Whole Leaf Tobacco
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  1. #21
    Administrator deluxestogie's Avatar
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    Re: Making Press-Cake

    A 5" x 5" block of tobacco (25 in2), regardless of its thickness, could be crushed into Perique by 35 psi, which would translate to 875 pounds directly applied. Press cake should be achievable with 1/10 that psi, so a mere 87.5 pounds would suffice. There's no real need for hydraulic anything, or even a mechanical jack. If you're doing a wine barrel full of tobacco, then go big, but for most home pressing, practically any hand-actuated clamp will get the job done (including the caulking gun).

    I believe the only tricky part is finding or making a well-fit follower for the container of your choice.

    Bob

  2. #22
    Senior Member ChinaVoodoo's Avatar
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    Re: Making Press-Cake

    Quote Originally Posted by deluxestogie View Post
    A 5" x 5" block of tobacco (25 in2), regardless of its thickness, could be crushed into Perique by 35 psi, which would translate to 875 pounds directly applied. Press cake should be achievable with 1/10 that psi, so a mere 87.5 pounds would suffice. There's no real need for hydraulic anything, or even a mechanical jack. If you're doing a wine barrel full of tobacco, then go big, but for most home pressing, practically any hand-actuated clamp will get the job done (including the caulking gun).

    I believe the only tricky part is finding or making a well-fit follower for the container of your choice.

    Bob
    If 87.5lbs is enough weight to make a 5"x5" brick of tobacco at 3.5psi, I'll be a monkeys uncle.
    This blanket is a necessity. It keeps me from cracking up. It may be regarded as a spiritual tourniquet. Without it, I'd be nothing, a ship without a rudder. - Linus

  3. #23
    Senior Member ChinaVoodoo's Avatar
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    Re: Making Press-Cake

    MacBaren's says they put 55 tons (metric, I presume) on a brick which is 40cm x 40cm and 1m thick (15.7" x 15.7" x 40") . That's 490psi. I think there's a big difference between pressing tobacco which is in case and tobacco which is in high case. Something to do with the elastic strength of the leaf, and cells rupturing.
    https://mac-baren.com/the-production-of-flake-tobacco
    This blanket is a necessity. It keeps me from cracking up. It may be regarded as a spiritual tourniquet. Without it, I'd be nothing, a ship without a rudder. - Linus

  4. #24
    Administrator deluxestogie's Avatar
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    Re: Making Press-Cake

    Quote Originally Posted by ChinaVoodoo View Post
    If 87.5lbs is enough weight to make a 5"x5" brick of tobacco at 3.5psi, I'll be a monkeys uncle.
    I'll still respect you, regardless of your nephew. Now I'll have to actually press a brick.

    Bob

    EDIT: While increasing thickness has zero impact on the psi, the thicker the material to be pressed, the longer it will take at the same pressure.

  5. #25
    Senior Member ChinaVoodoo's Avatar
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    Re: Making Press-Cake

    Quote Originally Posted by deluxestogie View Post
    I'll still respect you, regardless of your nephew. Now I'll have to actually press a brick.

    Bob

    EDIT: While increasing thickness has zero impact on the psi, the thicker the material to be pressed, the longer it will take at the same pressure.
    The ability of a mixture to resist elastic deformation under compression has an impact on how much force needs to be applied. Consider a fifty pound weight on a pillow. Now imagine a 50 lb weight on a stack of 20 pillows. In the first example, the pillow would likely be completely compressed. In the second, the 20 pillows would only be partly compressed. It might even be that three pillows are compressed in an uneven fashion depending on where they lie in the stack.
    This blanket is a necessity. It keeps me from cracking up. It may be regarded as a spiritual tourniquet. Without it, I'd be nothing, a ship without a rudder. - Linus

  6. #26
    Senior Member greenmonster714's Avatar
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    Re: Making Press-Cake

    Thanks for posting that MacBaren article. Good reading. I had no idea they used that much pressure or for that long.

  7. #27
    Administrator deluxestogie's Avatar
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    Re: Making Press-Cake

    I'll make up a compressed stack of whole leaf cut into rectangles of 2" x 6" (12 in2), aiming for a final block about 1" thick. The leaf will be well cased in 50:50 Seagram's VO Canadian Whiskey and water. This I will press between a cement floor and a plank, using a 5 gallon bucket of water (41.75#) as a direct weight. This should generate ~3.48 psi, which will be maintained for 1 month. The rectangular stack of leaf will be contained within a folded Ziploc bag, with the closure left open.

    It will either work or not work. We'll see.

    The plug will be composed of:
    • WLT Lemon Virginia
    • WLT Red Virginia
    • WLT Samsun
    • WLT Basma
    • BB's Burley Red Tips

    Bob

  8. #28
    Senior Member Leftynick's Avatar
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    Re: Making Press-Cake

    My last attempt on making a brick of tobacco turned out to be a brick of mold. Would likely to attempt this if my current crop doing nicely.

  9. #29
    Senior Member ChinaVoodoo's Avatar
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    Re: Making Press-Cake

    Quote Originally Posted by Leftynick View Post
    My last attempt on making a brick of tobacco turned out to be a brick of mold. Would likely to attempt this if my current crop doing nicely.
    That's a shame. I recommend that when doing processes where you add moisture to the tobacco, you weigh the tobacco first so you can afterwards tell if it's dried or not. Bricks and ropes and such are difficult to estimate moisture content in without cutting them open.
    This blanket is a necessity. It keeps me from cracking up. It may be regarded as a spiritual tourniquet. Without it, I'd be nothing, a ship without a rudder. - Linus

  10. #30
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    Re: Making Press-Cake

    I think it helps for us as we live in a drier climate China. in High humidity I would not be adding extra water.

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