EZ Solder 2" Shotgun

Anything cooling/condenser related.

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Twisted Brick
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EZ Solder 2" Shotgun

Post by Twisted Brick » Thu Oct 05, 2017 2:02 pm

Hey all -

I wanted to share some of the steps of how I put together my shotgun, which I tackled after gaining enough confidence from building my pot still.

After I was gifted a piece of 30" x 2" and 49" x 3" type L copper pipe, it seemed logical to go with a 3" pot still and 2" shotgun. The major influence here on my design was Zapata, whose thread on tube and baffle design guidelines I must've read through a dozen times (lengthy version on AD). This led me to pore through white papers on heat transfer theory, shell and tube geometry, laminar flow, etc and was able to come up with the specs I did. Too bad my wife's father isn't still with us - he was an MIT chemical engineer who specialized in heat transfer in industrial (nuclear) boilers. Oh well.

The build itself was inspired by BigSwede, by his beautiful machine work and simply elegant flanged end caps. I don't have access to those kinds of machines/skills but was fortunate (light shines down from parted clouds above and angels sing) to have a neighbor across the street who owns a CNC mill shop, and can work from napkin drawings. The thought was to take BigSwede's end cap flange design and apply it to the vapor tube holes as well. Hopefully, this would make soldering much easier/cleaner, and increase the chances of success. Mostly, this was my way of reducing or eliminating the pooling of vaporsat the top of the condenser, leading to possible smearing.
Attachments
Top and bottom dies
Top and bottom dies
First press
First press
27ga sheet and first press
27ga sheet and first press
Endplates before rounding
Endplates before rounding
Last edited by Twisted Brick on Thu Oct 05, 2017 2:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.
“Always carry a flagon of whiskey in case of snakebite, and furthermore, always carry a small snake.”

- W.C. Fields

My EZ Solder Shotgun

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Twisted Brick
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Re: EZ Solder 2" Shotgun

Post by Twisted Brick » Thu Oct 05, 2017 2:08 pm

Once the endplates were formed, I made 7 more, but trimmed the flanges off to make the baffles. Baffles were cut maintaining a 38% opening. Because I wanted my inlet and outlet tubes on the same side of the condenser (away from the pot), baffle spacing ended up at 2.5” which is close to the ideal of matching tube diameter. 9 baffles would have ended up less than the ideal 2".

I know I didn’t need to solder every tube into every baffle hole, but felt I needed the experience. The practice proved beneficial later when I knew just how much heat to apply and pressure to place on the solder when joining the endplates to the vapor tubes.
Attachments
Cut baffles
Cut baffles
Baffle test fit
Baffle test fit
Tubeset test fit
Tubeset test fit
IMG_1861 copy.jpg
“Always carry a flagon of whiskey in case of snakebite, and furthermore, always carry a small snake.”

- W.C. Fields

My EZ Solder Shotgun

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Twisted Brick
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Re: EZ Solder 2" Shotgun

Post by Twisted Brick » Thu Oct 05, 2017 2:14 pm

Since I used 2 x 2 x 1/2” tees for the inlet and outlet tubes, I had to make 2” spacers to accommodate the end caps, which were formed to fit 2” Type L copper pipe. It took me 2 weeks to cut and fit all of the parts, and 1 hour to solder everything up. After much wrangling, I decided to follow Myles’ advice, and soldered the endcap, vapor tubes, and ferrule all in one go. Fortunately, a pressure test with house water pressure revealed no leaks.

I used MAPP gas with Harris 8 silver solder and Stay Brite liquid flux. Thanks to Corene for recommending and helping me source the 3/32” solder instead of the 1/8”. I also have to say that soldering the tube set was greatly aided by flattening the solder with a hammer.

I’m still learning how to maximize efficiency on this thing. So far, I have completed four runs, the last of which was an UJSSM strip (7 gal) using 30k btu’s (9kW!) in 1hr 40min. The shotgun handled it with ease, no vapor.

So far, this entire project has been a total blast. I don’t know if its the builds or the distilling that will prove the most rewarding, but I aim to find out. Thanks to all before me who have shared what they learned so we all don’t have to learn the hard way.
Attachments
Soldered tubeset
Soldered tubeset
End cap test fit
End cap test fit
Soldered end cap and ferrule
Soldered end cap and ferrule
Finished!
Finished!
“Always carry a flagon of whiskey in case of snakebite, and furthermore, always carry a small snake.”

- W.C. Fields

My EZ Solder Shotgun

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Expat
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Re: EZ Solder 2" Shotgun

Post by Expat » Thu Oct 05, 2017 2:29 pm

Great build Twisted :clap: Much appreciated for sharing!

The die work is a thing of beauty :thumbup:
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Cross flow condenser viewtopic.php?f=87&t=47632
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Re: EZ Solder 2" Shotgun

Post by NcHooch » Thu Oct 05, 2017 4:05 pm

love that tooling man!
Your pics bring back fond memories of the 1.5" dia, 5x3/8" shotgun I made for my flute a few years back.
Cheers,
NChooch
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Re: EZ Solder 2" Shotgun

Post by just sayin » Thu Oct 05, 2017 5:03 pm

Mr. Brick,
You Sir are a master craftsman. Dang! Beautiful copper work!
I love your signature line! Love WC..."Some rascal has been tampering with the cork in my lunch!"..."Ah yes, I remember being lost in the wilds of Afghanistan, lost our corkscrew, had to exist for days on nothing more than food and water...." (Quotes from memory, likely not exact as I am an old fart)
Thank you for posting, please keep it coming.

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Re: EZ Solder 2" Shotgun

Post by Twisted Brick » Thu Oct 05, 2017 5:28 pm

Thanks, Gents!

ExPat - I will pass on your sentiments to the guy with the real skill. Every other time I yak with himI am amazed at the weird and obscure CNC skills he knows, and he reminds me that he learned them from the old guys just like I'm doing here.

NC - glad to hear it. For me, there is a slight bit of magic that goes on when one is building something a little more complicated - a mix of hope and uncertainty that disappears once its finished and it works! Certainly the stuff memories are made of.

Thanks, JustSayin... I grew up idolizing W.C. and the older I get, the more I can emulate him, the better I feel! Ah yes!!!
“Always carry a flagon of whiskey in case of snakebite, and furthermore, always carry a small snake.”

- W.C. Fields

My EZ Solder Shotgun

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Re: EZ Solder 2" Shotgun

Post by zapata » Fri Oct 06, 2017 5:59 pm

That is a thing of beauty! Lots of approaches to the hobby, but sounds like we have a similar perspective. I know I get the most reward when I challenge my noggin, learn new thinky things, in applying them have to learn new doing things, and then get to perfect applying the new self made tool. Only then am I comfortable to let it all go and get to feel all artisanal doing things on the fly and trusting the hard earned intuition and experience. It makes stilling one of the most rewarding multi-faceted hobbies I have.

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Twisted Brick
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Re: EZ Solder 2" Shotgun

Post by Twisted Brick » Sat Oct 07, 2017 8:37 am

Thanks Zapata. I hear ya. Funny about perspective - I thought the same thing when reading through your baffle design details. It validates my own definitions of the words artisanal and intuition.
“Always carry a flagon of whiskey in case of snakebite, and furthermore, always carry a small snake.”

- W.C. Fields

My EZ Solder Shotgun

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Re: EZ Solder 2" Shotgun

Post by Danespirit » Sat Oct 07, 2017 9:17 am

That's top-notch craftmanship..! :thumbup:

I understand why you were inspired by BigSwede..he really fabricates stuff with exceptional perfection.
However, your work is truly on the same level..!
That is without a doubt one of the best designed and build shotgun condensers I've seen around here (and elsewhere for that matter).
You could fabricate and sell these things...it's professional equipment.

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Re: EZ Solder 2" Shotgun

Post by zapata » Sat Oct 07, 2017 1:23 pm

Ya know, if nothing else you should really consider selling the punched plates. They are the most common size for shotties, are the biggest pain to fabricate, and would have very reasonable shipping. Baffle non-believers could just grab 2 for a simple build, or a baffler could grab as many as needed and easily cut their own baffles to spec. Or you could sell precut baffles at a reasonably estimated "close enough for most uses".

I imagine you would find enough demand for a low volume side hustle for yourself, and maybe even get some of the suppliers to wholesale them from you. You've got the tooling...

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Re: EZ Solder 2" Shotgun

Post by Oldvine Zin » Sat Oct 07, 2017 2:55 pm

very nice shottie :thumbup: :thumbup: and what the hell one more :thumbup:

OVZ

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Re: EZ Solder 2" Shotgun

Post by Bvritr » Sat Oct 07, 2017 10:53 pm

BEAUTIFULL, AMAZING work.

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Re: EZ Solder 2" Shotgun

Post by Pesty » Sun Oct 08, 2017 8:00 am

That is a work of beauty. Amazing job!

I'm on my 3rd shotgun attempt and over $100 in the hole for copper, time and resources failure. I've got my end caps in now but have a feeling it's gonna leak. I'm highly capable of doing this but have to admit these shotguns are the hardest things I've ever built. I like the challenge but the bucket of failed copper parts is haunting my dreams.

My biggest problem is shaping the plates. That die solves all that.. sell me 4 plates please.

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Re: EZ Solder 2" Shotgun

Post by Twisted Brick » Sun Oct 08, 2017 1:22 pm

You know, Zapata, I remember thinking right after soldering up the tubeset that if it was that easy for me, I should think about making them available to other builders, especially guys with liebigs looking to upgrade. When the endplates and ferrules went in the same way, I knew...

Thanks Dane and OVZ. Dem's (BigSwede) some big shoes to fill, for sure. It's much easier to try to do good work when you have a standard to follow.

Pesty - I'd be honored to make a set of plates for you. Remember, they fit Type L copper. PM me. I'm just up the 5Fwy from you.
“Always carry a flagon of whiskey in case of snakebite, and furthermore, always carry a small snake.”

- W.C. Fields

My EZ Solder Shotgun

Pesty
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Re: EZ Solder 2" Shotgun

Post by Pesty » Sun Oct 08, 2017 7:32 pm

Heck yeah!

Type L is what I have. PM incoming.

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Re: EZ Solder 2" Shotgun

Post by Klein » Sun Oct 08, 2017 7:39 pm

Absolutely amazing work!
I have discovered that I now have slow Leak again on my shotgun :( These would make building a shotgun so much easier.

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Re: EZ Solder 2" Shotgun

Post by trebor66n2 » Tue Jan 23, 2018 9:49 am

I wondered why you used for a condenser. I chatted with you about the 3 inch copper I got cheep. Think I'm taking your idea and putting my spin on it.
Sexy still.
.

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Re: EZ Solder 2" Shotgun

Post by Twisted Brick » Tue Jan 23, 2018 12:23 pm

Thanks Trebor. She runs rock solid and I love the flexibility of it being modular.

Great get on 7' of 3" for $25. Just make sure you build a condenser with enough volume to accommodate your riser. You also wanna keep your vapor speed through the still head and lyne arm into the condenser as slow and consistent as possible.

If you go with a shotgun like mine, I got endplates and baffles available. Pesty picked some up over Christmas and reported his condenser went together like a dream.
“Always carry a flagon of whiskey in case of snakebite, and furthermore, always carry a small snake.”

- W.C. Fields

My EZ Solder Shotgun

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Re: EZ Solder 2" Shotgun

Post by trebor66n2 » Tue Jan 23, 2018 2:15 pm

I'm going to use some 3 inch for the condenser since I have it. Been thinking about going 18 inches long and 7 1/2 inch going through it. Not sure it will be to heavy though. The 3 inch at that length is about half gallon of water and around 8 or 9 lbs of copper plus ferrules and triclamps.
I don't have 2 inch and the price was almost free for the copper.

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Re: EZ Solder 2" Shotgun

Post by Twisted Brick » Tue Jan 23, 2018 6:24 pm

I thought about doing the same, but only had 47" of 3" to work with so went with the 2" shotty. 3" will be more than adequate and should prove a fun build, not to mention good looking.

If you haven't seen it, here's a look at a 3" shotgun build here: http://ww1.homedistiller.org/forum/view ... 50&t=50760" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;" rel="nofollow

Can't wait to see pics!
“Always carry a flagon of whiskey in case of snakebite, and furthermore, always carry a small snake.”

- W.C. Fields

My EZ Solder Shotgun

trebor66n2
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Re: EZ Solder 2" Shotgun

Post by trebor66n2 » Fri Feb 09, 2018 10:00 pm

Twisted Brick, I changed my mind and bought some 2 inch copper. I'd like a few of your disks. What's the price , and how you want to make it happen?

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Re: EZ Solder 2" Shotgun

Post by Twisted Brick » Fri Feb 09, 2018 10:35 pm

Hey Trebor,

End plates are $15/ea. Most popular is 2 endplates and 3 baffles for $60 (plus shipping). Any additional baffles to the package are $10 for 2. Remember, this is for Type L pipe.

Venmo works good, or if you can get a check in the mail, I'll get the plates out right away. Oh, btw, with a NG burner, I've been getting almost 7L/h on my 3" pot and shotgun.

Thanks for your interest!

TB
“Always carry a flagon of whiskey in case of snakebite, and furthermore, always carry a small snake.”

- W.C. Fields

My EZ Solder Shotgun

Dedant
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Re: EZ Solder 2" Shotgun

Post by Dedant » Sat Feb 02, 2019 12:47 am

Would you consider posting 4 plates to New Zealand?

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Twisted Brick
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Re: EZ Solder 2" Shotgun

Post by Twisted Brick » Fri Feb 08, 2019 11:12 am

Sure! The plates don't weigh much and can be packaged quite easily. PM me, please and let me know your plans. My daughter will be graduating law school soon and afterwards will be visiting friends in Brisbane. She could always post them to you from there. If you need them right away, can do that as well.
“Always carry a flagon of whiskey in case of snakebite, and furthermore, always carry a small snake.”

- W.C. Fields

My EZ Solder Shotgun

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Re: EZ Solder 2" Shotgun

Post by 30xs » Wed Feb 13, 2019 3:03 pm

Interested and PM sent

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Re: EZ Solder 2" Shotgun

Post by Twisted Brick » Thu Feb 14, 2019 11:27 am

Got it, thanks! PM replied. Feel free to email me directly if you prefer.
“Always carry a flagon of whiskey in case of snakebite, and furthermore, always carry a small snake.”

- W.C. Fields

My EZ Solder Shotgun

Dedant
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Re: EZ Solder 2" Shotgun

Post by Dedant » Tue Feb 19, 2019 8:58 pm

My son is a fitter/ machinist cnc operator at a local engineering shop. They are flat out doing movie prop production at the moment. I have all my stainless welding and triclover and KleanFlow fittings through him. At some stage I'll have a look at getting the same forms done here , in the meantime though, PM sent. Cheers.

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Re: EZ Solder 2" Shotgun

Post by Pesty » Wed Feb 20, 2019 5:12 am

I got my plates from twisted last year and built my shotgun with them. Went together so simple and easy.
Thanks again!

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Re: EZ Solder 2" Shotgun

Post by Dedant » Mon Feb 25, 2019 3:50 pm

Pm sent but doesn’t seem to go through?

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