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Author: Subject: Making ethanol at home.
ScienceSquirrel
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[*] posted on 15-11-2011 at 16:32


Turbo yeasts are strains that will tolerate very high sugar and alcohol concentrations plus the packs do contain the nutrients needed to supplement the water and sugar washes that are used with these strains.
Beer yeasts are bred to operate in the 4 - 12% range in a hopped wort, most wine yeasts can handle 8 - 15% in a fruit juice derived liquor.
Turbo yeast can go as high as 23% with only sugar, water, a nitrogen source and some vitamins.
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[*] posted on 25-4-2015 at 19:45


I've tried to make a small amount of ethanol from sugar, and I succeeded (got 100 ml of pure ethanol), but the problem is - how can I get rid of a horrible smell of fermentation process?
The first man that comes into my apartment can tell that I'm making ethanol here, or at least he will ask if I keep a dead body in my wardrobe.
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[*] posted on 25-4-2015 at 21:32





[Edited on 4-26-2015 by Zombie]

[Edited on 4-26-2015 by Zombie]




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[*] posted on 26-4-2015 at 11:09


Substitute one horrible smell with another? Are you sure?
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[*] posted on 26-4-2015 at 19:07


Positive.

One night I met a Gal in a bar... never mind.:P




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[*] posted on 27-4-2015 at 19:07


Make sure your fermenter vents out a window. That is what they make vinyl tubing for. Good mash smells like a bar at closing time. If it smells like dead people, piss or vomit then toss it, or find a new bar.
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[*] posted on 27-4-2015 at 19:19


I started a new mash fermentation, this time I used an improvised reflux condenser made out of glass tubes.
And you know what? I can barely feel its odor. Most likely there was some high boiling stinky stuff which gave the odor first time.
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[*] posted on 6-5-2015 at 06:29


Got some sad news: I failed to distill any ethanol after 6 days of fermentation. But I've got (from 2L total volume) 70 ml of isopropanol, and a hell lot of amyl alcohols and other higher alcohols. Who have drunk all my ethanol?
I'm not sophisticated in brewing, is the only possible reason for the absence of ethanol is aerobic fermentation leading to acetic acid? But when I tried to mix the fermented product with baking soda, I got only slight bubling, much weaker than that of 5% acetic acid solution.
Did I fail fermentation, or maybe used some wrong nutrition, or wrong distillation process if the only possible reason?
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[*] posted on 6-5-2015 at 07:17


Explain what you used to ferment, the yeast, and or nutrients, and the conditions in which you fermented... Container? temp? dark? light?

Did the ferment bubble actively?

What did you ferment, and the recipe?

What was your distillation process? how much distillate did you recover from how much "beer"?

What were you wearing? ;)




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[*] posted on 6-5-2015 at 07:22


If you're trying to make ethanol by ANAEROBIC fermentation with yeast, then first step is to exclude any and all oxygen! You shouldn't have any worries about aerobic oxidation to acetic acid if you made an attempt to air-lock it.



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[*] posted on 6-5-2015 at 07:42


I'm using regular OTC baking yeasts, have no idea about what is the species name.
I made a mash from 1.7 L of water, 400 g of inverted sugar (obtained by heating a sugar at 80 C with 1 g of citric acid), 1 g of urea, 10 mg of B2 vitamin (it was a B-group vitamin complex in fact), 2 g of Ca3(PO4). The temperature was maintained 27-30 C all the time after making the above solution. When I added the yeasts, bubbling started pretty rapidly, and it was bubbling for 2 days, than intensity decreased, but there was still some bubbling, so I decided to keep it fermenting for 5 more days.
About fermentation device setup: it was a 2L bottle with 29/32 joint, in which was inserted a tube 20 cm long, plugged with a cotton wool.
On 7th day I replated the plugged tube with a usual glass air-lock device (like this one ), cooled, and let it settle for few hours. Then I decanted everything except bottom layer and distilled it. The first fraction that came off the distillation column was 80 C+.
This was the lowest fraction I managed to separate, which is isopropanol (checked by iodoform test).
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[*] posted on 6-5-2015 at 07:54


It all sounds right. You should have recovered around 200mL ish of EtOH. @ approx 40-50ABV

Did you use a water cooled condenser?




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[*] posted on 6-5-2015 at 08:44


My apparatus was similar to this one , in case you don't see the picture: source flask (one neck), fractioning column, three-way adapter with thermometer, water-cooled liebeg condenser, receiving adapter.
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[*] posted on 6-5-2015 at 10:18


The way I see that set up, the calcium chloride is supposed to dry the ethanol but in its position it can not. Nothing would be recovered there.

The calcium chloride filter would have to go either in the vapor path before condensing or in the condensate path before collection.

You would also need to monitor the ABV of the condensate or the head temp at the top of the column to know when to stop collecting.
The head temp should remain steady at whatever number thru the majority of the run. Once you see a gradual rise in temp... it is time to stop distilling.

I hope some of this applies...

[Edited on 5-6-2015 by Zombie]




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[*] posted on 6-5-2015 at 13:14


I don't know about all those vitamins and nutrients you added, or why you would use inverted sugar. I make my ethanol with quite high yield from simple table sugar, water, and turbo yeast. Works great every time, and the mixture concentrates to about 17-18%.



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[*] posted on 6-5-2015 at 14:54


Yes, yeast expresses sucrose invertase, so there's no need to invert the sugar - it does it for you.

@Zombie: Calcium chlorate? Do you mean chloride?




As below, so above.
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[*] posted on 6-5-2015 at 15:03


Yes.

I hope I didn't turn his lab into a roman candle...

I'll go back, and edit that... THANKS!!!!!




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[*] posted on 6-5-2015 at 15:07


Quote: Originally posted by Amos  
I don't know about all those vitamins and nutrients you added, or why you would use inverted sugar. I make my ethanol with quite high yield from simple table sugar, water, and turbo yeast. Works great every time, and the mixture concentrates to about 17-18%.



I recognize the formula. It was originally posted by a fella called Punkin on the distillation forums.

They tend to over think the simplest things there. Booze, free time, nonsense.




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[*] posted on 6-5-2015 at 16:35


Receiving flask was the last in my apparatus, no calcium chloride tube was present. Sorry, I was lazy to edit the picture and post it here.
I see all over the internet articles and some people recommend to invert the sugar before adding it to a mesh, though I was not able to find an answer about why shoul I do the same. They say that yeasts more easily consume inverted sugar, while they have to invert the regular one.
Ammonia leads to lesser amount of higher alcohols; vitamin B2/olive oil/small amount of oxygen is needed for yeasts reproduction.

[Edited on 7-5-2015 by byko3y]
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[*] posted on 8-5-2015 at 04:39


Quote: Originally posted by Zombie  
The way I see that set up, the calcium chloride is supposed to dry the ethanol but in its position it can not. Nothing would be recovered there.

It is not supposed to dry the alcohol, it is supposed to prevent ingress of humid air into the apparatus. This is a pretty common usage of a drying tube. Calcium chloride can't be used to directly dry simple alcohols anyways.




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[*] posted on 8-5-2015 at 10:58


Today I tried a carefull distillation with H2SO4 added into the fermentation product. Ethanol was distilling ri-i-i-ealy slow at 78-79°C, but after all, I've got a clear liquid with 0.80 g/ml density, most of which is probably a 96% ethanol, 55ml of a semi-pure product from 550ml of crude one.
After destroying esters with sodium hydroxide and another distillation, I finally got something like 45 ml of pure ethanol boiling at 78.2-78.8°C.
Maybe I tried to distill too rapidly in my previous try, and the fractioning column failed to separate ethanol and isopropanol, which have close boiling points (78.3 and 80.4). I can extrapolate the numbers, claiming 150 ml of 96% ethanol yield from 2200 ml of total product volume, which is 7%. I was sure the regular yeast could give at least 12% :( Gonna try a high load of a regular sugar next time.
Also, I was stupid to perform haloform test on the ethanol, because both ethanol and isopropanol give positive result, so you can't use the test to differentiate them.
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[*] posted on 8-5-2015 at 12:13


Quote: Originally posted by byko3y  
I can extrapolate the numbers, claiming 150 ml of 96% ethanol yield from 2200 ml of total product volume, which is 7%. I was sure the regular yeast could give at least 12% :( Gonna try a high load of a regular sugar next time.


Why did you add H2SO4 to the fermented mash?

Did you measure alcohol on what was left in the pot?

Did you allow fermentation to finish completely?

1 mol of glucose (180.16 g) yields 2 mol ethanol (2 x 46.07 g) of ethanol.

For 12 w% EtOH (normal yeast), start with 235 g sugar per litre of mash. That's what I used to do, worked a treat. Allow 2 weeks or until bubbling stops. Use a wine hygrometer or refractometer for ABV.

You're not easily going to detect small amounts of IPA with chemical tests.

[Edited on 8-5-2015 by blogfast25]




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[*] posted on 9-5-2015 at 01:47


I dunno why I added H2SO4. I was hoping it will help to break esters and other shit. Not really sure if it helped.
Yes, I allowed the fermentation to finish. I measured the 55 ml volume using a graduated cylinder.
After full oxidation primary alcohols convertinto acids and IPA converts into ketone. You can use acidic fuschin then (schiff's reagent) to detect the acetone. Or nitroprusside (rothera test), which is more specific to ketones. Anyway it requires some separation of oxidized products from the mixture, so it's a lot of work.
And thanks for explaining stochiometric proportions, I was wondering about those proportions, because all over the internet people post weight proportions, and in fact it's all about 1:2 moles.
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