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Yield of second run pot still

Yield of second run pot still

Postby okie » Thu Jan 15, 2015 5:09 am

I brew all grain malt plus peated malt in 11 gallon batches using two 6 gallon fermenters. Then I distill and collect everything down to around 30 - 20 abv and hold that until I get over five gallons for a second run. This is my system so far.

My second run I had yesterday in my 15 gal still was also my heads and tails from previous runs and about seven plus gallons total. I run low and slow. I started collecting and use a parrot to watch ABV. It started over 87 and ran for ever before I got down to 75 ABV. In fact I collected 2.5 gallons of heads. When the heart run started it stayed at 75 for a 1/2 gallon then went down fast to 60 ABV which was in total a gallon and a pint. I'm thinking it should have been more. I collected down to about 40 and saved the tails.

This was three fresh AG 11 gallon stripping runs plus leftovers. I now have a lot of heads collected. :confusion-confused:

I'm trying the Glenmorangie clone.

I didn't know where to put this topic and I usually choose the wrong one so if I did this time, I'm just stupid. :obscene-drinkingcheers:
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Re: Yield of second run pot still

Postby Zombie » Fri Jan 16, 2015 9:06 am

It seems simple... You added heads, and the heads came back out.

ABV shouldn't really be used for cutting. it actually has no relation to what compounds other than Ethanol is in the product. (scientifically yes it does but flavor profile no).

I'd suggest tossing the float thingy, and close your eyes, and smell/taste. Wait 24 hours, and repeat.

Some of what you thought were heads will become the bite in your hootch, and some of what you thought were tails will become the flavor profile you seek. That's why everyone suggests Small collection bottles. The flavors/extracted compounds shift quickly.

I may need to be "put down" soon.
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Re: Yield of second run pot still

Postby okie » Sat Jan 17, 2015 3:06 am

I think that works better for corn based whiskey. I'm talking about all barley. 100% malted barley with peat smoked in the mix. Glenmorangie Scotch, a single malt scotch and the biggest seller of scotch in the world, only collects scotch from 75% ABV to 65%. That makes it expensive and it taste great.

I experimented with some of the tails and heads as you suggested. I'm trying to make more out of what I have. Thanks for the comment.
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Re: Yield of second run pot still

Postby Zombie » Sat Jan 17, 2015 4:43 am

Scotch is all I make. I have never made anything but Barley Whiskey.

Once my fores are done I will begin collecting around 160 proof, and go down to around 40.
The first two pints are a no brainer, and get tossed, same for the last 2-3 pints. but everything else (pretty much) gets used/blended.

I take a huge mouthful of the center of the run, and keep that in till it burns. Spit it out, and quickly take a wiff of the bottom jars, looking for a smell that makes the burn stop without smelling/feeling "heavy" or off.
Sometimes I will have to go up a couple of bottles from the bottom to get this, and anything below is again... tossed

After I get the flavor, and smoothness from the heart, and tails... The "bite" is missing, and I'l do the same except this time I look for a match of the smell, and the taste in my mouth. If the top jars smell like chemicals... gone. I keep going down until the flavor/smell match.

In the end I always end up at or very near 100 proof, pure Scottish style Barley Whiskey. I say Whiskey because after 40 years of thinking it was Scotch... I learned here that in order for it to BE Scotch, it has to rest 2 years on Oak... I've never had a drop last more than one, and the closest to Oak it has ever been is my "enforcer" leaning against the door.

I may need to be "put down" soon.
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Re: Yield of second run pot still

Postby okie » Wed Jan 21, 2015 4:35 am

Thanks Zombie, I'll try that.

You never toss tails and heads back in and re run. I never did before this run either but I read where whisky guys do and I thought I'd try it once and that's how this whole thing came about. I'm just not that happy with the yield I'm getting from a lot of hard work and grain. I do proof mine down to 80 and drink it there.

60 plus pounds of malted barley should give me more than three liters of good single malt scotch I think. :confusion-confused:
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Re: Yield of second run pot still

Postby JayD » Wed Jan 21, 2015 10:28 am

Yield can be compared directly to your conversion rate, are getting complete conversion? are you taking a sg reading before you pitch your yeast and one on completion of fermentation as can indicate the amount of distillate you can expect from your run, and the size of your boiler charge...say you fermented wash ends up at 8 to 10% abv and you have fermented enough wash for a 100 ltr run, working on 10% final wash abv you should have a return of 10% of your total boiler fill, so 10% of 100 ltrs is 10 liters...so 10 lts is what you can expect from your run including fores n head, hearts n tails, removing the unwanted fractions leaves you with your drinking whisky...hope this helps
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Re: Yield of second run pot still

Postby MASHY » Wed Jan 21, 2015 11:33 pm

"60 plus pounds of malted barley should give me more than three liters of good single malt scotch"

I would have expected double that 6-7 litres?

Probably worth checking the numbers at the mashing and after ferment. Double mash or single ?
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Re: Yield of second run pot still

Postby okie » Sat Jan 24, 2015 6:50 am

I have a large igloo cooler, a white marine very thick one, with the wire mesh tube and stainless ball valve. I place 10 pounds of cracked malted barley in it, measure the temp of the barley and put that into a strike temp calculator to get the strike temp. I usually put 4 gallons of heated water in that batch.

90 min later I drain some off, replace that back and get a small amount for my iodine test. It always shows 100% conversion. I drain as much of that as I can into a container where I place my immersion cooler in and cool it down to about 80F

I add a second 3 gallons in the mash and wait 30 min or so, stir it well and after it sits drain that and chill it. Then when it's all cooled I do my hydrometer test and usually I'll get 1.065 or better. I have gotten over 1.070 once. I aerate for about 30 min or so and toss the yeast. After a bit I stir that and air lock.

Usually three days it stops and I let it rest a day. When I re check SG I'll go 1.000 and under.

I think I stopped the 1st run too quick and should have collected more. I collected 5 gallons and a quart in three of these. Then I added some old heads and tails for the second run. I got tons of heads.
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Re: Yield of second run pot still

Postby Zombie » Tue Jan 27, 2015 4:04 am

5-6 gallons sounds right for 65 or so gallons total mash. Maybe I mis read but I could only see around 21 gallons total...
Just side stepping a bit.

Zurmugy Bob stated here once that the changing temps. in a run is what creates some of the compounds we are trying to remove in "cuts".
I am suspecting that the addition of heads/tails/ are sort of jump starting that process, and diluting or spreading into your hearts from both sides.
I have tried to reclaim either a stopped boiler run or adding backset/heads/tails into the boiler, and I never had it work out. Perhaps it is because I am used to one certain flavor, and that changed or perhaps it is as you are finding there is some science to it that did not anticipate.
The only use I have for any of it is as I posted above. The heads/tails are for "proofing" and nothing else. I've tried to run the lawnmower on the heads but that never worked out well either.

Perhaps the fellas that strip/spirit run just have a different flavor profile in mind. That whole world is too much like work for me anyway... One run, and done!

I may need to be "put down" soon.
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Re: Yield of second run pot still

Postby okie » Wed Jan 28, 2015 3:32 am

That's what I always did before. No dunder, no tossing heads and tails in future runs, just strip, and spirit run tossing out the crap. I was happy with what I had and even had super compliments on my product.

Then it's TMI and I thought I'd try something different. Thanks for your comments and now I know it's not just me. Like I always say and try to live by. KISS. Keep It Simple Stupid!!
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Re: Yield of second run pot still

Postby Zombie » Wed Jan 28, 2015 4:57 am

My middle name... Well part of that is. :grin:

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Re: Yield of second run pot still

Postby myles » Wed Feb 04, 2015 2:00 am

I like the method they use in Cognac, with blended still charges - but the volumes of feints added are quite a low proportion of the charge. Cuts on both strip and spirit runs

Strip run feints. Reserved to fortify wash for future strip runs only. 10% feints max.
Spirit run feints. Mixed with the strip run feints and used on future strip runs.

The blending on the Spirit run charge is actually from previous late hearts. They keep the early hearts as Cognac, same principle as the 1/5th whisky cut. The late hearts is re-blended no more than 25% to 75% low wines for subsequent Spirit runs.


The other blending method you hear about is 60% Low wines to 40% feints for a Spirit run, but I don't use that. I did try all feints runs but eventually decided to just chuck any surplus feints through a packed column for neutral as a base for infused products.
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Re: Yield of second run pot still

Postby Zombie » Wed Feb 04, 2015 9:11 am

By feints do you mean combined heads, and tails or tails alone? There are so many uses of the word that I am not clear on the true definition.

I may need to be "put down" soon.
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Re: Yield of second run pot still

Postby okie » Fri Feb 06, 2015 6:43 am

I'm confused too. Strip feints run?

I made rum and didn't use the parrot. Collected in 1/2 pint jars and saved the purest best tasting rum I've made which is aging with spices now.

Back to the simple. KISS
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Re: Yield of second run pot still

Postby myles » Fri Feb 06, 2015 9:29 am

Let me try and clarify for you. Feints is combined heads and tails.

In the cognac method they take only the "hearts" of the STRIP run for the boiler charge on the spirit run. They are much more selective than usual. The heads and tails of the strip run get mixed into a general "feints" vat.

On the SPIRIT run they are also selective. The conventional 1/5th cut is taken as product but the later hearts is reserved for recycling in a subsequent spirit run.

The product is a very selective prime cut. Everything else is recycled, but I suspect some of it gets diverted to neutral. The volumes are just too big To deal with in any other way.
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Re: Yield of second run pot still

Postby JayD » Fri Feb 06, 2015 10:01 am

okie wrote:I'm confused too. Strip feints run?

I made rum and didn't use the parrot. Collected in 1/2 pint jars and saved the purest best tasting rum I've made which is aging with spices now.

Back to the simple. KISS


They too use the kiss principle believe it or not just there way way out in front, and to them it's simple...the kiss principle again...straight forward, step by step...you on the other hand are still learning (not that will ever stop) and as time goes by you will find your way and apply your kiss system in doing things. When you look at Myles post you can see around 3 to 4 steps. It will all fall into place, keep records of what you do with your runs and blending so you can repeat this process over and over...hope this helps you.
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Re: Yield of second run pot still

Postby Zombie » Fri Feb 06, 2015 4:54 pm

Thanks Guys!

I may need to be "put down" soon.
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Re: Yield of second run pot still

Postby Foxfire » Fri Apr 03, 2015 11:03 am

Went to drug store looking to buy a bottle of good old iodine, now I see all they have available is "decolorized iodine" anyone know if that will work for the starch test?
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Re: Yield of second run pot still

Postby Zymurgy Bob » Sat Apr 04, 2015 2:49 am

Plain ol' tincture of iodine is still available here in Washington State, but sterilizing iodophor from your local homebrew supply also works, although color intensity is a bit different.
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