Top products from r/firewater

We found 51 product mentions on r/firewater. We ranked the 223 resulting products by number of redditors who mentioned them. Here are the top 20.

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Top comments that mention products on r/firewater:

u/DangerInTheMiddle · 3 pointsr/firewater

I know the guys who wrote this. It goes pretty in depth regarding their startup procedure.

If there is no craft size license, you may be looking at $20k in distilling license fees. Also, you cannot run this out of a residence. So you have to set up the stills in a commercial/manufacturing property and submit a floor plan to have it inspected. Then wait 6 months while the paperwork goes through.

Basically, year one costs would be something like this.

License - $300-22,000 in NY, depending on size. This includes an insurance bond with the state, which will run a couple of grand

Commercial Real estate Lease - $24k-40k/year. You'll be paying this with your equipment all in place while you wait for the license to get approved. Also, you may have some zoning issues or need to go through a local approval situation.

Stills and other equipment- you already have some, but you will need to scale up from hobbyist size if you want to be able to produce enough quantity, I'd put a minimum of $5k in for a larger still/tanks. And thats still something you will ideally outgrow. But a new still could mean more licensing approvals in your state.

Ingredients- Use your current input cost to product yield and imagine running your current setup every day, all day. Your current still size will determine how much volume you can put out to start. Say you're running a 10 Gal still, yielding about 2.5gal of good proofed product per run, with a mash bill around $40/run, your raw materials cost is around $4/liter. Couple dollars for bottling, your just over $5 per 750ml of product, before aging. 2.5 gal/day for about the 120 days you'll be able to legally run after the permit comes in gives you 300 gallons of product you can make during your first year.

Storage/Aging- Depending on the product you're putting out, you're either barreling or selling moonshine. Good thing about moonshine, you can start selling right away. Bad thing, people don't want to pay craft distiller prices for moonshine. What you barrel is going away for a while, and you'll need a place to store it. Plus the cost of barrels if you can get them. Say you're aging everything for 1 year in 5gallon new oak barrels running you $80 each, thats 60 barells, or $4800. And you'll get about 250 gallons out of the barrels if you are lucky.

So 1.5 yrs after you start the process, you could possibly start bottling your product. You'll want to wait until you have several barells that have matured before you start blending. In your first year, you made 100 cases of whiskey, which can come to market around the end of year 2, during which you've been running that still like crazy. You even bought another small still to double production to almost 1000 gal of whiskey in year 2.

My rough math puts you at around $2000k with the excise tax on the whiskey that comes off the still for the first 2 years. You'll need to put this out before you can really bring something to market, and thats assuming you do everything. Bring in outside labor will cost you another $20k/year for some part time help. Then you gotta figure out the sales part. Thats a whole other ball game. You could easily spend $250-300k before you start getting a solid revenue stream. Then, assuming sales are good and you sell 80% of your 5000 bottles produced/year at around $30/750ml wholesale, you're looking at around $120k revenue. Assuming sales and production scale up equally and steadily, you'll be turning a profit around year 4.

That might be a nice time to take your first paycheck.

Obviously, there are ways to do it cheaper, maybe you have a line on cheaper commercial rent, maybe you can get materials cheaper, maybe there is a farm distiller license in your state that brings your licensing costs way down.

But if you want to start one up with just $15k, I would find 10 other people with similar dreams, each of which have $15k to put in, and build a company together. Give yourself a fighting chance to fight through the taxes and beuracracy in order to bring your sweet sweet firewater to those of us who thirst.

TL:DR, I need some rich alcoholic friends.

u/urbn · 1 pointr/firewater
  1. CO2 is produced as a byproduct from the yeast, BUT CO2 will also get trapped in the fermented wash so you can get CO2 being released for a while. You can use the bubbles to determine if your fermentation has started and if there is activity happening, but once it drops below say 1 bubble every 2 or 3 seconds you can't really depend on it. The best test is a hydrometer, which is the most important tool you'll need with fermenting, and they only cost around $10. The money you save from not running washes too early will pay for this very quickly.

    2: Yes it's dangerous but not at the levels you'll be dealing with. For about a year I had 6 buckets 7 gallon fermenting in my room with new washes every week. It helped clean my sinuses while I slept but that's about it. So it's nothing to worry about at those levels.

    2: Better to switch to a different yeast. Red star dady distillers yeast is cheaper and better for vodka. Use turbo yeast for making fuel, not alcohol. No need to clear it before distilling. If all the fermentation has been completed the yeast will drop to the bottom, and you just siphon it out. If you want to be extra sure cold crash it.

u/jtriangle · 4 pointsr/firewater

This is the pot still link from the sidebar.

Build it yourself, it's a much better investment than a $700 copper pot still. Also, your aforementioned still isn't going to magically make you nice, well rounded spirits.

If you're looking to get into this and haven't read the sidebar, that's step one. Not deciding on a recipe, not finding a still, it's getting informed. At this point, you're green as all getout. You don't know what you don't know and you're going to have to read more and watch more youtube videos, so you can ask better questions.

If you're going to buy anything, buy a used stainless steel beer keg, at least a quarter barrel, but better if you can get a 15.5 gallon (half barrel). Try to source it locally to save on shipping. Then you can buy a pot still column off ebay that'll triclamp right onto it. Combine that with a cajun cooker/turkey fryer burner and some hoses to bring water in/out of your condenser and you'll be there. Should be less than $200. I get that you don't understand any of these terms, and I encourage you to read the sidebar and google what that leaves out. This is an adventure, you're going to have a blast.

u/damnnearkilldem · 3 pointsr/firewater

The Compleat distller, this one is extra nerdy i have read it multiple times , had to break out the highlighter though! it has all the details that you could ever imagine on distilling.

The Alaskan Bootlegger's bible is a very fun read! I would read the other suggestions in this thread for true, proper, safe and clean methods. There are a few questionable methods, but this book is intended as a humorous read into the cheap, backwoods booze making (beer, wine and sprits)

The Home Distillers workbook was the first book i picked up was free on kindle one day It was a very straight forward read, nothing too complicated. built my first teapot setup that evening

I apologize if my post is not formatted well, I dont post too much on reddit!

u/troubledwatersofmind · 3 pointsr/firewater

I liked the Alaskan Bootlegger's Bible. It's more of a brief intro into all things homebrew though. And despite the name (and the question) I probably wouldn't consider it a 'bible' of sorts, but I still think it is worth the mention. Just an easy, lighthearted, enjoyable read.

u/HillybillyNerd · 3 pointsr/firewater

I built one of these to use as a stripping still since I ferment in 5 gallon buckets. It works great actually. At the basic level all you'd need to do is cut a hole in it and tig weld (or silver solder) a fitting into it for a water heater element. I'm using a $10 110v 1500w water heater element. Throw the sidebar Pot Still head on it and you're golden.

Cuts are easier and more precise on a larger still for sure, but many of us started out with a stove-top kettle and it is possible to make acceptable cuts at that size. My first few spirit runs were done with a 3 gallon wash capacity pot still I made from a 4 gallon stainless steel cooking pot and the sidebar pot still arm. I'd say it rivaled any bottom-shelf commercial product, but I could be biased. It was definitely acceptable drink to me and everyone I shared it with.

I say if that's what you have room for, go for it. It will work well for you and you can always upgrade later to larger sizes if you have room.

u/fnordfnordfnordfnord · 1 pointr/firewater

Mine came with a 40A 240V SSR (Solid State Relay). I've used it with both a 240V 1500W and a 120V 1200W element.

  1. Make sure you use a heat-sink with your SSR.
  2. Use thermally-conductive grease between the heat-sink and SSR.
  3. Make sure your wiring is up to snuff.

    You are planning on using 240V to run the heater, right? That'll put you at just over 10A, which is nothing for that SSR. If you try to use 120V, you need to make sure that your circuit can stand it, and my guess is that it cannot. Most residential 120V circuits aren't meant for a 20A load, neither the wiring in the walls nor the plugs or receptacles; even though the circuit breaker might say 20A.

    Here is the one I used, I think.

    edit: I should confess that I know more about controls than I do about distiller boilers (not much). /u/sillycyco raises a good point. The PID controller that I linked switches too slowly; you might be able to tune it to work satisfactorily, but that would probably not work as well as a variac or thyristor based controller, or a combination of the two (which would be needlessly complex). Those SSRs are good though, and they're useful in either type of control system. I didn't like the one controller in your OP post though because I didn't see a triac in the kit and the kit doesn't list one; which would make it operate about as good as my wrong suggestion would have.

    edit2: The stilldragon site says SSR, but it's actually a Phase Angle Controller which isn't the same thing.
u/beerglar · 2 pointsr/firewater

I have the Mile Hi 8 gal, and also have a Sanke keg (uncut, just with the valve removed) and an o-ring that interfaces between the column and keg. I do stripping runs outside with the Sanke keg (usually around 12 gal), Mile Hi column, and a propane burner (just running it hot and fast), which leaves me like 4-5 gal of low wines that I later do my spirit run with in the 8 gal Mile Hi milk can with the Mile Hi electric heating element. Works really well for me.

OP, if you go with the Mile Hi heating element/controller, I highly recommend that you use some kind of load monitoring device between the controller and the power source so that you can accurately dial in the power, because the knob on the controller has a very narrow useful range. I had one of these lying around and it works great:

u/DrunkBrokeandHungry · 2 pointsr/firewater

Do you mean 1/4 barrel? I'm making a Boka out of a 1/2 barrel keg (15.5 gal). Here's what I've bought:

5' of 2" copper DVW pipe - Local hardware store
25' of 1/4" copper refrigeration coil - Local hardware store
Stainless steel pot-scrubbers - Walmart

Clamp ferrule:

1500W heating element:

Fitting for heating element:


Triclamp gasket:



Lead-free solder:

I am going to start by forgoing the Liebig condenser as I don't think its terribly necessary and it can always be added easily just after the compression-fitted valve. The hardest part was finding 5' of copper pipe, everyplace wanted to sell me 10' and the prices were all over the place.

Hope this helps!

u/MookSkywalker · 2 pointsr/firewater

Yes, PBW is like oxy clean for your still

u/murrayhenson · 1 pointr/firewater

Thanks! Someone else has recommended filtration and I think that something like that plus your Pectinex suggestion would do it.

u/IdiotManChild · 1 pointr/firewater

I really enjoyed The Home Distiller's Workbook. It's easy to understand, gives beginners a decent foundational knowledge (enough to get started), and includes some simple recipes at the end.

u/potstillin · 1 pointr/firewater

z32 is talking about a system to maintain a closed loop cooling system. So you don't have to add new cool water, just remove heat from reservoir water.

My original post was about basically making a fairly flat worm and blowing air over it to condense vapor. Just an idea I found intriguing, water cooling makes much more sense for most of us. I would imagine the small air cooled distillers use some form of this setup. [distiller] ( alcohol vapor is much easier to condense than water vapor.

u/sillycyco · 1 pointr/firewater

> How does the Buchner Filter work?

Here is an example. It is a flask, with a stopper and funnel on top. You put filter paper in the funnel, and attach the vacuum pump to the nozzle on the side of the flask. This allows you to pull a vacuum in the flask, pulling whatever is in the funnel through the paper.

It will work to clarify your spirits (mostly), it is what I use in conjunction with cold crashing and decanting. Just stick your spirit in the freezer for a few days/week and the cloudy proteins will settle out to the bottom. Then just draw off the top clear liquid. Then use the funnel to polish it off if you need to.

u/rgby22 · 0 pointsr/firewater

heres a list of ADI books which most you can buy off of amazon

this is a pretty basic one. I would ignore the advice he gives to make a still. youll outgrow it pretty quickly and want to advance to something bigger

this book really basic and doesnt get into the science too much but is instead a real basic intro. sort of a cliff notes version. also doesnt get too much into distilling itself but is a decent starting place.

edit: added a different link to a website that has good books.

u/cowpen · 1 pointr/firewater

These distilling devices are perfectly legal in the US...

Not very practical for the purposes generally espoused in this subreddit however.

u/cringris · 1 pointr/firewater

Credit to Kings County Distillery. Here is their graph of a "typical" run. I know there are a million variables that can change this but it's an interesting way to gauge what you are measuring off your own still.

u/ccc1912 · 1 pointr/firewater

Wish I could do something like that, My still just makes brandy.

u/suprchunk · 1 pointr/firewater

> file:///C:/Users/ellyt_000/Downloads/White%20Mule%20Press%20Spring%202015%20Wholesale%20Catalog.pdf

Yep, Elly has a bug.

And let's clean up those links; here and here.

u/gobuchul74 · 2 pointsr/firewater

I used this kit.

Worked well. The flux is just straight acid though, so be careful with the fumes.

u/drinkfire · 3 pointsr/firewater

Use harris stay clean liquid flux. Only thing I've found that will stick to stainless. Break down and buy some. Only cost you about $15 and will be cheaper than a plumber.

u/bigbadfox · 1 pointr/firewater

I've ordered this book:http: // (i have yet to figure out how to shorten links)

I don't mean to impose at all, but would it be any imposition if i kept in contact through PM to get some info from someone who knows how this works?

u/chookas2244 · 2 pointsr/firewater

I use the 14 gallon version of this for sugar washes. amazon clicky

u/CarbonGod · 2 pointsr/firewater

VicTsing 80 GPH (300L/H) Submersible Water Pump For Pond, Aquarium, Fish Tank Fountain Water Pump Hydroponics with 5.9ft (1.8M) Power Cord

u/The_Paul_Alves · 3 pointsr/firewater

I'm getting THIS BOOK. I think you should too.

u/Johnnybgoode76 · 1 pointr/firewater

Eagle 1601MB Blue High Density Polyethylene Lab Pack Drum with Metal Lever-lock Lid, 30 gallon Capacity, 28.5" Height, 21.25" Diameter

u/ImChrisBrown · 2 pointsr/firewater

2x 120v seems like a massive pain. I think I'm going to just run one with a controller and deal with the extra time it takes

Also just looked at turkey fryers and found this

I would only need to triclamp the still ontop of the keg in that case, correct? I wouldn't need to modify the keg at all.

u/thearthurvandelay · 5 pointsr/firewater

you want an ultra low watt density element [], not a high density one. that's why you're getting all that scorch on there.

u/rvkUJApH34uqa5Wh8M4K · 1 pointr/firewater

What size of pump is needed? I'm thinking this might do the job. Will probably need to suck the air to start it but after that it might work.

u/coopster · 6 pointsr/firewater

The temperature probe is in the main column inserted down from the end cap. It sits directly in the vapor path at the 90 degree turn.

The PID controller has an auto-learn feature; after one setup session (where it bounced the temperature all over the place and recorded data) it can hold the steam temperature incredibly steady at just about any temperature.


u/Litigiousattny · 0 pointsr/firewater

I know a lot of people prefer ones that have more surface area so there is no scorching. look at

u/koorbloh · 3 pointsr/firewater

I use this to watch wattage:

I don't have a pic handy, but just imagine a homebrew of the milehidistiling thing plugged into the kill a watt thing, because that's what I do.