Hi, I,m pretty new to this hobby. (2months) I have a homemade 5 gallon (U.K) Boka reflux its only a metre high (39 inches) and 46mm diameter (nearly 2 inches). The boiler is a 3Kw urn used for making hot drinks (thermostat controlled). From the outset i had to come up with a way of controlling the power input. I just used a triac controller you can get them on e-bay and amazon for about £12 (usd 20) generally from China.With this i have almost infinite adjustment of power input. During the reflux after full on heat up to boil i drop the power to 800Watts which gives me the right velocity for good reflux I get 92% ABV with a 25% take off, as things progress I have to slowly(over 10 hours) turn the watts up to 1600 (ABV drops to 88%) also reducing the take off rate.So what I am saying is that its good to know all the technical heat calcs for the boiling mix, its not necessary to know this (i Didnt) to get acceptable performance. Basically biggest heater you can power from your suppy(fast boil) and a cheap triac controller. Just search on heat input or triac controller.
--- In firstname.lastname@example.org, chris jude <vegbenz300@...> wrote:
> For pipe insulation there's a number of choices at McMaster:
> Otherwise you should be able to get something from a local plumbing supply
> house. Just make sure it can handle up to 212 F.