DIY - Alcohol Pot Still using a Copper Water Geyser





Page 1 of 11 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 20 of 204
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    Alberton
    Age
    59
    Posts
    617
    Thanked: 985

    Default DIY - Alcohol Pot Still using a Copper Water Geyser

    So I picked up a 130l geyser from Paul 4X4. Geyser is in good nick. So a couple of observations;

    At 130l it is too big from a physical storage perspective, and I think I may want to distill smaller batches. This kettle will be used as the basis of a traditional pot still for the foreseeable future and my primary interest will be Scotch. This is a longer term project that I would like to be well considered based on fellow distiller experience. For this still I want to use a gas burner.

    I have bought a 30l SS keg that I will power with an electric element and that will be used as startup still. I though this would be a good place to start and to cut my teeth as I could start with 20l washes / mashes.

    Pot Still
    So back to geyser, I have also seen a couple of YouTube video's showing the the extreme calcium and gunk build up inside a domestic geyser so either way I want to open the geyser to clean it out. Turn the sound off and start at 2:40.



    So I am looking for suggestions on;

    - The volume I should make the still. This volume I think should be a function of commercially available kit like the size fermentation vessels, etc.
    - The configuration. I want to have this on a movable "trolley" for ease of use.
    - Is it worth including a Thumper for Scotch?
    - Was thinking of a drain in the base at the lowest point of the dome.
    - The top of the still will include an adapter could accommodate a reflux column if the hobby really get to me.

    Any other suggestions on this a pot still build with a geyser as base would be welcomed.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Johannesburg
    Age
    39
    Posts
    1,027
    Thanked: 161

    Default Re: DIY - Alcohol Pot Still using a Copper Water Geyser

    Maybe post a pic of the geyser you have got then people can give you some ideas.
    One suggestion is start with a few sugar washes to get used to fermenting and how to run your still once you have set it up before you jump into a grain mash.
    2009 Suzuki GV 3.2
    ex : 2010 Suzuki GV 2.4 M/T
    ex : 2007 Audi A4 2.0T - RS4 rear suspension

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    Alberton
    Age
    59
    Posts
    617
    Thanked: 985

    Default Re: DIY - Alcohol Pot Still using a Copper Water Geyser

    Quote Originally Posted by ColeGP View Post
    Maybe post a pic of the geyser you have got then people can give you some ideas.
    One suggestion is start with a few sugar washes to get used to fermenting and how to run your still once you have set it up before you jump into a grain mash.
    Will post tomorrow.

    The 30l beer keg will the be start with the sugar washes. Will not start on the grains until I am roughly familiar with distilling. Much to learn.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Location
    Marble Hall
    Age
    31
    Posts
    93
    Thanked: 8

    Default Re: DIY - Alcohol Pot Still using a Copper Water Geyser

    I did use also a geyser drum butt I did not cut it open I just putted a drain pipe and tap on the bottom and outlet on top works 100 percent. I cleaned it by using a wap where a can clean it top and bottom pipes and the element hole. Then putting 10l water 5l vinegar and 100g citric acid and boiled it. Mixure can out green did it 2 times and now it's working 100 percent. Sorry for the bad English. Eks boertjie

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    Alberton
    Age
    59
    Posts
    617
    Thanked: 985

    Default Re: DIY - Alcohol Pot Still using a Copper Water Geyser

    Ek het eintlik daardie video ingesluit omdat ek gesien het dat jy nie oop gesny het nie. Bly om te hoor dat dit vir jou werk. Ek vertrou nie n ou geyser, veral as dit by my dop kom.

    Ek wil in elkgeval myne kleiner laat maak.

    Jammer vir die swak Afrikaans, ek's n rooinek .

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    Alberton
    Age
    59
    Posts
    617
    Thanked: 985

    Default Re: DIY - Alcohol Pot Still using a Copper Water Geyser

    So curiously, it has been known for years that copper is an excellent anti-microbial material, while Stainless Steel is not.

    In the second world war people turned in their awesome copper pots so that jacketed bullets could be made for the war effort. This created a market for a new material for pots and pans and SS became the marketers dream, promoting the hygenic factor where in fact copper is way more hygenic. And so started the near permanent move from copper. Copper heats and cools way quicker and for professional chefs it is a must to be able to stop cooking as quickly as you start cooking. For the food and beverage industry copper is an awesome material.

    Years ago while still in the copper industry I got involved in the Palaborwa foundation. Money set aside by the mine to build the local community. One of the things they had adopted was copper for ALL touch surfaces, door handles, small bowls and stuff, counter tops. Now it need not be 100% copper but an alloy thereof, so many of thr surfaces look like brass in colour but they are indeed copper.

    This technology was adopted from American Army field Hospitals.

    https://cuverro.com/copper-vs-stainless-steel

    Copper kills more than 99.9% of bacteria that cause infections within 2 hours of surface contact. Copper continuously kills bacteria 24 hours a day, even after repeated contamination. Helps inhibit the buildup and growth of infectious bacteria.
    Stainless steel has no inherent antimicrobial properties and can harbor deadly bacteria for days.

    Just for interest sake. When my ship comes in I am buying a set of copper pots, have wanted a set for years.
    Last edited by Andrew Leigh; 2020/05/31 at 09:59 AM.

  7. The Following 2 Users Say Thank You to Andrew Leigh For This Useful Post:


  8. #7
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    Location
    Secunda
    Age
    33
    Posts
    30
    Thanked: 12

    Default Re: DIY - Alcohol Pot Still using a Copper Water Geyser

    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew Leigh View Post
    So curiously, it has been known for years that copper is an excellent anti-microbial material, while Stainless Steel is not.

    In the second world war people turned in their awesome copper pots so that jacketed bullets could be made for the war effort. This created a market for a new material for pots and pans and SS became the marketers dream, promoting the hygenic factor where in fact copper is way more hygenic. And so started the near permanent move from copper. Copper heats and cools way quicker and for professional chefs it is a must to be able to stop cooking as quickly as you start cooking. For the food and beverage industry copper is an awesome material.

    Years ago while still in the copper industry I got involved in the Palaborwa foundation. Money set aside by the mine to build the local community. One of the things they had adopted was copper for ALL touch surfaces, door handles, small bowls and stuff, counter tops. Now it need not be 100% copper but an alloy thereof, so many of thr surfaces look like brass in colour but they are indeed copper.

    This technology was adopted from American Army field Hospitals.

    https://cuverro.com/copper-vs-stainless-steel

    Copper kills more than 99.9% of bacteria that cause infections within 2 hours of surface contact. Copper continuously kills bacteria 24 hours a day, even after repeated contamination. Helps inhibit the buildup and growth of infectious bacteria.
    Stainless steel has no inherent antimicrobial properties and can harbor deadly bacteria for days.

    Just for interest sake. When my ship comes in I am buying a set of copper pots, have wanted a set for years.

    The Oligodynamic effect....
    2013 Nissan Navara 3.0 DCi 4x4 D/C - Rooigevaar
    2015 Nissan Hardbody NP300 2.4 4x4 D/C - Kragtige Pakdonkie
    2012 VW Amarok 2.0TSI D/C 4x2 - SOLD (Needed a 4x4)
    2010 VW CC 2.0TSI DSG - SOLD
    2008 VW Golf 5 2.0 Trendline - SOLD

  9. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    Alberton
    Age
    59
    Posts
    617
    Thanked: 985

    Default Re: DIY - Alcohol Pot Still using a Copper Water Geyser

    Quote Originally Posted by Ratelrooi View Post
    The Oligodynamic effect....

  10. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2015
    Location
    Marble Hall
    Age
    31
    Posts
    93
    Thanked: 8

    Default Re: DIY - Alcohol Pot Still using a Copper Water Geyser

    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew Leigh View Post
    Ek het eintlik daardie video ingesluit omdat ek gesien het dat jy nie oop gesny het nie. Bly om te hoor dat dit vir jou werk. Ek vertrou nie n ou geyser, veral as dit by my dop kom.

    Ek wil in elkgeval myne kleiner laat maak.

    Jammer vir die swak Afrikaans, ek's n rooinek .
    Ek het myne met n kamera binne gekyk hy skoon geen kalk nie. So ons mutual met die taale. Het met n oom gepraat hy het by SAB en by distillers gewerk hy die raad gegee van asyn en citric acid.

  11. #10
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    Alberton
    Age
    59
    Posts
    617
    Thanked: 985

    Default Re: DIY - Alcohol Pot Still using a Copper Water Geyser

    I have subscribed to this guy.

    A Russian, no voice, no irritating music, no irritating repetition just wonderful skill and skills that with a little practice I can replicate at home.



    My geyser is looking less daunting

  12. The Following User Says Thank You to Andrew Leigh For This Useful Post:


  13. #11
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    Alberton
    Age
    59
    Posts
    617
    Thanked: 985

    Default Re: DIY - Alcohol Pot Still using a Copper Water Geyser

    And this one.

    In this one he makes the base but without the dozens of little pleats that one would cut to bend up to fit inside the main kettle.


  14. #12
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    De Wildt
    Age
    57
    Posts
    37,782
    Thanked: 14104

    Default Re: DIY - Alcohol Pot Still using a Copper Water Geyser

    Andrew, cutting open the geyser opens a whole new can of worms.

    You would need copper fabrication skills to get the two pieces to seal again properly.

    This sealing surface needs to be fairly precise and you need to consider how to get a perfect seal.

    So very precise measurement and cutting is needed as well.

    I would say brazing skills are also needed and copper forming skills.

    I agree about the movable trolley, I have mine on one.

    Lastly, from experience, you need to make the parrot and column easily removable as you should not move the contraption around with those items fitted, it puts extreme stress on the dome.
    Mine now needs to be reinforced and cracks brazed.
    2012 Jeep Sahara Unlimited 3.6 V6
    Percivamus

  15. #13
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Johannesburg
    Age
    39
    Posts
    1,027
    Thanked: 161

    Default Re: DIY - Alcohol Pot Still using a Copper Water Geyser

    Quote Originally Posted by Andrew Leigh View Post
    And this one.

    In this one he makes the base but without the dozens of little pleats that one would cut to bend up to fit inside the main kettle.


    thats a pretty expensive diy job, those 4 inch tri clamp ferrules and the clamp are probably about R1.5k alone.
    2009 Suzuki GV 3.2
    ex : 2010 Suzuki GV 2.4 M/T
    ex : 2007 Audi A4 2.0T - RS4 rear suspension

  16. #14
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    Alberton
    Age
    59
    Posts
    617
    Thanked: 985

    Default Re: DIY - Alcohol Pot Still using a Copper Water Geyser

    Quote Originally Posted by jelo View Post
    Andrew, cutting open the geyser opens a whole new can of worms.

    You would need copper fabrication skills to get the two pieces to seal again properly.

    This sealing surface needs to be fairly precise and you need to consider how to get a perfect seal.

    So very precise measurement and cutting is needed as well.

    I would say brazing skills are also needed and copper forming skills.

    I agree about the movable trolley, I have mine on one.

    Lastly, from experience, you need to make the parrot and column easily removable as you should not move the contraption around with those items fitted, it puts extreme stress on the dome.
    Mine now needs to be reinforced and cracks brazed.
    Thanks, the reason for the trolley is so that there can be permanent support for the bitties that "hang" so to speak. The liebig, the hoses etc.

    I have made a 8" Newtonian Reflecting Scope from scratch, complete with brass fittings and Mahogany veneer so I think i'll be ok. I learn new skills quickly.

  17. #15
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    East London
    Age
    59
    Posts
    56
    Thanked: 25

    Default Re: DIY - Alcohol Pot Still using a Copper Water Geyser

    Hi Andrew, I don't want to derail your thread but I want to do the same as you are.

    May I also ask questions and post pics so that we get replies in one thread only?

    Lionel

  18. #16
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    durban
    Age
    56
    Posts
    1,455
    Thanked: 1110

    Default Re: DIY - Alcohol Pot Still using a Copper Water Geyser

    I also want to try. Jelo is right ,you need fabrication skills.This could be taught or copied but there needs to be some guidelines.

    It would help to know a size and drawing and whats needed in terms of accessibility in terms of getting into the still.

  19. #17
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Location
    Alberton
    Age
    59
    Posts
    617
    Thanked: 985

    Default Re: DIY - Alcohol Pot Still using a Copper Water Geyser

    Quote Originally Posted by lionelk View Post
    Hi Andrew, I don't want to derail your thread but I want to do the same as you are.

    May I also ask questions and post pics so that we get replies in one thread only?

    Lionel
    Absolutely, the whole purpose of the thread is to share Still building ideas.

  20. The Following User Says Thank You to Andrew Leigh For This Useful Post:


  21. #18
    Join Date
    Jul 2013
    Location
    East London
    Age
    59
    Posts
    56
    Thanked: 25

    Default Re: DIY - Alcohol Pot Still using a Copper Water Geyser

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	20200601_144610.jpg 
Views:	75 
Size:	399.5 KB 
ID:	574063Click image for larger version. 

Name:	20200601_144540.jpg 
Views:	72 
Size:	222.5 KB 
ID:	574064Click image for larger version. 

Name:	20200601_152055.jpg 
Views:	66 
Size:	376.8 KB 
ID:	574065

    I got this 50l yesterday, unfortunately being a horizontal one it makes more work for me.

    What I am thinking of doing

    - moving the element socket to make it an upright geyser
    - remove all existing pipes and 'patch' the holes
    - install the column in the top middle

    What I would like to do is cut the top off and make a clip on lid, then it can be used as a still and to brew beer.

    Any comments or suggestions please

  22. #19
    Join Date
    Jul 2012
    Location
    Johannesburg
    Age
    39
    Posts
    1,027
    Thanked: 161

    Default Re: DIY - Alcohol Pot Still using a Copper Water Geyser

    Quote Originally Posted by lionelk View Post
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	20200601_144610.jpg 
Views:	75 
Size:	399.5 KB 
ID:	574063Click image for larger version. 

Name:	20200601_144540.jpg 
Views:	72 
Size:	222.5 KB 
ID:	574064Click image for larger version. 

Name:	20200601_152055.jpg 
Views:	66 
Size:	376.8 KB 
ID:	574065

    I got this 50l yesterday, unfortunately being a horizontal one it makes more work for me.

    What I am thinking of doing

    - moving the element socket to make it an upright geyser
    - remove all existing pipes and 'patch' the holes
    - install the column in the top middle

    What I would like to do is cut the top off and make a clip on lid, then it can be used as a still and to brew beer.

    Any comments or suggestions please
    If you can braze then rather than making a clip on top maybe put a 4-6 inch tri clamp fitting so its big enough for you to get your hand into it (probably a 6 inch)
    Then you can use a 6 - 2 tri clamp reducer and make your column to fit ontop of that.
    Would make it a more expensive project but at least you know your joints / seals will all be good.
    2009 Suzuki GV 3.2
    ex : 2010 Suzuki GV 2.4 M/T
    ex : 2007 Audi A4 2.0T - RS4 rear suspension

  23. #20
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    De Wildt
    Age
    57
    Posts
    37,782
    Thanked: 14104

    Default Re: DIY - Alcohol Pot Still using a Copper Water Geyser

    Quote Originally Posted by ColeGP View Post
    If you can braze then rather than making a clip on top maybe put a 4-6 inch tri clamp fitting so its big enough for you to get your hand into it (probably a 6 inch)
    Then you can use a 6 - 2 tri clamp reducer and make your column to fit ontop of that.
    Would make it a more expensive project but at least you know your joints / seals will all be good.
    yes and no

    I'd just stay with a 2" tri clamp and have a drain port for cleaning and flushing. Easy peasy.
    2012 Jeep Sahara Unlimited 3.6 V6
    Percivamus

Page 1 of 11 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 ... LastLast

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •