MacBoka users

High performance modular SS304 plated columns and accessories.

Re: MacBoka users

Postby xcvator » Fri Aug 28, 2015 3:33 pm

I know this is pathetic, :ymsigh: but I haven't been so excited since I had to give up viagra :twisted: :twisted:
xcvator
 
Posts: 172
Joined: Fri Aug 21, 2015 12:51 pm
Location: Mornington Peninsula
equipment: 2" MacBoka
2" Copper Pot still Head
50 Litre keg on a 16000 watt 4 ring gas burner

Re: MacBoka users

Postby xcvator » Tue Sep 01, 2015 8:40 pm

Fishboy wrote:Hey Hawkeye, I managed to increase the stripping rate pretty dramatically by just making a copper cap to the vapour pipe.

All I did was to flatten out a bit of 3/4" pipe that I split lengthways and annealed.
I just bent it up so that it sits supported by the edge of the vapour pipe and creates an angled cover that prevents condensed fluid falling straight back down the vapour pipe without having to sit in the collection area.

I reckon it improved output speed by a good 30%.

With the lieberg on it still kept output under 25 deg even at the improved rate.


For a complete noob that hasn't even got their MacBoka yet can somebody explain this, or better still illustrate it for me please :oops:
xcvator
 
Posts: 172
Joined: Fri Aug 21, 2015 12:51 pm
Location: Mornington Peninsula
equipment: 2" MacBoka
2" Copper Pot still Head
50 Litre keg on a 16000 watt 4 ring gas burner

Re: MacBoka users

Postby xcvator » Mon Sep 28, 2015 9:29 pm

Well I'm officially in the MacBoka owners group now :-D
The 1st cleaning run should start at about 0900 est tomorrow and the 1st actual spirit run ( 45 litres of tpw )hopefully start about 1300 est and finished at drunk o'clock :)) :))
xcvator
 
Posts: 172
Joined: Fri Aug 21, 2015 12:51 pm
Location: Mornington Peninsula
equipment: 2" MacBoka
2" Copper Pot still Head
50 Litre keg on a 16000 watt 4 ring gas burner

Re: MacBoka users

Postby WalterWhite » Mon Sep 28, 2015 9:36 pm

I'll be doing a spirit run at some point tomorrow so hopefully we can hook up on chat and see how it's going :)
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Location: South Australia - on the Fleurieu
equipment: 35L Digiboil with power control, 2” copper pot combo with optional extended column.

Re: MacBoka users

Postby xcvator » Wed Sep 30, 2015 9:03 pm

Well I'm not sure atm just where I fucked up :angry-banghead: but I obviously did, copious amounts of 78 % abv :scared-eek: wtf

Did the vinegar run, chucked in 10 litres of tpw for sacrificial run and chucked all that out, emptied the boiler and washed it out. Filled the boiler with 40 litres of tpw and lost the next 1.5 hours of my life ( insulate the boiler next time dumbo ) had take of valve closed, when temp finally stated to rise I turned the water on and left it for 10 minutes at 78c then opened the t/o valve, ran off 600 ml of foreshots, closed the t/o valve for 10 minutes for refluxing then ran off 2x 500 ml jars, then got cheeky and ran into a 2 litre flagon then back to 500ml jars, gradually reducing the amount in each jar until the flow slowed to almost nothing but a few drops at jar 13 then shut down.

So today I did the smell test :o 1st jar :puke-huge: 2nd jar = .5 :puke-huge:, flagon = :smile: jars 4,5,6,7,8,9 :-D jars 10 and 11 = .5 :puke-huge: , 12 and 13 :puke-huge:

So 1,2 10,11,12 & 13 went into feints jar

Now the questions :oops:
Do I control the abv by water or t/o speed ( I suspect the later ) ?
I made up several different drinks with essences ( yeah I'm on training wheels so go easy on me) when testing these for safety reasons ;-) I found a very slight taste of acetone at the finish but after leaving for a few hours and more safety testing, that seems to have disappeared , is this normal ?

Over all I'm pretty happy with the results :o the essence whisky with the addition of a bit of glycerol is as good or better than "Vat 69" or "Black Douglas" but a long way from my ultimate target of "Glenmorangie"and the "Scotch Heather" that got me interested in home distilling in the 1st place is pretty bloody good :handgestures-thumbupleft:

so there you go, my 1st day distilling and tasting my own booze 8-}
xcvator
 
Posts: 172
Joined: Fri Aug 21, 2015 12:51 pm
Location: Mornington Peninsula
equipment: 2" MacBoka
2" Copper Pot still Head
50 Litre keg on a 16000 watt 4 ring gas burner

Re: MacBoka users

Postby WalterWhite » Wed Sep 30, 2015 9:12 pm

Well mate any start is a good start! You have turned tomato paste, water and sugar in to a spirit that you are comfortable drinking!! Celebrate that.
I think the best way to see a huge improvement next time is by stripping and doing a spirit run.
If I can get 95% out of my cheap I Keggo you can get top quality Azeo out of a Mac Boka!!! Seriously consider doing a few strip runs and saving up some low wines .... The effort will pay dividends! And in the meantime enjoy drinking what you have :handgestures-thumbupleft:
WalterWhite
 
Posts: 527
Joined: Sun Aug 16, 2015 12:34 pm
Location: South Australia - on the Fleurieu
equipment: 35L Digiboil with power control, 2” copper pot combo with optional extended column.

Re: MacBoka users

Postby Adam007 » Thu Oct 01, 2015 8:06 am

Does it come from Mac with copper mesh packing installed?
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Location: North QLD
equipment: 2" Boka
2" Pot
50L Keg Boiler 2400W

Re: MacBoka users

Postby tipsy » Thu Oct 01, 2015 8:14 am

xcvator wrote:Do I control the abv by water or t/o speed ( I suspect the later ) ?


Take off speed, I used to run my LM as fast as possible without the temperature rising.
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Location: South Gippsland, VIC.
equipment: 4" Mac 4 with packed section and gin basket on a 50lt boiler with 2 2400w FSD elements.

Re: MacBoka users

Postby WTDist » Thu Oct 01, 2015 9:59 am

tipsy wrote:
xcvator wrote:Do I control the abv by water or t/o speed ( I suspect the later ) ?


Take off speed, I used to run my LM as fast as possible without the temperature rising.

is this the same of ABV? run as fast as you can as long as it stays at 95.6% wondering how to tell how fast i can push my 2". it can get azeo on a single run (1.5m packing) so im thinking maybe i could go faster on low wines? is this the idea?
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equipment: Building a 4" bubbler with 8" glass thumper

Re: MacBoka users

Postby xcvator » Thu Oct 01, 2015 11:02 am

Adam007 wrote:Does it come from Mac with copper mesh packing installed?


Yes, but you have to take it out and clean it and the roll it up and push it back in, very easy to do
xcvator
 
Posts: 172
Joined: Fri Aug 21, 2015 12:51 pm
Location: Mornington Peninsula
equipment: 2" MacBoka
2" Copper Pot still Head
50 Litre keg on a 16000 watt 4 ring gas burner

Re: MacBoka users

Postby tipsy » Thu Oct 01, 2015 1:38 pm

WTDist wrote:
tipsy wrote:
xcvator wrote:Do I control the abv by water or t/o speed ( I suspect the later ) ?


Take off speed, I used to run my LM as fast as possible without the temperature rising.

is this the same of ABV? run as fast as you can as long as it stays at 95.6% wondering how to tell how fast i can push my 2". it can get azeo on a single run (1.5m packing) so im thinking maybe i could go faster on low wines? is this the idea?


For my old LM Nixon stone it was. It used to sit at 78° and come out azeo, if I opened it up too much the temperature would rise and the alc% would drop.
Disclaimer: This still was a very slow still, if I recall correctly the fastest I could run it was very fast dripping never a stream like the larger diameter stills and everytime I tried to speed it up it had a long lag time so I used to overshoot a fair bit.
tipsy
 
Posts: 863
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Location: South Gippsland, VIC.
equipment: 4" Mac 4 with packed section and gin basket on a 50lt boiler with 2 2400w FSD elements.

Re: MacBoka users

Postby WTDist » Thu Oct 01, 2015 2:24 pm

cool. mine has about 5 to 10 second delay in controls but still needs a power controller. Once i get the controller ill see what i can do in speeds with azeo
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Re: MacBoka users

Postby xcvator » Thu Oct 08, 2015 5:18 pm

Well today I did my 2nd ever run with another 50 litres of TPW :D OMG , what a long day, fired up the burner at 9:30am and finished at 5:30 pm, the keg was showing 17c at the start so took 2.5 hours to get to temp even with a layer of insulation around it, booring :cry:

Refluxed for 1 hour then ran off 400ml of fore shots, refluxed again for 30 minutes, cracked the valve open till it settled at 77.8c and just let it run, just changing jars until about 4pm when the temps started to rise, refluxed again for a few minutes and the temp dropped back and away we went again, I just let it run then into 1 jar until the temp hit 85c and the flow was down to a dribble.
Did a clean by opening the valve wide open letting the water run into a bucket for 10 minutes then turned off the cooling water and just let steam blast through the whole set up for 10 minutes. :smile:
I did 3 alchometer readings, all were almost identical , 93% @ 19c :dance: much better than the 1st try ;-) finished up with 14 x 400ml jars
cheers Keith
xcvator
 
Posts: 172
Joined: Fri Aug 21, 2015 12:51 pm
Location: Mornington Peninsula
equipment: 2" MacBoka
2" Copper Pot still Head
50 Litre keg on a 16000 watt 4 ring gas burner

Re: MacBoka users

Postby Hawkeye » Sat Oct 17, 2015 6:34 pm

So far my best results have been strip first, but not too fast, and then really slow spirit runs. The slower the better.
More TPW sitting in kegs, will probably do some runs next weekend...

I really like the MacBoka, it's a great little unit and so easy to use. I need to get bigger kegs and a bigger boiler with some sort of insulation, that's where I can see making some time savings for me at the moment.

I've made around 10L of good quality neutral now, working from $40 for a 700mL of Smirnoff black ( and I think mine is better than Smirnoff Black) it's just shy of $600.... So another one or two runs and the still has paid for itself.
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Posts: 84
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equipment: 2" MacBoka on a 30L boiler.

Re: MacBoka users

Postby Hawkeye » Tue Dec 15, 2015 1:21 pm

Today got an unexpected day off (isn't your boss meant to let you know before the night before you have a day off so that you can plan stuff? Maggot woman...) so I am running through a batch of home brew stout that went bad.
Probably not much alcohol in it but thought I'd give it a try.

Have pulled out the copper packing and column is about half full with loosely packed stainless steel scrubbies. Going to run at a fast strip at about 1L an hour, if I go much over that the distillate comes out too hot...

Will have to see how goes, i have no chips so not going to age it on wood. I assume I still do cuts, was thinking I'll just take the fores n tails off then mix the rest up n put it in a bottle n forget about it for awhile.

I think the still has officially paid for itself now in 5 spirit runs of TPW. So two strips and then a spirit run, getting around 3-4 L of drinking strength vodka each time, I think I've made nearly $1000 worth. It's a great hobby and I love making alcohol so it pays for itself in other ways too :)

Thanks Mac!
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equipment: 2" MacBoka on a 30L boiler.

Re: MacBoka users

Postby Bundaboy » Thu Jan 07, 2016 8:57 pm

As a proud new owner of a MacBoka, and having read all four pages of this thread, and even though I haven't got my elements mounted in my boiler yet, am I entitled to start asking stupid questions now? 8-}

Ha ha no need to answer that (unless you can't help yourselves ;-)).

I will spend the next day or so investigating the best way to fit the elements, I was hoping to use a step drill but apparently they won't handle the SS, I might buy a special hole saw, or may rough it out with a drill and use my die grinder to smooth it to size - a technique that works well enough but always seems such a hack to me.

I saw someone using a punch which would be a great way to do it, but costly especially as they wouldn't be generally available.

One interesting design question is where to position the elements. At this stage I am assuming that the main element (the one that will be on all the time) would be position as low as possible in the keg. The second "booster" element would then be mounted, say, 1 and a half times the element height above that (as the elements are longer than the radius of the keg). The main aim being to allow as much wash to boil off as possible before exposing the elements.

Anyway I suppose that is more of a "boiler" topic than a "MacBoka" topic but suffice it to say that's where I am in my own personal MacBoka adventure.

Cheers all.
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Location: Southern Highlands, NSW
equipment: MH-943/s water distiller
Some parts in the shed for something more "traditional", 2" MacBoka atop a 50L SS keg fitted with 2 x 2400W weldless elements (with guards).

Re: MacBoka users

Postby xcvator » Thu Jan 07, 2016 9:52 pm

A step drill will work ok,( $30-00 from the bgs ) you may have to drill a pilot hole, use lots of lubrication, like wd40 or rp7 and then grind out the hole a bit bigger :handgestures-thumbupleft:
xcvator
 
Posts: 172
Joined: Fri Aug 21, 2015 12:51 pm
Location: Mornington Peninsula
equipment: 2" MacBoka
2" Copper Pot still Head
50 Litre keg on a 16000 watt 4 ring gas burner

Re: MacBoka users

Postby Urrazeb » Thu Jan 07, 2016 10:39 pm

xcvator wrote:Well I'm not sure atm just where I fucked up :angry-banghead: but I obviously did, copious amounts of 78 % abv :scared-eek: wtf

Did the vinegar run, chucked in 10 litres of tpw for sacrificial run and chucked all that out, emptied the boiler and washed it out. Filled the boiler with 40 litres of tpw and lost the next 1.5 hours of my life ( insulate the boiler next time dumbo ) had take of valve closed, when temp finally stated to rise I turned the water on and left it for 10 minutes at 78c then opened the t/o valve, ran off 600 ml of foreshots, closed the t/o valve for 10 minutes for refluxing then ran off 2x 500 ml jars, then got cheeky and ran into a 2 litre flagon then back to 500ml jars, gradually reducing the amount in each jar until the flow slowed to almost nothing but a few drops at jar 13 then shut down.

So today I did the smell test :o 1st jar :puke-huge: 2nd jar = .5 :puke-huge:, flagon = :smile: jars 4,5,6,7,8,9 :-D jars 10 and 11 = .5 :puke-huge: , 12 and 13 :puke-huge:

So 1,2 10,11,12 & 13 went into feints jar

Now the questions :oops:
Do I control the abv by water or t/o speed ( I suspect the later ) ?
I made up several different drinks with essences ( yeah I'm on training wheels so go easy on me) when testing these for safety reasons ;-) I found a very slight taste of acetone at the finish but after leaving for a few hours and more safety testing, that seems to have disappeared , is this normal ?

Over all I'm pretty happy with the results :o the essence whisky with the addition of a bit of glycerol is as good or better than "Vat 69" or "Black Douglas" but a long way from my ultimate target of "Glenmorangie"and the "Scotch Heather" that got me interested in home distilling in the 1st place is pretty bloody good :handgestures-thumbupleft:

so there you go, my 1st day distilling and tasting my own booze 8-}


Couple of points...

1. You should always run low wines through the Boka, anything else you cant call decent.

2. Always control by take off rate & ABV

3. You mention training wheels? Take cuts then, there is no substitute for a trained nose in this hobby. 2L flagon is gonna fuck your run. 200ml max until you get the hang of things. Bokas cut very sharply and you need to be aware of where a fraction ends and another begins.

4. Turn water on before heat - no matter what

5. If you're take off is 78% then reflux it until it reaches at least 90, if it doesn't something is wrong

Good luck :romance-kisscheek:
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Re: MacBoka users

Postby WTDist » Thu Jan 07, 2016 10:57 pm

good info there. I colelct in 1L jars once im in hearts... but ive been at this for a while now and know when im in it. the cross overs mark is always surrounded by a few 150ml jars so i dont overlap them into my 1L jars. once you find your sweat spot that the heads turns to heards you will collect easier. im nearly about to start collecting in 1l jars my self :handgestures-thumbupleft:
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equipment: Building a 4" bubbler with 8" glass thumper

Re: MacBoka users

Postby xcvator » Fri Jan 08, 2016 6:58 pm

Thanks for the comments Urrazeb, things have changed a bit since I put that post up, thank goodness :D I have found a sweet spot that I can run at 78.8c , now it's not azeo but I can run a wash at about 1.5 litres p/h @90%.
If I use "Vanessa" 1st then the Boka I can get 2.5 to 3 litres p/h @ 92% to 93%.
Also changing from a 2 ring burner to a 4 ring burner has been a game changer too, but the training wheels are still there and will be for a few years yet :roll:
xcvator
 
Posts: 172
Joined: Fri Aug 21, 2015 12:51 pm
Location: Mornington Peninsula
equipment: 2" MacBoka
2" Copper Pot still Head
50 Litre keg on a 16000 watt 4 ring gas burner

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