What packing material do you prefer?

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What packing material do you prefer

Copper Mesh/Scrubbies
8
22%
Stainless Mesh/Scrubbies
3
8%
Ceramic
2
6%
Glass
8
22%
Lava Rock
7
19%
Cut Up Copper Pipe
0
No votes
Prismatic Spirial
6
17%
Springs
0
No votes
Other
2
6%
 
Total votes : 36

What packing material do you prefer?

Postby Rain Distillate » Sat Mar 04, 2017 8:55 am

What packing material do you prefer and why?


If other, please specify what material and why you like to run with it.
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Re: What packing material do you prefer?

Postby Hunter7922 » Fri Mar 10, 2017 8:21 am

Wondering if you could use 3M Scotch-Brite Copper Scrubbing Pad
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Re: What packing material do you prefer?

Postby Rain Distillate » Fri Mar 10, 2017 9:20 am

Hunter7922 wrote:Wondering if you could use 3M Scotch-Brite Copper Scrubbing Pad


As long as it's a copper Scrubbie and not a copper coated Scrubbie. Make sure to source them, to verify.
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Re: What packing material do you prefer?

Postby Lyonsie » Fri Mar 10, 2017 9:40 am

Marlbes all the way.
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Re: What packing material do you prefer?

Postby BlackStrap » Fri Mar 10, 2017 9:53 am

I use copper mesh, easy to pack and unpack in my column... can be cleaned and reused, and copper removes sulfites, when distilling wines.
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Re: What packing material do you prefer?

Postby Hunter7922 » Fri Mar 10, 2017 10:14 am

I've seen post about marbles, but how would you install them in a reflux column
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Re: What packing material do you prefer?

Postby thepatchworkdoll » Fri Mar 10, 2017 10:17 am

Hi there
SPP for me hands up. The best Ive tried so far in my opinion.
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Re: What packing material do you prefer?

Postby Rain Distillate » Fri Mar 10, 2017 10:34 am

Hunter7922 wrote:I've seen post about marbles, but how would you install them in a reflux column



make a retaining screen (drill holes in bottom of column and slide a few pieces of solid copper wire (12ga) then solder in place. now add a copper scrubbie and load your marbles. if you added more wire you could probably do w/o the scrubbie.

You could also make one out of some copper sheet. Drill a bunch of holes and slide down inside the column so it sits on top of a ferrule.


or buy a screened ptfe gasket. kinda expensive. don't use anything measured in microns....toooooo small.
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Re: What packing material do you prefer?

Postby Desvio » Fri Mar 10, 2017 10:41 am

If "glass" equals marbles, then yes marbles it is.

I like messing around with the amount of packing in the column and marbles are easy to scale by weight.
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Re: What packing material do you prefer?

Postby Hunter7922 » Fri Mar 10, 2017 10:53 am

OK, perfect!

Sorry for this and I'm sure its posted some where, but SPP?

As for the marbles. Question i would have is once you're finish with the run. How would you clean the column and the marbles? just water, no scrubbing.

To new and learning

thanks
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Re: What packing material do you prefer?

Postby Hunter7922 » Fri Mar 10, 2017 11:38 am

Looked it up on google, SPP (Spiral Prismatic Springs)

Sounds good, but a little more than i want to go with as a newbie.

Thanks though
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Re: What packing material do you prefer?

Postby nuntius01 » Tue Jul 04, 2017 7:25 am

never thought of using cut up pipe. i use mesh. might look into that.
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Re: What packing material do you prefer?

Postby Cu29er » Tue Jul 04, 2017 8:45 am

Of those who have used different packing schemes ...

-how does the back pressure compare with each type?
-what is the % alc or proof output of each type given same stack diameter and height?

I've seen the SPP is favored in many reviews/tests, but really expensive and hard to find.

Rig I've seen: straight empty pipe = 40-60pr, 7 plates with holes = 80pr, SS scrubbies = 120pr; limited number of runs to be valid though.

.
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Re: What packing material do you prefer?

Postby masonsjax » Tue Jul 04, 2017 6:31 pm

Ive been very happy with glass marbles.
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Re: What packing material do you prefer?

Postby Klein » Tue Jul 04, 2017 6:49 pm

Glass marbles [THUMBS UP SIGN]
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Re: What packing material do you prefer?

Postby DAD300 » Tue Jul 04, 2017 7:21 pm

SS Scrubbies are the most cost efficient, but SPP is King for HETP and neutral!

The pressure in a column can be anything you want with Scrubbies.

Cleaning? How much do you clean a column or packing you just ran steaming alcohol through? Copper, take out and soak in lemon juice, rinse. SS, pour some hot water down the top of the column.
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Re: What packing material do you prefer?

Postby Evil Wizard » Sun Jul 09, 2017 7:51 pm

There have been a lot of positive posts on scoria - I can't seemed to find it but I am having great success with lava rock balls. I soaked some in vodka for a couple months and found no degradation.

geolite.jpg
geolite/hydroton
geolite.jpg (12.33 KiB) Viewed 609 times


Sometimes called Hydroton or geolite, I bought 50L for about $40 CAD. The balls were smaller than some I've seen in the past, and the red melted coating was inconsistent, showing 20% of the porous dark grey interior. This is ideal because it allows more porosity. Even the fully red coated balls have a nice rough texture allowing a lot of surface area. When you pour the water on it you can hear the holes fill like Rice Krispies.

They pack in my 6" column beautifully like marbles but at a fraction of the weight. This is vital considering I'm lifting 4' of type K copper pipe (much heavier than dwv/m/k) up onto the 30 gallon boiler. If it were marbles I would need handles on the column and they would interfere with my pipe insulation.
6'-column.jpg
distiller
6'-column.jpg (12.98 KiB) Viewed 609 times


I rinsed 20L of geolite in water several times before loading them into my 4 foot column (plus 1 foot Cooling Management section of 3/8" tube wrapped 4 or 5 times). I have a perforated copper disc floating in the bottom of the column with scrubbies on top of it to keep the lava balls from falling or blocking the holes.

I get full reflux with the condensor, and after 40min, I tweaked the 3way water valve to drop the reflux condensor to a trickle and open up the product condensor. I hit azeo right off the bat, pulled off meths and heads from the sugar and wheat wash.

For hearts I cranked the speed up to the limits of the product condensor (1/4" copper inside 3" pipe) which was 5900watts and got 17.6 Litres/hour at 88%-90%. At 4450watts I got 12L/hr.

In regards to the goofy looking lyne arm - I'm just using pieces from my 3" continuous distiller (clocked at 22.6 L/hr of wash input and 5.4 L/hr of 60%-67%abv ethanol output)

I'm pretty happy with geolite. Way less work than building plates and easier than breaking up scoria.
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Re: What packing material do you prefer?

Postby Stillernz » Mon Jul 10, 2017 12:45 am

Evil Wizard wrote:There have been a lot of positive posts on scoria - I can't seemed to find it but I am having great success with lava rock balls. I soaked some in vodka for a couple months and found no degradation.

geolite.jpg


Sometimes called Hydroton or geolite, I bought 50L for about $40 CAD. The balls were smaller than some I've seen in the past, and the red melted coating was inconsistent, showing 20% of the porous dark grey interior. This is ideal because it allows more porosity. Even the fully red coated balls have a nice rough texture allowing a lot of surface area. When you pour the water on it you can hear the holes fill like Rice Krispies.

They pack in my 6" column beautifully like marbles but at a fraction of the weight. This is vital considering I'm lifting 4' of type K copper pipe (much heavier than dwv/m/k) up onto the 30 gallon boiler. If it were marbles I would need handles on the column and they would interfere with my pipe insulation.
6'-column.jpg


I rinsed 20L of geolite in water several times before loading them into my 4 foot column (plus 1 foot Cooling Management section of 3/8" tube wrapped 4 or 5 times). I have a perforated copper disc floating in the bottom of the column with scrubbies on top of it to keep the lava balls from falling or blocking the holes.

I get full reflux with the condensor, and after 40min, I tweaked the 3way water valve to drop the reflux condensor to a trickle and open up the product condensor. I hit azeo right off the bat, pulled off meths and heads from the sugar and wheat wash.

For hearts I cranked the speed up to the limits of the product condensor (1/4" copper inside 3" pipe) which was 5900watts and got 17.6 Litres/hour at 88%-90%. At 4450watts I got 12L/hr.

In regards to the goofy looking lyne arm - I'm just using pieces from my 3" continuous distiller (clocked at 22.6 L/hr of wash input and 5.4 L/hr of 60%-67%abv ethanol output)

I'm pretty happy with geolite. Way less work than building plates and easier than breaking up scoria.

+1 for Scoria. I cleaned mind through water and then boiled it twice and then do a vinegar run too and that's stuff is superb. I got 2 massive bags for 10nzd score!
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Re: What packing material do you prefer?

Postby still_stirrin » Mon Jul 10, 2017 4:49 pm

I'm a "glass marble guy". Easy to load and unload. Easy to clean. Comparable to SPP for effectiveness. And when it comes time to replace....very economical.
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Re: What packing material do you prefer?

Postby Saltbush Bill » Tue Jul 11, 2017 12:17 am

I have to wonder why marbles and glass didn't get separate categories.
Back in the mists of time some folk used broken wind shield / screen glass as packing in reflux stills.
I suspect a few still do use that and other forms of glass besides marbles.
The results of the survey might tell a different story if marbles and glass had their own categories.
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Re: What packing material do you prefer?

Postby Bushman » Tue Jul 11, 2017 4:45 am

This is an interesting thread as all I have used is homemade copper packing. If something works great, why change? I do have some experience with plates and rocks hanging around Mash Rookie and all his experiments with packing. He built a glass column so he could not only test its efficiency but also visually inspect the process. He documented it on a thread here about 3-4 years ago.
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Re: What packing material do you prefer?

Postby OtisT » Tue Jul 11, 2017 7:43 am

I prefer copper mesh in my 2" column.

Lots of surface area.
Light, light, light weight compared with other packing.
Rinses and dries quickly when you take it out.
I don't need to Solder wire or add a screen to the bottom of my column to hold the packing in.
I can easily change the density of the mesh roles.
I can add just a few inches of packing at any location of the column. Sometimes I only use a half role at the top for light reflux.
If I roll the mesh just so, with a cone/point at the bottom, I can redirect reflux off the walls and back into the center of the column.
Storing mesh when not in use is compact.
A 1 pound role for about $14 can last dozens of uses.
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Re: What packing material do you prefer?

Postby StillerBoy » Tue Jul 11, 2017 9:45 am

I'm a lava rock user.. there are light in weight, and easy to clean, and their efficiency is a good if not better than 1/2" size marbles.. the size of the pieces makes all the different in their efficiency, to big and they are useless, dime size are the best for 2" and 3" columns, and 3/8" size for 1.5" columns..

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