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Hello from the UK

Hi Guys

Just thought I'd best introduce myself, I've been distilling about a year, I mainly make neutral from various well known sugar wash recipes and I've been running an SD 2-4-2 torpedo on my 2" VM/LM hybrid, but I've only just put both feet into the SD world so to speak, as I've just ordered a 3 plate baby crystal dragon section, a 510mm section for packing and a dephlagmator, so this will be new territory for me, using 4 plates and CM control.

My still will be in every sense a hybrid once my new bits from @SDeurope arrive, I have a 50lt boiler with upto 3kw power, the column I'm going to setup will be a little unusual, I will have the 3 plate baby dragon on top of my torpedo to give me 4 plates, then I'll have the 510mm packed section under the dephlagmator, sounds normal so far!

Here's how I'm planing the product takeoff, I will still keep my LM/VM sections I currently use, they already have 2" tri-clamp ferrels so will fit perfectly with the new bits, I'm going to mount my VM takeoff above the dephlagmator, the take off arm is 1" with a 1" ball valve, so minimum 4:1 VM ratio, on top of this will be my Boka section, with a double wound cooling coil, slant plates and LM takeoff.

My plan for running it is to have the reflux cooling water going trough the boka coil before then going through the dephlagmator, I should easily get 100% reflux, and as my VM and LM takeoff is between the two condensers, I want to be able to adjust the cooling to set 78°c at the takeoffs, if I can hold it there, I'm hoping it will remove fores/heads only, I will collect them on the LM output and there will be some sign when there nearly finished, like a drop in collection rate, then switch to the VM output, decrease the cooling to collect the hearts, maybe I'm being too ambitious here, I've never run a dephlagmator or any type of CM control before, any ideas if you think it'll work?

It would be a nice way to compress/remove heads if it works.


  • Welcome @Anavrin, there is no doubt you will like it here in our midst. Your endeavor looks very interesting, please don't forget to post a lot of pictures as you progress. :)

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  • Welcome Anavrin.

    StillDragon North America - Your StillDragon® Distributor for North America

  • Fancy seeing you here....pull up a chair it's your round. ;)

    Of all the beautiful things in the world, only man can invent boredom

    Drinking rum before 11am doesn't make you an alcoholic, it makes you a Pirate

  • Indeed, nice having your here, @Anavrin & @Icefever. This place is more than just about StillDragon products, our rapidly growing global community is a very helpful and friendly place with a lot of really talented distillers participating. :)

    StillDragon Europe - Your StillDragon® Distributor for Europe & the surrounding area

  • @SDeurope said: with a lot of really talented distillers participating. :)

    I'll 2nd that...just had a very good read by Myles on thumpers....made me look at them from a different point of view..

    Of all the beautiful things in the world, only man can invent boredom

    Drinking rum before 11am doesn't make you an alcoholic, it makes you a Pirate

  • edited February 2015

    I love my SD rig but honestly I would come here regardless the community is great and very helpful and they don't care what you are running.

    I have run a LM/VM still for many years and I would say the heads compression of the LM and easy of hearts run and tails shut down of the VM is something of beauty. I am by no means an expert but I would think with an LM take off its overkill, one of the key weakness of the VM on its own is it tended to smear the heads and having LM solved this. I guess when your new SD toys arrive you will be able to answer it for us!

  • Thanks for the positive welcome everyone, I've got a few wash's on the go and can't wait to get playing with my new toy :-) I've got plans to make brandy, port and rum, however I've tested one of the Irish cream essences out on my fair lady and its looking like I'm gonna need a lot more neutral sugar wash to keep her supplied, I tried the Punkin's muck recipe with the raw eggs a few weeks ago, it was ok, it actually got better after a few days, although a little extra chocolate sauce got added each day :-) However I have to say I've found an amazing quick Irish cream, it uses an essence but I ignore the recipe on the bottle as I've tweeked it a little, just in case anyone interested, it makes 1litre at just over 20% and won't last long!

    Take a 1litre jug Add 200gr sugar 300ml fresh single cream Add a bottle of Prestige Irish Cream Essence Then start stiring as you top up to 1 litre with 40% neutral

    It's better than any real Irish cream I've ever bought!

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