To Reactor or Not

In my pursuit to find the most cost efficient way to extract this low potency hemp I have (4%). I need to do larger volumes 60lbs+ a run to make this worth while. I don’t think that units like the delta or pinnacle are worth the money and scale up just get more labor intensive. This leaves me looking at reactors. Ive recently heard of a lab’s reactor exploding and dumping 100kg of crude on the floor, I assume its cause it got to cold or someone dumped to much warm liquid in the super cold reactor. Anyways hoping to avoid learning all of my lessons by mistake on this one and get into a reactor that will do the job right from the beginning.

Does anyone have experience using reactors, do they need to be insulated and jacketed, how much head room do you need and last but not least how do you filter that much biomass out of the mixture ?

Any advice based on experience is always appreciated, thanks!

How did their stainless reactor explode? If you mean they we’re extracting in a glass reactor than they hired the wrong consultant.


To be honest I didn’t pry into what the employee did wrong or what exactly they are using. Ive been to the facility and seen large 300+ gallon reactors there, I have no idea if they are glass lined. Just see huge stainless jacketed vessels. Why that happened is not my real question. Hoping you guys are willing to share your reactor selection with me and why. I really looking to skip some trial and error.

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Are you just looking for a cheap method to extract crude? This forum has some interesting threads I recommend you read through - “bucket Tek” alcohol extraction as well as “washing machine” DIY centerfuge for drying out your biomass.
If you are looking for a larger scale closed-loop and OSHA compliant option, you may want to reconsider your budget for this project. Take a look at Pinnacle Stainless and their Etoh Extraction skid.


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I am looking for a small scale ethanol extraction unit.
What about these 10L Glass Jackated Reactors from USA Lab?

The other option is the much bigger 50L stainless reactor from BVV
I am worried this needs much bigger vac an chiller. We just need something going on the cheap side ASAP.

What are you doing with a vac pump on your etoh extractor?

Stainless is always my choice over glass for etoh, and I’d rather use hdpe instead if possible


Do I not need vacuum for the reactor? BVV has a vac pump in their turnkey setup.

This is from Lab Society about their Jacketed Glass Reactor:

A key advantage of the dual jacket system is that you can pull vacuum on the outer jacket while pumping cooled or heated fluid through the inner jacket.

For extraction you do not need vacuum. Seriously, people have had great success with just using buckets. I am eyeing reactors like that (particularly double jacket reactors) for crystallization, LLE, and possibly even decarbing, but they’re WAY too small for biomass extraction and completely unnecessary. A 20l reactor is really only 5.3 gallons. A 5 gallon SS bucket is a much more appropriate vessel. If you want to scale up, you’d probably want a 30-100 gallon jacketed fermenter.

Those reactors are super versatile and can definitely come in handy for post processing, but they’re just not the right tool for the job of biomass extraction.


We are probably getting the 50L SS Jackated Reactor. What would be an appropriate chiller/heater to go with it?

Check out a 1/2 barrel jacketed fermenter and see if it’ll meet your needs before dropping the cash on that reactor. Although, Ledab sells a 50L double jacket reactor that would be great for chilling efficiency since you can utilize vacuum jacket insulation. It’s only like $400 more than the single jacket reactor from BVV.

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Thanks for the tips! I really like the double jacketed reactor from Ledab. Do you know anything abut their shipping cost/time to USA?

I don’t, unfortunately. I was just looking for double jacket stainless steel reactors and only came across this one. Having upwards of 15 kilos of product in a 50l glass reactor where I would be running -80c and +140c fluid through for different reactions makes me a little nervous. Not to mention the cost of the glass. Every other steel reactor I have found in that size or smaller was only single jacket. It would be great if I could find more in that size range to shop around.

@Soxhlet Have you ever fabbed something like this?

So after talking to Ledab and BVV I found out that they are not selling the double jacketed SS reactor anymore, due to low demand. I was told that the single jacketed one will be just as good for what we need it for.

We have double jacketed reactors in stock. We just ended a 50% off sale on those but I can extended the discount date and get you one half off. Send me a pm if interested


Im thinking of getting a glass jacketed reactor. For pre/post processing. Right now i do degumming in a Sep funnel. It seems primitive. Theres got to be a better way of doing this.

I understand why you dont want to extract in a glass reactor but is it optimal for doing stuff like the brine wash or the pH brine wash or is it better in the Sep funnel.

Whats most important to me is the efficiency of the reaction. I dont mind using the funnell and having it take forever to do these processes if its the best method. But if using a reactor is as good or better then I’m probably going to get one.

I just want to make sure theres not a more proper or more versatile way of doing what im already doing.

Also if I switch to cryo ethanol extraction in the future will my reactor become obsolete? Because I wont have to degum anymore or the degumming will be so drastically reduced that i wont need it.

I also would like to decarb in the reactor if that is a viable option

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We’ve happily used a 30gal one of these instead of a reactor for extraction:

It’ll handle 15-20lb batches easily. They’ll put any size thread you want on the lid and the drain. Pump fluid in/out with a pneumatic pump. Wrap it with insulation if you’d like but we’ve kept things pretty cold without it, starting with -80C EtOH. Tank and stand together was around $800.


emphasized text The glacier tank ones are insulated


i got a 50l jacketed ACE glass reactor for a pretty good deal. it seems to be never used or even unpacked

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I got an ace glass reactor. it claims to be rated from -50c to 250c would this be suitable for etoh extraction? cryo?

I got it for processing, scrubbing, etc but It would be a bonus to be able to use it for extraction. it looks like i could fit about 25# of trim in this 50L reactor

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