Welcome to the new Moonshine Distiller Blog

Hello and welcome to the new Moonshine Distiller Blog! First things first, we are really trying to get our social media presence going, so please follow us! The links are to the right —>

So, we have had a lot of feedback from customers that they would love to see some recipes and more instructional information available on our website, so we decided to make that happen! Over the coming months, we will be posting all of our favorite recipes, putting together some instructional posts, and launching our new “Distilling Instructionals” web series.

Unfortunately, putting together all this information for you is going to take time, so please be patient with us as we work hard to get everything put together. If you have anything that you would like to see or that you think would be useful, please let us know!.

19 thoughts on “Welcome to the new Moonshine Distiller Blog

  1. Some very nice looking stuff!
    It would be cool if you sold (and listed on your site) individual components for your flutes like say bubble plates, 4×3 window tee’s, replacement glass windows, dephlegs, product condensers etc.
    Also perhaps you might consider showing the actual plates?

    Thanks
    K

    1. Kurt, thanks for the kind words! We will actually be listing a variety of individual parts in the beginning of January, but we are trying to decide how best to list those without making the site really confusing for beginners who are not in need of that stuff.

      As for the individual plates, I will certainly add that to my to-do list. Should be easy enough!

  2. Got my still for Christmas and I am very excited to start. I had a few questions about setting it up. where does the screen go? Do I run a hose to the condensers or can I get a pump and recycle the water used? Should Teflon tape be used on the thermometer when screwing it in? I got the 8 gallon setup does that mean I should fill the whole thing or only so much?

    1. Thanks for stopping by our new blog! Here are some answers to the questions you had:

      1. The perforated plate can go either at the bottom (held in place by the three prongs inside the still tower) or you can use the prongs to hold up the copper mesh (and the copper mesh will then hold up the raschig rings) and you can then place the perforated plate on top of the packing to help evenly distribute the reflux on its way down the column.
      2. You can run a continuous flow through the condensers (in at the bottom of the long skinny condenser –> out of the top of the long skinny condenser –> in to the bottom of the reflux condeser –> out of the top of the reflux condenser) or you can recirculate water as well. Just be aware that if you recirculate water, it will warm up over the course of the run so you will have to adjust your heat source accordingly.
      3. The thermometer goes into a thermowell, which is completely sealed so no teflon tape is necessary.
      4. I would not recommend filling it with more than about 6.5 gallons. You will need a little extra head space in there once the liquid starts boiling.

    2. the best way we came up with on the condensor arm cooling was a small pond pump attached to about 2 feet of hose, or enough hose so your pump will sit on the bottom of a 5 gal bucket, us the same amount on the uphill side (outlet), we fill the bucket with about 2 gals of water, and the rest is ice

  3. I am interested in adding a thumper to my 13 gal milk jug, my question in adding the thumper is, when i come from the top of the boiler and over to the thump, does that piping absolutely have to be copper? I am welder, so i am considering stainless, as i am very good at tig welding so its in my comfort zone, my thoughts are…stainless from boiler to thump, then copper from thump out to condensor..or worm, any help is greatly appreciated

    1. To be honest, copper in the thumper doesn’t really matter all that much (assuming you have some copper mesh for packing). The copper is just to help remove the sulfides, so as long as you have copper mesh in your column, that should take care of it. If you have the capabilities, I would certainly go with stainless as it is less expensive, more durable, and easier to clean. We will actually have some 3 gallon thumpers available in a couple weeks, if you decide not to make your own.

  4. So I bought the water heater heating element with all the works, any tutorials or instructions on how to put it all together?

  5. My new 8 gal still arrived today and survived the trip well. I was hoping for some literature inside, as I am brand new to this. I’ve heard that I should run a mix of vinegar and water through to clean things before using. What kind of ratio should I be using?
    I’ve also heard that I should distil a batch of wine through to season(?) it, not for consumption. Is this true, should it be a full boiler, or will a couple of gallons do?
    If I don’t use the tower section of the still, should I still put the copper mesh in the top.
    I’d like to try some rum. Should the wash be stirred, shook, or just left alone while fermenting.
    Thanks for the help, I’m anxious to get started.

    1. I typically recommend a 50/50 ratio of vinegar to water for the cleaning run. I have never heard of distilling a batch of wine to season the still, but I am sure it can’t hurt!

      As far as packing the tower goes, you always want some copper mesh in there. This will help remove the sulfides and give you a much cleaner product.

      For the fermentation, the wash should just be left alone. Make sure it is well mixed before you start fermenting it and then just let it sit until it stops bubbling.

  6. oops make that one gallon of water to 1 gallon Vinegar

  7. Was interested in adding the thermowell to my 13 gallon unit but was curious as to the depth of the thing. You don’t give the length of the well. What thermometer can it accept? My unit is PLC Controlled so really want to add a thermocouple, but a thermometer will do for now. Bravo on your craftsmanship BTW.

  8. OK, I ran off my first batch of rum. The condenser is still spraying, but doesn’t seem to bother anything. I had a 6.5 gallon wash , initial SG 1.12 ending SD 1.08, and collected 8 pints starting at 70% down to 41%. The temp seemed to go high quite fast. Once the temp hit 80C, I backed the burner down, but the temp kept climbing. Collected foreshots at 90C, and most of the run at 92C. The first 2 pints, 70% & 65% are crystal clear, the rest are a little cloudy. They have set for over a week now, and still cloudy. Will a charcoal filter help this?

    1. It is completely normal for the tails to be a little cloudy. However, there are definitely a couple other things to note:
      1. I don’t think you wash finished fermenting. It should have fermented to much lower than 1.08…
      2. A charcoal filter will definitely help, but depending upon the amount of congeners you have in there, it may still not be drinkable. However, even if it is not, you can add it to the next batch and let it run through the still again.
      3. Most people will run a rum through the still 2 or 3 times.

  9. Very good blog you have here but I was wanting to know
    if you knew of any forums that cover the
    same topics talked about in this article? I’d really like to be a part of community where I can get feed-back from other experienced individuals that
    share the same interest. If you have any suggestions, please let me
    know. Thanks!

    1. There are a lot of blogs out there, but I think the biggest one would probably be homedistiller.org. Another that I have browsed occasionally is nanodistiller.org.

    2. TYVM you’ve solved all my problems

  10. Bought a new 8 gallon duel purpose still March 6th 2015, Was using a regular pot still up till then. I brew mostly whiskeys, I go for flavor over proof.
    I added on a few extra items like a sight glass and a parrot just to have the whole set up. My first run I did a little premature, the rye mash had not completely fermented but having a new toy I just had to play with it. I also should have done a better job of the first cleaning, Soon at the unit got up to temp I could smell the coolant that was used in the manufacturing process.
    The second run was much better, did a better job of cleaning.
    Also worth mentioning is that I bought a 1500 watt heater that went in the tank and WOW ! WHAT A DIFFERENCE. The shine came out perfectly clear! No off taste.
    Ran 1 gallon in about 2 hours after getting it up to temp. This still does it all. I may get the 13 gallon boiler and another heater. This still is awesome !!!

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