Small pot still for testing/small batch

Pot still design and discussion

Small pot still for testing/small batch

Postby bigadz » Sun May 26, 2019 2:18 pm

Hey guys,

I've done a lot of searching but haven't found the answer yet or maybe I'm blind...

What's the best option for a small pot still for testing recipes and small batch stuff, mainly testing gin recipes and doing some grappa/brandy stuff. I'm definitely going to go down the path of a FSD modular pot so I can eventually build a second boiler and have a dedicated pot still for bigger batches, but if I was looking at something to run say 5L to 10L.

I'm keen to try building something but I am a complete potato when it comes to soldering/brazing, so if there is an option ready to rock keen to here about it.

Cheers!
bigadz
 
Posts: 45
Joined: Sat Jan 06, 2018 4:55 pm
Location: Melbourne
equipment: 4" 5 plate glass bubbler with FSD neutralizer
Dual 2400w element keg boiler

Re: Small pot still for testing/small batch

Postby Yonder » Sun May 26, 2019 3:58 pm

I think there may be one or two things off here. You can do good brandy and whisky in a pot but gin is more a column sip. If you go down that trail, a pot may give you half a liter of usable products but that's hardly enough of a sample to prove out a recipe. From experience i believe you should have a look at something around 20-25 l. You'll have the opportunity to make some cuts and see where the spirit's strength and weakness lies. Just my thinkin'.
Yonder
 
Posts: 56
Joined: Thu Apr 19, 2018 3:38 pm
Location: Texas, of course
equipment: 10 gal copper pot w/doubler and a lot of enthusiasm

Re: Small pot still for testing/small batch

Postby bigadz » Sun May 26, 2019 6:29 pm

Yonder wrote:I think there may be one or two things off here. You can do good brandy and whisky in a pot but gin is more a column sip. If you go down that trail, a pot may give you half a liter of usable products but that's hardly enough of a sample to prove out a recipe. From experience i believe you should have a look at something around 20-25 l. You'll have the opportunity to make some cuts and see where the spirit's strength and weakness lies. Just my thinkin'.



Apprreciate the thinking! Was looking at the methods of Odin's easy gin as found on other forums hence why the thought of something small. But it's all food for thought!
bigadz
 
Posts: 45
Joined: Sat Jan 06, 2018 4:55 pm
Location: Melbourne
equipment: 4" 5 plate glass bubbler with FSD neutralizer
Dual 2400w element keg boiler

Re: Small pot still for testing/small batch

Postby Professor Green » Sun May 26, 2019 7:35 pm

I don't think you necessarily need a column for gin other than for making the base neutral.

Bigadz, there's a thread around here somewhere that shows my small (12 litre) bain marie pot still. I'm using it to develop absinthe recipes but have done some seriously good gin in it too.

EDIT: Here it is
Last edited by Professor Green on Sun May 26, 2019 7:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Professor Green
Mentor
 
Posts: 2282
Joined: Fri Apr 17, 2015 1:10 pm
Location: Victoria
equipment: FSD 100 litre milk can with 2 x 2400W elements
FSD Neutraliser
FSD Carter Head
12 litre double boiler with 2400W element

Re: Small pot still for testing/small batch

Postby MaKa » Sun May 26, 2019 7:38 pm

With respect to gin you really need to think about the style you want to make (i.e. macerated or vapour infused).

I have a FSD neutraliser use this to make my neutral hearts cut. You wont be able to make a good netural with just a pot still.

When I have finshed macerating I run this through a t500 still, with an adapter I picked up from FSD store. I used this in a pot still mode and collect my product. This set up is not particuarly great at vapour infusion but I have put some cheese cloth between the joins in the modular section to put the botanicals in vapour path.

One thing I have been told is, depending on how big of a batch you want to scale up to, your test batches will need to be around 10 litres.

I went down this batch as it was the simplest and most cost effective set up I could come up with without having to build one.
MaKa
 
Posts: 90
Images: 0
Joined: Sun Jun 07, 2015 1:08 pm
Location: Melbourne
equipment: FSD 4" Neutraliser
FSD Carter head
T500 pot still with a 2" FSD modular head

Re: Small pot still for testing/small batch

Postby bigadz » Sun May 26, 2019 8:08 pm

bigadz wrote:
MaKa wrote:With respect to gin you really need to think about the style you want to make (i.e. macerated or vapour infused).

I have a FSD neutraliser use this to make my neutral hearts cut. You wont be able to make a good netural with just a pot still.

When I have finshed macerating I run this through a t500 still, with an adapter I picked up from FSD store. I used this in a pot still mode and collect my product. This set up is not particuarly great at vapour infusion but I have put some cheese cloth between the joins in the modular section to put the botanicals in vapour path.

One thing I have been told is, depending on how big of a batch you want to scale up to, your test batches will need to be around 10 litres.

I went down this batch as it was the simplest and most cost effective set up I could come up with without having to build one.


Hopefully a mod fixes that up, itchy post finger 8-}

Really appreciate the comments! I currently have a 5 plate glass bubbler column with a FSD neutralizer so neutral isn't an issue. I have a 4" gin basket too but was thinking of something smaller to test different flavours without having to run a minimum 15L to cover my elements.

As it stands at the moment I have 2 boilers so was thinking I'd eventually end up with my column on one and a dedicated pot still on the other, but was thinking something smallish using the maceration method to at least figure out what flavours I like and what works.
Last edited by Sam. on Tue May 28, 2019 11:47 am, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: removed double post
bigadz
 
Posts: 45
Joined: Sat Jan 06, 2018 4:55 pm
Location: Melbourne
equipment: 4" 5 plate glass bubbler with FSD neutralizer
Dual 2400w element keg boiler

Re: Small pot still for testing/small batch

Postby MaKa » Sun May 26, 2019 9:24 pm

A t500 will suit you then, internal heating elements means you can run them with basically nothing in them. I've run mine down to less than 1 litre in it. This is the reason I went with this setup
MaKa
 
Posts: 90
Images: 0
Joined: Sun Jun 07, 2015 1:08 pm
Location: Melbourne
equipment: FSD 4" Neutraliser
FSD Carter head
T500 pot still with a 2" FSD modular head

Re: Small pot still for testing/small batch

Postby Professor Green » Mon May 27, 2019 7:34 am

Are you running that T500 boiler with the reflux column with the packing removed or with a proper pot still MaKa?
How do stop the elements from scorching the botanicals?
Professor Green
Mentor
 
Posts: 2282
Joined: Fri Apr 17, 2015 1:10 pm
Location: Victoria
equipment: FSD 100 litre milk can with 2 x 2400W elements
FSD Neutraliser
FSD Carter Head
12 litre double boiler with 2400W element

Re: Small pot still for testing/small batch

Postby MaKa » Mon May 27, 2019 8:12 pm

I suspend the botanicals in a bit of cheesecloth in the liquid.

I haven't had anything scorch with this method
MaKa
 
Posts: 90
Images: 0
Joined: Sun Jun 07, 2015 1:08 pm
Location: Melbourne
equipment: FSD 4" Neutraliser
FSD Carter head
T500 pot still with a 2" FSD modular head

Re: Small pot still for testing/small batch

Postby Boardy62 » Fri Jan 17, 2020 7:16 am

Gin in the T500,i put juniper in the boiler and the other botanicals in a basket (large tea leave basket) tied tight to the base of the column have been doing this for a few years and it makes a fantastic gin :music-deathmetal:
Boardy62
 
Posts: 207
Joined: Sun Sep 20, 2015 4:29 pm
Location: far south coast nsw
equipment: FSD Neutraliser, two 2400w elements, gin caddy,100 ltr boiler
T500 reflux still and boiler,
pure distilling pot still head
power controller
Parrot and racking cane

Re: Small pot still for testing/small batch

Postby wynnum1 » Fri Jan 17, 2020 7:36 am

For gin can just build out of stainless just need to create the vapour to pass through the botanicals and then condense
Just needs to be made so does not turn into a bomb have seen video where they used glass.
wynnum1
 
Posts: 1419
Joined: Tue Jul 26, 2011 1:18 pm

Re: Small pot still for testing/small batch

Postby RuddyCrazy » Fri Jan 17, 2020 7:28 pm

For doing small batch's have a look at my minime pot still project, for making gin I just grind up the botanicals and soak them in 40% neutral in the boiler for a day or 2 then when I run it I put some 40% neutral in the thumper with some of the botanicals and the end result according to my mate who I made the gin for he reckoned it was better than anything you can buy.

My boiler is just some 4" copper pipe and the thumper is 3" copper pipe, 1/2" pipe was used for the connections and the PC was 3/4" over the 1/2". Now I just use an old Subaru fuel pump for the PC which is fed from a 20 litre cube. I've done more runs on this minime than I've done on my 4" bubbler since I made that mini potstill and the results of small batch is on par with the bubbler

Cheers Bryan
RuddyCrazy
 
Posts: 1073
Joined: Thu Oct 31, 2013 6:36 pm
Location: Not far from Kanmantoo SA
equipment: 4" copper bubbler with a setup for Neutral and a thumper for Whisky and my old 5 litre pot for doing maceration runs and MiniMe the baby pot still also a 1-1/2" pot still and bubbler build happening


Return to Pot Stills



Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 5 guests

x