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Re: [Distillers] carbon filtering

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  • Trid
    ... Perhaps somebody can help with the actual documentation, but it s my understanding that ethanol tends to leach out some nasties out of PVC. There have
    Message 1 of 15 , Mar 13, 2006
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      --- loulenz2002 <loulenz2002@...> wrote:

      > I've never really contributed anything to this group, I never felt I
      > had anything worth sharing, but I do receive a help and ideas from
      > everybody, thanks guys and gals!!
      > I usually only do whiskey runs but I started doing vodca recently, and
      > I thought that the carbon filtering was to slow, so I had an idea
      > based on one on the distiller´s site. I built a 1m filter out of PVC,
      > sealed all the joints with food grade silicone, on the top of the
      > filter I have a screw on cap which I put a ball lock from a cornelius
      > keg on, and on the bottom end I have another screw-on cap from which I
      > can remove the spent carbon and in this cap I put my filter paper in
      > there, and there's a nozzle screwed into it which i put a little piece
      > of cotton into. The vodka comes out clean tasting,clear and quick
      > with a couple of pounds of CO2.
      > Any feedback on problems with this setup are appreciated.
      >
      > Lou

      Perhaps somebody can help with the actual documentation, but it's my
      understanding that ethanol tends to leach out some nasties out of PVC. There
      have been a number of discussions on the forum mentioning this and other
      undesirable characteristics of PVC.

      Personally, I'm looking at using an old corny keg for the carbon vessel and
      putting a tap at the bottom for the takeoff. Can't go wrong with stainless for
      the finished product.

      Trid
    • Gregory Bloom
      Oncologists have expressed concern about plasticizer leaching from PVC. Quoting from http://tinyurl.com/qhen8: To make matters worse, ethanol and Cremophor
      Message 2 of 15 , Mar 13, 2006
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        Oncologists have expressed concern about plasticizer leaching from PVC. Quoting from http://tinyurl.com/qhen8:

        "To make matters worse, ethanol and Cremophor EL leach plasticizers from PVC bags and infusion sets, requiring preparation and administration of paclitaxel in glass bottles or non-PVC infusion systems."



        I like the idea of using a pressurized carbon column to speed things up. But I'd probably make it out of copper, just to be safe. (Though, frankly, the tumor promoting properties of ethanol probably far outweigh the risk posed by any trace amounts of plasticizer that one might leach in a couple of minutes of contact with PVC).


        Trid <triddlywinks@...> wrote:

        --- loulenz2002 <loulenz2002@...> wrote:

        > I've never really contributed anything to this group, I never felt I
        > had anything worth sharing, but I do receive a help and ideas from
        > everybody, thanks guys and gals!!
        > I usually only do whiskey runs but I started doing vodca recently, and
        > I thought that the carbon filtering was to slow, so I had an idea
        > based on one on the distiller´s site. I built a 1m filter out of PVC,
        > sealed all the joints with food grade silicone, on the top of the
        > filter I have a screw on cap which I put a ball lock from a cornelius
        > keg on, and on the bottom end I have another screw-on cap from which I
        > can remove the spent carbon and in this cap I put my filter paper in
        > there, and there's a nozzle screwed into it which i put a little piece
        > of cotton into. The vodka comes out clean tasting,clear and quick
        > with a couple of pounds of CO2.
        > Any feedback on problems with this setup are appreciated.
        >
        > Lou

        Perhaps somebody can help with the actual documentation, but it's my
        understanding that ethanol tends to leach out some nasties out of PVC. There
        have been a number of discussions on the forum mentioning this and other
        undesirable characteristics of PVC.

        Personally, I'm looking at using an old corny keg for the carbon vessel and
        putting a tap at the bottom for the takeoff. Can't go wrong with stainless for
        the finished product.

        Trid



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      • Louis Lenz
        Yeah i´ve read about the problems related to pvc, i had some pvc laying and tried it out, i don`t know if you should be able to taste the nasties or not, but
        Message 3 of 15 , Mar 13, 2006
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          Yeah i´ve read about the problems related to pvc, i had some pvc laying and tried it out, i don`t know if you should be able to taste the nasties or not, but it tastes fine. I´m trying to get my license to make distilled alcohol so i can sell it at festivals around Chile, so they`ll end up taking everything i make to the lab. So after that i´ll learn alot more. It should be happening some time this month or the next. After it goes to the lab i can post the results. BTW i kinda like that corny keg idea. I might give that a try.
          Thanks for the input, Lou
          Gregory Bloom <gjbloom@...> wrote: Oncologists have expressed concern about plasticizer leaching from PVC. Quoting from http://tinyurl.com/qhen8:

          "To make matters worse, ethanol and Cremophor EL leach plasticizers from PVC bags and infusion sets, requiring preparation and administration of paclitaxel in glass bottles or non-PVC infusion systems."



          I like the idea of using a pressurized carbon column to speed things up. But I'd probably make it out of copper, just to be safe. (Though, frankly, the tumor promoting properties of ethanol probably far outweigh the risk posed by any trace amounts of plasticizer that one might leach in a couple of minutes of contact with PVC).


          Trid <triddlywinks@...> wrote:

          --- loulenz2002 <loulenz2002@...> wrote:

          > I've never really contributed anything to this group, I never felt I
          > had anything worth sharing, but I do receive a help and ideas from
          > everybody, thanks guys and gals!!
          > I usually only do whiskey runs but I started doing vodca recently, and
          > I thought that the carbon filtering was to slow, so I had an idea
          > based on one on the distiller�s site. I built a 1m filter out of PVC,
          > sealed all the joints with food grade silicone, on the top of the
          > filter I have a screw on cap which I put a ball lock from a cornelius
          > keg on, and on the bottom end I have another screw-on cap from which I
          > can remove the spent carbon and in this cap I put my filter paper in
          > there, and there's a nozzle screwed into it which i put a little piece
          > of cotton into. The vodka comes out clean tasting,clear and quick
          > with a couple of pounds of CO2.
          > Any feedback on problems with this setup are appreciated.
          >
          > Lou

          Perhaps somebody can help with the actual documentation, but it's my
          understanding that ethanol tends to leach out some nasties out of PVC. There
          have been a number of discussions on the forum mentioning this and other
          undesirable characteristics of PVC.

          Personally, I'm looking at using an old corny keg for the carbon vessel and
          putting a tap at the bottom for the takeoff. Can't go wrong with stainless for
          the finished product.

          Trid



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        • Robert Hubble
          I don t know about white PVC (what I m assuming you re talking about), but the flexible clear plastic tubing from hardware stores is responsible for the only
          Message 4 of 15 , Mar 13, 2006
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            I don't know about white PVC (what I'm assuming you're talking about), but
            the flexible clear plastic tubing from hardware stores is responsible for
            the only real failures I've had with this still. As a final product guide,
            I slipped a one-foot section over the condenser output to facilitate
            changing output receptacles of different sizes, and those 2 batches of rum
            were very harsh tasting, even in the middle run.

            I pitched that flex tube, and all following runs have been sweet and lovely.
            I have learned my lesson.

            Zymurgy Bob, a simple potstiller




            >From: Gregory Bloom <gjbloom@...>
            >Reply-To: Distillers@yahoogroups.com
            >To: Distillers@yahoogroups.com
            >Subject: Re: [Distillers] carbon filtering
            >Date: Mon, 13 Mar 2006 09:33:57 -0800 (PST)
            >
            >Oncologists have expressed concern about plasticizer leaching from PVC.
            >Quoting from http://tinyurl.com/qhen8:
            >
            > "To make matters worse, ethanol and Cremophor EL leach plasticizers from
            >PVC bags and infusion sets, requiring preparation and administration of
            >paclitaxel in glass bottles or non-PVC infusion systems."
            >
            >
            >
            > I like the idea of using a pressurized carbon column to speed things up.
            >But I'd probably make it out of copper, just to be safe. (Though, frankly,
            >the tumor promoting properties of ethanol probably far outweigh the risk
            >posed by any trace amounts of plasticizer that one might leach in a couple
            >of minutes of contact with PVC).
            >
            >
            >Trid <triddlywinks@...> wrote:
            >
            > --- loulenz2002 <loulenz2002@...> wrote:
            >
            > > I've never really contributed anything to this group, I never felt I
            > > had anything worth sharing, but I do receive a help and ideas from
            > > everybody, thanks guys and gals!!
            > > I usually only do whiskey runs but I started doing vodca recently, and
            > > I thought that the carbon filtering was to slow, so I had an idea
            > > based on one on the distiller�s site. I built a 1m filter out of PVC,
            > > sealed all the joints with food grade silicone, on the top of the
            > > filter I have a screw on cap which I put a ball lock from a cornelius
            > > keg on, and on the bottom end I have another screw-on cap from which I
            > > can remove the spent carbon and in this cap I put my filter paper in
            > > there, and there's a nozzle screwed into it which i put a little piece
            > > of cotton into. The vodka comes out clean tasting,clear and quick
            > > with a couple of pounds of CO2.
            > > Any feedback on problems with this setup are appreciated.
            > >
            > > Lou
            >
            > Perhaps somebody can help with the actual documentation, but it's my
            > understanding that ethanol tends to leach out some nasties out of PVC.
            >There
            > have been a number of discussions on the forum mentioning this and other
            > undesirable characteristics of PVC.
            >
            > Personally, I'm looking at using an old corny keg for the carbon vessel
            >and
            > putting a tap at the bottom for the takeoff. Can't go wrong with
            >stainless for
            > the finished product.
            >
            > Trid
            >
            >
            >
            >---------------------------------
            >Yahoo! Mail
            >Bring photos to life! New PhotoMail makes sharing a breeze.
            >
            >[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
            >

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          • Louis Lenz
            Well the pvc we use in chile is blue. We have two types one that is for sewage which is grey, and the other is blue which is for drinking water, for some
            Message 5 of 15 , Mar 13, 2006
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              Well the pvc we use in chile is blue. We have two types one that is for sewage which is grey, and the other is blue which is for drinking water, for some reason all they use here for water lines is pvc. But I haven't noticed any harsh flavors from the filter, so I'll just wait for the lab results, before I destroy my corny keg.

              Lou

              Robert Hubble <zymurgybob@...> wrote: I don't know about white PVC (what I'm assuming you're talking about), but
              the flexible clear plastic tubing from hardware stores is responsible for
              the only real failures I've had with this still. As a final product guide,
              I slipped a one-foot section over the condenser output to facilitate
              changing output receptacles of different sizes, and those 2 batches of rum
              were very harsh tasting, even in the middle run.

              I pitched that flex tube, and all following runs have been sweet and lovely.
              I have learned my lesson.

              Zymurgy Bob, a simple potstiller




              >From: Gregory Bloom
              >Reply-To: Distillers@yahoogroups.com
              >To: Distillers@yahoogroups.com
              >Subject: Re: [Distillers] carbon filtering
              >Date: Mon, 13 Mar 2006 09:33:57 -0800 (PST)
              >
              >Oncologists have expressed concern about plasticizer leaching from PVC.
              >Quoting from http://tinyurl.com/qhen8:
              >
              > "To make matters worse, ethanol and Cremophor EL leach plasticizers from
              >PVC bags and infusion sets, requiring preparation and administration of
              >paclitaxel in glass bottles or non-PVC infusion systems."
              >
              >
              >
              > I like the idea of using a pressurized carbon column to speed things up.
              >But I'd probably make it out of copper, just to be safe. (Though, frankly,
              >the tumor promoting properties of ethanol probably far outweigh the risk
              >posed by any trace amounts of plasticizer that one might leach in a couple
              >of minutes of contact with PVC).
              >
              >
              >Trid wrote:
              >
              > --- loulenz2002 wrote:
              >
              > > I've never really contributed anything to this group, I never felt I
              > > had anything worth sharing, but I do receive a help and ideas from
              > > everybody, thanks guys and gals!!
              > > I usually only do whiskey runs but I started doing vodca recently, and
              > > I thought that the carbon filtering was to slow, so I had an idea
              > > based on one on the distiller�s site. I built a 1m filter out of PVC,
              > > sealed all the joints with food grade silicone, on the top of the
              > > filter I have a screw on cap which I put a ball lock from a cornelius
              > > keg on, and on the bottom end I have another screw-on cap from which I
              > > can remove the spent carbon and in this cap I put my filter paper in
              > > there, and there's a nozzle screwed into it which i put a little piece
              > > of cotton into. The vodka comes out clean tasting,clear and quick
              > > with a couple of pounds of CO2.
              > > Any feedback on problems with this setup are appreciated.
              > >
              > > Lou
              >
              > Perhaps somebody can help with the actual documentation, but it's my
              > understanding that ethanol tends to leach out some nasties out of PVC.
              >There
              > have been a number of discussions on the forum mentioning this and other
              > undesirable characteristics of PVC.
              >
              > Personally, I'm looking at using an old corny keg for the carbon vessel
              >and
              > putting a tap at the bottom for the takeoff. Can't go wrong with
              >stainless for
              > the finished product.
              >
              > Trid
              >
              >
              >
              >---------------------------------
              >Yahoo! Mail
              >Bring photos to life! New PhotoMail makes sharing a breeze.
              >
              >[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
              >

              _________________________________________________________________
              Don�t just search. Find. Check out the new MSN Search!
              http://search.msn.click-url.com/go/onm00200636ave/direct/01/



              Distillers list archives : http://archive.nnytech.net/
              FAQ and other information at http://homedistiller.org
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            • mccumster
              How much alcohol do you lose when carbon filtering. Does the proof drop a substantial amount?
              Message 6 of 15 , Nov 13, 2012
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                How much alcohol do you lose when carbon filtering. Does the proof drop a substantial amount?
              • edbar44
                you re supposed saturate or boil the carbon (after rinsing) since it is supposed to increase it filtering ability, not sure if that s a fact. anyway if you
                Message 7 of 15 , Nov 18, 2012
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                  you're supposed saturate or boil the carbon (after rinsing) since it is supposed to increase it filtering ability, not sure if that's a fact. anyway if you clean the carbon and it's saturated, depending on your volume, your product will force the water out when it is going down the column, depending on your setup, mine hold about 500 ml of water, so when I begin filtering, I wait for the 500 ml to come out and then start testing for alcohol, I guess I lose about 150 ml but you get it back on the back end when you're changing carbon. I add 500 ml to the empty column and flush out the remaining alcohol. so 150 ml of 40% ABV isn't much. I usually run my carbon for 3000 ml unless some flavors begin to appear.

                  hope this helps, just my way of doing things. I never reuse the carbon, too much trouble cleaning it properly and you can get 50# bags for about $40. I've used 2 bags in 6 years.

                  read the carbon handbook if you haven't already, it's posted in many places on the boards and suppliers web sites.

                  --- In Distillers@yahoogroups.com, "mccumster" <dmccallum76@...> wrote:
                  >
                  > How much alcohol do you lose when carbon filtering. Does the proof drop a substantial amount?
                  >
                • anthony chiappetta
                  hello, interesting, so you put carbon in you column on your still? also were can i get 50 lbs for 40 bucks? thanks
                  Message 8 of 15 , Nov 19, 2012
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                    hello, interesting, so you put carbon in you column on your still? also were can i get 50 lbs for 40 bucks? thanks

                    On Sun, Nov 18, 2012 at 6:28 AM, edbar44 <edbar44@...> wrote:
                     



                    you're supposed saturate or boil the carbon (after rinsing) since it is supposed to increase it filtering ability, not sure if that's a fact. anyway if you clean the carbon and it's saturated, depending on your volume, your product will force the water out when it is going down the column, depending on your setup, mine hold about 500 ml of water, so when I begin filtering, I wait for the 500 ml to come out and then start testing for alcohol, I guess I lose about 150 ml but you get it back on the back end when you're changing carbon. I add 500 ml to the empty column and flush out the remaining alcohol. so 150 ml of 40% ABV isn't much. I usually run my carbon for 3000 ml unless some flavors begin to appear.

                    hope this helps, just my way of doing things. I never reuse the carbon, too much trouble cleaning it properly and you can get 50# bags for about $40. I've used 2 bags in 6 years.

                    read the carbon handbook if you haven't already, it's posted in many places on the boards and suppliers web sites.

                    --- In Distillers@yahoogroups.com, "mccumster" <dmccallum76@...> wrote:
                    >
                    > How much alcohol do you lose when carbon filtering. Does the proof drop a substantial amount?
                    >


                  • ballard_bootlegger
                    There are a lot of things that can affect your carbon filtering. Including but not limited to the size and shape of the carbon granules, the size of the filter
                    Message 9 of 15 , Nov 20, 2012
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                      There are a lot of things that can affect your carbon filtering.  Including but not limited to the size and shape of the carbon granules, the size of the filter housing, the method of loading carbon and booze, and how much booze you have to run through at a time.  It's important to rinse the carbon to get rid of contaminates that consist of mostly detergent-like salts.  It's suggested to rinse with boiled water 4-5 times before loading the carbon.  Once you load the carbon the next important step is to make sure the carbon is fully saturated with no air pockets.  This insures the most efficient use of the carbon.  From what I understand you can lose anywhere from 2-4% ABV when filtering so it's recommended to start with about 44%.  

                       

                      Below I'm going to paste an exerpt from the carbon guide from Gert Strand that I've found most useful.  It's kinda long but a good road map for efficient carbon filtering.  Hope this shines some light!

                       

                      Granulated Activated Carbon

                      Granulated activated carbon is used in thick layers, usually between 1.5-2.5 meters where the filtering takes place through the carbon.  Inside the carbon, the alcohol runs through the macro pores in the granules.  The layer is constructed by filling a pipe with activated carbon.  For easily purified liquids, like water, a layer of 5-10 cm should be enough.  Alcohol normally needs 1.5 meters.  It does not matter if the layer (length of pipe used) is higher, but if it is too thin, then purification will not take place.  The pipe must be at least 38 mm in diameter otherwise a "wall effect" will be created and the alcohol runs past the carbon along the wall, without being purified. 

                      For the filtering to really take place in the carbon, the pipe must be free from air.  This means that the purification must take place in one continuous flow.  The pipe must not be allowed to run dry.  The carbon must also be saturated so that the alcohol immediately runs through the carbon.  Neither should any channels be allowed to form in the carbon filled pipe. This will happen if you pour dry carbon into the pipe the pipe and then in the alcohol.  Channels are formed in the carbon through which the alcohol can escape unpurified. … The carbon bed must be correctly started.

                      When the water or alcohol is filtered through the carbon, the first thing to happen is that the soluble substances left in the pores from manufacturing are dissolved.  These are the substances that have not become gas and evaporated, and have not been rinsed out after manufacturing.  It would be too expensive to completely rid the carbon of the substances.  All industrial filters are started up despite this, and the carbon is rinsed before use.

                      The substances (salts) are easiest described as soap-like.  When these substances are dissolved, the pH balance rises from 7 to nearly 10, and the carbon will not be as effective again until the pH balance has been restored to that of water or alcohol, approximately pH7 (neutral).  Before the carbon is used for purification, these substances must be washed or rinsed away:

                      • 1.       Before pouring the carbon into the pipe, mix the carbon (stirring vigorously) with 2-3 times as much hot or boiling water in a stainless steel saucepan or pot (depending on volume to be rinsed)
                      • 2.      Discard the surplus water and repeat the process 4-5 times, ensuring that all soluble substances are dissolved away from the carbon.
                      • 3.      Leave to stand for 24 hours, give the carbon time to soak up more water.
                      • 4.      Again, pour in hot or boiling water, stir and discard the surplus water.  Attach 2-3 filter papers to the pipe and fill it with warm water.
                      • 5.      Pour the saturated carbon into the pipe in such a way that it always remains in the water and all air is driven out.
                      • 6.      Tap the pipe to make sure the carbon is properly settled and packed (positioned).
                      • 7.      Filter at least 2-5 liters of water through the pipe, and fill up with alcohol before the water has run through the funnel, making sure the pipe does not run dry.  If you let the funnel run dry by mistake, filter another 4-5 liters of warm water to get rid of all the air and continue with alcohol before the last of the water has left the funnel.  In this way the carbon is started up and no air remains in the pipe.  The air film between and inside the granules disappears.  Filtration must be continuous; the pipe must not be allowed to run dry.  It is best to have a large funnel or container attached to that you don't have to keep filling all the time.  It is all too easy to forget a filling and let air into the tube.
                      • 8.      Lastly, pour a liter of water through the pipe to get all the alcohol out.
                      "    Quoted from a text by Gert Strand"

                      Woo… That is a mouthful. 

                      Drink well!

                      Whitney.

                    • Ed Barcik
                      No, I have a separate 1 ½ “ copper column for filtering and Calgon sells the carbon although difficult to buy unless you are a water treatment guy. No, I
                      Message 10 of 15 , Nov 22, 2012
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                        No, I have a separate 1 ½ “ copper column for filtering and Calgon sells the carbon although difficult to buy unless you are a water treatment guy.

                         

                      • last2blast
                        I purchased a large water filter that you would attach under your sink or basement. There are several different types of cartridges that you can purchase for
                        Message 11 of 15 , Nov 29, 2012
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                          I purchased a large water filter that you would attach under your sink or basement. There are several different types of cartridges that you can purchase for them. I purchased one that looks like yarn on a roll and a charcoal filter. A small amount of charcoal will become dislodged during filtering, so it requires a second filter. In the future, I will purchase two of them. Run it through the charcoal and then the second filter. It well require a good pump to push it through both filters. Hope this helps.




                          --- In Distillers@yahoogroups.com, "Ed Barcik" <edbar44@...> wrote:
                          >
                          > No, I have a separate 1 ½ " copper column for filtering and Calgon sells the
                          > carbon although difficult to buy unless you are a water treatment guy.
                          >
                        • ballard_bootlegger
                          -No, you wouldn t want any trace of carbon in the actual still. The carbon will end up releasing what it picked up and potentially create unwanted compounds.
                          Message 12 of 15 , Nov 30, 2012
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                            -No, you wouldn't want any trace of carbon in the actual still. The carbon will end up releasing what it picked up and potentially create unwanted compounds. You'll get a blue distillate that smells like ammonia. On the bright side you can filter it out and re-distill without too much difficulty.
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