I had preheated the WVO to 145 deg and transferred it to my mix tank. I usually lose a few degrees in the transfer. It was about 137 deg prior to adding KOH/meth so I turned on external heater and added chemicals. I shut off external heat at 140 deg. The temp continued to climb to 149.7 deg at which time it finally peaked only after forcing the temp to stop by placing heavy metal heat sinks in the mix. I was getting nervous. I vaguely remember the flash temp for the methanol to be 148 deg (I may be wrong). This is the first time I could not control the temp. Do you think it was a chemical reaction that caused this? I did add the chemicals faster than usual. The batch came out fine although I probably flashed off quite a bit of methanol. It was over temp for approx 45 min.
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This is the first time I could not control the temp. Do you think it was a chemical reaction that caused this? I did add the chemicals faster than usual.
Mixing KOH and methanol causes a remarkably exothermic reaction. I found that mixing them in a 5-lb cubie was dangerous, especially when I was in a hurry to get them mixed and added to a batch of hot WVO. I never popped the safety valve on my appleseed reactor, but I did have a fountain of methoxide one time because I added too much KOH too quickly to several gallons of methanol. Scared the hell out of me.
I'm betting that's what happened here ... gotta let the methoxide cool off before adding it to your WVO, or you'll see your temperatures climb. As long as you've got a pressure relief valve on your reactor, though, you should be all right.