Still Spirits Air still

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Still Spirits Air still

Postby grant » Wed Jun 18, 2008 1:17 am

Hi All,

Anyone heard of these new little suckers? an air still

http://stillspirits.com/webfiles/StillS ... h_Data.pdf
http://stillspirits.com/webfiles/StillS ... _Notes.pdf

http://stillspirits.com/

Coming out @ 60% i'd imagine it would require a fair amount of filtering, but what about the taste?

Interested to hear if anyone has played with one as of yet.

Cheers
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Re: Still Spirits Air still

Postby Aidas » Wed Jun 18, 2008 1:48 am

It's just a repackaged EasyStill.

Do a search on the forum for Easystill, and you'll get all the info you need.

It's fine for potstilling (aside from the rubber seal and the plastic spout), but it will NOT make a neutral.

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Re: Still Spirits Air still

Postby grant » Wed Jun 18, 2008 2:05 am

Ah ok, had a quick search sums up what i thought it would do :shock:

I'll stick with my current setup
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Re: Still Spirits Air still

Postby Oaty » Tue Jul 29, 2008 2:04 am

Both PDFs just seemed like a sales brochure. The tech notes didn't say anything. From what it did say it could only be a toy pot still.Nothing that small is going to produce much anyway. I doubt you're going to get anywhere near 60% . It did warn to only use turbos. That's the loop-hole. If they say use turbos then they can presume a starting abv of 20+%. If using normal fermentation with abv of about 10% you'd only get a product of 30+% . However, you didn't follow the directions on the box. Seems a pressure cooker and $5 of copper tubing would accomplish the same thing.
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Re: Still Spirits Air still

Postby SuperDavid » Tue Jul 29, 2008 7:07 am

I bought one of these stills the other day to get started on distilling.(couldn't afford a "real" still setup or have the skills to make my own)
I'm completly new to distilling, so I thought I'd put through some cheap port that I've got sitting around just to see how it all works and see what the end product is like. The port was 17% and I put through 1lt and got back 250mls of 60%. I was surprised to see that it was spot on 60%abv as advertised.
I've got a sugar wash going at the moment I'm expecting that will finish at 14 or 15%.
so I'm expecting similar results as I distil my sugar wash.
Air stills don't seem to have a good rep on here.....but as a beginner it seems to be a cheap and effective way to make a start in this hobby.
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Re: Still Spirits Air still

Postby junkyard dawg » Tue Jul 29, 2008 8:30 am

but as a beginner it seems to be a cheap and effective way to make a start in this hobby.


seems like that doesn't it...

but its not. There are much better paths to take. Toy potstill at best. waste of time and money is more like it.
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Re: Still Spirits Air still

Postby SuperDavid » Tue Jul 29, 2008 12:47 pm

junkyard dawg wrote:
but as a beginner it seems to be a cheap and effective way to make a start in this hobby.


seems like that doesn't it...

but its not. There are much better paths to take. Toy potstill at best. waste of time and money is more like it.


thats a nice attitude you have there.
perhaps where you are stills are cheap? or maybe you have the skills required to make your own still.
but where I am you would be hard pressed to buy a still and the other things you need to set up for less than $600.
Since I don't have the know how to make my own still, buying something is the only way to go. I certainly wouldn't be spending a minimum of $600 to get set up in a hobby that I'm not that serious about yet.
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Re: Still Spirits Air still

Postby Tater » Tue Jul 29, 2008 1:16 pm

SuperDavid wrote:
junkyard dawg wrote:
but as a beginner it seems to be a cheap and effective way to make a start in this hobby.


seems like that doesn't it...

but its not. There are much better paths to take. Toy potstill at best. waste of time and money is more like it.


thats a nice attitude you have there.
perhaps where you are stills are cheap? or maybe you have the skills required to make your own still.
but where I am you would be hard pressed to buy a still and the other things you need to set up for less than $600.
Since I don't have the know how to make my own still, buying something is the only way to go. I certainly wouldn't be spending a minimum of $600 to get set up in a hobby that I'm not that serious about yet.

Its not attitude its fact . But hell do as you please you asked and got an answer.If you live in a place that doesn't have cheep ss stock pots and its above your ability's to read how its done or drill a hole or get 1 drilled for you then maybe this hobby isn't for you.This is one of those hobbies ya get out what you put into it if ya know what I mean. On the other hand if your willing to spend some time researching a bit you'll find things ain't as hard or complicated as you think.And thats theres several items that are available to you in your area that will work as a still.With several on this site just waiting for the chance to help ya through it.
PLEASE READ THIS FORUMS RULES AND THESES Links: http://homedistiller.org and New Distiller Reading Lounge I use a pot still
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Re: Still Spirits Air still

Postby Fourway » Tue Jul 29, 2008 1:47 pm

SuperDavid wrote:
junkyard dawg wrote:
SuperDavid wrote:but as a beginner it seems to be a cheap and effective way to make a start in this hobby.


seems like that doesn't it...

but its not. There are much better paths to take. Toy potstill at best. waste of time and money is more like it.


thats a nice attitude you have there...
Since I don't have the know how to make my own still, buying something is the only way to go.


This website is filled with "know how" and the practical advice you need to obtain some of the knowing of the how for yourself.

Nobody starts out with know how, it's something you get through the process of learning.
Luckily, what you need to learn to build a simple starter still is so simple you could do it in 30 or 40 minutes.

Buying overpriced under-built garbage like the e-z still is not an alternative to learning how to make a proper rig.

"I don't know how so I can't" isn't the sort of approach that will take you far in any hobby, but especially not this one.
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Re: Still Spirits Air still

Postby manu de hanoi » Tue Jul 29, 2008 7:32 pm

I dont know how expensive the still "super david" is selling, but I kind of agree that for the first still, before you are even "into" the hobby, a quick solution is ok.

My first still was *ahem*, an aluminium sauce pan with a lid, a hole in the lid, and a u shaped piece of stainless plugged into it. The results were awful to my friends but I found my booze delicious from day one !
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Re: Still Spirits Air still

Postby Dnderhead » Tue Jul 29, 2008 7:47 pm

Had to laugh! Manu I started out with a coffee can ,I was about 10? made stuff that was good for killing grasshoppers.
thought I was making the wolds best stuff! (it would evaporate on your tongue before you could swallow maybe good thing )
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Re: Still Spirits Air still

Postby blanikdog » Tue Jul 29, 2008 7:56 pm

Building a still is not difficult, David and you gain the benefit of knowing that the product you make is all your own work. Plus, by the time you have made it you are half way to asking serious questions and more importantly, get good answers. There is more than enough information on this site to build your FIRST pot still. Go for it!

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Re: Still Spirits Air still

Postby junkyard dawg » Tue Jul 29, 2008 8:18 pm

superdavid, I am not giving you attitude, I am responding to a forum post about a still. My response is based on experience and was meant to be helpful and to further your understanding of some basic truths about hobby distillation.

Talk about some attitude...

So, if you're still interested, heres a few things you might want to consider about that 'cheap and effective' start in this hobby.

lets start with the yield... it holds 4 liters of wash. You might be able to expect about 400 to 800 ml of horrible crappy tasting product if you use turbo yeast that produces upward of 20% abv. Thats optimistic at best... and read around this forum a little. You will find very few people that want to drink turbo yeast products... after they learn to do it right. A proper wash at around 10% abv will have such a small yield that it will be next to impossible to make cuts... In other words, it is simply too small to be useful. I know... I know... Sometimes things that seem too good to be true are just exactly that.

then theres the yeast thing... They INSIST that you use turbos. Turbo yeast has a place in this hobby, but its only for demonstration or for the making of fuel. If you really want to make a decent drink, you gotta look elsewhere. Again, read up about others experiences. draw your own conclusions. Turbos have a place, but not at this scale!

then theres all that plastic... plastic and ethanol are a bad combo. Did you read the part about the foam gaskets that you have to replace as they shrink? Those toxic chemicals are going straight into your 'drink'. do I really have to explain that anymore??? I wouldn't even taste the garbage that comes out of that machine.

plastic carbon filter... same deal...

you have to use carbon...yeah, read up some more and learn the ins and outs of carbon... goes back to the yeast. Think of it like this... you are making drinking water... would it be better to start with hog farm runoff or high mountain spring water? Turbo yeast is the hog farm runoff... Good washes, mashing and fermenting are the key to making a good drink. You can learn that, but that machine is not right for taking the next step and seperating out the good portions of a well made wash. That is just how it is... sorry if you didn't understand this before you made your purchase.

They say you need no heads cut? Thats so wrong... on so many levels.... Do you understand the ramifications of that advice? THEY ARE NOT TO BE TRUSTED! They are happy to poison you to make a buck.

There are other things too, thats just scratching the surface... Don't be impressed that it made 60%. You could do that for free in your freezer...

but hey, if you think you know better... rock on... I'm sure you will have a good time...

If I were you, I would get my money back. Be as persistent as you have to be. Shame on them for selling that kind of garbage. If you need more help understanding these very serious issues then just ask. There are many very experienced folks here who would be happy to help... that much should be clear by now. We tend to take safety very seriously. (unlike the people who sell the airstill) Sorry you got taken in by the sexy simplicity of it all, but there are few shortcuts in this hobby and thats surely not one of them.
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Re: Still Spirits Air still

Postby SuperDavid » Tue Jul 29, 2008 9:58 pm

junkyard dawg wrote:superdavid, I am not giving you attitude, I am responding to a forum post about a still. My response is based on experience and was meant to be helpful and to further your understanding of some basic truths about hobby distillation.

Talk about some attitude...

So, if you're still interested, heres a few things you might want to consider about that 'cheap and effective' start in this hobby.

lets start with the yield... it holds 4 liters of wash. You might be able to expect about 400 to 800 ml of horrible crappy tasting product if you use turbo yeast that produces upward of 20% abv. Thats optimistic at best... and read around this forum a little. You will find very few people that want to drink turbo yeast products... after they learn to do it right. A proper wash at around 10% abv will have such a small yield that it will be next to impossible to make cuts... In other words, it is simply too small to be useful. I know... I know... Sometimes things that seem too good to be true are just exactly that.

then theres the yeast thing... They INSIST that you use turbos. Turbo yeast has a place in this hobby, but its only for demonstration or for the making of fuel. If you really want to make a decent drink, you gotta look elsewhere. Again, read up about others experiences. draw your own conclusions. Turbos have a place, but not at this scale!

then theres all that plastic... plastic and ethanol are a bad combo. Did you read the part about the foam gaskets that you have to replace as they shrink? Those toxic chemicals are going straight into your 'drink'. do I really have to explain that anymore??? I wouldn't even taste the garbage that comes out of that machine.

plastic carbon filter... same deal...

you have to use carbon...yeah, read up some more and learn the ins and outs of carbon... goes back to the yeast. Think of it like this... you are making drinking water... would it be better to start with hog farm runoff or high mountain spring water? Turbo yeast is the hog farm runoff... Good washes, mashing and fermenting are the key to making a good drink. You can learn that, but that machine is not right for taking the next step and seperating out the good portions of a well made wash. That is just how it is... sorry if you didn't understand this before you made your purchase.

They say you need no heads cut? Thats so wrong... on so many levels.... Do you understand the ramifications of that advice? THEY ARE NOT TO BE TRUSTED! They are happy to poison you to make a buck.

There are other things too, thats just scratching the surface... Don't be impressed that it made 60%. You could do that for free in your freezer...

but hey, if you think you know better... rock on... I'm sure you will have a good time...

If I were you, I would get my money back. Be as persistent as you have to be. Shame on them for selling that kind of garbage. If you need more help understanding these very serious issues then just ask. There are many very experienced folks here who would be happy to help... that much should be clear by now. We tend to take safety very seriously. (unlike the people who sell the airstill) Sorry you got taken in by the sexy simplicity of it all, but there are few shortcuts in this hobby and thats surely not one of them.


Your last post should have been your first post, much more helpful and full of information.
I'm not saying I know better. I'm saying that my know how/available space/money/tools are not in a great situation to be jumping into this hobby balls and all spending lots of cash and making mass quantities. I thought the air still might have been a good way to get into the hobby. Maybey it isn't the best way after all? it's used.... so I won't be getting any money back. I'm going to try and make the best of what I have.
I may have only registered and made my first post yesterday but I have been reading this site for weeks. So I have picked up atleast one thing. Not to use turbos
I'm not using a turbo yeast for my sugar wash. I specificly avoided using a turbo yeast. I went with a yeast that I'm told is very clean. Essencia Super6. I'm keeping the temperature low and I've got 7kgs of dextrose in 26liters of water.
with all the reading I've done and talking to other people "in the know" it seems that you don't need to cut out the foreshot when you use dextrose only, because no methanol comes from dextrose. But I don't have 100% faith in that so I'll be throwing out the first of whatever comes out regardless of what sugar I use.
anyway I'll keep reading this site as I have been...I might look further into making my own simple still of some kind.

thanks for everyones advice/flames!
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Re: Still Spirits Air still

Postby blanikdog » Tue Jul 29, 2008 10:33 pm

Flames were never intended, David. :)

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Re: Still Spirits Air still

Postby junkyard dawg » Wed Jul 30, 2008 6:15 am

My first post was clear and concise in my head and the second post has already been stated over and over on this forum... I know that it takes time for all the info here to settle into place and begin to make sense. Much of it won't make sense till you've done this for a while.

So, a few questions... Is the vapor path all stainless? I HATE plastic nozzles and hoses in stills.

Is there any way to control the heating element. Seems like its plug and play, like a coffee maker. You turn it on and it runs at a set wattage till its turned off. If you can rewire that element so that you can have control over the heat input into the boiler then you might have something that you could use. It could be possible to make 10-15% abv washes with good clean yeast and whatever ingredients you wanted, run multiple batches till you had 4 liters of low wines... Then run that again on the lower power setting. stripping runs and spirit runs... That way you might be able to get a decent yield. But, You must have the ability to lower the power for the spirit run. Just a thought, but it might work...

About the heads cut; Yeast make many byproducts other than just methanol. You got your esters and aldehydes and all kinds of other big words. Many of those things concentrate in the heads and they are also a concern in the heads cut. Its not just the methanol. Without careful cuts, you are only concentrating the bad components. If you run something like port through there and don't take a heads cut then you can make a serious skull cracking booze. No heads cut can get downright dangerous real fast. IMHO that is horrible advice to tell any stiller that there is no need to make a heads cut.

Stick around and stick with it, I think you'll have no problem figuring it all out. I bet you've already learned a lot with that still, so all is not lost...
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Re: Still Spirits Air still

Postby SuperDavid » Wed Jul 30, 2008 10:24 am

junkyard dawg wrote:My first post was clear and concise in my head and the second post has already been stated over and over on this forum... I know that it takes time for all the info here to settle into place and begin to make sense. Much of it won't make sense till you've done this for a while.

So, a few questions... Is the vapor path all stainless? I HATE plastic nozzles and hoses in stills.

Is there any way to control the heating element. Seems like its plug and play, like a coffee maker. You turn it on and it runs at a set wattage till its turned off. If you can rewire that element so that you can have control over the heat input into the boiler then you might have something that you could use. It could be possible to make 10-15% abv washes with good clean yeast and whatever ingredients you wanted, run multiple batches till you had 4 liters of low wines... Then run that again on the lower power setting. stripping runs and spirit runs... That way you might be able to get a decent yield. But, You must have the ability to lower the power for the spirit run. Just a thought, but it might work...

About the heads cut; Yeast make many byproducts other than just methanol. You got your esters and aldehydes and all kinds of other big words. Many of those things concentrate in the heads and they are also a concern in the heads cut. Its not just the methanol. Without careful cuts, you are only concentrating the bad components. If you run something like port through there and don't take a heads cut then you can make a serious skull cracking booze. No heads cut can get downright dangerous real fast. IMHO that is horrible advice to tell any stiller that there is no need to make a heads cut.

Stick around and stick with it, I think you'll have no problem figuring it all out. I bet you've already learned a lot with that still, so all is not lost...


yeah I figured that I would only be concentrating any bad stuff in the port when I ran a litre through ..it was probably more than I needed to but I threw out about 20 mils. Then collected the next 250mls and then ran it a little longer in a seperate jar to see when the quality started dropping off. It wasn't much after the 250mls that it went bad.
I beleive the vapor path IS stainless..I can see the coil going around. Now that I am aware I've noticed the nozzel is plastic.
That does worry me. I don't really want to do any cutting...but I might have look into cutting the nozzel off and using some copper. I think I'll still run my first sugar wash through this still and see what kind of product I get.
Even though my little air still might be the devil I'm still enjoying this hobby so far and I am looking forward to upgrading sooner or later.
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Re: Still Spirits Air still

Postby Oaty » Thu Jul 31, 2008 2:42 am

I'm sorry that I started all this ...and I did..not Dawg. I'm the one that first used the phrase..'toy still' . He merely re-stated my contention. I pointed out that it would do little more that a pressure cooker with $ 5 worth of coiled copper. I still think the pressure cooker would have done as well.
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There's nothing wrong with beginning with deficent equiptment before investing money in quality. However, I do not think that an investment over $600 is necessary.
Apparently, SuperDave has researched enough to know that the machines contention that cuts aren't necessary was I false one. This indicates a willingness to learn. I hope he continues his efforts.
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Re: Still Spirits Air still

Postby grogrum » Mon Feb 16, 2009 9:44 pm

superdavid,
I know this is an old thread, but a couple of points didn't seem to get picked up on...

They say you need no heads cut? Thats so wrong... on so many levels.... Do you understand the ramifications of that advice? THEY ARE NOT TO BE TRUSTED! They are happy to poison you to make a buck.


You can't cut the heads on an airstill. It is NOT a fractional still - it merely removes water!. ALL the heads and tails remain!

I've got 7kgs of dextrose in 26liters of water.
with all the reading I've done and talking to other people "in the know" it seems that you don't need to cut out the foreshot when you use dextrose only, because no methanol comes from dextrose. But I don't have 100% faith in that so I'll be throwing out the first of whatever comes out regardless of what sugar I use.


Very glad to hear you didn't have 100% faith in that. It is pure crap!
When you use Sucrose, the first thing the yeast does is convert it into d-glucose (dextrose) and d-fructose. You get methanol from dextrose just as much as from sucrose.
Hope this helps
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Re: Still Spirits Air still

Postby SuperDavid » Mon Feb 16, 2009 10:51 pm

I moved on from the air still along time ago.
I only got that thing to get into the hobby and see if it was the kind of hobby for me.
I didn't want to spent lots of money on a better still to find out this hobby wasn't for me, but since then I've spent up on better stuff and I'm building my own pot still and Punkin is building a VM column for me. I've learnt massive amounts since this air still thread.
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Re: Still Spirits Air still

Postby olddog » Tue Feb 17, 2009 12:55 am

I thought you were building a new potstill ?
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Re: Still Spirits Air still

Postby SuperDavid » Tue Feb 17, 2009 9:11 am

olddog wrote:I thought you were building a new potstill ?

I am!! I've finalised my plans and I'm going to put it all together very soon, and I've also got Punkin building me a VM Column!
I'm going to be up to my eyeballs in stills!
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Re: Still Spirits Air still

Postby punkin » Tue Feb 17, 2009 11:30 am

Yes, VM column is ready to ship this week...


shortvm1.jpg
shortvm1.jpg (101.32 KiB) Viewed 4245 times



2 piece column to be soldered on arrival because of postage restrictions.






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Re: Still Spirits Air still

Postby SuperDavid » Tue Feb 17, 2009 11:36 am

punkin wrote:Yes, VM column is ready to ship this week...




2 piece column to be soldered on arrival because of postage restrictions.






HopeYouDon'tMindThePiccieGoingInPunkin


Na doesnt bother me! it's looking good!
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