- 1 How clear should my wash be before distilling?
- 2 What happens if you drink the head of moonshine?
- 3 What to do with heads and tails when distilling?
How much head do you throw out for moonshine?
How to Remove Methanol from Moonshine – One way a commercial distiller would determine the presence of methanol is to monitor still temperature, If anything is produced by the still before wash temperature reaches 174 degrees, it’s methanol. A commercial distiller will discard it.
Again, methanol boils at a lower temperature than ethanol and will concentrate at the beginning of distillation runs. Additionally, commercial distillers have determined that simply discarding a standard amount per batch, based on batch size, is enough to keep things safe. The rule of thumb is to discard 1/3 of a pint jar for every 5 gallons of wash being distilled.
How much initial product to discard:
1 gallon batch – discard the first 2/3 of a shot glass 5 gallon batch – discard the first 1/3 of a pint jar 10 gallon batch – discard the first 3/4 of a pint jar
Regardless of still temp, it’s a good idea to always follow this rule of thumb. Methanol or not, the first stuff to come off the still tastes and smells like rubbing alcohol. It’s by far the worst stuff in the entire production run and it isn’t going to impress anyone. Kyle Brown is the owner of Clawhammer Supply, a small scale distillation and brewing equipment company which he founded in 2009. His passion is teaching people about the many uses of distillation equipment as well as how to make beer at home. When he isn’t brewing beer or writing about it, you can find him at his local gym or on the running trail.
How clear should my wash be before distilling?
Article: Clearing the wash
- Clearing the wash
- When fermentation is complete
- Turbo clear should always be used to clear wash before distillation, there are three reasons for this;
- To remove the yeast – there are many billions of yeast cells (70 billion/ml) by the end of the fermentation – if not removed they will break open during boiling releasing volatiles giving off-flavours and aromas into the distillation process and reducing distillate quality.
- To remove semi-soluble compounds – Turbo clear contains strongly negative and positive charging and will take out unwanted compounds that even filtration will not remove.
- T o remove adsorbents – the majority of turbo yeasts contain absorbent materials such as activated carbons, clays and other compounds which trap unwanted metabolites within pore microstructures.
If turbo clear is not used, these metabolites will be released during boiling. Turbo Clear has been reformulated to give increased performance and works faster than ever. Each turbo pack comes with part A and part B. It is important to remove dissolved gas from the wash by vigorous stirring of the wash first – then add part A.
- One hour later stir very gently and Part B should be added.
- Then leave the wash for at least 24 hours before decanting and distilling.
- Within 24 hours Turbo Clear removes over 95% of the yeast cells, solids and other unwanted compounds from the wash – at this point it is acceptable for distilling.
- For ultimate quality – leave for 48 hours to remove up to 99% of the solids.
It can sometimes take several days for the wash to become completely clear because alcohol yeasts are poor flocculators, but removing every last cell is not important. : Article: Clearing the wash
What happens if you drink the head of moonshine?
Everything You Need to Know about Moonshine Moonshine carries with it the stigma of a backwoods drink that can double as an engine degreaser. However for those in the know, can also be a top shelf spirit that connoisseurs around the world will gladly put a pinky in the air for a taste.
The number one thing you hear about Moonshine when talking to laymen is, “Won’t that stuff make you blind?” The answer is no, drinking moonshine will not make you blind, At least not any more so than other types of booze, we’ve all had those regretful mornings. The genesis of this concern comes from the fact that a byproduct of distilling, known as methanol, can indeed make one blind.
Combine that fact with Moonshine’s unregulated history and voila. horror stories have long lives. Like so many things, distilling is both science and art, A great distiller has his art down to science, making his product stand out in every way possible. This includes the mash, the temperatures, the timing, and any infusions he may have up his sleeve. When doing a run of Moonshine, you heat your mash to a desired temperature, The mash has been fermenting, and is a slurry of all the stuff you want mixed with a bunch of stuff you don’t want. By heating it, you’re taking advantage of the fact that the stuff you want will evaporate at different temperatures than the stuff you don’t want.
When you begin heating, the first distillate to come out the other end of your still is known as the foreshots, The foreshots are mostly methanol, and they will make you blind. Next, comes the heads, The heads won’t make you blind, but the volatile alcohols they contain will give you a whopping hangover.
The product also smells and tastes terrible, this is because of the acetone that is present. After the heads come the hearts, The hearts are arguably the most important step that separates delicious Moonshine from engine degreaser, Think of this transition as a gradient and you begin to see what makes it so difficult.
- Your first and last jars of hearts can be difficult to time, and often what smells/tastes ok to you will be laughed at by a seasoned shiner.
- Finally we get to the tails, which get oily from water and proteins that are present.
- If you’re drinking oily hooch, you’re drinking tails. Gross.
- If you want to learn more about this subject, Mile Hi Distilling has a great article on,
If you check online spirits retailers or if you have a decent spirits retailer near you, chances are good that you’ll find a great brand of Moonshine there. Unfortunately, there’s no way to say what brand is better than another because they all have their own corner of the market.
- Maybe you like the traditional sweet-corn taste that comes from a full blown corn Whiskey mash.
- If so, check out Tim Smith’s Climax Moonshine.
- Or perhaps you’re into flavored Moonshine made from a sugar mash that is built on a more neutral-tasting foundation.
- If this is your style, check out,
- If you have distillers close to you, go give them a taste.
If you smell a sweet ethanol and corn coming off the shine, you’re probably in the right place. We’re here to help people try new things more often. Not only do we send out personalized samples & complimentary bottles, we give people access to rare and original Spirits, invite them to great events, and keep them educated & entertained with booze-themed content. Get the freshly distilled booze news, new releases, and awesome deals in your inbox before everyone else, : Everything You Need to Know about Moonshine
Can I distill my wash twice?
| Double distillation of you neutral spirit is the most important method you can use to improve the quality and quantity of your finished alcohol. 1. Distil your wash as normal, you do not have to discard anything as you will do it on the second distillation anyway. This is called a “stripping” run because you “strip” the alcohol.2. Collect the spirit and dilute to 45% using the calculator found here 3. For every 8-10L spirit add 1 tablespoon of sodium carbonate (not bicarbonate). This is sold as washing soda at the supermarket.4. Run the still as normal, discarding the first 50-100mLs. This is called the “spirit run” 5. Dilute to 40% and carbon filter To save time you can strip the alcohol from two or three ferments and then do a single spirit run. barry 4/4/2018 11:53:02 pm why are you adding sodium carbonate to the strip run after collection??? The sodium carbonate in your second distillation causes ‘base catalysed hydrolysis’. Some of the bad tasting compounds get converted into compounds with high boiling points so they cannot come over with your product. This means that the heads and tails fractions are much smaller, leaving you with a cleaner (and larger) hearts cut. An unfiltered double distilled product (with sodium carbonate) will in many cases be cleaner than a single distilled and filtered product. Make sure to never add sodium carbonate to your wash for your first distillation. Dave 10/2/2019 08:36:56 pm Why do you use carbonate instead of bicarbonate? Anything wing with using bicarbonate? Thanks for your help. Duck 6/8/2020 02:23:55 am Sodium carbonate is more basic than sodium bicarbonate so induces base catylised hydrolysis more readily. If you put sodium bicarbonate in a glass oven safe tray in the oven @200C for 2hrs it will convert to sodium carbonate. Matthew Scherf 9/5/2020 06:35:30 pm Hi – I have some heads that I’ve saved. If I add sodium carbonate to the heads, and then add those to fortify the sugar wash, is it safe? sean 11/9/2020 06:13:14 pm hey mate. i do a double batch at a time. when you do your spirit run with sodium carbonate. do u just dilute to 40% or do u fill the still back to the top with water thanks mate Mike 9/23/2022 01:44:46 am Ok so I made the mistake of adding Sodium carbonate washing soda to the wash in a stripping run, now i have a spirit that has a bad smell a bit like ammonia, should I try re running it or just tip it down the drain. Garry 5/7/2018 06:09:21 pm Hi do you get the same result using the turbo 500 reflux still,also double filtering ? Thanks Garry Hi Garry, Yes you can do double distillation in a t500. There is no need to double filter after you’ve done a double distillation, it will be VERY clean. A nice slow single filter is more than enough. Cheers tash 2/26/2020 11:11:00 pm Hi do you filter after the second distillation or the first? noting I am looking to add botanicals to make gin on the second distillation Mark 6/2/2018 08:37:58 pm Hi mate, Do you need to filtee tpw or only turbo. Cheers, Mark. Steve 11/20/2020 06:17:45 am Hi what do you do with heads and tails you collect? camille 6/2/2018 10:28:06 pm Hi Mark, it’s not essential to filter a tpw but it will make it a little cleaner. Always filter a turbo and double distil it if you have the time. cheers Mark 6/2/2018 11:18:02 pm Many thanks, Looking forward to trying your bourbon essence. Do you recommend to age the soirit on wood chunks first and if so which type. Thanks again, Mark camille 6/3/2018 01:49:47 am Hi Mark, the essence already contains an oak profile so I would try it first before oaking. If you feel it’s not enough by all means put in a few chunks. At the end of the day it’s all about you like to drink ? cheers Mark 6/3/2018 03:11:49 pm Hi Camille, Just followed your instructions on double distilling. It made some amazing spirit. The sodium carbonate makes a difference. I lost about 10%, is that normal? Also, with the T500 is it necessary to do cuts as I am lost on how to do that. Kind regards, Mark. camille 6/3/2018 05:48:46 pm Hi Mark, I’m actually unsure why you would have lost 10%. The t500 frequently leaks around the lid so perhaps you lost some there. You can plug that up with flour paste or just accept the loss. The other reason I can think of is you cooling water is too cool and the still struggles to push the last little bit out. It’s always important to do cuts as it will increase the quality of your spirit especially if you don’t carbon filter. Carbon does hide a lot of sins though. cheers jason 7/12/2018 05:48:52 pm Hi I am going to try out the sodium carbonate Woolies have Lectric in wash & soaker Washing Soda Is this good enough or should i look for a different brand Cheers camille 7/12/2018 05:53:20 pm it’s not food grade but it’s the brand I use Adam 8/7/2018 01:50:44 pm Hi Ducks.just want to make sure this is the right stuff. https://www.woolworths.com.au/shop/productdetails/263093/lectric-inwash-soaker-washing-soda and thanks for all the info!!! camille 8/10/2018 07:34:36 pm Hi Adam, yes this is the right product. Have a good brew! Mson 8/25/2018 05:25:20 pm Do I use 1 tablespoon to 8-10 liters of neutral used or 1 tablespoon to 8-10 L of spirit diluted at 45%. Sorry for the simple question, am fairly new to this 🙂 Mate I’m new to it as well but I’m assuming it’s added to the total volume after its diluted? camille 9/5/2018 06:28:58 am can you repeat your question please. I don’t understand what you mean Steve 9/5/2018 02:11:39 pm I run a still spirit condenser do I have to conditions the second run on a double distilling,also thanks for giving out advice about double distilling Jay 9/19/2018 04:58:20 am Camille – I believe what Mson was asking refers to points 2 & 3. Do you add the 1 Table spoon of sodium carbonate to 8-10L of: A. clean distilled spirit OR B. the 45% diluted spirit. Following the directions it’s the diluted, but I guess #3 says spirit – so that’s where the confusion may have come from. Camille 9/19/2018 09:12:02 pm Add the sodium carbonate to the 45% diluted spirit. Sorry for any confusion Robert Christoffel 9/30/2018 12:31:26 pm Hi Hope you will help me, I have a Turbo 500 Happy with it, i would like to try DOUBLE DISTILLING can someone out there tell me how to do it PLEASE, Step by Step would be GREAT, Thanks Very Much Bob Camille 10/1/2018 03:50:19 am Hi Bob, 1. Make ferment 2. Distill ferment without cuts (stripping run, do not drink this) 3. Dilute spirit to 45% 4. Add 1 tablespoon of sodium carbonate to each 9L of 45 Spirit 5. Run again making sure to take foreshots, heads, hearts and tails. (Spirit Run) On average you can strip 3 ferments to a single spirit run to save yourself time. Mick 11/27/2020 01:51:08 pm This may be a dumb question, but I am assuming you clean out the still before the second run yeah? Ian 8/21/2021 11:08:31 pm Hi Bob I run the t500 when I do a double distill, was recommended by the home brew shop on the second run add ten litres of hot water to your near 95% and like the first run it as close as you can to 50 degrees low and slow comes out so clean the women fight over it for there fruit drinks eg lemon chilo etc Luke 11/1/2018 02:38:13 am Hi All, I’m very new to using an air still, I have the Still Spirits 4L air still. I’ve only made one run though the still at the moment using the manufacturers instructions. However I’m interested in double distilling with it. I’m not 100% clear on what the process is. Do I distill the first 700ml as per the manufacturer, then dilute to 45% and add just that and a small amount of sodium carbonate back into the still for the 2nd distillation? Then discard the first 10ml or so? Or have I got it completely wrong? Sorry for the newbie questions! Cheers Luke Denny McIntyre 12/27/2018 01:46:31 am Does the washing soda do the same thing as distillers conditioner? Is better than or just as good or worse? Camille 12/28/2018 08:38:16 am Washing soda does a completely different thing. It is only done in the second distillation, never add it to your wash. Denny 1/14/2019 03:13:11 pm Thanks heaps gonna double distill my next 2 washes. Should i be putting distillers conditioner in my spirit run? Using t500 Dave 12/28/2018 07:06:22 pm Hi, just wondering, when u distill the first wash to 45%, do u add water back to the 21lts to do the second distill??? Dan 1/23/2019 06:47:15 pm Hi all. I didnt discard the first 50ml of my first distil so I have to do a second distil. Ive noticed you have to add sodium carbonate and i proof it to 40%. My question is do i just add the 40% to the still or make up to 25litres? Also to distil again do i need to add the distil conditioner and ceramic boil enhances? Thanks 👍 Hi Dan, You just have to put in the 45%, no need to fill your still up to the 25L mark, you’ll just waste time and electricity. Cheers, Camille Dan 1/23/2019 09:52:26 pm Thanks for that. i ended up just filtering and watering the alcohol the other half after i realised i stuffed up Hi Dan, You can still double distill after its been filtered. If you filter before and after the second distillation you’ll end up with super clean booze. Its unnecessary but it does make it squealy clean! Jules 1/31/2019 05:03:43 pm Hi, Do you have to wait a certain amount of time after adding the lectric soda to the 45% spirit? Or can you mix it all up and run it straight away? Cheers Duck Distilling 7/28/2019 08:13:54 am Just dump it in and run straight away Kev Roberts 6/10/2019 12:38:08 pm G’day mate, to save space and weight in my caravan on an extended trip, I would like to carry 93% alcohol and then reduce that to 40% with local water before adding any essence. To achieve this, before leaving, I intend to use my T500 to produce 93% in the normal manner, (disgarding the first 100 ml) then reduce this to 40% before very slowly carbon filtering this to my normal high standard. At this point, can I re-distill my 40% filtered product back to 93%, again disgarding the first 100ml and carry the concentrate to dilute later with local water back to 40% WITHOUT filtering again? Thanks mate, Kev. Hi Kev, Yes that will work very well. It is in fact the best 95% is made for soaking gin botanicals. Cheers, Luke trevor cottrell 6/19/2019 09:15:44 pm so about a teaspoon of carbonate to my 4ltr wash at 45% abv should do it?second distillation of course in my airstill Duck Distilling 6/19/2019 10:09:46 pm That should do the trick. Make it a heaped teaspoon, a little extra won’t hurt. trevor cottrell 6/19/2019 10:15:26 pm thx, here goes nothing lol, let you know how it went, cheers” Michele 7/28/2019 12:42:31 am Do you need to use water conditioner in the second distillation or just the soda? trevor 7/28/2019 04:13:41 am i didnt bother with conditioner on second run, all went fine, that was with tpw yes? Duck 7/28/2019 08:14:28 am You dont need it on the second run Jade 7/28/2019 04:04:38 am I’m doing a gin in the t500. I’m wondering if I can add my botanicals in the 2nd distillation run? If I do this, should I filter before the 2nd run or still filter after? Thanks!!! Duck 7/28/2019 08:15:46 am Have a look at our section on gin. http://www.duckdistilling.com.au/blogpost/making-gin You want to soak the botanicals in 95% and then cut down chris 4/21/2020 05:50:02 pm what if you did add sodium carbonate to your wash for your first distillation. What will happen??. Craig 5/14/2020 03:25:42 am Im guessing you can tell us.😁 Duck Distilling 5/14/2020 05:04:46 am You’ll release ammonia from your wash and turn your spirit blue making it toxic Dean 5/23/2020 03:20:47 pm Hi Duck Distilling, just wanting to know a couple of things, 1: is it ok to firsr dissolve the sodium carbonate in the water that is added to the high proof? 2: Is it ok to let the sodium carbonate and alcohol mixture sit in the boiler overnight? 3: Do I need to add ceramic saddles in the boiler when doing the final run. Sorry for all the questions and thanks in advance. Duck Distilling 5/23/2020 05:49:09 pm And the saddles are good too but not as necessary as when distilling from wash so if you forget it’s no bother Dean 5/23/2020 07:23:26 pm Hi Duck Distilling thanks for the fast reply but it looks like half of the reply is missing? Dean 5/29/2020 02:26:19 am Hi duck distilling, not sure if you seen my last reply but it looks like half of your response to my original questions was missing? Would love to hear your feedback on the other unanswered questions. Thanks again for your help. Duck Distilling 5/29/2020 03:29:12 am Hi mate, sorry I wrote two replies but only one came through.1. Totally fine to dissolve sodium carbonate in water first. Or you can just chuck it straight in the boiler.2. You can let the alcohol and sodium carbonate sit together as long as you like.3. Without saddles is fine on a spirit run, very hard to puke. No harm adding them though Hi Just got my ducks burbon in the mail, My tpw is now ready to distill. I am using the Air Spirits still. Their instructions is to distill wash to 700 mi of spirit and then and 300 ml to bring it to 40 % finished product before filtering. Question is, as i want to do your double distillation do i put the above 1 litre @ 40 % back in for the second run with soda and discarding first 50 – 100 mill, Or do i top up the 700ml of spirit from the fist run to the 4ltr mark on the still with water then run the second distillation ? regards Rob Duck 6/8/2020 02:27:20 am Diluting to 40 % and then redistilling is best practice. As you’ll have lots of room in the airstill you should do 2-3 runs from the wash, dilute to 40% and then run again. With a 10% tpw wash you’ll do 3 strips, add spirit to boiler and dilute then do a single slow spirit run Natalie Newman 6/10/2020 05:36:04 am OK. COOL I have about 6 l of 40% filtered S@^&*, once filtered still nasty, do I put 4 l of this stuff back in my 4 l turbo still with washing soda and run the whole lot through, ditch the first 100 ml and still all the rest still it stops, or should there be any “tails” if it’s all 40% spirit So much help, but so hard to follow for a dummie Duck Distilling 6/10/2020 05:58:00 am Yes. Stick the 40% back in your still with sodium carbonate and redistill. Take cuts and then keep your hearts. If the 40% you put into the boiler is only hearts from previous run then you only need to take a small heads cut and the rest should be hearts. Natalie 6/11/2020 06:34:15 pm Sorry, but in a second run (spirit run) I still don’t get it as to how much of a 4 l spirit run do I keep after the 100 ml foreshot waste. Should there be any left in the air still, or should I only collect a certain amount and ditch the stuff remaining. I have read somewhere that the remaining stuff can be put back in a wash ? ? ? BUT I really need to know how much to save, and how much to leave. I’ve just pulled out the first 100 ml of rocket fuel, but the next 250 ml tastes like metho.I’ll keep stilling it, but should I still it again (3rd time) or just filter it again? I have a fuselex filter with 5 times washed activated carbon. I’m using sodium carbonate, conditioner and saddles, I want to get it right ! ! ! Help please 🙂 Cheers,Nat John 4/10/2021 11:05:03 pm https://i.imgur.com/1MM0IOo.jpg Check this put it tells you exactly what to do for ya Air Still. Duck Distilling 6/11/2020 07:08:26 pm Please send me an email through our contact form. I’m not 100% sure what you’re doing so shoot me an email and we’ll get it sorted James 6/21/2020 02:14:37 pm Do you have to run in reflux on the second run? Or can you run in pot still mode? Duck Distilling 6/21/2020 06:46:31 pm It’s actually better to use the pot still on the strip run and use the reflux on the second run. It’s a lot quicker getting the booze off a wash with a pot still. baden barry 7/1/2020 04:09:30 pm thanks for the info i will give the 2nd run a go thanks again for the help Rohan Anstey 9/8/2020 07:38:08 pm Hi, I’m using a non commercial still. It is a an beer keg with condensor that attaches to that. It uses a hot water element to heat the wash. Because of the volume required to cover the element, am I best to add my dilute first wash back into still with the remnants of the first wash or? the other option I can think of is to empty enough out that I’m not wasting time/energy but also not running the element dry. Sorry I know this is a little left of centre. Thanks I’m assuming the element is low as possible on the keg? What most people do is collect multiple strip runs before doing a spirit run. Usually 3xstrip runs is enough for 1 spirit run. Because your strippings are 40% there will be plenty of liquid covering the elements. If you’re doing turbo wash you’ll only need to collect 2xstrips before doing spirit run because if the slightly higher yield Shane 9/18/2020 07:20:13 am Hi I have a non commercial still and have tried re-stilling a few times without success, losing volume and percentage after starting with 5 -7 liters @94%, I have use the leftover water for the next wash, Thanks for the useful posts and information, I will have another go hopefully being more successful 👍 Dave 10/5/2020 02:13:16 pm Hi there, was just wondering for the second run, do you top it back up to 20 litres with water or just run the 45% on its own? Shane 10/6/2020 02:25:40 am I am not sure of the percentage it was 7 liters @ 94% and 40 liters of water, I will try again @ 40 % alcohol and see how that goes Jason 10/17/2020 07:06:24 pm Hi its my first time double distilling is normal for the spirit to be coming out hot camille 10/17/2020 07:22:42 pm Yes it can be, what kind of still are you using? And what was your process? Jason 10/17/2020 07:38:11 pm Im using a t500. I have done the same process as in comments. Diluted to 45% added sodium carbonate. sean 11/9/2020 06:21:37 pm what the difference between diluted to 45% and just filling the still back to the top with water for the spirit run with sodium carbonate. camille 11/9/2020 08:25:29 pm I usually say 40% because above 50% is dangerous and gives a bit of leeway. You can dilute to 40% (or 45%) and use sodium carbonate. Alternatively you can just fill the still up with water, even if it’s 20% it will work. The difference is you’ll spend more money on heating your still up if you just fill it to the brim. The main concern is not boiling the elements or the bottom of your still dry sean 11/9/2020 08:56:41 pm thanks sean 11/10/2020 01:11:07 am So if I burn off two 25 litre washers and put that back in my still in top it up to 25 litre of water would I add it 2 and a 1/2 tablespoons of sodium bicarbonate sean 11/10/2020 01:12:56 am Sorry sodium carbonate Camille 11/10/2020 02:03:29 am Yep that’s fine sean 12/6/2020 07:55:03 pm thanks Camille. Just did first burn off with sodium carbonate and the quality is amazing. best stuff ever. thanks again. Hi I’m about second distil two 25L TPW on a second run together. Do you discard more than the 150ml at the start because you are doing double? sean 11/21/2020 01:08:49 am when i do spirit run with two 25l washes do i just take 100ml out or do i double it. Ger Caff 11/25/2020 11:16:52 am Hi, I am new to the process as well. I done a spirit run of 18L and have approx.700ml of 90%. I will dilute this down to 40% which will give me about 1.5L. The still can hold 24L. Is there a probably or risk distilling 1.5L in such a big still? Thanks in advance, Scott Yaxley 12/17/2020 12:01:14 am Hi, New to this Air-Still business and have similar questions to Natalie. I’ve done my first stripping run through the Still Spirits Air Still, based on a 10l wash. From the first two 4l wash runs, I discarded the first 50ml of Foreshots from each, then collected the next 700ml – it came out about 55%, then 50% ABV. I’ve diluted both runs to 40%, filtered through the carbon filter and have about 2litres. I’m keen to do a Spirit Run to get a palatable neutral spirit to make lemoncello (from lemons). So my plan is to put the 2l of 40% in the Air Still, and dilute with water to the 4l mark (this would be 20% right??). I am planning to discard another 50ml of foreshots (to be safe), maybe take another 150ml as Heads, then collect about 1l which I am assuming will be hearts. I’ll probably let it run and collect as much tail as I can, testing occassionally. I did collect abut a further 100ml of tails (~30%) from the remainder of the initial stripping runs, and I was planning to dump this and the Spirit run Heads and Tails in a feints jar until I have enough to do a separate run. Can you see anything wrong with the above strategy, or am I overcomplicating it. I’m not confident in discerning the cuts at the moment, but have noticed the smell differences in the fractions collected so far. Any comments appreciated. Thanks. Neal Ivey 8/21/2022 06:58:24 pm Hi Scott. Did you get an answer to your question. I have the same question. Neil 3/11/2021 05:20:47 pm after reading about TPW and bicarb I’m keen to give them a go I’ve been learning the slow way, everything seems to add time cost and effort, but if the end product and found, double distilling did make a noticeable difference and running thru a carbon filter made a difference when making booze for Xmas presents I’d thought I’d show off and triple distil, I reckon most people could pick the difference over a double but it is only small, and while not necessary for regular drinking it can be a little fun again very keen to try the bi carb thanks to all for their comments, its a good way to learn and I don’t know anyone in Canberra that’s into the craft Cheers Neil quicksloth 12/27/2021 09:42:54 pm Hi Neil, i just did my first double distilled tpw last month and it made a MASSIVE difference from my single distilled version. people thought it was okay before, managed to have a cocktail party out of the double distilled stuff. now i never tried it without the bi carb but i believe it had made a big difference. at first i could taste almost a powdery taste but also a lot of the harshness and off flavours had disappeared. well worth it in my opinion. I also compress the heads by dropping temp for the first half hr after collecting fores. only got about 300-400ml heads (or less) out of a 2 wash 2nd distill Hi, I have a T500, I thought I would give double distilling a go without looking into it, which is what do I do 😂. I took the first 94% and put it back in the T 500. I didn’t put any water with it at all 😂. then I started reading all the comments on this page, I stopped it halfway And added the water, so I didn’t burn the bottom out 😆. So what do you reckon do you think it will still be okay or do I do it all over again but with the sodium bicarb and the 49% water, Thanks BD And the Duck Bourbon essence is unreal!! How much do you discard when doing spirit run with 2 or 3 washes together? Ethan Salmon 11/12/2021 05:56:49 pm hey just wondering i diluted spirit to roughly 20% as i was told but reading this you are saying 40% will this make a diference? quicksloth 12/27/2021 09:54:48 pm Hi Ethan, 20% is fine, but its just a waste of time, 30-40% is enough to run it without any problems. your just heating less water up Hi just wondering if I need to do cuts for a 35l wash of the birdwatchers recipe. Or do I just remove the first 100mls. Thankyou What a great site, thanks Duck Distilling. I am using the T500, I was given a tip the other day regarding clearing the wash. Once fermentation is complete leave it for an extra day so the sediment goes to the bottom of the barrel, drain the contents of the barrel into a clean second barrel leaving the sediment behind in the first barrel. Once degassed use the clear in the normal way, this makes a clearer wash for the still. This is a tip that I haven’t tried yet but having a wash in the barrel atm I will be putting it to the test in the next few day’s. Karl Quilter 12/10/2022 05:06:08 am Thanks I run the Turbo 500 still and ur site has been a big help as I turned the water of by accident halfway through distilling and the temperature raised too over 90 degrees Celsius I turned it off then started it again then I filtered it and did a 2nd wash my 1st ever 2nd wash and too be honest it’s the best tasting moonshine I have had. Jonathan Ritchie 3/9/2023 02:15:58 pm when you double distill with the Sodium Carbonate do you do it in the reflux still or the pot still? (I have a copperhead still) Thanks
Why is my wash not clearing?
Clearing A Wash We must say we are talking about a Sugar/Glucose Mix. If the wash fails to clear it is nearly always down to two things. It hasn’t been sufficiently degassed or the wash was still slightly fermenting when the finings was added. I know people will say we have done this for years in the same way and never had a problem so how could this happen.
The liquid wasn’t mixed properly at the start. We thought it had stopped fermenting as no bubbles were coming through the airlock (never take this as it’s finished always do two readings on your hydrometer a day apart with then being the same). As you can see there are quite a few factors in the equation and there are more.
It’s also a good gauge of whether it has finished fermenting. If when we are degassing, we are continually getting heavy bubbles on the liquid surface the chances are we are still fermenting. Firstly, we can leave the wash a bit longer to see if it clears.
So we can leave it a little longer it won’t hurt. The only thing we should be careful off is the fermenting container should have little headroom (space between the liquid and the lid of the container). It’s fine for 5 to 7days but much longer than this we run the risk of infection.
Some people will siphon the liquid of the worst of the sediment first but this isn’t necessary as the finings like the sediment the more present the easier it works (within reason). Again once added just let it do the work. The good news is that even if the wash is a bit grey (not black) we can still run it through the still and will come out clear so don’t get too worried.
Another option is to purchase a wine filter to take out the sediment. There are two types the Mini Jet Automatic filter and the Harris Vinbrite Filter. : Clearing A Wash
Can you clean with 40% alcohol?
Can I use liquor to clean my house? – Let’s cut right to the chase: No, The kinds of liquors that you use to create your favorite cocktails are not concentrated enough to actually disinfect surfaces and effectively remove germs and bacteria. Most commercial forms of vodka, for example, contain alcohol concentrations that hover around 40%, Home Care & Cleaning Lab Executive Director Carolyn Forté brings more than 40 years of experience as a consumer products expert to her role as executive director of the Good Housekeeping Institute ‘s Home Care and Cleaning Lab. Using deep analytical testing and writing expertise in appliances, cleaning, textiles and organizational products, she produces cleaning and home care advice for GH, has authored numerous books and bookazines for the brand and partners with the American Cleaning Institute to co-produce the Discover Cleaning Summits. Health Editor Zee Krstic is a health editor for Good Housekeeping, where he covers health and nutrition news, decodes diet and fitness trends and reviews the best products in the wellness aisle. Prior to joining GH in 2019, Zee fostered a nutrition background as an editor at Cooking Light and is continually developing his grasp of holistic health through collaboration with leading academic experts and clinical care providers.
How much of distillation is heads?
Distilling Hearts & Tails – Foreshots NOTE: You should only use this alcohol as fuel or cleaner. Do not consume this part of your run! The first 5% or so of your run will consist of the fore shots. This 5% contains methanol. Generally, as a standard practice, you would throw out the first 250 ml per 20 liters as this part of your run will consist of these fore shots.
Again, DO NOT consume these because they are toxic and will poison you and/or make you blind. Heads Next, comes the part of the distillate known as the heads. The heads make up 30% percent of your alcohol run. As mentioned above, you will find lots of different volatile alcohols in the heads of your run.
NOTE: A great way of isolating both the fore shots and heads in your run is to bring your still to around 75 °C and keep it there for around 10 minutes. The alcohol produced during this duration will consist of only fore shots and heads. Once the condenser stops producing at 75 °C, you’ll know that you’ve collected all of the more volatile alcohols that make up the fore shots and heads of the run.
Hearts The next 30% of your run will be the sweet spot of your alcohol run, known as the hearts. You’ll want to raise the temperature of your still to 80 °C to 82 °C range to start collecting this portion of your distillate. As you get into the hearts portion of your run, you should notice that the solvent smell of acetone tapers off and is replaced with a sweet-smelling ethanol alcohol.
This is where practice makes perfect. In order to maximize high-quality hearts, you’ll need to focus. You should be able to recognize the hearts by their sweet and neutral flavor. Taste just a bit of the distillate on your finger. The main giveaway is the sweet/smooth taste of ethanol.
You’ll see an oily film start to collect on the top of the distillate and be able to smell/taste a burnt type of flavor. The tails contain protein and carbohydrates from the wash that you don’t want in your final product. Be sure to keep your tails because you can run them again as their own wash in the future to pull out a bit more useful product.
Do you have to throw out heads on second distillation?
Heads – When distilling, you should separate, or cut, the heads, hearts, and tails. The head of the distillate is the first portion of the run. You can recognise it by its smell. It has an unpleasant smell like nail polish or methylated spirits. You throw away the heads or you can keep it to use as a fire starter for your BBQ.
What to do with heads and tails when distilling?
The heads and tails, known as ‘feints,’ can be discarded, but because the feints still contain some of that sought-after ethanol, they are sometimes recycled into a new batch of fermentation mash and re-distilled.