Re: Questions about reflux stills
I was a newbie here myself about 18 months ago and it is purely
through the much appreciated help of the very experienced guys on
this site that i now (safely) enjoy the fruits of my own still.
I built the Bokakob still and continue to get excellent results from
Mine is slightly larger than the original plans posted here. The 33"
column is 2.5" stainless steel (only because it was the only large
bore pipe i could find) and i have eventually changed the packing
for 30" of rolled-up copper mesh. I started with stainless pot
scrubbers but the copper gives a better tasting product (you have to
have some copper in the vapour flow!). The condenser sits on top of
this and adds another 9". I made my condenser as a separate piece
and welded a larger diameter tube to the top of the column that it
slots into. It made welding the take-off tubes easier.
I also started with a 5L boiler (stock pot) and have now upgraded to
a 25L ex-army stainless stock pot but that required a gas burner to
heat it as the electric hob i started with wasn't powerful enough.
I MIG welded the column to the lid of the stock pot (stainless wire
and Argon CO2 gas). If i had the choice though i would like to have
a copper column, just can't justify the cost of 2" copper pipe.
The coils in the condenser i made by filling small-bore copper pipe
with salt (to stop the pipe collapsing during bending) and wrapping
it very carefully around a brush handle - instant coils!
The take-off pipe is carefully welded stainless which i attach a tap
to when it's running to control flow.
If you intend to use copper all through, the pipes and take-off are
easier to fit as you can use lead-free solder and a blow-torch to
attach them. You could also make the column and condenser in one
Hope this helps. Ask away if you need to know anything specific.
--- In firstname.lastname@example.org, "keeperoftoast"
> ok, im really new to this, and am preparing to build my first
> I understand the general concept of construction, but feel a littleso
> bit lost on the finer principles.
> i searched for the last couple days but couldn't find any topics,
> if one exists, im sorry, please redirect me.
> Specifically im looking at making bokakob's mini-still.
> any directions in construction would be much appreciated.