Did a vinegar cleaning run in my pot still last night! Once I got over the initial fear of being blown up, or busted for distilling vinegar in my garage
, it was a lot of fun, and definitely a learning experience. I did the mirror trick to look for leaks, and didn’t get any fogging, but I did notice a tiny spot at the top of my column where the 90* fitting attaches, it looked like there was a minute amount of liquid bubbling through the soldered joint… is it worth fluxing, soldering, and doing the whole cleaning process again? Or should I just toss a little flour paste on there and call it good?
I figured for just a 20 minute run (with the condenser on), 6 gallons of cold water would be enough to run my 24” Liebig, but it was not knocking down all of the vapor and that 6 gallons was steaming hot half way through the run… will this be different with an ethanol run, or do I just need way more/a constant supply of water?
Things I learned:
- It takes forever to boil six gallons with my propane burner
- Don’t let your cooling lines get too close to your boiler (oops!)
- You need A LOT of ventilation to run propane in your garage (I initially had one door cracked about 4", the window all the way open, and the back door open, and I still managed to set off a smoke detector.. although this may have been due to the paint burning and peeling off of my new Bayou Classic propane burner... but I set up an exhaust fan out the attic window, and that seemed to do the trick)
- I was skeptical, but the “everlasting PTFE gasket”, with an easy flange works a treat! I didn't have any vapor loss, even without flour paste!