Rerunning Feints

Distillation methods and improvements.

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Dnderhead
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Re: Rerunning Feints

Post by Dnderhead » Wed Jun 08, 2011 10:14 pm

I seen one article on rum, they were using a pot still with two thumpers,
they were using heads in the first thumper and tales into the second thumper.
but these whould be drained after use so build up.

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Re: Rerunning Feints

Post by kiwistiller » Wed Jun 08, 2011 11:53 pm

blind drunk wrote:
Gotta chime in here and say that the best aged spirit I've ever made is an all feints (including heads, but not foreshots) rum
.

Hey Kiwi, how did it taste before the aging process? Did it have a sting? How many generations of recycled heads?

My second to last run was pretty awesome, full grainy/fruity middle and smooth. I thought I was on a roll - lots of heads and tails, some low wines and fresh wash. That was the magic, I thought. Then, same technique, dilution etc and the run was a bust. I couldn't figure out where the middle was. I thought I lost my touch :roll: Too much smearing without any decent middle. I aired it for 3-7 days (some is still airing - hope springs eternal and all of that) but the heat sting only increased with time. That's what got me thinking something's wrong. Led me here :)

Also, wonder if it's different with rum? Dunno. Cheers.
Hey mate, it was rougher than normal for sure, but in a tasty way. Like you take all the flavours good and bad and amplified them. [the rest of all this is opinion] I'm a big believer in the smearing that some try to cut out for my flavoured spirits - that's all the stuff that's going to age into deliciousness, right? Look at the scotch guys, they barely cut at all, but after long enough in the barrel, it's great. I think there is a happy medium where you make just wide enough cuts for the length that you want to age for. Most (actually, pretty much all) of my spirits for drinking white get a lick of the reflux these days to take away anything that can't be aired better. Anything going on oak though... they can pry my pot still from my cold dead hands :lol:

I also think you are probably right with the "different for rum" thing. IMHO Rum is an estery drink - the cogeners make it what it is. Grain, for me at least, wants to be a touch milder, less floral, less fruity, so less cogeners. I don't think I'd attempt an all feints run for a spirit to be kept white. For my targets it would be counter productive I reckon. Just my thoughts on the matter anyway, take it for what it's worth.

Seen that article as well, dnder, it makes me want to build a thumper or two.
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Re: Rerunning Feints

Post by blanikdog » Thu Jun 09, 2011 12:57 am

Dnderhead wrote:" I just always kept the rejects from my cuts in a jug, and added it to next spirit run.'
feints are tales not heads . and they go into the stripping run not the spirits run.

(pronounced “Faints”) a name given to the last portion of spirits that runs from a still as the distillation of a batch nears completion. Feints are normally turned back into the still for redistillation. Feints are also, and more generally referred to as tails

Yep dunder, that's what I always thought too, but we are both old buggers. Seems to me that greed is the big problem here. But, I don't have any problems with my end product, nor do I need a thumper. I wonder what I'm doing wrong ? <shrug>
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Re: Rerunning Feints

Post by Usge » Thu Jun 09, 2011 6:43 am

And we sure appreciate you "old buggers" being around too! :thumbup:

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Re: Rerunning Feints

Post by Bushman » Thu Jun 09, 2011 6:53 am

blanikdog wrote:Yep dunder, that's what I always thought too, but we are both old buggers. Seems to me that greed is the big problem here. But, I don't have any problems with my end product, nor do I need a thumper. I wonder what I'm doing wrong ? <shrug>
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Re: Rerunning Feints

Post by Dnderhead » Thu Jun 09, 2011 7:48 am

it seems the what type of product your making makes a difference.
so id say .keep heads /tales separated ,try each,then decide.
doing this you shuld keep tract so you can repeat.
was doing all grain, and tales had flavors,heads had bite.so i used the tales.
if you collect enough heads you could try refluxing them into neutral.

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Re: Rerunning Feints

Post by blind drunk » Thu Jun 09, 2011 8:27 am

Hey mate, it was rougher than normal for sure, but in a tasty way. Like you take all the flavours good and bad and amplified them.
I'd define my last run very much this way. It was the sting that bothered and worried me. If time would defang the stinger, then it could be pretty awesome.
I'm a big believer in the smearing that some try to cut out for my flavoured spirits - that's all the stuff that's going to age into deliciousness, right?
Let's hope :lol: Just kidding, smearing is good here too. Mind you, I've only ever run a 2" pot head so I have nothing to compare with. Like I said, it wasn't so much the taste, but the sting that freaked me out. At least that's want I meant to say. And btw it is going to be aged. Maybe I'll just leave the sting-y little prick alone and let the folks at my wake decide if it was worth it :ewink: After all, it's just a jug's worth. I'll make the recycling modifications moving forward.
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Re: Rerunning Feints

Post by Dan P. » Thu Jun 09, 2011 12:16 pm

This is an awesome thread. I have been recycling both heads and tails, because someone somewhere on the interweb said so. This makes more sense as, while I know they contain a lot of alcohol, I've never tasted heads and thought "yum, there's a lot of good tastes in there, too bad I can't include them in my final cut". Heads almost always taste nasty and chemical. I have, however, tasted good tastes in tails, which can have great flavour but also taste too boggy and weak (in %ABV) to include.
At the risk of overstatement, I think this thread is revolutionary, for me at least. It is like when I discovered that you did not have to make cuts on a stripping run when I first became interested in distilling.
As an aside, I have been haunted by the use of rum feints (heads and tails) in a batch of whiskey. It is not a bad thing, but they are very perceptible.
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Re: Rerunning Feints

Post by blind drunk » Thu Jun 09, 2011 1:12 pm

This makes more sense as, while I know they contain a lot of alcohol, I've never tasted heads and thought "yum, there's a lot of good tastes in there, too bad I can't include them in my final cut".
The early heads have that same effect on me but the later ones entice me to no end. So fragrant and yet so elusive. I believe all the top notes live there. That's what I've been chasing, with only partial success. Just a thought.
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Re: Rerunning Feints

Post by HookLine » Thu Jun 09, 2011 5:23 pm

Excellent thread. Much obliged to Dunder in particular.

I have just been collecting all my heads and tails in one container (but separate for different spirits types, rum in one, whisky in another). When I have enough for a full boiler charge I do a run, which often gives a very good result, lots of flavour. But usually run it slower than normal pot still spirit run, with a scrubber or two in the short pot column to get a bit more separation. In particular I take the heads off very slowly. Should also work well running it relatively fast through a packed reflux column, with a low reflux ratio (2:1 ?).

So if tails are feints, what are heads? Just heads?
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Re: Rerunning Feints

Post by Dnderhead » Thu Jun 09, 2011 5:50 pm

any way of getting this or similar copied to maybe the reading lounge.its about as good as any.
http://www.awa.dk/glosary/index.htm

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Re: Rerunning Feints

Post by dougjones31 » Fri Jun 10, 2011 5:16 pm

The sting will usually go away with aging. Distress aging for a week in and out of the freezer will reduce it alot.

I run stripping runs on 5 generations, then spirit run, cut , save heads and tails. Repeat this until I have 5 generations of heads and tails saved up and do an all heads and tails spirit run. Usually turns out very special, A little spicy but with time it mellows out and is superb.

I toss the heads and tails of this special run. So, I never save run heads and tails but once.

Been thinking about trying it though. Save the heads and tails from these special runs....and run them just to see. What would hurt to throw them in a barrel and forget them. May become something fine when my kids get my age...?

It will make me feel better when it is time to toss gallons of heads and tails. Run them one more time to see if there is anything worthwhile left......

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Re: Rerunning Feints

Post by blind drunk » Mon Jun 13, 2011 11:23 pm

11 gallons mash of malted and flaked barley and cracked wheat +
1 gallon tails +
3/4 of a gallon of near misses
no heads

Ran it slow without copper in the column = no sting and nice flavor. The eagle has landed ... again 8)
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Re: Rerunning Feints

Post by dougjones31 » Tue Jun 14, 2011 4:36 pm

A lesson learned about running feints...........


If you continuously add all your feints to the next run, they will build up and make it harsh and eventually nasty.

If you consider the whole concept of distillation and remember that nasties come out first and last, you can work out a system that will work. You have to start tossing the first and last jar before you save the feints for adding to the next run. I just do a huge foreshot discard and stop collecting @ 25%. This will get rid of the majority of the bad stuff that accumulates.

I used to do this before I abandoned it and started doing "all feints" runs. I realized that the extra special product of an all feints run was worth doing.

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Re: Rerunning Feints

Post by blind drunk » Tue Jun 14, 2011 5:02 pm

Definitely lesson learned. I have to be more aware of what's what in the heads and feints departments. Need a system of monitoring and note taking. You probably noticed that I don't do a spirit run with accumulate low wines. I do a single pass with a fresh beer, heads and tails and then recycle those as low wines in my next single pass spirit run. Even though I'm calling them they "low wines" they aren't technically low wines because of all that recycling of heads and tails. Really, what I've been using as low wines is a mix of real low wines from the fresh beer plus the multiple generations of heads and tails. That's why I got confused. I thought that the big hit of fresh beer would re balance everything. But as we know, distillation concentrates flavors ... and eventually it came back to bite me.

At least that's what I've been doing up until this very last one, where I kept the heads out of the spirit run. Seemed to work. So as it stands, my jug of current heads are a first generation heads and my tails jug is a multiple generation of recycled tails. Must step back a little ...

Thank you for you insights.
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Re: Rerunning Feints

Post by rtalbigr » Wed Jun 15, 2011 1:43 am

My spirit run is usually 3 gal low wines and 2 gal wash. If I have feints (with heads mixed in) from previous runs I will have a spirit run of 2 gal low wines, 1 gal feints, and 2 gal wash (feints w/heads will never be more than 1/5th of the run). When running with feints I always double the amount of fores I take off and then I am real careful where I make my cuts into hearts, it is often double the amount of heads as well. I have never run my feints with a stripping run but I am thinking about going to that as a better method (it will also help with foaming w/some AGs). I do collect mixed feints from various runs and when I have enough run them through my pot several times to use as neutrals for cordials, etc. When doing that I always dilute with RO water.

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Re: Rerunning Feints

Post by blind drunk » Wed Jun 15, 2011 11:46 am

I'll definitely try the all feints' run in the future. Btw I never seem to get foaming with the all grains, although I keep expecting it to happen ...
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Re: Rerunning Feints

Post by rtalbigr » Wed Jun 15, 2011 11:56 am

BD - Oats are the worst and then barley for foamin', well, in my experience. I always leave plenty of head space, usually run just 3 gal in a 7 gal (total cap) pot, so it's never a problem for me, some times I can get away with 4 gal. Sometimes I use anti-foam agent from Brewhaus but not very often.

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Re: Rerunning Feints

Post by blind drunk » Wed Jun 15, 2011 12:02 pm

Never done oats - I'll keep that in mind for the future.
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Re: Rerunning Feints

Post by Bushman » Sat Jul 02, 2011 6:27 am

I decided to revive this thread as I know mash rookie and several others are working on a glossary of terms for the forum. This thread has batted around defining feints. On page 10 of the Craft Whiskey Distilling book in the third paragraph they define feints as "The heads and tails when mixed together are called feints". Do we want to live with that definition?

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Re: Rerunning Feints

Post by Dnderhead » Sat Jul 02, 2011 6:53 am

how about,, a portion. of heads or tales that is rerun,to recover flavors and ethanol.
you can rewrite .I'm not real good with words.

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Re: Rerunning Feints

Post by yankeeclear » Mon Jul 04, 2011 3:08 pm

Great thread guys - school was definitely in session! I have been spending the past several months combing through the forums and have to tell you that reading the posts indicates (like this thread) the community has varying understanding of that the terms heads, tails and feints.

I read through twice and though there is not complete consensus there is at least convergence on a couple of points. Allow me to summarize what I think I have gathered:
  • Feints = Tails (plus possibly late Heads)
  • Heads and tails should be saved off separately from a spirit run
  • Feints can be added to low wines in the next stripping run OR saved up and run as a separate all-feints spirit run
  • Heads can be run in an all-heads spirit run, preferably in a reflux for neutral spirits
  • Heads/Tails from an all-heads or all-feints should be discarded
Did I miss nuance on any of these?
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Re: Rerunning Feints

Post by frozenthunderbolt » Mon Jul 04, 2011 4:15 pm

yankeeclear wrote:Great thread guys - school was definitely in session! I have been spending the past several months combing through the forums and have to tell you that reading the posts indicates (like this thread) the community has varying understanding of that the terms heads, tails and feints.

I read through twice and though there is not complete consensus there is at least convergence on a couple of points. Allow me to summarize what I think I have gathered:
  • Feints = Tails (plus possibly late Heads)
  • Heads and tails should be saved off separately from a spirit run
  • Feints can be added to low wines in the next stripping run OR saved up and run as a separate all-feints spirit run
  • Heads can be run in an all-heads spirit run, preferably in a reflux for neutral spirits
  • Heads/Tails from an all-heads or all-feints should be discarded
Did I miss nuance on any of these?
You might keep tails on an all-feints - would be a subjective judgement though otherwise i think you have hit it on the head (in my understanding)
Also, not a great idea to CONTINIOUSLY add feints to your next strip run - 1 or 2 times in a row is ok though, after that definitly turf the heads at least.
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Re: Rerunning Feints

Post by Dnderhead » Mon Jul 04, 2011 4:47 pm

after reading much, with Scotch /Irosh use only tales -and that is where I got that from.
but it seems some others rerun heads as well.
Iv always used tales and rerun heads off as a neutral.
but there is a trick to using tales,they should be collected at or diluted to below 30%
the stored for 48+ hours in a cool place then draw off the bottom.this is because fusels
will separate and float on top.the "good" can then be drawn off beneath. Fusels can be
nasty both in drink and to the still.(bitter/hot/oilly and can coat still/packing)
I used a corny kegs with a tap on bottom,you mite fiend other containers better suited.

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Re: Rerunning Feints

Post by blind drunk » Mon Jul 04, 2011 5:03 pm

this is because fusels will separate and float on top.the "good" can then be drawn off beneath.
How do you know when to stop drawing from the bottom without being able to see the layering?
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Re: Rerunning Feints

Post by Dnderhead » Mon Jul 04, 2011 5:27 pm

I did it so much that I knew, But I was thinking for others that whould not have as much .
one of the refrigerator containers with the tap like used for lemonade etc.
(by the way exposed to o2 fusels will turn yellow)

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Re: Rerunning Feints

Post by blind drunk » Mon Jul 04, 2011 5:49 pm

So for a typical 5 US gallon corny @ 30%, how much of it is fusels, etc. Roughly.
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Re: Rerunning Feints

Post by Dnderhead » Mon Jul 04, 2011 6:01 pm

iv had 1/2 inch to as much as 4 inches.so i just draw off about 4 gallons.dump the rest, its just not worth it.

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Re: Rerunning Feints

Post by blind drunk » Mon Jul 04, 2011 6:10 pm

Got it, thanks again.
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Re: Rerunning Feints

Post by rtalbigr » Tue Jul 05, 2011 1:34 am

Thx Dndr, learn sumpin every day. That explains all the gunk in my pot when I do a feints run.

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