With the mill and the press made it was time to make the racks.Like the mill and press there are many styles and ways to make them but the most popular way seems to be to make a square lattice out of hardwood strips. This then has a square frame placed on top into which a large cloth is placed and filled with apple pulp, then the edges of the cloth are folded inwards to make a block of apple, called a ‘cheese’.
The trouble of course was that ready made ones were a tadge expensive, up to £35 per rack. So they had to be homemade,although it was still going to be expensive. Another problem was that the time to get everything made, gather the apples and press the cider was running out, having to fit it in between work, a holiday and other projects.
To save money and time I had another cunning plan. The rack would be part strips of wood and part plywood boards with holes in. Reading various forums this was far from ideal but it would have to do.
So the wood was bought and work started. First long strips of redwood were cut to the required size.
Then the boards were cut out, the strips placed on one side and screwed on the other.
Then drainage holes for the juice to run through were drilled.
Quite a lot of holes had to be drilled and the reverse side came out quite ragged and needed to be sanded.
Then a frame was made for the for the apple ‘cheeses’, and a bottom tray to catch the juice, all of which were given a coat of food grade varnish. Then the cloths were cut to size.
Now all that was needed was a day to make the cider.