Loading ...
Sorry, an error occurred while loading the content.

Test for harmful substances in batch

Expand Messages
  • zfragapane
    Hello, I m a semi-newbie and would like to make sure I m being safe. I recently found a test for methanol including potassium dichromate and red litmus paper.
    Message 1 of 6 , Aug 27, 2013
    • 0 Attachment
      Hello,

      I'm a semi-newbie and would like to make sure I'm being safe.

      I recently found a test for methanol including potassium dichromate and red litmus paper. Mix PD in alcohol and dip red litmus paper in resulting solution. Leave for 1-2 minutes and if it turns blue, there's methanol.

      My questions are:

      1) Has anyone tried this and trust the method?
      2) Are there any other harmful substances that could result from the process and any other kits to test that it is not toxic?


      Z
    • Robert Rickman
      I ve been puzzled by this issue since I started distilling. I have been making beer for years with pretty much the same ingredients as I use to make my mash
      Message 2 of 6 , Aug 28, 2013
      • 0 Attachment

        I've been puzzled by this issue since I started distilling.  I have been making beer for years with pretty much the same ingredients as I use to make my mash for distilling.  It occured to me that the issue of methonol in beer has never come up so why should it be an issue in distilling?  I'm of the opinion that the issue is more fable than fact, perhaps a leftover from prohibition  times when other ingredients were used that may have had the ability to produce methonol.

        I don't test for methonol and I don't usually discard the heads.  Someone else may have other thoughts on the matter but that's my two cents. 

        On Aug 27, 2013 5:22 PM, "zfragapane" <zfragapane@...> wrote:
         

        Hello,

        I'm a semi-newbie and would like to make sure I'm being safe.

        I recently found a test for methanol including potassium dichromate and red litmus paper. Mix PD in alcohol and dip red litmus paper in resulting solution. Leave for 1-2 minutes and if it turns blue, there's methanol.

        My questions are:

        1) Has anyone tried this and trust the method?
        2) Are there any other harmful substances that could result from the process and any other kits to test that it is not toxic?

        Z

      • David Eastham
        I believe this is a test for any alcohol so would be positive cos of the ethanol in there. There really is no need to test for methanol, discarding the first
        Message 3 of 6 , Aug 28, 2013
        • 0 Attachment
          I believe this is a test for any alcohol so would be positive cos of the ethanol in there. There really is no need to test for methanol, discarding the first bit of distillate will get rid of this, thats if theres any methanol at all anyway.
          Dave

          --- In new_distillers@yahoogroups.com, "zfragapane" <zfragapane@...> wrote:
          >
          > Hello,
          >
          > I'm a semi-newbie and would like to make sure I'm being safe.
          >
          > I recently found a test for methanol including potassium dichromate and red litmus paper. Mix PD in alcohol and dip red litmus paper in resulting solution. Leave for 1-2 minutes and if it turns blue, there's methanol.
          >
          > My questions are:
          >
          > 1) Has anyone tried this and trust the method?
          > 2) Are there any other harmful substances that could result from the process and any other kits to test that it is not toxic?
          >
          >
          > Z
          >
        • Paul
          I think the experts would say you are overplaying the methanol risk. Z Bob has stated here several times that methanol is only a danger when it is deliberately
          Message 4 of 6 , Aug 28, 2013
          • 0 Attachment

            I think the experts would say you are overplaying the methanol risk. Z Bob has stated here several times that methanol is only a danger when it is deliberately introduced to adulterate booze by unscrupulous persons. It occurred during the prohibition era in the US, and regularly makes the headlines in third world countries when large numbers of people drink it and get sick thus giving home-distilling a bad rap for the wrong reasons.

            Further, Bob recently stated it has been found that due to hydrogen bonding, and contrary to popular opinion, methanol is not readily concentrated and removed in foreshots and heads but appears across the distilling session. It could be this is one reason why distillers expose distillate to the atmosphere for a day or two - to allow remaining lighter volatilies to evaporate and disperse.

            If the many people here have not found methanol to be a particular danger, I'm not sure why it should be for you.

            Paul


          • Robert Rickman
            I agree with Dave. Discardng the first bit would get rid of anything that might be there. I don t even bother because i don t believe there is a high
            Message 5 of 6 , Aug 28, 2013
            • 0 Attachment

              I agree with Dave.  Discardng the first bit would get rid of anything that might be there.  I don't even bother because i don't believe there is a high likelihood of any methonol.  BTW I can still see just fine lol.

              On Aug 28, 2013 1:00 PM, "David Eastham" <planetgong0@...> wrote:
               

              I believe this is a test for any alcohol so would be positive cos of the ethanol in there. There really is no need to test for methanol, discarding the first bit of distillate will get rid of this, thats if theres any methanol at all anyway.
              Dave

              --- In new_distillers@yahoogroups.com, "zfragapane" <zfragapane@...> wrote:
              >
              > Hello,
              >
              > I'm a semi-newbie and would like to make sure I'm being safe.
              >
              > I recently found a test for methanol including potassium dichromate and red litmus paper. Mix PD in alcohol and dip red litmus paper in resulting solution. Leave for 1-2 minutes and if it turns blue, there's methanol.
              >
              > My questions are:
              >
              > 1) Has anyone tried this and trust the method?
              > 2) Are there any other harmful substances that could result from the process and any other kits to test that it is not toxic?
              >
              >
              > Z
              >

            • Zapata Vive
              The other thing to remember is that methanol is not bad per se. It exists in many foods and beverages in varying degrees. In fact many spirits which are
              Message 6 of 6 , Aug 28, 2013
              • 0 Attachment
                The other thing to remember is that methanol is not bad per se.  It exists in many foods and beverages in varying degrees.  In fact many spirits which are produced in Europe have higher levels than are allowed in US products, making import or domestic production of some fruit brandies difficult/impossible.  See the craft brandy making ebook that is circulating freely for a section on minimizing methanol, mostly via fruit prep and fementing methods, NOT distilling techniques.  (I guess I can dig up a link if ya'll can't find the brandy book, I think it was published by a University up north, maybe Michigan? It's a good read, especially for a free book)

                It's not that people are dying from high levels of methanol in the EU, it's just that they have traditionally made these beverages, proven their methanol concentrations are manageable, and so their regulations allow it. 

                If you make booze in any of the accepted ways, I just don't think you can make or concentrate methanol to a harmful level.
                Heck, orange juice has high levels of methanol, but nobody is going blind from it.  Well, except me, in the morning, OJ is way too bright for my sleepy eyes.  My black coffee is much less glaring.


                On Wed, Aug 28, 2013 at 1:24 PM, Paul <self.adhesive@...> wrote:
                 


                I think the experts would say you are overplaying the methanol risk. Z Bob has stated here several times that methanol is only a danger when it is deliberately introduced to adulterate booze by unscrupulous persons. It occurred during the prohibition era in the US, and regularly makes the headlines in third world countries when large numbers of people drink it and get sick thus giving home-distilling a bad rap for the wrong reasons.

                Further, Bob recently stated it has been found that due to hydrogen bonding, and contrary to popular opinion, methanol is not readily concentrated and removed in foreshots and heads but appears across the distilling session. It could be this is one reason why distillers expose distillate to the atmosphere for a day or two - to allow remaining lighter volatilies to evaporate and disperse.

                If the many people here have not found methanol to be a particular danger, I'm not sure why it should be for you.

                Paul



              Your message has been successfully submitted and would be delivered to recipients shortly.