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type of heat source

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  • schnappser
    i am contemplating building a pot still and wondering what the preferred method of heating is.I was leaning toward internal heating elements until a member
    Message 1 of 8 , Feb 2, 2009
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      i am contemplating building a pot still and wondering what the
      preferred method of heating is.I was leaning toward internal heating
      elements until a member informed me that they would scorch the
      mash.what do you all think about this subject?
    • Trid
      ... The answer really is the universal copout: It depends. There are advantaged and disadvantages of each. If you are planning on running anything chunky or
      Message 2 of 8 , Feb 2, 2009
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        --- In new_distillers@yahoogroups.com, "schnappser" <jblugel@...> wrote:
        >
        > i am contemplating building a pot still and wondering what the
        > preferred method of heating is.I was leaning toward internal heating
        > elements until a member informed me that they would scorch the
        > mash.what do you all think about this subject?
        >

        The answer really is the universal copout: It depends.

        There are advantaged and disadvantages of each.

        If you are planning on running anything chunky or filled with solids,
        external is a must.
        If you are going to allow any wash to clarify before running then
        internal can be perfect.

        It's all a matter of what you have, what you want, and what you're
        working with.

        Neutral spirits, rum, whisk(e)y where the mash has clarified before
        running, and similar clear washes would be fine for internal heating
        elements. Fruit schnapps, whisk(e)y distilled on the grain, absinthe,
        and certain styles of gin would need external heat due to the solid
        bits inside the boiler which could/would scorch on an internal heating
        element.

        Of course, there are always exceptions or work-arounds, too. Get some
        basics down and then work up to the exceptions.

        Trid
      • schnappser
        ... heating ... solids, ... absinthe, ... heating ... some ... thanks Trid for answering my question.I am definately going to distill some chunky fruit mash
        Message 3 of 8 , Feb 2, 2009
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          --- In new_distillers@yahoogroups.com, "Trid" <triddlywinks@...>
          wrote:
          >
          > --- In new_distillers@yahoogroups.com, "schnappser" <jblugel@>
          wrote:
          > >
          > > i am contemplating building a pot still and wondering what the
          > > preferred method of heating is.I was leaning toward internal
          heating
          > > elements until a member informed me that they would scorch the
          > > mash.what do you all think about this subject?
          > >
          >
          > The answer really is the universal copout: It depends.
          >
          > There are advantaged and disadvantages of each.
          >
          > If you are planning on running anything chunky or filled with
          solids,
          > external is a must.
          > If you are going to allow any wash to clarify before running then
          > internal can be perfect.
          >
          > It's all a matter of what you have, what you want, and what you're
          > working with.
          >
          > Neutral spirits, rum, whisk(e)y where the mash has clarified before
          > running, and similar clear washes would be fine for internal heating
          > elements. Fruit schnapps, whisk(e)y distilled on the grain,
          absinthe,
          > and certain styles of gin would need external heat due to the solid
          > bits inside the boiler which could/would scorch on an internal
          heating
          > element.
          >
          > Of course, there are always exceptions or work-arounds, too. Get
          some
          > basics down and then work up to the exceptions.
          >
          > Trid
          >
          thanks Trid for answering my question.I am definately going to
          distill some chunky fruit mash and therefore would need a external
          heat source. What are my options? Gas burner,hot plate...what else?
        • rye_junkie1
          ... To add a little to this, over the weekend I distilled the 4th iteration of the sour mash I have going. Up until then I had had no issues at all doing
          Message 4 of 8 , Feb 3, 2009
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            --- In new_distillers@yahoogroups.com, "schnappser" <jblugel@...> wrote:
            >
            > --- In new_distillers@yahoogroups.com, "Trid" <triddlywinks@>
            > wrote:
            > >
            > > --- In new_distillers@yahoogroups.com, "schnappser" <jblugel@>
            > wrote:
            > > >
            > > > i am contemplating building a pot still and wondering what the
            > > > preferred method of heating is.I was leaning toward internal
            > heating
            > > > elements until a member informed me that they would scorch the
            > > > mash.what do you all think about this subject?
            > > >
            > >
            > > The answer really is the universal copout: It depends.
            > >
            > > There are advantaged and disadvantages of each.
            > >
            > > If you are planning on running anything chunky or filled with
            > solids,
            > > external is a must.
            > > If you are going to allow any wash to clarify before running then
            > > internal can be perfect.
            > >
            > > It's all a matter of what you have, what you want, and what you're
            > > working with.
            > >
            > > Neutral spirits, rum, whisk(e)y where the mash has clarified before
            > > running, and similar clear washes would be fine for internal heating
            > > elements. Fruit schnapps, whisk(e)y distilled on the grain,
            > absinthe,
            > > and certain styles of gin would need external heat due to the solid
            > > bits inside the boiler which could/would scorch on an internal
            > heating
            > > element.
            > >
            > > Of course, there are always exceptions or work-arounds, too. Get
            > some
            > > basics down and then work up to the exceptions.
            > >
            > > Trid
            > >
            > thanks Trid for answering my question.I am definately going to
            > distill some chunky fruit mash and therefore would need a external
            > heat source. What are my options? Gas burner,hot plate...what else?



            To add a little to this, over the weekend I distilled the 4th
            iteration of the sour mash I have going. Up until then I had had no
            issues at all doing this with my Internal elements boiler. I guess I
            filtered too much yeast trub through the bag on this run though
            because the wash got scorched bad. However, here's the rub: I run 2
            elements. One 1440watt 120 volt element and a 2500watt 240v element
            that i run on 120v for a measured wattage of 648 watts. After the run
            and the boiler was emptied( the smell of the backset told me something
            was wrong) I noticed that the 1440 element was BLACK and the 650w was
            nice copper shiny. Removing the 1440 for a closer look the crust on
            this thing was about .020-.030" thick. Taking a razor blade to it i
            was able to flake it off in big pieces and then shined it up with a
            pot scrubber. So for me if I had been using 2 of the 650w elements I
            would have been fine and your fruit mashes would most likely do OK
            too. The run would just be a bit slower. Greed is a bitch of a
            monster in this Hobby.

            Mason
          • nonamedistiller
            ... other than gas,and or A hot plate, I think the last choice would be Wood fired.. Other than that, You could choose to use steam powered still. But then
            Message 5 of 8 , Feb 3, 2009
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              > > Trid
              > >
              > thanks Trid for answering my question.I am definately going to
              > distill some chunky fruit mash and therefore would need a external
              > heat source. What are my options? Gas burner,hot plate...what else?
              >
              other than gas,and or A hot plate, I think the last choice would be
              Wood fired.. Other than that, You could choose to use steam powered
              still. But then you still have to heat the water for steam. Either
              using Wood,Gas,or electric.. Last thing used would be Solar, But
              thats very slow, and isn't very efficient.. HTH (NoName)
            • Zapata Vive
              Someone posted a link recently to an american distiller thread on heat options. They had external heating wires as an option, basically you wrap your boiler
              Message 6 of 8 , Feb 3, 2009
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                Someone posted a link recently to an american distiller thread on heat options.  They had external heating wires as an option, basically you wrap your boiler in it.  Seems good to me.  The Am distiller link had McMaster-Carr parts numbers to the wires, and also stainless immersion elements (similar to water heater elements, but you get to choose the diameter, length, wattage, and thread diameter).
                 
                For that matter, I was eyeballing the 400 watt water bed heater I have taped to a fermenter.  A couple of those might work alright for heating a boiler, haven't done it, but thought it, so I thought I'd share.  My waterbed heater was free, but I imagine even buying them they are less than the heat wires referenced in the american distiller link.
                 
                ----- Original Message -----
                Sent: Tuesday, February 03, 2009 12:11 PM
                Subject: [new_distillers] Re: type of heat source


                > > Trid
                > >
                > thanks Trid for answering my question.I am definately going to
                > distill some chunky fruit mash and therefore would need a external
                > heat source. What are my options? Gas burner,hot plate...what else?
                >
                other than gas,and or A hot plate, I think the last choice would be
                Wood fired.. Other than that, You could choose to use steam powered
                still. But then you still have to heat the water for steam. Either
                using Wood,Gas,or electric.. Last thing used would be Solar, But
                thats very slow, and isn't very efficient.. HTH (NoName)

              • rye_junkie1
                ... heat options. They had external heating wires as an option, basically you wrap your boiler in it. Seems good to me. The Am distiller link had
                Message 7 of 8 , Feb 3, 2009
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                  --- In new_distillers@yahoogroups.com, "Zapata Vive" <zapatavive@...>
                  wrote:
                  >
                  > Someone posted a link recently to an american distiller thread on
                  heat options. They had external heating wires as an option, basically
                  you wrap your boiler in it. Seems good to me. The Am distiller link
                  had McMaster-Carr parts numbers to the wires, and also stainless
                  immersion elements (similar to water heater elements, but you get to
                  choose the diameter, length, wattage, and thread diameter).
                  >
                  > For that matter, I was eyeballing the 400 watt water bed heater I
                  have taped to a fermenter. A couple of those might work alright for
                  heating a boiler, haven't done it, but thought it, so I thought I'd
                  share. My waterbed heater was free, but I imagine even buying them
                  they are less than the heat wires referenced in the american distiller
                  link.



                  http://adiforums.com/index.php?showtopic=432

                  Mason
                • gff_stwrt
                  ... else? ... Hi, folks, Probably the most efficient would be a solar STORAGE system as the water would be nearly at distilling/steam-making temperature at the
                  Message 8 of 8 , Feb 3, 2009
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                    --- In new_distillers@yahoogroups.com, "nonamedistiller"
                    <nonamedistiller@...> wrote:
                    >
                    >
                    > > > Trid
                    > > >
                    > > thanks Trid for answering my question.I am definately going to
                    > > distill some chunky fruit mash and therefore would need a external
                    > > heat source. What are my options? Gas burner,hot plate...what
                    else?
                    > >
                    > other than gas,and or A hot plate, I think the last choice would be
                    > Wood fired.. Other than that, You could choose to use steam powered
                    > still. But then you still have to heat the water for steam. Either
                    > using Wood,Gas,or electric.. Last thing used would be Solar, But
                    > thats very slow, and isn't very efficient.. HTH (NoName)

                    Hi, folks,
                    Probably the most efficient would be a solar STORAGE system as the
                    water would be nearly at distilling/steam-making temperature at the
                    time you want to start. No waiting.

                    As to the detail of the system, I leave that to more mechanical people
                    for the time being.
                    But it's something that I would like to look into one day.

                    Regards,

                    The Baker
                    >
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