Does anybody use galvanised steel for their column. This is what I
have seen on Tony's site about it.
"Galvanised materials are not safe to use on the condenser side, but
if it's part of the boiler or at the bottom end of the column, it
should be fine (provided you don't boil so vigorously that your wash
bubbles up through your column and into your collecting container.
Toxic salts from metals can be dissolved in liquid, but remain behind
when the liquid is vaporized (as in a reflux column).
For example, you could toss a handful of lead fishing sinkers into
your boiler which could well leach toxic levels of lead into the
wash. But once the vapor runs through the column, it's free of the
lead salts and safe. If you used lead based solder (or galvanized
parts) in your CONDENSER, that would be a different story. The hot
liquid condensate could leach lead salts from soldered joints or zinc
from the galvanized parts and you would wind up with contaminated
There is a lot of road works going on in my area and I have seen lots
of galvanised steel tube in skips that used to be road signs. They
are up to 3m high and about 100mm diameter. They weigh a lot so I was
thinking of having it resting on the bottom of the keg and then
connect it to a flange. I would drill holes in the tube section
beneath the flange so the wash can pass through it. I would leave the
tube open at both ends and put my Nixon Stone style oversized
condenser in the top so no vapour escapes. A gatevalve to my liebeg
would be under the oversized condenser in the column.
Just how toxic are the metal salts they talk about? Is it just as
harmful as taking to many iron or zinc supplements? I could always
reattach my smaller stainless column again and redistill the
distillate just to be sure no salts were in it (shouldn't take long