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BeerKeg Still

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  • Mel
    Hello Since there is not all that much traffic on the list, I thought I would tell you all a little more about my Still Building endeavour. I started with a
    Message 1 of 1 , Dec 18, 1999
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      Since there is not all that much traffic on the list, I thought I would tell
      you all a little more about my Still Building endeavour.

      I started with a dirty, scraped up Guinness beer keg, The first step was
      cleaning the outside I started out with steel wool, course and fine, but did
      not have too much success with either, I then went with Silicon Carbide
      Sandpaper,220 then 600 then 1500, I'm very pleased with the results, I also
      had great success with Scotch Brite pads and Comet cleanser together, I am
      now proud to call this beer keg mine, I can almost comb my hair in the
      reflection from it. When all my work is done I will rub it all down again
      using wet 1500 grit sandpaper. then maybe rubbing compound. It was suggested
      by David Reed that I could have it Electro Polished but it looks pretty good
      so I think I will skip this part, but If a can find a company locally that
      will do it for a good price "cheap" I just may get it done.

      The next job was to cut out an 8 1/2" hole in the top of the keg where the
      original valve was, I cut out a cardboard template then traced around this
      on the top of the keg. I then drilled a couple of holes and stuck my jig saw
      in there and proceeded to cut but found I could not turn the saw enough to
      follow the line, the side of the keg is about 3' higher then the top so the
      arse end of the jig saw was jamming against the side and I could not cut the
      curve that I wanted. Once I start something I am compelled to finish it, so
      I drilled a series of holes around the inside of the marked circle, (about
      7,549 holes but whose counting),(not really that many) I then took out the
      little Makita grinder and smoothed the edges of the roughed out hole to the
      required size Why a 8 1\2" hole you ask. Well when I started this project I
      was going to use a SS Soda fountain container as the boiler but then decided
      it was not going to work out that well. This container was about 36" high,
      and has a screw on lid, and you guessed it, it is 8 1/2" in Diameter. I cut
      a six inch peice off the container from the top down,(with a Hacksaw BTW)
      and fitted it into the hole in the beer keg, a nice snug fit I might add,
      and my buddy Stewart will weld this up tomorrow. It is an AWESOME looking
      boiler let me tell you...

      My first plan was to heat with propane but I am not to keen on that idea
      anymore so I have been thinking of fitting in an electric heating element
      the kind that you find in hot water tanks with the controls etc. Will this
      do the job? The keg has a diameter about 15-16", and is 21" high, 27" with
      its new top, and holds 50 Liters, probably only do 20 liter batches though.
      There is a lot of hot water tanks available in my area right now as we just
      got Natural gas service and a lot of people, myself included have switched
      to Gas hot water tanks. I could even put in two elements, one opposite the
      other downlow in the keg. What ya think? If it is a stupid idea please tell
      me before I do it. And if there is a better way let me know.

      Next chapter, making the tower. I have the book "Illicit Distilling" and
      ordered "Making Gin and Vodka", hope it comes before Xmas, (Oh! BTW Merry
      Christmas to all) I also looked at the copper tower in Bob Lennon's PDF
      file, it looks interesting as well, oh another question would a 4" dia. SS
      pipe be ok for the column coming out of the boiler, or is that to big of a
      pipe?, length to be decided later. I have been sipping Drambuie since I
      started this Email and I am starting to have a bit of trouble finding the
      proper keys, so catch ya later BYE

      Regards Mel
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