So, I understand how a pot still works.
And a reflux still is just a pot still with a long column, with "something:" rocks, perforated discs, copper webbing, etc. in the column so that the water "sticks" to the material and drips back into the still, and a more pure ethyl alcohol makes it through the material and into the worm to condense back into the liquid.
Now, I've seen all this stuff about "thumpers" or "thump kegs." I've never seen one in real life, so... if you will indulge me... I'd like to tell you guys what I think they are, and you tell me if I've got it.
A thumper is a vessel, partially filled with some inert liquid (water, extra mash etc.). The still's head has a pipe that comes out of the pot, and goes into this thump keg, and the tip of the column is submerged in the liquid. So, the alcohol vapors travel through the column and into the water inside the thump keg, where they emerge as bubbles of hot alcohol steam. The bubbles rise through the water and pop, releasing the alcohol into the keg, which then travels through a "release pipe," that goes into a worm/condensor... and comes out as a high proof alcohol. The theory being that the water, being cooler than the steam, condenses what little water is in steam, allowing for a more pure alcohol. It most likely also somehow "scrubs" the steam of some impurities, and heavier molecules... kinda like a water-bong in college.
Is this true? If not... please set me straight.