Carbon Filtering

Filtering spirits after distillation
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Easydrinker
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Carbon Filtering

Post by Easydrinker »

To carbon filter your spirit , or not, is a topic which divides opinion.
Firstly what is the spirit and how was it made?
It only makes sense to carbon filter a neutral spirit or vodka, as filtering will remove any taste or aroma that you may have strived to get into a whisky, rum, whatever.
Neutral spirits made in a column still, especially if double distilled from a clean wash, with judicious cuts made, do not need filtering, some folk will do so, most will not.
With larger pot stills it is absolutely possible to get clean neutral by making careful cuts, but you lose a lot this way to the Heads and Tails. By using an efficient carbon filter system you can make a wider cut taking some of the late Heads and early Tails which the carbon will then efficiently clean and polish for you.
With a small Airstill, which is a compromised Pot still, unless you make very, very tight cuts, even after a double distillation, you will probably benefit from carbon filtering.
This one remains a contentious issue!
Nothing is set in stone,and we all need to find our own way.

There are several commercial filters available, the Essencia and Eze spring to mind, although sometimes finding one, or replacement filters can be a challenge.
It is not too difficult to make one.
My own cheapy filtering method before the essencia was to pour a couple of teaspoons of carbon into each litre of "neutral" and leave bottles in a place where I would shake several times a day,for several days.At the sides of your TV watching chair would be good....
Then put the bottles in a freezer for 24 hours,before decanting, (trick learnt from HD forum).
Putting the bottles in a freezer for 24 hours really did seem to make a difference when it came to decanting off. I used to loose maybe 50 mil from 1000, without filtering through paper.
Similar result to the Essencia, more work, more excercise. :)

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Maker
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Re: Carbon Filtering

Post by Maker »

This is something I have toyed with making for sometime, I have some stainless tube and a bag of activated carbon so could make a filter for neutral but as I have been making cornflake whiskey of late I am thinking more about making some charcoal to pour through as Jack Daniels does to add flavour, how come it does not strip the flavour of the spirit, is it just a coarse grade and mainly flows past?
I'm not as think as you drunk I am...
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Re: Carbon Filtering

Post by Easydrinker »

I'm guessing most of it goes straight through.
Imagine how raspy un-filtered JD tastes. :lol:

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Re: Carbon Filtering

Post by Mash »

You can have mine. I rarely use it. I get much better results with an air stone.
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Re: Carbon Filtering

Post by Maker »

I have an air stone, bought it to clean up the cachaca I made, think I was asking to much of it..
My 4 month old cornflake whiskey compared to jack Daniels I think would only be preference of taste, mine is a lot smoother.
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Taity
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Re: Carbon Filtering

Post by Taity »

Testing this one put seems to work good
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Re: Carbon Filtering

Post by Moss »

I used to have a similar method, but I always found it Was really slow
Have you tried turning it off and back on again?


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Re: Carbon Filtering

Post by Easydrinker »

I sometimes find that the speed that my neutral is filtered has a beneficial effect upon the amount that I consume.
i.e., I can't drink it too fast, because the supply drys up.
There is a lot through My Essencia tonight.
Which is a bugger, as I have to drive to donate blood in the morning.
I remembered the word 'willpower' and put it in the searchbox above.
It found no matches.
My decision then.
How many manys, are too many manys?
Many many.
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Re: Carbon Filtering

Post by Mash »

It looks remarkably familiar to one I saw somewhere else,...only a few days ago. :D
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Re: Carbon Filtering

Post by Easydrinker »

I am all for people dragging posts here from elsewhere.
Not all of us are elsewhere! :)

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Re: Carbon Filtering

Post by Mash »

Looking at the picture,I'm not sure what it does for the alcohol, but that filter does seem to attract the flies :D :D
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Re: Carbon Filtering

Post by Rochdaleguy »

Mash wrote: Sun Feb 24, 2019 8:23 am You can have mine. I rarely use it. I get much better results with an air stone.
Hi Mash, what kind of air filter / pump do you use, and what’s your method? I’d like to ditch the carbon filtering if I can.
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Re: Carbon Filtering

Post by Mash »

You don't need carbon to produce quality alcohol. Make a good natural wash. Don't stress the yeast and they make you good stuff.

The air stone is stainless, I use a basic air pump for 30 mins on the freshly run spirit cut at 40%
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Re: Carbon Filtering

Post by EchoSevenNine »

Mash wrote: Mon Jun 17, 2019 6:49 am You don't need carbon to produce quality alcohol. Make a good natural wash. Don't stress the yeast and they make you good stuff.

The air stone is stainless, I use a basic air pump for 30 mins on the freshly run spirit cut at 40%
What sort of litres per minute doe the pump run, please, Mr Mash?
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Re: Carbon Filtering

Post by gaza the instructor »

Not tried an Airstone Mash says it rounds off the spirit nicely.
That sounds good but for now I leave mine for a month in a
DJ and just rotate the stock. I permanently have four or five
washes on the go and therefore 5 or 6 gallons of 40% in stock.
I use it to make my Gin amongst other things, :D
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Re: Carbon Filtering

Post by Mash »

EchoSevenNine wrote: Tue Jul 02, 2019 12:51 pm What sort of litres per minute doe the pump run, please, Mr Mash?
No idea. Don't think about too hard. I use a simple aquarium pump
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Re: Carbon Filtering

Post by Mash »

Ok ok ok I have been out to the brew shed and looked it up.

I have an Airvolution 2 - 200 lpm. Don't think it will matter too much, & I certainly would not go over 200 L. My DJ does tend to erupt when a drop the pump in hand I always make sure it's no more than three quarters full.

TBH I bought this for beer, a couple of years ago in pursuance of the cobblers that it made a difference to your yeast starting and was better than a good thrashing with a balloon whisk. It isn't.

However it has done grand service at polishing neutral. It is just doing the same as airing it - Just quicker and easier.
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Re: Carbon Filtering

Post by EchoSevenNine »

Im sold and bought both, stainless stone and pump yesterday.

Nearly shit a brick when i seen your 200lpm, Mash, but that should be lph i see :D
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Re: Carbon Filtering

Post by Mash »

I thought it was mph :D Sorry my typo.

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Re: Carbon Filtering

Post by EchoSevenNine »

Nothing but sterling advice from you so far, Mash, i cant see this being any different.
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Re: Carbon Filtering

Post by captainfog »

How does this idea work? What does it do to the neutral?
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Re: Carbon Filtering

Post by Mash »

Works well. Takes the harsh edges off.
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Re: Carbon Filtering

Post by myles »

I have tried carbon filtering but do not bother these days.
I have an airstone setup.

I use this airstone wand https://www.brewbuilder.co.uk/air-stone-wand.html
with this air pump https://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/product/B07 ... UTF8&psc=1

Try the options and make up your own mind. I am not a fan of carbon - but even I will say that there are some applications that need it. It really does depend on you product, quality control and fermentation priorities.

If you make vodka/gin and have real tight haze control, then carbon filtering might be absolutely necessary. Otherwise you might not NEED it but may still CHOOSE to use it. That is personal choice. I will not say you are wrong.
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Re: Carbon Filtering

Post by Easydrinker »

I have not made much neutral in the last 12 months.
Put a 50 litre ferment through my kit last week.
I considered it a 'clean' wash.
Carbon filtering certainly seems to have improved the product.
For me, this was a no brainer.
An airstone MAY have done the same job.
I can't help being a Luditte. :lol:

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Re: Carbon Filtering

Post by Mash »

It's always a personal choice. I get quite good clean ferments, but still found an improvement with air.
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