Cloudy heads:

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Cloudy heads:

Postby Alchemist75 » Sat Jul 14, 2018 6:29 pm

So last night I did a run of my buddies usual corn sugar head and he wanted to do a one and done with the column. We ran it and I kept the cuts tight. Good heads and tails compression for sure. I noticed that the heads, first 300 ml or so ran off foggy. They cleared up at about 350 and then we took our hearts cut. Now, I left the heads sitting in the cutting jars over night and when I took a look at them today they were still foggy and jar 1 had visible sediment. The inside of the lids were starting to develop rust spots too. The whole rig is copper except for the boiler which is stainless. Are cloudy heads a common thing? I know tails can get foggy but I had to wonder especially with that sediment. I've done 4 separate cleaning runs with repeated rinse downs using hot vinegar and salt. I keep the copper squeaky clean. I flush everything before I run too. I noticed the same phenomena on my cleaning runs too: murky heads. This normal? My pot still configuration doesn't do this....
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Re: Cloudy heads:

Postby NZChris » Sat Jul 14, 2018 11:38 pm

Try searching the site for 'misting test'
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Re: Cloudy heads:

Postby Copperhead road » Sun Jul 15, 2018 1:55 am

Did you have enough headroom in the boiler? I have had that happen once and the cause was a small puke. That was on a stripping run not a spirit run and with a potty.
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Re: Cloudy heads:

Postby Kareltje » Sun Jul 15, 2018 2:56 am

Recently saw it in a grain run, with 2 l of grainslop and 1 l water in a 10 l-thumper, only water in the boiler and running hard (according to my standards! :crazy: )

And to my surprise I found it in runs where I collected 50 ml heads, diluted these to about 100 ml to be able to measure. The 50 ml of 85 to 90 % was clear, the diluted 100 ml was hazy.
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Re: Cloudy heads:

Postby Alchemist75 » Sun Jul 15, 2018 7:01 am

No, it ain't puke, it's something else. I've seen it with low boiler charges. Carlo Rossi was the worst, the milky heads smelled AWFUL. Actually, for the record, the final cleaning run with Carlo burgundy was horrid. Never attempt Carlo in a column and expect good spirit. That's the drink they'll serve you in hell. I suspect it's ethyl acetate in a near pure state at the nose of the run but it's anyone's guess at this point. It only occurs with the column, not the pot.
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Re: Cloudy heads:

Postby thecroweater » Sun Jul 15, 2018 7:52 am

Ya started a bit fast no big deal. More likely it is mostly acetone which is very distinctive and a lot more offensive than the sweeter smelling acetate
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Re: Cloudy heads:

Postby Alchemist75 » Sun Jul 15, 2018 12:45 pm

OK, I suspected it was something along those lines. Just wasn't sure if I was seeing a bigger problem with my equipment.
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Re: Cloudy heads:

Postby still_stirrin » Sun Jul 15, 2018 1:13 pm

Ehtyl acetate is what is usually found in fingernail polish remover. A very distinct smell, and quite “burny” to taste. Nobody likes it in their liquor. It does have a slightly sweet smell however.

Acetone is a paint thinner, or sometimes a degreaser solvent. More volatile than the fingernail polish remover, it will become explosive quickly if concentrated in a closed room. Similarly, the volatility will make it hazardous to breathe, so open windows if you have a lot of it vaporizing in your still shed. Definitely burns the nose if inhaled and not even inviting to taste. You’ll dump it when collected.

Acetyaldehyde has the “green apple” smell and will rise early as the still comes “online”. It is quite volatile, so it will be about the first thing to come “up the pipe”. Chances are that there isn’t much of it in your ferment though, as it is the early fermentation byproduct which will decompose as the wash settles post-fermentation (when attenuate). A classic example of this byproduct is Anheuser-Busch “Budweiser” beer, especially if sampled close to its “born on” date.
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Re: Cloudy heads:

Postby Alchemist75 » Sun Jul 15, 2018 2:16 pm

I've read til my eyes bleed and then read some more but there's so many things I see that aren't touched upon in other places. Running a column is a whole new ball game and I'm a toddler.
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Re: Cloudy heads:

Postby bilgriss » Wed Jul 18, 2018 3:13 am

Toddler having fun though, I hope!
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Re: Cloudy heads:

Postby Alchemist75 » Wed Jul 18, 2018 10:53 am

Toddler quickly discovering that he can make some damn fine product with a little patience. My latest batch of product came off tasting like sugar with just a touch of grain. Smooth as silk. Stripping everything before you use the reflux is the bees knees. Thanks to all the wizards on the HD forums for teaching me and others how to make the top shelf product!
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