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RE: [Distillers] Question about yield

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  • Lars Norberg
    And now you are talking about 100% spirits? Ok, then there must be something wrong with my process, time for some evaluation. /Lars ... From: Pete Sayers
    Message 1 of 9 , Feb 3, 2002
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      And now you are talking about 100% spirits?
      Ok, then there must be something wrong with my process, time for some
      evaluation.

      /Lars

      -----Original Message-----
      From: Pete Sayers [mailto:brubarn@...]
      Sent: den 3 februari 2002 22:37
      To: Lars Norberg
      Subject: Re: [Distillers] Question about yield

      Lars, with a Still Spirits Turbo Extra, the rule of thumb, when using a
      "Fractionating Column Still", take off half in litres, the weight of
      sugar
      in the wash,ie if you have used 8 kgs sugar, then take off 4 litres of
      spirit.
      Pete
      ----- Original Message -----
      From: "Lars Norberg" <lano1701@...>
      To: <Distillers@yahoogroups.com>
      Sent: Saturday, February 02, 2002 1:14 AM
      Subject: RE: [Distillers] Question about yield


      > I use 8 kg of sugar for 25 liters of mash, so according to your
      > theoretical calculation I should be getting around 8*610 = 4.8 liters,
      > which adds up pretty well to upwards of 20%.
      > Of course there will be losses, but is it reasonable to get around a
      50%
      > loss?
      > If I really push the distillation going as high in temperature as I
      > possibly can I probably could get somewhere around 2.5-3 liters of
      > output from those 25 liters. Doesn't sound too good does it?
      > And the mash has to be pretty close to 20% as the density readings are
      > low and there is basically no sugar left in it.
      > Or could there be a leak in the fermentation vessel perhaps? So that
      the
      > yeast has access to oxygen and thereby ferments the sugar to only
      water
      > and carbondioxide? I do not think that this is the case, but it could
      be
      > a possibility, right?
      >
      > -----Original Message-----
      > From: Tony & Elle Ackland
      [mailto:Tony.Ackland@...]
      > Sent: den 2 februari 2002 01:38
      > To: 'Distillers newsgroup'
      > Subject: RE: [Distillers] Question about yield
      >
      > > I assume that the mash is 15-20% as I use the specified amount of
      > sugar
      > > for a 20% mash (using a 20% turbo) and run it until it reads around
      > > .990.
      >
      > Double check the amount of sugar they ask you to use. Just because
      the
      > advertisment says it can do XX%, doesnt always mean their instructions
      > will
      > get you there.
      >
      > Eg : the max yield (theoretical) you can get off sugar is 480 g per
      1kg
      > of
      > sugar. 480g = 610 mL
      >
      > Still Spirits Turbos
      > "Turbo" - pack is grey/purple on gold background
      > recommend 6kg for 25L. This will only make a max of 6 x 610 = 3.6 L
      > pure
      > alcohol, which as 3.6/25 = 14.5%
      >
      > "Turbo Extra" - blue pack
      > recommend 8kg for 25L. 8 x 610 = 4.9L; 4.9/25 = 19.5%
      >
      > Interesting enough, neither pack actually says what % to expect from
      it.
      >
      > But there will always be some other losses. Not all the sugar may
      > ferment;
      > some of it goes into growing more yeast too.
      >
      >
      >
      > > I suspected that there might be a leak in the still or something
      like
      > > that, but I did not find any.
      > > If you subtract the heads and tails from those 3 liters, how much is
      > > there left? Do you keep and use 3 liters or is that the total amount
      > you
      > > take out from the still?
      >
      > The heads are < 100 mL, and the tails are usually < 500 mL. I collect
      > the
      > tails all the way form 82C up to about 96C - eg at that stage they're
      > only
      > about 35%. So the collected good stuff is say around 2.8L if I'm
      > expecting
      > 3L, but I figure the other 0.2L I'll get next time from the recycled
      > tails.
      > The tails get recycled into the next batch, the heads are thrown away.
      >
      > > Any ideas what could be going wrong?
      >
      > Do you know the starting OG of the wash ?
      > How long do you run the still for, what heat input,
      > what % do you collect at,
      > when & how do you decide to finish a run ?
      >
      > Tony
      >
      >
      >
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    • Lars Norberg
      ... it to drop enough SG at the end. If half the sugar was becoming yeast (very remote chance), then you d probably notice it from the shear volume of
      Message 2 of 9 , Feb 3, 2002
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        >Looks like you're making the alcohol ok - using enough sugar & getting
        it >to drop enough SG at the end. If half the sugar was becoming yeast
        (very >remote chance), then you'd probably notice it from the shear
        volume of >yeast remaining at the end. But I'm guessing your yeast
        sediment is only >1-2cm thick (normal) ?

        Hehe, yeah, I would guess it is about normal. Absolutely not more than 1
        cm sediment when the rest of it is absolutely clear. This is a possible
        place of some loss though, as I opened the fermenter lid once every
        other day to make a measurement of how far in the process I was, and to
        make a comparison between the different strands of yeasts that I used,
        so some oxygen may have been available and thereby letting the yeast
        grow instead of producing alcohol, but it shouldn't have happened to any
        large extent.


        >> If I really push the distillation going as high in temperature as I
        >> possibly can I probably could get somewhere around 2.5-3 liters of
        >> output from those 25 liters. Doesn't sound too good does it?

        >No point ruining the quality though.

        No, I don't use the stuff, it was just to see how much non-water stuff
        there was in the mash. And it still wasn't much.

        >Have you checked the still for vapour leaks ? Smell/hear anything ?

        Yeah, I did a comparison between what I got out + what was left in the
        still, and it added up to what I put in.

        >Could the distillate somehow not be dripping into the collection jar
        but >running somewhere else ? (gees - reckon you'd spot a litre or so
        puddle on >the floor !)

        No, not a chance :)
        And as I did the out vs in check, there just isn't more alcohol in the
        mash than what I get out.

        Hmm... the mystery continues :)

        /Lars
      • Lars Norberg
        Ok, so around 4 liters of 92% alcohol from 8 kg of sugar. Well, I m still pretty far below, but not by more than perhaps 1 liter though. But 4 liters of 92%
        Message 3 of 9 , Feb 3, 2002
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          Ok, so around 4 liters of 92% alcohol from 8 kg of sugar.
          Well, I'm still pretty far below, but not by more than perhaps 1 liter
          though.
          But 4 liters of 92% alcohol is a pretty bad result also, as the
          mash then only would be barely 15%, and it should be closer to 20 than
          that.

          -----Original Message-----
          From: Pete Sayers [mailto:brubarn@...]
          Sent: den 4 februari 2002 22:22
          To: Lars Norberg
          Subject: Re: [Distillers] Question about yield

          Not 100% but bloody close, 92-92% average.
          Pete
          ----- Original Message -----
          From: "Lars Norberg" <lano1701@...>
          To: <Distillers@yahoogroups.com>
          Sent: Monday, February 04, 2002 1:38 AM
          Subject: RE: [Distillers] Question about yield


          > And now you are talking about 100% spirits?
          > Ok, then there must be something wrong with my process, time for some
          > evaluation.
          >
          > /Lars
          >
          > -----Original Message-----
          > From: Pete Sayers [mailto:brubarn@...]
          > Sent: den 3 februari 2002 22:37
          > To: Lars Norberg
          > Subject: Re: [Distillers] Question about yield
          >
          > Lars, with a Still Spirits Turbo Extra, the rule of thumb, when using
          a
          > "Fractionating Column Still", take off half in litres, the weight of
          > sugar
          > in the wash,ie if you have used 8 kgs sugar, then take off 4 litres of
          > spirit.
          > Pete
          > ----- Original Message -----
          > From: "Lars Norberg" <lano1701@...>
          > To: <Distillers@yahoogroups.com>
          > Sent: Saturday, February 02, 2002 1:14 AM
          > Subject: RE: [Distillers] Question about yield
          >
          >
          > > I use 8 kg of sugar for 25 liters of mash, so according to your
          > > theoretical calculation I should be getting around 8*610 = 4.8
          liters,
          > > which adds up pretty well to upwards of 20%.
          > > Of course there will be losses, but is it reasonable to get around a
          > 50%
          > > loss?
          > > If I really push the distillation going as high in temperature as I
          > > possibly can I probably could get somewhere around 2.5-3 liters of
          > > output from those 25 liters. Doesn't sound too good does it?
          > > And the mash has to be pretty close to 20% as the density readings
          are
          > > low and there is basically no sugar left in it.
          > > Or could there be a leak in the fermentation vessel perhaps? So that
          > the
          > > yeast has access to oxygen and thereby ferments the sugar to only
          > water
          > > and carbondioxide? I do not think that this is the case, but it
          could
          > be
          > > a possibility, right?
          > >
          > > -----Original Message-----
          > > From: Tony & Elle Ackland
          > [mailto:Tony.Ackland@...]
          > > Sent: den 2 februari 2002 01:38
          > > To: 'Distillers newsgroup'
          > > Subject: RE: [Distillers] Question about yield
          > >
          > > > I assume that the mash is 15-20% as I use the specified amount of
          > > sugar
          > > > for a 20% mash (using a 20% turbo) and run it until it reads
          around
          > > > .990.
          > >
          > > Double check the amount of sugar they ask you to use. Just because
          > the
          > > advertisment says it can do XX%, doesnt always mean their
          instructions
          > > will
          > > get you there.
          > >
          > > Eg : the max yield (theoretical) you can get off sugar is 480 g per
          > 1kg
          > > of
          > > sugar. 480g = 610 mL
          > >
          > > Still Spirits Turbos
          > > "Turbo" - pack is grey/purple on gold background
          > > recommend 6kg for 25L. This will only make a max of 6 x 610 = 3.6 L
          > > pure
          > > alcohol, which as 3.6/25 = 14.5%
          > >
          > > "Turbo Extra" - blue pack
          > > recommend 8kg for 25L. 8 x 610 = 4.9L; 4.9/25 = 19.5%
          > >
          > > Interesting enough, neither pack actually says what % to expect from
          > it.
          > >
          > > But there will always be some other losses. Not all the sugar may
          > > ferment;
          > > some of it goes into growing more yeast too.
          > >
          > >
          > >
          > > > I suspected that there might be a leak in the still or something
          > like
          > > > that, but I did not find any.
          > > > If you subtract the heads and tails from those 3 liters, how much
          is
          > > > there left? Do you keep and use 3 liters or is that the total
          amount
          > > you
          > > > take out from the still?
          > >
          > > The heads are < 100 mL, and the tails are usually < 500 mL. I
          collect
          > > the
          > > tails all the way form 82C up to about 96C - eg at that stage
          they're
          > > only
          > > about 35%. So the collected good stuff is say around 2.8L if I'm
          > > expecting
          > > 3L, but I figure the other 0.2L I'll get next time from the recycled
          > > tails.
          > > The tails get recycled into the next batch, the heads are thrown
          away.
          > >
          > > > Any ideas what could be going wrong?
          > >
          > > Do you know the starting OG of the wash ?
          > > How long do you run the still for, what heat input,
          > > what % do you collect at,
          > > when & how do you decide to finish a run ?
          > >
          > > Tony
          > >
          > >
          > >
          > > Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to
          > > http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
          > >
          > >
          > >
          > > ------------------------ Yahoo! Groups Sponsor
          > >
          > >
          > >
          > > Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to
          > http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
          > >
          > >
          > >
          >
          >
          >
          > ------------------------ Yahoo! Groups Sponsor
          >
          >
          >
          > Your use of Yahoo! Groups is subject to
          http://docs.yahoo.com/info/terms/
          >
          >
          >
        • Ackland, Tony (CALNZAS)
          ... No - sounds like something is going wrong. Looks like you re making the alcohol ok - using enough sugar & getting it to drop enough SG at the end. If half
          Message 4 of 9 , Feb 4, 2002
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            > Of course there will be losses, but is it reasonable to get around a
            > 50% loss?

            No - sounds like something is going wrong.

            Looks like you're making the alcohol ok - using enough sugar & getting it to drop enough SG at the end. If half the sugar was becoming yeast (very remote chance), then you'd probably notice it from the shear volume of yeast remaining at the end. But I'm guessing your yeast sediment is only 1-2cm thick (normal) ?

            > If I really push the distillation going as high in temperature as I
            > possibly can I probably could get somewhere around 2.5-3 liters of
            > output from those 25 liters. Doesn't sound too good does it?

            No point ruining the quality though.

            Have you checked the still for vapour leaks ? Smell/hear anything ?

            Could the distillate somehow not be dripping into the collection jar but running somewhere else ? (gees - reckon you'd spot a litre or so puddle on the floor !)

            Tony
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