New still smells funny

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HodyMac
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New still smells funny

Post by HodyMac » Thu Sep 17, 2020 12:22 pm

Newbie here. I finished my pot still, and did a 50/50 vinegar run last week. Today I did a sacrificial alcohol distillation to clean out any remaining flux, etc...

So, I figured I’d distill a case of PBR that’s been in my basement for a few years. So the run went well, but the inside of the copper tubing smells like PBR. Any recommendations for cleaning the PBR smell out of the still? I wouldn’t want that taste in a non-sacrificial run.

I’ve got some deathwish wheat germ bubbling away downstairs, and I’m looking forward to running that.

Thanks.

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Demy
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Re: New still smells funny

Post by Demy » Thu Sep 17, 2020 1:17 pm

I think a simple sweep with water might be enough, if you have dissolved a teaspoon of citric acid.

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Durhommer
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Re: New still smells funny

Post by Durhommer » Thu Sep 17, 2020 2:21 pm

What he said
You have two ears and one mouth for a reason....

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kiwi Bruce
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Re: New still smells funny

Post by kiwi Bruce » Thu Sep 17, 2020 2:31 pm

It's the hops, which are an oil compound. Do a soupy water wash or run your new copper again using just water or rinse everything with acetone.
Whatever is the easiest or cheapest or least time consuming...it'll wash out fine !
Getting hung up all day on smiles

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Windy City
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Re: New still smells funny

Post by Windy City » Thu Sep 17, 2020 2:33 pm

Although it may have seemed like a good idea, beer is not that great for the sacrificial run.
Beer ( even PBR) has hops, hops have oils. Let alone some year old beer that has skunked.
Many people on this forum have run beer through their stills but then need to do new cleaning runs to get rid of the hop oils.
A simple sugar wash like shadys sugar shine, wineos or birdwatchers is an easy and inexpensive way to get alcohol for a sacrificial run.
It doesn’t sound like your still is that big, I would just start my cleaning process again.

Edit posted same time as kiwi
The liver is evil and must be punished

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NineInchNails
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Re: New still smells funny

Post by NineInchNails » Sat Sep 19, 2020 12:49 pm

I've heard of some people washing their still using Oxy Clean & water. Just rinse thoroughly using warm to hot water. I might be tempted to load the boiler with enough water and blast steam through it afterward, although maybe not necessary.

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Deplorable
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Re: New still smells funny

Post by Deplorable » Sat Sep 19, 2020 7:47 pm

Note to self...
"Clown Beer makes still smell funny."
Use all your senses, and its not that hard. You just have to pay attention.

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acfixer69
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Re: New still smells funny

Post by acfixer69 » Sat Sep 19, 2020 8:07 pm

PBR is a right of passage and still a Sunday morning sidewalk breakfast. The next run will clean that out but fores and heads I would cut deeper then smell.

HodyMac
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Re: New still smells funny

Post by HodyMac » Sun Sep 20, 2020 10:46 pm

Thanks, everyone!
Oxycleen helped a bunch. Smells OK now.
Looking forward to a first real run Sunday!

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