will begin to flow),
smell (to judge when the foreshots are done), flowrate (matching the
flowrate from when the thermometer worked), and volume collected per
standard wash fermented (typically, I get the same volume per batch
I run a stillmaster type still and in lieu of carbon treatment,
always run a second run of the distillate. I save the first quart
and the last two quarts of distillate from each second run and
recycle with the initial run next go-round. This system leaves me
with pure 95% neutral spirit without the need for recycling - OR for
a thermometer or for carbon treatment for that matter.
I use a propane cooker outdoors which enables fine tuning of heat
source and I dump the cooling water into the heated pool so that the
water and heat energy are conserved.
No waste, clean spirit, and no thermometer. But, you need an
accurate thermometer initially before you can develop this kind of a
feel for your gear.
>Is a meat thermometer any good to get the temperatureLOL, I don't know about "good," but they can be used. I mean I use them for
>of the fume at the head of the still ?
my rigs and experiments, but then again I'm not going after high purity
stuff either. Also, I know the way that my sills act. I know the sounds of
the boiling when things change, and I can smell the difference in the vapor.
If you are going after high purity neutral spirit, then you should send
about $25 [US] and get a good digital thermometer to check your still. You
can find some even cheaper ones, but the cost that you will put out buying
new ones after the first five break would have bought you a real nice one in
the first place.
Some people use both on the same still in different parts of the still.
There are all different ways to use both of them.
If you do use a meat thermometer, make sure that you find one with a really
big face on it. This will allow you to still see the very small fluctuations
in the temperature that the smaller faced ones prohibit you from seeing.
So, if you don't mind less than 85% accurate readings and don't mind making
a few "learning" runs before you get used to it, then yes, a meat
thermometer with a very large face is good to use. Like I said, I use them,
but I know what I'm going after. Make sure that if you do buy one, spend the
extra money to get the large faced one, I can't express this enough.
I hope this helps.
Your Brother in Magick,
The Omnipresent Mecakyrios
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