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My new press

How about we start with a picture.

[attachment=2]press 1.jpg[/attachment]

What you have there is a welded steel frame with screw, a HDPE filter base and follower and a leveling plate. The hopper is also welded and lined with polycarbonate so it does not touch the sake (bad, evil iron) and is able to be sanitized and has a spigot valve.

Overall, it went very well with only a one fixable flaw. But what worked first:

Leak proof.
Base filter did not clog
Follower and leveling plate stayed horizontal.

In short, I’ve thrilled with it. The only issue that came up was that it the bag pressed on the container in such a way that it created a seal and basically nothing flowed. In that I had 5 gallons of sake in the press at the time, failure was NOT an option. With some quick trips to the shop, I fashioned up 8 pieces of PVC with slots to allow the sake to press out from the sides. That turned out to work just great.

[attachment=1]slotted pvc.jpg[/attachment]

All told, with the troubleshooting, it took me about 4 hours to press the 5 gallons, but 90% was pressed in the last half hour.

With the solution working, I pressed my 2nd standard sized batch and had the whole thing pressed in maybe 20 minutes.

[attachment=0]todays pressing.jpg[/attachment]

And for those interested, here is how it all went together…in the next post as 3 seems to be the limit.

The pictorial story:


My biggest sin was re-inventing the wheel as it were. I’m going to build up a new inner hopper out of 1/2" HDPE slats, and stainless steel bands. And just put the whole thing into a 5 gallon bucket with a valve. Will have to make up new top, bottom and leveling plates but that should be pretty easy.

[attachment=0]new hopper.jpg[/attachment]

Luckily I designed the press to accept 5 gallon buckets :smiley:

And that will also allow me to press apples in the fall…

Wow, great post and GREAT design. It’s even my favorite color! What’s your total cost into the press, if you were to build it again without the troubleshooting?

Thanks for the kind words. I appreciate it.

Well, that is a sticky question about total cost. Mostly because I had to buy a couple tools I didn’t have (go look up Steel Demon saw blades - I cut 1 " thick mild steel like it was aluminum :twisted: ) and I bought some materials in larger quantities because I would have use for them but have quite a bit left over. So I’ll give you both.

5x8 sheet 12 ga steel. $78. Used $20 worth.
1-20 threaded rod. $12 - used $4
1-20 nuts - $4
1 1/4 pipe - $10 - used $2
1/2" angle - $20 - used $10
1" square tube - $40 used $10
1x2 square tube - $40
HDPE - $20
HDPE Glue $20 - used $1
Spigot - $12
PVC cap - $1
Paint $25
Grinding disks - $10 - still in use
Diablo Steel demon $40 - still in use

Total cost $334

But again, with the exception of plastic, some paint and 1x2 square, I could make another for under $50 with what i have around still.

So, the cost of the materials used would be about $150.

Oh, and don’t forget about the $1000 welder :slight_smile:

But the next design will less as I am replacing the welded and lined hopper with a 5 gallon bucket and that new plastic ribbed deal.

I’d be interested in hearing how version 2.0 differs in practical usage (easier to clean, set up, move, build, etc).

How big are the batches you press? 5 gallons at once?

Well, as I have no sake brewing right now, it will be a year before 2.0 gets sake tested.

Yes, it was designed to handle 5 gallons, and did.

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