Pot still & thumper with hammered lid : 2.5 years working on it!

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Fredistiller
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Pot still & thumper with hammered lid : 2.5 years working on it!

Post by Fredistiller » Wed Apr 08, 2020 5:14 am

Hi everyone!


2.5 years! Really? Actually yes...but only working on it in my spare time, so not that often. Sorry for the clickbait :ebiggrin:
But I must admit that when I looked at the date of the first picture I was like :shock:


After using my little still for a while now I wished to go for a bigger one for different reasons. After a very long time reading the forum and searching for all kind of possibilities, my mind began to boil, conceiving "my dream still".

I wanted a pot still with:
- a double bloiler, electric powered and insulated.
- a thumper.
- a shotgun product condenser.
- the possibility of filling both boiler and thumper for an other run without having to disassemble everything.
- easy to drain and to clean.
- I also wanted it to be easy to store.
- a good look 8)

So I started drawing plans and for that I clearly underestimated the time I would spend on it :econfused: .
Here a want to give a special thanks to "Myles" for his final check on the double boiler plans! :thumbup:

Then I read everything I could about controlers, I knew really nothing about electricity. And here comes my second special thanks :clap: to my brother who really took time and effort to understand what I needed, and helped me find and assemble a first class controler. I'm really happy about it!

The stainless steel part wasn't a problem at all as I work as a welder. So I was able to get and weld eveything I needed.

For the copper lids it was a different story. Now 20 years ago I had the chance to be teatched by an old coppersmith. He learned me to form copper sheets into shapes. With the use of an hammer and differents "anvils". But I didn't emboss copper for more than 15 years now, so I admit I sweated a lot before I get the results :mrgreen:

But enough words! Here is are the pics:

The complete still: boiler (50L)>thumper (35L) > shotgun product condenser > parrot.
Some numbers: stripping run (without thumper)= 32L @ 8~9abv. Product comes out at 61 abv. 2h40 (from firing up to @20%)
Spirit run: 29L@40abv + thumper charged with wash and some feints (3L). Products comes out @83abv. 6h in total.
Response time 5 minutes
All the outlet/inlet of the boiler/thumper are at the same height. Easy to choose witch configuration I want to use. Also each one has a drain ball valve.
All the outlet/inlet of the boiler/thumper are at the same height. Easy to choose witch configuration I want to use. Also each one has a drain ball valve.

Hammering "mesurements" makes easier to know hom much product you actually have. (I'm a little bit obssesed at keeping records of eveything I distill.)
liquid mesurementJPG.jpg

My thumper is placed on a "special tripod" made off two parts.
One part is the base, a ring with pins (adjustable in height).
The second part is made of two rings joined with pipes. One ring has an iside diameter slightly smaller than the other one. So the thumper can stand on the smaller ring when in use. Or, when the tripod is turned upside down, the thumper can go through the larger ring. So I can store tripod and thumper inside the boiler. Space saving!
tripodJPG.jpg
all in 1JPG.jpg
And my "fine tunned" controler with main power switch and cooling fan. The ammetre makes it really precise in use.
you rock bro!
you rock bro!

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Fredistiller
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Re: Pot still & thumper with hammered lid : 2.5 years working on it!

Post by Fredistiller » Wed Apr 08, 2020 5:21 am

The lids are made out of 0.7mm copper sheet, embossed, strain hardened and polished. Is the expansion chamber of any help? I don't know! I wanted one only because it looks sooo coool :lolno: 8)
boiler and thumper lids
boiler and thumper lids
boiler lid with expansion chamber in two parts
boiler lid with expansion chamber in two parts
last test before welding. That chamber made me sweat!
last test before welding. That chamber made me sweat!
copper 4.jpg

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Fredistiller
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Re: Pot still & thumper with hammered lid : 2.5 years working on it!

Post by Fredistiller » Wed Apr 08, 2020 5:49 am

The shotgun product condenser is made of 7 pipes diam 15mm and 550mm long.

To be honest it's too big and heavy. People from this forum warned me, I know. But I had so many issues with my previous SS liebig and wanted to use as less water as possible, that I didn't took the risk to make my condenser too small. My first idea was to make a recirculation water system, to use as less water as possible. But I gave up after a few unsuccesful attempts. Now I distill in the basement and use rain water that comes from my garden above thanks to the connected vessels system.
And it works too good also :D , even with my valve (I buyed an other one than on the pic) at the smallest water flow I can't control the temperature of my product. Products comes at ~10°C all the time.

pipes inside and baffles
pipes inside and baffles
one baffle have a smaller outside diameter, the other one a bigger inside diameter. Each diameter have a surface even bigger, and is even big as my 21.7mm cooling water inlet.
one baffle have a smaller outside diameter, the other one a bigger inside diameter. Each diameter have a surface even bigger, and is even big as my 21.7mm cooling water inlet.

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Re: Pot still & thumper with hammered lid : 2.5 years working on it!

Post by Fredistiller » Wed Apr 08, 2020 5:50 am

And at last but not least: my parrot.
parrotJPG.jpg

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Re: Pot still & thumper with hammered lid : 2.5 years working on it!

Post by stillanoob » Wed Apr 08, 2020 6:08 am

Wow! Well worth the time you took.

Please, please go into excruciating detail about how you did the copper work! I am very much interested in learning.

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Re: Pot still & thumper with hammered lid : 2.5 years working on it!

Post by tombombadil » Wed Apr 08, 2020 6:36 am

Same here, very curious about working with copper like that, very well done!

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Re: Pot still & thumper with hammered lid : 2.5 years working on it!

Post by StillerBoy » Wed Apr 08, 2020 6:36 am

Congratulation.. beautiful work..

Lots of hour of work of tinder loving care.. just super...

Mars
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Re: Pot still & thumper with hammered lid : 2.5 years working on it!

Post by Twisted Brick » Wed Apr 08, 2020 9:37 am

Truly inspirational work, Fred. Yours shows the most craftsmanship and patience I've seen here.

Thanks for sharing.

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Re: Pot still & thumper with hammered lid : 2.5 years working on it!

Post by Dewstiller » Thu Apr 09, 2020 3:47 am

Looks great!

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Re: Pot still & thumper with hammered lid : 2.5 years working on it!

Post by Chauncey » Thu Apr 09, 2020 2:51 pm

That looks incredible. A really nice piece of kit, as they say. You have some real talent brother, and thumbs up to ya bro for showing ya the electricity ropes. And as others said, please impart us with more knowledge of the methods and the tools
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Fredistiller
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Re: Pot still & thumper with hammered lid : 2.5 years working on it!

Post by Fredistiller » Mon Apr 27, 2020 3:12 am

Guys,

I'm working on a "tutorial" with pictures and complete explanations about the methods of sinking and raising copper.
Keep you posted!

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Re: Pot still & thumper with hammered lid : 2.5 years working on it!

Post by LWTCS » Mon Apr 27, 2020 3:26 am

Very nice indeed.
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Re: Pot still & thumper with hammered lid : 2.5 years working on it!

Post by 49er » Wed Dec 30, 2020 11:59 am

I've always wanted an 'onion' like that too....looks fantastic!! :D :thumbup:

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Re: Pot still & thumper with hammered lid : 2.5 years working on it!

Post by SassyFrass » Wed Dec 30, 2020 6:43 pm

Kudos to you. That is a beautiful rig. You should be proud. Yep, and I'm like everyone else, I'd love to learn the coppersmith art.
SF
Simple Lil' Pot Still, no temp guage, no carbon, no scrubbers, nuthin' fancy. Sometimes use a thumper, sometimes don't.

Real good info for New Folks:

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Re: Pot still & thumper with hammered lid : 2.5 years working on it!

Post by Deplorable » Wed Dec 30, 2020 10:31 pm

Thats got some serious cool factor. One hell of a home built kit there Fredistiller.
Use all your senses, and its not that hard. You just have to pay attention.

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Re: Pot still & thumper with hammered lid : 2.5 years working on it!

Post by dunluce » Wed Dec 30, 2020 11:17 pm

Beautiful work, looking forward to your copper working tutorials. :)

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