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no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

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no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby the Doctor » Sun Apr 14, 2013 8:34 am

I am ready to start manufacturing a gin but despite all the talk has anyone actually found a gin basket which will fit a 2 inch stilldragon tri clamp ...to act as a Carter head. I had been waiting for something to come from SD themselves but that hasn't been forthcoming so if anyone has an off the shelf answer please let me know. There is definitely pent up demand for a gin so selling the product should not be a problem. Getting the appropriate equipment is. I would appreciate any help. The frustration is getting to me. :angry-banghead:
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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby the Doctor » Sun Apr 14, 2013 9:05 am

Don't know mate it does not look like the simple elegant answer I was looking for. I was after easily inter-changable baskets and something of the shelf perhaps along the lines of an in line filter... But so many options have been thrown into the mix ...and yet nobody seems to have nailed it. The prototype exists and the design of the Carter brothers head is well known, I was looking to see if anyone has found a simple approximation of this with inter-changable baskets.
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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby the Doctor » Sun Apr 14, 2013 9:06 am

I have done boiler gins as well...but there is nothing better than Bombay or Hendricks...they are both infusion gins, and my preferred style.
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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby edwatters » Sun Apr 14, 2013 10:18 am

Stainless steel tea baskets are available on eBay, seems to work real nice. There are oversized ones with chains
It always tastes like it smells
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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby the Doctor » Sun Apr 14, 2013 11:26 am

edwatters wrote:Stainless steel tea baskets are available on eBay, seems to work real nice. There are oversized ones with chains

I have tried one of these but suspect that the vapour simply passed around the basket, favouring the less dense surrounding air, over the packed basket. Also the whole system has to be shut down and the product side disassembled to access the basket, which precludes using it for differing exposure of the various botanicals in one session. It is however the best idea so far. I was just hoping that with all the talk of a gin basket being developed someone may have a definitive answer. For the volumes we hope to make even the largest of our tea balls is inadequate. I thought that there might be a stilldragon answer by now as they said they were designing one, but it seems to be on the back burner, I am hoping that someone may have found a filter or like that we can use instead.
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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby the Doctor » Sun Apr 14, 2013 12:40 pm

minime wrote:Any of the available veggie steamer baskets work? What size column does it need to fit into?

http://www.amazon.com/s/ref=nb_sb_ss_i_ ... r%20basket

2 inch would be preferable to keep vapour speed up but at the moment I am using 2 x 2 to 4 inch SD adapters with little success. I like the idea of some of the 2 inch filters I have seen suggested on other threads and forums but no one has really said they have found an answer, After some searching I hoped that this new thread might flush out someone who has made these work. I thought that all development had ceased at SD on this.
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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby stubbydrainer » Sun Apr 14, 2013 2:16 pm

Doc
I could sent you mine for a little while , if that would help you out
It set up for a 2" tri clamp
I get excited when I dilute my spirits to 40% ABV...... It means I get more to drink more often
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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby the Doctor » Sun Apr 14, 2013 3:23 pm

stubbydrainer wrote:Doc
I could sent you mine for a little while , if that would help you out
It set up for a 2" tri clamp

Thanks Stub's I will keep trying to get a permanent solution at this time, I have made the mistake of developing product before only to have to go back and start again when I changed the parameters of the equipment. I have the botanicals, label, and bottles ready. The demand is there as customers seem to bring up gin a lot during tastings. I just need to find a better solution to a gin basket. I live near a college town and we stock Hendricks gin here, it has really taken off amongst a younger group of drinkers. Your offer is very kind mate...if i do not find a permanent solution I will PM ya.
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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby the Doctor » Sun Apr 14, 2013 5:14 pm

Actually for one of our specialist copper still manufacturers there is an opportunity if you should make a gin head using the universal tri clamp system ... I know i would buy one, and am happy to help you with photography and marketing... I think it would be a really popular niche product. someones got to do it. There is definitely a market, judging by the posts re development. Just a thought.
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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby stubbydrainer » Sun Apr 14, 2013 8:47 pm

Doc
I could send it , you could see if it suits or not , if it does , you could keep it
making them is like falling off a log when ya pissed, I will just knock up another for myself if you like the result
if not , keep it there and I will wander down your way and pick it up one day or drop it into punkins and I will get it from here
any which way , its no bother at all
I will just have to put a new stainless screen in the bottom of it first

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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby the Doctor » Mon Apr 15, 2013 8:46 am

Stubs you are a gentleman indeed. I would love to give it a go so ignore the pm ... I am happy to pay for the basket if it works out for us ...but more so if you wanted to start to manufacture I can offer my services to help with photos , photoshop and promoting it ... it is a niche of the distilling industry that is just screaming for a motivated person to fill. I actually think that even a quality copper tube with a mesh bottom which could fit into an existing tri-clamp tube would suffice...sometimes in this hobby and industry i feel as though we are trying to build nuclear power stations when often the simplest solutions are the ones that work. Over complication is the mother of procrastination, and the only result is no result.
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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby midcarolina » Mon Apr 15, 2013 11:32 am

This maybe overly simplistic....... but couldnt you take 2x4 tee or a torpedo housing and fill it with as many small tea balls as will fit? I would think that would ensure good vapor contact............

way over my head..........just thinkin........
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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby the Doctor » Mon Apr 15, 2013 12:02 pm

Not a bad idea MC but I found that much of the vapour would simply pass around the tea balls rather than go through. But simplicity is where the answer will lie we do not need twin aeronautical capacitation transgressors navatating our novatrunions at high divergence speeds to achieve this ...it just needs a basket that vapour can pass through after the turn of the take off section.
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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby midcarolina » Mon Apr 15, 2013 12:59 pm

How about these.........http://www.rjsales.com/products/filters/index.html

These have sanitary fittings, although a inline strainer is made to remove particulate....... it should work.... these are prolly expensive but I would think our friends in China could have them made a lot cheaper..........
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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby the Doctor » Mon Apr 15, 2013 1:08 pm

MC they look like they could work, I will make some enquiries see what comes of it. Thanks for the link sir...I appreciate it. Regards
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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby Tracker » Mon Apr 15, 2013 1:31 pm

What volume of botanicals do you need to hold Doc?


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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby the Doctor » Mon Apr 15, 2013 1:47 pm

Tracker I do at least 100 liters wash of low wines in each run. Low wines are 40% abv.
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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby Tracker » Mon Apr 15, 2013 1:52 pm

I fear a misunderstanding.
I was asking what volume size the botanicals basket needs to hold.


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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby the Doctor » Mon Apr 15, 2013 3:54 pm

Sorry mate I am thinking that to accommodate the course botanicals I like like lemongrass and whole lavender split vanilla bean something about 8 - 12 inches which would be a solid sided tube with a mesh bottom to slip into a 2 inch SD tri clamp tube would do it...vapour speeds would be good through 2 inch and a long basket means not having to pack stuff in to the point of restriction. Sorry for the misunderstanding.
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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby Tracker » Mon Apr 15, 2013 11:01 pm

Thanks Doc, just needed that info to kick the brain cells into motion.
I have nothing specific in mind but will certainly think on it.

It also needs to have a non return of liquid to the boiler - Yes?


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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby Philter » Tue Apr 16, 2013 12:53 am

Doc, this subject has put my brain into hyper-drive. How does this sound for a gin basket....

Using a SD 4" x 4" x 3" tee, but heavily modified:-
On both ends of 4" opening, remove the ferrule part and weld an endcap (to connect this to another 4" triclamp on either end)
For the base, drill an off centre 2" hole and add a short piece of 2" pipe. The offset pipe won't allow "Gin liquid" to drop back into the boiler and the endcap will also stop the liquid.
For the top, use something similar to a solid bubble plate that's been drilled to 2" & centred (Easy to remove for cleaning the TEE and use a 4" gasket)
The 3" port can be used to insert/remove the basket that would be welded to a 3" endcap (Triclamped but have a heat resistant handle)
Directly opposite the 3" entry, have a centering nut welded to keep the Gin Basket level and to slot into.
Maybe have a 3/4" drain at the base of the tee as well (to drain the fluid from the lower endcap)

You would keep the same 4" strength of the still all the way through the column.
Would about 70mm in diameter by 100mm long be large enough to house the botanicals in this case?

Am happy to draw this out on paper/ MS paint if it's not clear?
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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby bdm1010 » Tue Apr 16, 2013 1:30 am

How about this? I drew up a quick schematic. basically use a small 2" section of pipe as the basket with a screen gasket to hold the botanicals. On top of that is a 2" TC Y. on one side of the Y is a 2" TC butterfly valve with an end cap. you can put botanicals in during the run whenever you want. Just close the valve take off the endcap insert botanicals put endcap back on and open valve dropping botanicals into the basket. on the other side of the Y is a 45 and a 90 to attack back to condenser.


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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby the Doctor » Tue Apr 16, 2013 1:37 am

very interesting idea I had never thought of a Y unit before ...I wonder what the distilling brains trust will say... my distilling engineering knowledge is a bit weak. Te TC valve at 4 is confusing me a bit, what is it's job.
Thanks for the idea...Doc
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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby bdm1010 » Tue Apr 16, 2013 1:39 am

so you can add botanicals into the basket during the run. like an airlock in a space station. put botanicals in the closed valve and put end cap on. once in hearts open valve and it will dump the botanicals into the basket
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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby the Doctor » Tue Apr 16, 2013 1:53 am

wow what a great idea...thank you for explaining....now this is food for thought.
thanks again.
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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby rossco » Tue Apr 16, 2013 7:04 am

I don't understand gin but...
If you are trying to avoid reflux back to the boiler would the basket not be better after the 180degree bend and above the final condenser?
Then you just need a 2" straight section with a screen at the bottom and the botanicals can be put there at setup. You could add a T if you need to see.
Down side would be the affect on the height of the takeoff point ie lower.
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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby the Doctor » Tue Apr 16, 2013 8:11 am

Whats to develop sounds like that should be easy to get to the shelves.
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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby rossco » Tue Apr 16, 2013 1:58 pm

2" one of these with a mesh gasket below it and above the PC would do it.
SD already has something similar.

http://www.ebay.com.au/itm/TriClamp-Sight-Glass-3-with-Protection-SS304-Tri-clamp-/200812644060?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item2ec15dc6dc

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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby nick » Tue Apr 16, 2013 10:11 pm

What about just making a perf plate, like the copper plates for the bubble plates with thousands of holes, the putting this above the condenser after the 180 degree turn,
Then put the botanicals above this,
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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby Monty » Wed Apr 17, 2013 12:30 am

nick wrote:What about just making a perf plate, like the copper plates for the bubble plates with thousands of holes, the putting this above the condenser after the 180 degree turn,
Then put the botanicals above this,
Nick


While I haven't made a gin, it's my understanding that this configuration will give you a color-tinted spirit as the ethanol will condense a bit in the botanicals and pull color with it. Putting the basket before the 180, on the other hand, allows passive reflux to drip back into the boiler, resulting in a cleaning issue. The Carter head addresses both these issues by trapping any reflux in the head and allowing only infused vapor to reach the condensor.
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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby stubbydrainer » Tue Apr 30, 2013 3:40 pm

Doc
I finally got a new chunk of stainless screen. I will replace the old one on my basket and send it to you this week.
I expect to be out your way soonish, I am planning to drop in on punkin and yourself when I get out that way, so, try out the gin thumper in the meantime and I can pick it up then if that's the case

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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby the Doctor » Tue Apr 30, 2013 3:44 pm

Thanks Stubbs that would be mint mate... I have the herbs, labels and bottles ready to go.
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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby F6Hawk » Tue Apr 30, 2013 4:22 pm

Doc, do you have a pic of the still in question to which you would like to add said botanical(s) basket?
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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby stubbydrainer » Tue Apr 30, 2013 5:32 pm

Doc
It's in the post to you, expect it Thursday ( maybe )

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Re: no gin head for my stilldragon...bugger!

Postby the Doctor » Tue Apr 30, 2013 6:05 pm

Thanks Stubbs..I appreciate it.
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