1/4 " copper tubing

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1/4 " copper tubing

Postby Grayson_Stewart » Wed Nov 10, 2004 3:52 pm

Brought over from old forum:

PieterPost
(newbie)
09/29/04 02:28 PM
1/4 " copper tubing



I was just wondering what this copper tubing is normally used for? I am having a hard time finding it and this knowledge might aid my quest !

btw what do u guys use to bend it properly so it stays a tube and doesn't become flat?

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LeftLaneCruiser
(member)
09/29/04 03:05 PM
Re: 1/4 " copper tubing [re: PieterPost]



The small diameter soft copper tubing is used for brake line in cars. Also in refridgeration and / or airconditioning.

A shop in auto-parts should have some. Official dealers and garages too, but they are usually more expensive.

To fit inside a 2" pipe (54 mm) i wound it around a 1 1/2 " pipe (35 mm). It didn't flatten out.

KJH


Destillatori te Salutat

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theholymackerel
(addict)
09/29/04 03:58 PM
Re: 1/4 " copper tubing [re: PieterPost]



What are ya usin' it for? If yer makin' an internal condenser for a column still then LeftLaneCruiser gave ya good advice.

If yer possibly makin' a coil for a pot still I'd go with no smaller than 3/8 inch soft copper line.



Copper line is sold at most hardware stores here in the states. It's used for all sorts of stuff. Often as water lines.

There is a tool called a "coil bender". It's a steel coil of wire with an inner openin' to fit one of the sizes of copper line. With one of these copper line is easily bent without crimpin' or flattenin'.

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tater
(addict)
09/29/04 04:25 PM
Re: 1/4 " copper tubing [re: PieterPost]



look at plumming supplys as waterline for refrigators with ice makers or in a aircond parts house . brake lines all ive seen were made of steel

Theres more old drunks then there are old doctors

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josesillo
(stranger)
09/29/04 06:05 PM
Re: 1/4 " copper tubing [re: tater]



you may also want to try heating it a bit with a welding torch to bend it

- - - - - - -

--I only drink to make other people seem more interesting.!!!--

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PieterPost
(newbie)
09/29/04 11:39 PM
Re: 1/4 " copper tubing [re: LeftLaneCruiser]



thanks for the advice people. I am indeed going to use it to make an internal cooling element for my reflux still.

I had already tried to make an element out of a 12 mm soft copper tube (0.6 inch) This did work but the tube flattened a bit because I didn't use an internal element to help bend it.

So onwards to an autopart shop ..........

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leglessboot
(newbie)
09/30/04 02:51 AM
Re: 1/4 " copper tubing [re: theholymackerel]



In response to holy I'd go along with that. I used our equivalent to 1/4" which is 8mm. It comes in coils which are easy to bend but use an external bending spring. It also comes in straight lengths which are not as soft and harder to bend. This sort of tubing is used for microbore heating systems, popular here in euroland.

My main comment is if using for a pot still then go bigger, say 3/8" or 10mm. I used 8mm and I have a problem. The problem is this:

My temperatures are not right because (i believe) of the higher pressure created in my large ex-pressure cooker and the small diameter still coil. I don't get any product at all until the temp reaches 187F and the main run comes at 190F+

Having said that the product is good and always carbon filtered at 40% then distilled again to get the higher alcohol cuts that I need. Is this temperature thing to be expected using small coil diameter?

When I get round to it I will make a new coil using 10mm copper.

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PieterPost
(newbie)
09/30/04 03:35 AM
Re: 1/4 " copper tubing [re: leglessboot]



just wondering legless, why do you use a coil at all for a pot still? Don't you want to use a water cooled element to condense the alcohol. These are pretty easy to solder together and can be kept straight --> no bending needed.

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pothead
(addict)
09/30/04 03:50 AM
Re: 1/4 " copper tubing [re: PieterPost]



with a straight condenser, you would need to use a constant flow of water pumped acrossed it(like a liebig) This would be quite a bit of water by the time the run is done. If you use a coil all you realy need to do is put the coil inside a bucket and fill it with water(as long as the copper is the right diameter and length).

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PieterPost
(newbie)
09/30/04 04:00 AM
Re: 1/4 " copper tubing [re: pothead]



well, you'd be surprised how little flow is needed for the element to cool properly. I am going to use a simple aquarium pump which I obtained very cheaply. I think a bucket of water would also sufice. The coiled condensor would be less fuss .........

Just for the fun of it and to get the water temp as low as possible (within reason) I was planning to use a radiator but instead I am going to try and built a bong. I (ahem) still have some PVC tubes lying around and those can easily be adapted.

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leglessboot
(newbie)
09/30/04 04:29 AM
Attachment
Re: 1/4 " copper tubing [re: PieterPost]



Not sure where you are coming from. Of course my coil - through which the distillate runs - is water cooled. See attachment, pic of my condenser. The coil is in the water jacket.

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leglessboot
(newbie)
09/30/04 04:38 AM
Attachment
Re: 1/4 " copper tubing [re: leglessboot]



Here's another pic of it action. See the tiny 8mm tubing. Is this causing the temperature anomaly?

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leglessboot
(newbie)
09/30/04 04:41 AM
Attachment
Re: 1/4 " copper tubing [re: leglessboot]



And here's the pot. It holds about 15 ltrs. About 20ft of 8mm tube altogether including the coil may be a lot of resistance for the vapours. Higher pressure = higher boiling temp. Is that right?

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pothead
(addict)
09/30/04 06:47 AM
Re: 1/4 " copper tubing [re: leglessboot]



Looks pretty nice. I didn't see a water inlet/outlet connected to the water jacket....how do you keep the water cool?

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cartouche
(member)
09/30/04 08:41 AM
Re: 1/4 " copper tubing [re: leglessboot]



You should go at least 3/8", 1/4 is really quite small.
I go from 2 1/2" down to 1/2 with a tapered tube ...I don't think you can make it too big but if you build up pressure you will need more heat.

C.

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leglessboot
(newbie)
09/30/04 10:28 AM
Re: 1/4 " copper tubing [re: pothead]



The water inlet is on the bottom plate, so is the outlet but there is an internal tube connected going to the top so the water is pumped from the bottom and returns down the tube from the top. I use a small water feature pump in a bucket in the sink. When the water starts to get warm I blast cold water into the bucket from the tap or just keep it trickling in. That way I don't use too much water.

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Fourway
(old hand)
09/30/04 05:37 PM
Re: 1/4 " copper tubing [re: leglessboot]



Legless--
You are far far too concerned about temp.
lots of pot still users don't even use thermometers, if you weren't using one you'd be perfectly happy with how things are working.

You are taking the temp of the wash not the vapor.
If you were monitoring vapor temp the readings would be much closer to what you were expecting. the temp of the wash is generally not considered useful information.
Monitoring the liquid you would not get output at the low temps you were expecting to see unless your liquid was already 98% alcohol.
alcohol doesn't come flying out of a 90% water 10% alcohol mixture when the liquid temp hits the boiling temp of ethanol, the mixture has to boil. All that water makes the boil temp much higher. likewise the alcohol lowers the boil temp to less than that of 100% water.

You are suffering from too much extraneous data.
yank out your thermometer, plug the hole and put the thermometer in the junk drawer.


for such a small still 1/4 tube is ok... just never ever try to distill anything chunky.

Gin was mother's milk to her. - George Bernard Shaw

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leglessboot
(newbie)
10/01/04 11:30 AM
Re: 1/4 " copper tubing [re: Fourway]



Fourway:

"You are taking the temp of the wash not the vapor."

No, my thermometer probe is some way from the wash. As for concerned with temperature - I'm learning. having said that everything I read was very concerned with temperature but I find it doesn't matter, the product comes off in it's own way and time.


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grayson_stewart
(enthusiast)
10/01/04 12:02 PM
Re: 1/4 " copper tubing [re: leglessboot]



I found the vapor temperature/wash percentage chart on this site (under Theory ,,,then Distillate Strength Temperature ) to be really accurate as long as the temperature probe is ONLY in the vapor path and at the top of the column. Simple as determining the alcohol % of your wash, find it at the bottom of the chart, then slide vertically up the chart to the "liquid %" line, then move horizontally to the right to the "vapour %" line, then move vertically down to find the alcohol % of the product after distilled. Works for a single distillation through a pot still.

It helps to play with this chart and watch your hydrometer readings and temperature guage to teach yourself the "feel" for distillation. Definately use all the senses of touch, site, feel, taste and smell to learn the different stages of the product, but use the chart to have an idea of where your at for the changes you sense....with practice you won't even need the temp guage anymore.

Good things may come to those who wait. But only the things left by those who hustle.

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leglessboot
(newbie)
10/02/04 04:27 AM
Re: 1/4 " copper tubing [re: grayson_stewart]



Thanks, never looked there. Seems like useful info.

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MyDBear
(member)
10/02/04 05:33 AM
Re: 1/4 " copper tubing [re: PieterPost]



PieterPost:
I was just wondering what this copper tubing is normally used for? I am having a hard time finding it and this knowledge might aid my quest !

btw what do u guys use to bend it properly so it stays a tube and doesn't become flat?
**************************************************************************
any plumbing, hardware, or home improvement store will cary this tubing, this type ov tube is measured by the in side DIA. so 1/4" tube has an outside DIA. of 3/8" and 3/8" has an out side DIA. of 1/2" and so on. And to bend it in a coil you have to fill it full of dry sand crimp the ends and wrap it around what ever size you want to make your coil. It will not egg or flaten out.

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PieterPost
(newbie)
10/02/04 05:58 AM
Re: 1/4 " copper tubing [re: MyDBear]



the home improvement stores/hardware/ plumbing stores don't carry this diameter. At least not over here.

I actually found it at a car-part shop, they use it for their break lines (is this correct?, anyhow it has to do with the breaks). Just like leftlanecruiser suggested to me ! It was quite expensive but I have 6 meters of the stuff now.

MyDBear, filling it with sand it a good idea, thx will try that.

Today I also bought a big industrial ring-burner to heat up my boiler. Great stuff. As soon as my wine has finished fermenting I will start on creating a sugar-wash for my reflux column which is nearly finished ! Can't wait !!!!

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tater
(addict)
10/02/04 07:52 AM
Re: 1/4 " copper tubing [re: MyDBear]



Bear tubin is made in the id or od measurments inside and outside

Theres more old drunks then there are old doctors

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grayson_stewart
(enthusiast)
10/02/04 08:02 AM
Re: 1/4 " copper tubing [re: leglessboot]



legless,

The ENTIRE site is filled with useful information. I strongly urge you to read the whole site. You won't be able to retain every single bit of information there, but you will at least know where to go back to obtain the information you need.


Good things may come to those who wait. But only the things left by those who hustle.

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theholymackerel
(addict)
10/02/04 08:27 AM
Re: 1/4 " copper tubing [re: grayson_stewart]



Good advice Greyson.

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leglessboot
(journeyman)
10/02/04 08:38 AM
Re: 1/4 " copper tubing [re: grayson_stewart]



I read most of it just missed that bit.

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MyDBear
(member)
10/02/04 08:47 AM
Re: 1/4 " copper tubing [re: tater]



LOL yes it tater, it's all made with an id or od. I guess I didnt say what all I wanted to say.
Lets say that you wanted to use 1/4" copper tubing and now you wanted to buy some fittings to solder every thing together. you would buy 3/8" fittings because the od of the tubing is 3/8" .. That is where I think I was going with the ID and OD thing

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tater
(addict)
10/02/04 09:18 AM
Re: 1/4 " copper tubing [re: MyDBear]



.My fittins dont work out like that . I buy fittins 1/4 for 1/4 3/8 for 3/8 1/2 for 1/2 and so on. What i was saying about size was that you can buy copper tubin in the id or od measurments. fittins as well


Theres more old drunks then there are old doctors

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MyDBear
(member)
10/02/04 09:36 AM
Re: 1/4 " copper tubing [re: tater]



I'm glad we got that straightened out

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tater
(addict)
10/02/04 09:38 AM
Re: 1/4 " copper tubing [re: MyDBear]



lol


Theres more old drunks then there are old doctors

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nzbourbonhead
(newbie)
10/02/04 11:21 AM
Re: 1/4 " copper tubing [re: tater]



In nz pipe is inside diameter and tubing outside diameter gets confusing sometimes

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kahluaman
(newbie)
10/02/04 11:47 AM
Re: 1/4 " copper tubing [re: tater]



Here in the states brake line is made of steel; sometihing about high pressure burst strength (The Gov't. protecting us from ourselves again!). LegLessBoot, Is that a Goerge Forman "Knocks out the fat" grill I see behind your pot in the picture!

Edited by kahluaman (10/02/04 11:49 AM)

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leglessboot
(journeyman)
10/02/04 12:02 PM
Re: 1/4 " copper tubing [re: kahluaman]



Yup. And very good it is too. Just about to cook a steak on it right now.
Light travels faster than sound. That is why some people appear bright until you hear them speak.
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