Making cider with no press

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Portreath

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Is it possible to make cider without a press? I've just found a tree properly loaded with apples in our local woods, apples taste nice too. I recon I could get a couple of ruck sacks full of the things.

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prog99

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I've used a domestic fruit juicer to tediously do 10kg of apples.
Also know someone who blitzed them in a food processor and then did a lot of squeezing. Its useful to get help with this one.
 

jceg316

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It's definitely possible to scrat them. You need a bucked and a heavy post or log or something to smash the apples up with. Then to press you can put the apple mash into cheese cloth and press down on it with heavy items maybe. Efficiency may not be so great. I know some people use a car jack as the pressing mechanism.
 

Hagrid

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I’ve built a really simple apple press that works really well. If you’re hoping to use the tree a few times it’d be worth making one.

I’ve been thinking about doing a “how to build” but I didn’t take any pictures as I built it. I should be able to talk it through though.
 

BrewMeHappy

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I used and electric juicer once but never again. It may have been just the juicer but it was a chore and kept clogging up.

The bottle jack option looks genius.
 

freester

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My answer to this is the pressing is easy - some small presses are cheap or you can make one. The scratting is harder, or hard work depending on your method.
 

HarryFlatters

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I'm making cider at the weekend from a glut of apples from my neighbours and in-laws. I've got a press but no scratter, so I'm planning on quartering the apples, putting them in a builders trug and hitting them with a fence post until they're pulped.
 

Cwrw666

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I usually freeze my apples then thaw them out, scrat them and press them. This year I was a bit lazy though; I froze 'em, thawed 'em, then just pressed them whole. I reckon my efficiency was down a little but not too bad. The freezing ruptures all the structure of the apple making it easier for the juice to get out.
 

Hagrid

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I froze and thawed pears and blamley apples for my press this year but then forraged some crab apples. I didn’t get chance to freeze them but was impressed by the about the juice I got. I’ve picked up some eaters today to add to the mix and won’t be freezing them it’ll be interesting to see what difference it makes.
I usually freeze my apples then thaw them out, scrat them and press them. This year I was a bit lazy though; I froze 'em, thawed 'em, then just pressed them whole. I reckon my efficiency was down a little but not too bad. The freezing ruptures all the structure of the apple making it easier for the juice to get out.
 

froggi

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Re the scratting.... a mate who is a commercial brewer decided to make a cider one year to test the waters re production to sell "artisan" cider in the bar
He built the press using steel box section which was very successful and simply used a cleaned out and sanitised (as much as he could anyway) garden shredder due to the amount of apples he had to process - it's possible to pick up a shredder from your local freecycle website or off evilBay for dirt cheap (mine was £20 and very local to me so collected)
Just a thought
 

Shirley Bassett

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Scratting of apples:

I too use a garden shredder. I modified the top slot to allow me to put whole apples in. If you get a second hand one, then if you disassemble the cutting parts of the shredder, they can be quickly cleaned with a wire scrubbing brush, wire wool and then put in an ultrasonic bath, if you have access to one. Alternative to the bath is to soak them, for about two weeks in full fat coke.

Prior to use I spray the whole of the insides of the shredder with Starsan via a plant misting bottle. I clean down the cutting parts and Starsan them.

Post scratting I strip the shredder down again, clean down the insides of the shredder. The blades etc I wash, then dry and then store them in a tub of sunflower oil. It stops any long term corrosion.

Pressing:

I found that a bottle jack option is far easier to use than a scissor jack. I use a 6 ton one. Haven’t watched the above video, but if you are pressing against a wooden top beam in the press,then it is beneficial to place a sacrificial piece of wood between the jack and the top beam. I use a piece of pallet top.
 

froggi

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Re the juice extraction, I have heard of/seen on PooTube/thought about, using an old standalone spin dryer to centrifuge the juice out.... Not sure how successful it would be but from the viewings, it seems that it could be viable..... Just a thought!!
 

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