Alembic and HBS pot stills attachments

Pot still design and discussion

Alembic and HBS pot stills attachments

Postby Irritable » Thu Jun 04, 2015 3:18 pm

So a friend of mine runs a pure still for neutral and does reasonably well out of it.

He is talking about now getting a pot atachment - either an alembic all copper of a small copper with lyne arm to suit his hbs boiler. (he has recently tasted some of my nutri grain that came out of my little hbs unit, so he's now moving away from neutrals as I am - but I know the direction I am taking, just need tax time to come lol)

Apart from the $$$ difference - What would be the difference, in terms of final product be between something like a HBS pot/alembic or a quality item from FSD ?
Does anyone have a alembic all copper head to suit a T500 or pure still - how do you find it ?

Has anyone upgraded from a T500 / Pure unit with pot to a 2 or 4 inch pot from FSD ?

Thanks
Si
Irritable
 
Posts: 141
Joined: Wed May 13, 2015 3:26 pm
equipment: Super Reflux that aint so super but aint so reflux :)

Re: Alembic and HBS pot stills attachments

Postby WTDist » Thu Jun 04, 2015 3:32 pm

I think FSD will be the way to go unless you or your mate is handy with tools. Then i would build. you can makea pot for under $100. I think my T500 Mod is costing me about maybe 80$ and not much more, although i had to buy a propane torch n a few other bits n pieces to do the job.

I havnt heard a complaint from an FSD unit but the shop bought ones i have seen might lack in the condenser :think: The ones i have seen before had really short liebigs. Its the reason i never bought a potstill in the past before my knowledge on this forum, they looked like nothing at all
WTDist
 
Posts: 2
Joined: Sun Oct 05, 2014 11:32 am
Location: Brisbane
equipment: Building a 4" bubbler with 8" glass thumper

Re: Alembic and HBS pot stills attachments

Postby Zak Griffin » Thu Jun 04, 2015 3:42 pm

I've said it before and I'll say it again; if you want anything but neutral, any money you spend on a still that ISN'T a bubbler (or can be used as part of a bubbler) is money you have wasted.

Go FSD.
Zak Griffin
Mentor
 
Posts: 6831
Joined: Mon Jul 15, 2013 9:34 pm
Location: Radelaide
equipment: "The Heart of Gold" - 4" Bubbler - finally bubbling!
"Zaphod" - 3" Pot - retired
"Agrajag" - 6" Bubbler - midlife crisis build?

Re: Alembic and HBS pot stills attachments

Postby Professor Green » Thu Jun 04, 2015 3:49 pm

I have the alembic dome and condenser for the T500. It functions OK but like the t500 column, it is a little flimsy. The copper on the dome is not very thick and I think it would dent very easily if dropped or knocked hard. It does look fairly sexy though. As far as economics go, I just checked one of the shops in Melbourne and the alembic dome and condenser are $239 and $189 respectively (so $428 all up). The FSD 2" pot still is only $340 plus the cost of an adapter for the t500 lid. The 4" pot is more expensive at $585 but you do get a parrot with it AND it does offer an easy upgrade path to the top notch still models should the want arise. If I was to start from scratch again, I'd have gone with either of two FSD offerings from the get-go.

I have an FSD 4" pot on the way to me right now. It's built like a tank and I expect it will still be around and functioning long after I've turned up my toes.

Cheers,
Prof. Green.
Professor Green
Mentor
 
Posts: 2283
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: Alembic and HBS pot stills attachments

Postby Irritable » Thu Jun 04, 2015 4:10 pm

Zak Griffin wrote:I've said it before and I'll say it again; if you want anything but neutral, any money you spend on a still that ISN'T a bubbler (or can be used as part of a bubbler) is money you have wasted.

Go FSD.


I know my direction - I'm sourcing a keg as I type this and I'll be following the direction everyone else is going...my friend on the other hand is convinced of his direction and nothing i can do/say to stop him, he is doing what he will be doing - he even refuses to join up here, i assume because he either knows it all, or believes a HBS will not steer him wrong. :angry-banghead:

BUT before I get to see a bubbler in my little hands, before i can understand the benefits in person...I'd like to know more.
Everyone acknowledges that a bubbler is the best type of still out there, but I am still(get it) - even after a fair amount of reading - trying to understand why and how the bubblers are so effective.
I see the vapour paths on videos and understand the interaction between the refluxing liquid hitting the rising vapours etc and i can see a lot of stripping potential - but I am not sure i understand the flavour retention but am learning that as well.
What about time ? what about water - are there not two water inputs and outputs to a bubbler ?
I read that bubblers can pull high ABV and still retain flavour - but what if this is not what someone is after ? Maybe someone wants to pull "authentic ABV" from a traditional still set up - is it possible to run the bubblers like this - or is that their beauty, complete versatility ?


Si
Irritable
 
Posts: 141
Joined: Wed May 13, 2015 3:26 pm
equipment: Super Reflux that aint so super but aint so reflux :)

Re: Alembic and HBS pot stills attachments

Postby stattonb » Mon Sep 21, 2015 11:50 am

I was gonna buy the dome and condenser but ended up getting a pot still condenser for the t500 after getting it plus clamp and t500 adapter only cost me $200 and it works a treat,beats paying $450.
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
stattonb
 
Posts: 278
Joined: Thu Mar 19, 2015 4:20 pm
Location: Boondall,Qld
equipment: T500 - Minus the crappy plastic outlet pipe
2'' Pot Still Condenser

Re: Alembic and HBS pot stills attachments

Postby scythe » Mon Sep 21, 2015 8:28 pm

Its the beauty of a bubbler.
Reduce the number of plates and the %ABV reduces and flavour increases, if you run it faster the ABV will drop but you will possibly get smearing of the hearts with heard and tails, which is true of all stills.

What do you mean by "authentic" ?
scythe
 
Posts: 1761
Joined: Thu Nov 14, 2013 6:34 am
Location: Central West NSW
equipment: Dreaming of a 4" bubbler

Re: Alembic and HBS pot stills attachments

Postby rumdidlydum » Mon Sep 21, 2015 8:34 pm

scythe wrote:Its the beauty of a bubbler.
Reduce the number of plates and the %ABV reduces and flavour increases, if you run it faster the ABV will drop but you will possibly get smearing of the hearts with heard and tails, which is true of all stills.

What do you mean by "authentic" ?

I wouldn't bother asking si any questions. :laughing-rolling:
rumdidlydum
Site Donor
 
Posts: 2618
Joined: Sun Oct 27, 2013 7:20 pm
Location: CQ
equipment: The infamous Illuminated chicken leg boiler, Rum glass and other bits and bobs

Re: Alembic and HBS pot stills attachments

Postby McMelloW » Tue Sep 22, 2015 12:13 am

Because I brew beer I have bought a Grainfather. And also the Alembic Top with it..
The GF is fantasic for brewing beer or mashing a whisky wash.
The Alembic Top for the T500 fits also on a GF. See the picture of my set up.

Image

It works OK for distillig. However I changed a few thing.
The heating elemnts are 2000W and the condenser with the Alembic is only 30cm. This combination is not ideal. The heat is too much for the short conderser. IMHO

So I made a new column and uses miy own Liebig condener (60cm). The conection is very simple The nut for the condeser is 1.5" male thread. Just bought a connector 1.5" internal thread to 22mm copper. No changes are made to the dome or the original condenser
When I do a spirit run I use a little power controller to reduce the heat. The spirit comes out a bit slower. It all works to my satisfaction

Next step is to build a 2"boka and put it on the dome. I am already collecting the materials.
I know things can be different and cheaper. This is my way of distilling for a number of reasons.
McMelloW
 
Posts: 14
Joined: Sat Jul 25, 2015 5:47 am
equipment: Grainfather with Alembic Potstill top

Re: Alembic and HBS pot stills attachments

Postby WalterWhite » Tue Sep 22, 2015 6:52 am

Irritable wrote:
Zak Griffin wrote:I've said it before and I'll say it again; if you want anything but neutral, any money you spend on a still that ISN'T a bubbler (or can be used as part of a bubbler) is money you have wasted.

Go FSD.


I know my direction - I'm sourcing a keg as I type this and I'll be following the direction everyone else is going...my friend on the other hand is convinced of his direction and nothing i can do/say to stop him, he is doing what he will be doing - he even refuses to join up here, i assume because he either knows it all, or believes a HBS will not steer him wrong. :angry-banghead:

BUT before I get to see a bubbler in my little hands, before i can understand the benefits in person...I'd like to know more.
Everyone acknowledges that a bubbler is the best type of still out there, but I am still(get it) - even after a fair amount of reading - trying to understand why and how the bubblers are so effective.
I see the vapour paths on videos and understand the interaction between the refluxing liquid hitting the rising vapours etc and i can see a lot of stripping potential - but I am not sure i understand the flavour retention but am learning that as well.
What about time ? what about water - are there not two water inputs and outputs to a bubbler ?
I read that bubblers can pull high ABV and still retain flavour - but what if this is not what someone is after ? Maybe someone wants to pull "authentic ABV" from a traditional still set up - is it possible to run the bubblers like this - or is that their beauty, complete versatility ?


Have a look here for starters viewtopic.php?f=57&t=3117#p46591

It spells out exactly how a bubbler works.
WalterWhite
 
Posts: 517
Joined: Sun Aug 16, 2015 12:34 pm
Location: South Australia - on the Fleurieu
equipment: Brian the bubbler aka 4" FSD Neutralizer. 50L keg with 2 x 2200w elements.

Re: Alembic and HBS pot stills attachments

Postby wiifm » Tue Sep 22, 2015 8:14 am

Irritable wrote:I know my direction - I'm sourcing a keg as I type this and I'll be following the direction everyone else is going...my friend on the other hand is convinced of his direction and nothing i can do/say to stop him, he is doing what he will be doing - he even refuses to join up here, i assume because he either knows it all, or believes a HBS will not steer him wrong. :angry-banghead:

BUT before I get to see a bubbler in my little hands, before i can understand the benefits in person...I'd like to know more.
Everyone acknowledges that a bubbler is the best type of still out there, but I am still(get it) - even after a fair amount of reading - trying to understand why and how the bubblers are so effective.
I see the vapour paths on videos and understand the interaction between the refluxing liquid hitting the rising vapours etc and i can see a lot of stripping potential - but I am not sure i understand the flavour retention but am learning that as well.
What about time ? what about water - are there not two water inputs and outputs to a bubbler ?
I read that bubblers can pull high ABV and still retain flavour - but what if this is not what someone is after ? Maybe someone wants to pull "authentic ABV" from a traditional still set up - is it possible to run the bubblers like this - or is that their beauty, complete versatility ?


Si

In MY view, there are two major differences between pot stilling and plated column stilling.

Time distilling: If you're pot stilling, the likely process is going to be do 3-4 stripping runs until you have enough low wines to charge the boiler, then do a slow spirit run. If you're running a 50L keg, probably 2-3 hours per run. It makes for a long weekend. Where will you store the low wines in the meantime? Do you have enough / big enough fermenters to fill the boiler 3-4 times?
If you're using a plated column, add your wash, do a spirit run. Repeat next weekend.

Smearing: If you're pot stilling, you have little to no control over smearing, so what do you do? Tight cuts? Longer on oak? With a plated column, the heads and tails are compressed, leaving room for a wider hearts cut.

If you want 'authentic abv', run with less plates. Yes that is the beauty of a modular setup.
wiifm
 
Posts: 192
Joined: Sun Nov 24, 2013 7:03 am
Location: Cairns
equipment: 4 plate glasser using FSD bubble caps

Re: Alembic and HBS pot stills attachments

Postby WTDist » Tue Sep 22, 2015 9:51 am

Pretty sure Irratable has left the bulding :)) :)) :)) :))
WTDist
 
Posts: 2
Joined: Sun Oct 05, 2014 11:32 am
Location: Brisbane
equipment: Building a 4" bubbler with 8" glass thumper

Re: Alembic and HBS pot stills attachments

Postby wiifm » Tue Sep 22, 2015 12:03 pm

WTDist wrote:Pretty sure Irratable has left the bulding :)) :)) :)) :))

and here I was, trying to be helpful :laughing-rolling:
wiifm
 
Posts: 192
Joined: Sun Nov 24, 2013 7:03 am
Location: Cairns
equipment: 4 plate glasser using FSD bubble caps

Re: Alembic and HBS pot stills attachments

Postby danwbrews » Sat Feb 08, 2020 2:22 pm

McMelloW wrote:Because I brew beer I have bought a Grainfather. And also the Alembic Top with it..
The GF is fantasic for brewing beer or mashing a whisky wash.
The Alembic Top for the T500 fits also on a GF. See the picture of my set up.

Image

It works OK for distillig. However I changed a few thing.
The heating elemnts are 2000W and the condenser with the Alembic is only 30cm. This combination is not ideal. The heat is too much for the short conderser. IMHO

So I made a new column and uses miy own Liebig condener (60cm). The conection is very simple The nut for the condeser is 1.5" male thread. Just bought a connector 1.5" internal thread to 22mm copper. No changes are made to the dome or the original condenser
When I do a spirit run I use a little power controller to reduce the heat. The spirit comes out a bit slower. It all works to my satisfaction

Next step is to build a 2"boka and put it on the dome. I am already collecting the materials.
I know things can be different and cheaper. This is my way of distilling for a number of reasons.



What kind of controller do you use. I have a Mash & Boil and would like to use it as a small pot still for Ouzo and first runs of rum and Irish Whiskey to collect backset.
I was just given the boiler and have just begun my quest into distilling.
Thanks,
Dan
danwbrews
 
Posts: 34
Joined: Sat Mar 31, 2018 9:45 pm
Location: Texas
equipment: I'm new to the hobby. I've been a beer brewer for 23 years. Building a CCVM still that can be used as a pot still when I want.
I have a 15 gallon Keg with 2 2000 W electric heaters. with a 2"potstill head 20" tall and a 2" shotgun condenser 20" long with four 1/2" condenser tubes. A 1.5 meter packed column is in the works.

Re: Alembic and HBS pot stills attachments

Postby Professor Green » Sat Feb 08, 2020 7:47 pm

McMelloW is probably not going to answer, he hasn't logged in for 4 years!
Professor Green
Mentor
 
Posts: 2283
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: Alembic and HBS pot stills attachments

Postby Tesla101 » Mon Feb 10, 2020 12:01 pm

wiifm wrote:In MY view, there are two major differences between pot stilling and plated column stilling.

Time distilling: If you're pot stilling, the likely process is going to be do 3-4 stripping runs until you have enough low wines to charge the boiler, then do a slow spirit run. If you're running a 50L keg, probably 2-3 hours per run. It makes for a long weekend. Where will you store the low wines in the meantime? Do you have enough / big enough fermenters to fill the boiler 3-4 times?
If you're using a plated column, add your wash, do a spirit run. Repeat next weekend.

Smearing: If you're pot stilling, you have little to no control over smearing, so what do you do? Tight cuts? Longer on oak? With a plated column, the heads and tails are compressed, leaving room for a wider hearts cut.

If you want 'authentic abv', run with less plates. Yes that is the beauty of a modular setup.


This^^^^ ^:)^

Still true 5 years later. Wish I'd known that before going down the T500 rabbit hole (even though I pot still the stripping run and then reflux still the spirit run, it still takes a good 9 hours out of my weekend just to process a 25L wash).

All part of the learning journey I guess :whistle:
Tesla101
 
Posts: 290
Joined: Thu Jan 09, 2020 6:48 pm
Location: Melbourne-ish, VIC
equipment: T500 column & alembic pot

Re: Alembic and HBS pot stills attachments

Postby southern45 » Mon Feb 10, 2020 5:34 pm

As somebody who went through: AirStill, HBS Reflux Still, Copper 2” Pot, FSD 4 Plate Bubbler. I have one piece of advice for anyone really getting into this hobby...

BUY THE DAMN BUBBLER! :twisted:

(or a modular 4” pot that can be upgraded down the line)
southern45
 
Posts: 139
Joined: Mon Dec 10, 2018 2:50 pm
Location: Tasmania
equipment: Four plate 5-Star copper bubbler


Return to Pot Stills



Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 5 guests

x