RE: [new_distillers] Say what?!!
- There are many ways of building/designing/running a still. It really comes
down to whats best for your situation.
The thumber is in essence simply a single plate reflux column - an area for
liquid & vapour to come to equilibrium. The amount of liquid can be pretty
variable, provided that there is enough contact with it to "treat" all the
vapour passing through. Because they are simply bubbling the vapour
through, with no real fancy tricks like perforated plates to distribute the
gas & liquid & make lots of tiny bubbles with heaps of surface area, it
means that you probably have to have a decent depth in it to get it working
ok. Hence the "thump" when its bubbling - big bubbles coming up through a
head of liquid.
Hence the better the design of it, the less liquid is required; or scale it
down in size regardless and still a fairly good result from it anyhow.
We've heard how thumpers come in different sizes; Deb's 5 gallon still uses
2.5 gallon (10L) of mash, and the 1 gallon thumper uses about 1 quart (1L)
of liquid. Her yield is 2-3 quarts (L). The photos that Mark posted show
a smaller thumper.
If you are going to have a large thumper, it wouldn't make sense to use
water in it, because so much of your initial alcohol is going into just
saturating the water; hence the use of the "tails". But if you have a
small thumper, its not too much difference.
As for the technique of returning it ALL to the thumper - this would depend
again on the size of the unit. Yes, it would make sense in the situation
of where you have a large thumper, but if it is small, you may not have
enough capacity. eg - Debs case where her yield is 2-3 times that which
would fit in the thumper - hence just keep the tails to use.
This is just another situation where there are many ways of doing basically
the same thing, neither way is strictly wrong or right.
Tony the Confuser.
>Tony! I don't understand how you could use water in the thumper.
>Fox-Fire book says to use mash in the thump on the first run then saving
>it cleaning out everything and putting that first run into the thumper
>refilling the still with mash and running it a second time. this time
>you should have good smooth shine. Which makes more sense to me.