Ebay finds

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Ebay finds

Postby blackmoor » Mon Jul 24, 2017 10:19 pm

Looking to replace my air still. It has worked for over 6 years without problems. But reflux would be the way to go.

Unfortunately I'm not in any way mechanicly skilled, and do not own any tools to make a still. Been looking eabys offerings from time to time and this caught my attention:

http://www.ebay.de/itm/NEW-LUCKY-SPRING ... Sw-CpX-5E6

What do you think, worth the money?
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Re: Ebay finds

Postby Mikey-moo » Tue Jul 25, 2017 12:55 am

The reflux condenser doesn't look very efficient - probably why it's so huge. But I think it's just because they don't want the hassle of cutting the job lot of stainless pipes. Not bad for 375€ but make sure all the seals are PTFE :-)
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Re: Ebay finds

Postby Pikey » Tue Jul 25, 2017 1:32 am

That seems to be a Coolant controlled (CM) still. Price wise is competetive with the better known alternatives.
Cannot tell whether it has plastic components which are the bain of some of them
Looks as though the reflux water can be disconnected, so it could in theory be run as a pot, but that condenser would need to be bigger, or have another added.
However, it looks as though that column splits in two - so you culd try improving your skills and make a pot head and condenser to go on the shortened column.

Conclusion ? I'd like to have a proper look at one "in teh hand" before making a final decision, but if that's not possible - I might actually buy it ! :lol:
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Re: Ebay finds

Postby Bushman » Tue Jul 25, 2017 4:11 am

I tried to google them and they do not have a website but another site similar to eBay they are selling on. I would want more information about what type of product condenser they have.
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Re: Ebay finds

Postby Danespirit » Tue Jul 25, 2017 5:24 am

I wouldn't recommend it.
The design itself has so many flaws, it ain't worth the money he asks for it.
One of the flaws is the reflux condenser fills more or less half the column, which again makes packing it impossible.
That means you'll only have half of the column for packing, crippling the HETP.
As a result, the ABV will suffer...I doubt a column this low will hold the 94% ABV as the seller claims, without a whole lot of reflux going on from the very ineffective RC.
The takeoff has a diameter of only 15 mm and reduces further to just 10 mm before the PC...
It has no valve...so it's just a pot still with a pipe inside, some of the vapor will bypass and escape the takeoff.
for 375 EURO or 440 USD , you can get better options out there.
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Re: Ebay finds

Postby HDNB » Tue Jul 25, 2017 5:51 am

i gotta agree with danespirit. there is much better for the same or less money
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Re: Ebay finds

Postby Pikey » Tue Jul 25, 2017 12:06 pm

Here's the more "accepted version" http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Still-Spirits-T500-distilling-range-Reflux-Alembic-and-starter-pack-Brand-new-/222189750340?var=&hash=item33bb8a8844:m:mMXJX17thafTLXtPxnmsgmA

It has all the same issues DS mentions with regard to the one shown above, runs way above it price wise and according to Rad cannot be used for vapour temperature above 85 C because of the synthetics it contains.

http://homedistiller.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=27&t=62974#p7430216
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Re: Ebay finds

Postby blackmoor » Tue Jul 25, 2017 12:33 pm

Seller replied to my questions:

The distiller comes with the glass rings column filling.
It comes with all the seals and they are made of silicone.
It comes with the tap connector (you can choose the type and size of your tap) and I can also add for free additional valve.

The column is 125cm long and the quality is approx. 94% at first run.

It has 230 V schuko plug for power.

It has 2 1500W heater elements. When temperature rises on the top of the column to 70C's, switch the power to only one 1500w element.


My problem is that in order to NOT get in trouble with our countrys authorities, the distiller has to be ordered from EU. What can you recommend from eu as "proven" seller and design, which I could buy? Iäm not intrested in pot still, only column.
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Re: Ebay finds

Postby Danespirit » Tue Jul 25, 2017 4:06 pm

Well, the column filling is alright...the silicone seals are not, though.
There is no possible way you can know what kind of silicone it is.
I think you didn't quite understand what I meant with the valve.
I didn't mean a valve for the tap...I mean a valve on the takeoff side.
Should he mean a valve on said takeoff, the tiny cross section diameter of the pipe going out will cause a lot of trouble and I sincerely doubt it will produce the 1,25 L/hr he claims.
As it is right now on that drawing I copied from the E-bay link, it's essentially just a pot still with a tiny (and insufficient) tube condenser inside.
There is no way you are able to get a full condensation aka reflux with that thing.
That fact will cause the problem I mentioned in the earlier post....escaping vapors (as it has no valve to stop them).
A poor separation and a lousy product is the result.
You mention a Schuko power plug...are you living in Germany by any chance?

Seriously, you would be better off by building a still yourself.
If you don't have the ability to accomplish that, you could get the parts welded at a local metal workshop.
All it takes is a keg, a few fittings and a piece of stainless tube. The plans for it can be found in here and I'm sure a lot of guys will be happy to help you with this project.
It would be a lot cheaper and better than this still he sells.
Edit:
Oh, I almost forgot...even with two elements and one can be turned off, you'll still need a controller.
That adds further to the price of this.
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Re: Ebay finds

Postby blackmoor » Tue Jul 25, 2017 11:19 pm

Danespririt, thank you for your input, it is really good.

I donät live in germany, I live in finland. And at north of Finland. We don't have metal shops here, apart from shops that make roofs and fix dented cars and fix motors. So really my only option would be to get something premade.

If someone here could point me to a still which I could buy from EU, it does not have to be this one, or t500. But something that is proven to work and semi "noob" friendly.

How about you sell me one? You are from Denmark?
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Re: Ebay finds

Postby Pikey » Wed Jul 26, 2017 12:14 am

The valve DS speaks of is at the output side of the still. It is apparent on the Liquid management and the Vapour management types of still. The Pot still and the Coolant management types do not have the valve. (See diagrams)

http://ww.homedistiller.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=46605

The lack of the product valve reduces cost and makes operation far more simple ("Noob friendly"). Almost all "reflux" stills sold commercially are of the CM type. In fact I cannot think I have ever seen a different type offered for sale. Whether it is possible to get all the ethanol out of one of these stills and stay within the manufacturers instructions is probably doubtful.

It seems that the simplest "real" reflux still to make is the Bokakob which is an LM still. For a first timer, I would mount one of those onto a second hand tea urn with the electrics modified and a cheap power controller. Any reasonably competent plumber should be able to do that for you. (BUT - the vent hole in a Boka is Essential, although it is not obviously so ).

However I cannot help you buy a decent reflux still off the shelf - I think you are stuck with the one you have found or the t500 :roll:

Are you really not allowed to buy anything which is not produced in EU ? - That sounds dreadful ! :cry:
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Re: Ebay finds

Postby EventfulAnimal » Wed Jul 26, 2017 12:31 am

For that kind of money you could pick up one of these. I can't attest to their quality, but they m look very impressive and are cheap as cheap for what you're getting. https://www.reddit.com/r/firewater/comm ... express_4/


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Re: Ebay finds

Postby blackmoor » Wed Jul 26, 2017 2:35 am

DavidR wrote:For that kind of money you could pick up one of these. I can't attest to their quality, but they m look very impressive and are cheap as cheap for what you're getting. https://www.reddit.com/r/firewater/comm ... express_4/


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Very nice looking thing...but thats from china?

The EU thing: When a person gets a parcel from within EU, it does not pass customs, and they don't get too nosy about the item. But If I order it from USA or China or Russia, they will look into the parcel. And If by chance it goes through customs ( not reported to the police that I'm ordering illegal still), THEN I have to pay +24% VAT for the price of the item AND SHIPPING!And toll too. So thats just not worth the risk. Thas why I would like to order from EU district. If someone in this forum has a good self build still with reasonable price and is from EU and is willing to part with it, pm me :)
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Re: Ebay finds

Postby Danespirit » Fri Jul 28, 2017 1:52 am

blackmoor wrote:Danespririt, thank you for your input, it is really good.

I donät live in germany, I live in finland. And at north of Finland. We don't have metal shops here, apart from shops that make roofs and fix dented cars and fix motors. So really my only option would be to get something premade.

If someone here could point me to a still which I could buy from EU, it does not have to be this one, or t500. But something that is proven to work and semi "noob" friendly.

How about you sell me one? You are from Denmark?


Ahh, I see..
We have another one from Finland in here, I've helped with ideas for a pot still.
His name is Crane and maybe he got a few sources up there.
Oh yeah, I know the cumbersome way through the customs, when a package arrives from outside the EU. :x
So I only order for under 80 Dkr (12,60 USD or 10,75 Euro) each time as this is the toll-free limit, which makes my building process way longer as the items come in different packages.
Yes, I'm from Denmark...the southern part of it.
I'd like to sell you one..but the problem is I haven't access to a workshop right now.
However, what I can do is to help you with some technical assistance.
It would get you a simple pot still for a start, without welding or any fancy tools.
Feel free to PM me.
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Re: Ebay finds

Postby Swedish Pride » Fri Jul 28, 2017 4:32 am

this looks like an ok LM, again you'd have to inquire about the packing, seals etc
https://destylacja.com/pl/p/DESTYLATOR-AABRATEK/2087
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Re: Ebay finds

Postby Pikey » Fri Jul 28, 2017 8:52 am

Google translate says ;

".....
Designed for water distillation of essential oils and alcohol.
Very stable and safe distillation unit.
After the first boiling distillate we can get a power of 96%


The elements which are in contact with the vapor distilled liquid are made of stainless steel. No flexible silicone seal connectors. All components are welded together............"

However I can't see what country and don't know what a "zl" is so is it EU ?
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Re: Ebay finds

Postby Swedish Pride » Fri Jul 28, 2017 8:55 am

zl is polish Zloty, think its 20 or 25 zl per euro
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Re: Ebay finds

Postby thecroweater » Fri Jul 28, 2017 9:02 am

there is an EU agent for Stilldraggon
viewtopic.php?f=77&t=59224#p7376106
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Re: Ebay finds

Postby Pikey » Fri Jul 28, 2017 9:10 am

Swedish Pride wrote:zl is polish Zloty, think its 20 or 25 zl per euro


That prices the unit at about 80 euros then ? - And it seems it comes with the keg ? :D

It also says to phone before purchase - so watch out for a scam there !
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Re: Ebay finds

Postby Pikey » Fri Jul 28, 2017 9:56 am

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Re: Ebay finds

Postby thecroweater » Fri Jul 28, 2017 6:38 pm


Although a packed section could be added that is not in itself a reflux still, its a plated column and pretty expensive for what it is. At about 1500 euro I think you could just about get a copper column for that, stainless should be significantly cheaper, least converting to aid that's the way I see it. Also that pidly PC wouldn't handle much, you'd be either hammering the coolent through or running pretty slow, I'd steer clear of it myself. Now I'm not saying a plated column is not a direction to explore, I personally make my neutral in one but I don't only make neutral so for me this makes perfect sense as its the best of three worlds (pot, plated and reflux depending on configeration) . If you are sure you only ever want to make one thing then a one trick pony might be your best still for the money
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Re: Ebay finds

Postby Danespirit » Sat Jul 29, 2017 10:57 am

+1 crow
I did just convert the price....that's almost 1,800 $ :shock:
Also, as you wrote the PC is on the small side.
I'd say it will take a lot of water just to knock down the 4,5 KW they deliver as a standard element...let alone the 6 KW they offer as an alternative option.
It's a 4" (100 mm) column with 4 plates. That won't bring you anything near a neutral spirit.
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Re: Ebay finds

Postby Pikey » Sat Jul 29, 2017 2:15 pm

Pikey wrote:
Swedish Pride wrote:zl is polish Zloty, think its 20 or 25 zl per euro


That prices the unit at about 80 euros then ? - And it seems it comes with the keg ? :D

It also says to phone before purchase - so watch out for a scam there !


Apparently the exchange rate is 1 zl to 0.23 Eu - kills them stone dead then !
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Re: Ebay finds

Postby Swedish Pride » Sat Jul 29, 2017 2:58 pm

I knew there was a 20 in there somewhere
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Re: Ebay finds

Postby still_stirrin » Sat Jul 29, 2017 3:06 pm

Swedish Pride wrote:I knew there was a 20 in there somewhere
:shock:
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Re: Ebay finds

Postby Swedish Pride » Sat Jul 29, 2017 3:14 pm

close enough :lol:
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Re: Ebay finds

Postby blackmoor » Wed Aug 02, 2017 6:31 am

Swedish Pride wrote:this looks like an ok LM, again you'd have to inquire about the packing, seals etc
https://destylacja.com/pl/p/DESTYLATOR-AABRATEK/2087


This looks interesting. I contacted this seller:

https://prostill.co.uk/en_US/p/Aabratek-AAEL/39

That would cost 500 euros with shipping. I asked for:

column packing material: Column is packed with glass tubes.

Gasket material: All stills should have silicione or teflon orings. Silicone does not react with alcohol, so it is the best material to produce orings and gaskets. Aabratek also has silicone oring between column and boiler.

Manual of operation:

Instruction for use

We remind you that a distillation process is of an individual nature in case of each respective user and, to a great extent, depends on the taste requirements of the column owners. Hereby we present the main steps of proceedings while handling out distiller, and at the same time, we remind you that you can modulate a duration of many of steps presented below.

1 Pouring in a batch and warming up

- You should fill in a container maximally up to 90% of its capacity. Please, remember that an immersion heater must be all the time immersed in the liquid and that during this process an amount of the liquid decreases!

- Assemble the column on the container, connect an inlet and outlet of cooling water (in any sequence).

- After filling in the container, you should connect both immersion heaters to power supply.

2 Stabilisation of the column

- Bringing the batch to boiling is manifested by a rapid temperature rise on the thermometer located on the column head.

- Then, you should disconnect one plug – white one. At this very moment, a column stabilisation takes place. It should last from approx. 20 min. even up to 1hour. The longer the stabilisation, the better the heads are better separated from the distillate heart. The heads are the compounds, which feature characteristic pungent smell. During a collection of the heads, quality of the distillate will improve progressively.

- At the end of the stabilisation, you should read out the temperature on the column. It is a so-called stabilisation temperature and it is of approx. 77.5°C.

3 Collection of the heads

- After the stabilisation, you should begin collecting the heads. For this purpose, you should slightly turn on a valve situated under the column head and set a collection speed for approx. 2-3 drops per second. You collect 300-500 mL. An amount of these compounds depends of the distilled batch.

(The heads are the alcohols that feature aroma and are of the other reaction order that ethyl alcohol. They are responsible for the bad odour of the distillate. The more precisely and diligently the heads are collected, the purer product is collected.)



4 Collection of the heart

- As the collection of the heads progresses, quality of the received distillate improves gradually and the temperature on the column head slowly increases by 0.3°C even up to 0.5°C with regard to the temperature at the end of the stabilisation.

- After collecting the heads, you can accelerate collecting and collect further 500 mL.

- The most important issue while collecting the heart, is the temperature on the column (stabilisation temperature). You should adjust the collection speed so that the temperature is stable and not higher than 0.3°C even up to 0.5°C. with regard to the read-out after completing the stabilisation step.

Example: You should read out the temperature on the column: 77.6°C after completing the stabilisation step (par. 2). While collecting the heart you should adjust the collection speed in such a manner that the temperature on the column is stable and does not exceed 77.9°C. The correct speed of the heart collection should be of approx. 1.5L/h. The collection speed should decrease as the amount of the collected distillate increases.


What do you think? worth of investing 500 euros?
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Re: Ebay finds

Postby Danespirit » Wed Aug 02, 2017 7:59 am

The kit includes:

-column 120 cm
-doble heater 2000W + 1400W
-2 thermometers
-2 ball valves
-silicone gasket (oring)
-silicone tube
-manual


-safe and solid construction
-aesthetic appearance
-stable work
-high-quality distillate
-stainless steel
-easy to use
-cooler made of 3 m spiral

That's what the seller states on his page.
Well, the price of 500 Euros, can't be justified by the product delivered.
For this price, I'd expect the keg to be part of the deal...it isn't.
I can't determine the kind of hose used in this construction, but if that's just a simple shower hose with a stainless steel covering, it's not acceptable.
I don't know if one can get CST around here (Europe), but I for my part haven't seen it yet.

For the silicone part: You can possibly know what kind of silicone he talks about.
There are so many different sorts out there.
It has been discussed over and over again on this forum, PTFE is and stays the only safe option for gaskets.
Unless, you have very expensive special components at hand, like the chemical industry has....made out of Unobtanium.
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Re: Ebay finds

Postby blackmoor » Wed Aug 02, 2017 8:04 am

That's what the seller states on his page.
Well, the price of 500 Euros, can't be justified by the product delivered.
For this price, I'd expect the keg to be part of the deal...it isn't.
I can't determine the kind of hose used in this construction, but if that's just a simple shower hose with a stainless steel covering, it's not acceptable.


Maybe I dont understand...you mean the boiler? when you say "For the price I'd expect the keg to be a part of the deal...it is not". On his product page you can select whether you take a 30 Litre one or 50 litre one. Price difference is 10 GBP (BTW should i Take the 50 litre one, even though my wash pot is only 25 litres?).

What hose do you mean?
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Re: Ebay finds

Postby Danespirit » Wed Aug 02, 2017 8:40 am

The description is as above on the seller's page, he doesn't mention any boiler (keg).
So I assume it not part of the deal...you better check that before buying.
The picture shown is the same, regardless of the choice one makes...that made me suspect the keg isn't part of the deal.
It's an LM still, so the RC and PC are the same, it's this particular coiled up hose I mean.
The barbed hose connection at the take-off valve, suggests that one should connect a hose for product collection..don't do so..!
I've seen similar designs on a distilling forum (think it's Polish): http://www.bimber.info/forum/index.php
Somewhere in there, I came by some constructions made by a guy with the handle "Aabratek", so I assume it's the same guy.
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