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What Is The Problem With Making Moonshine In Aluminum? (Solution)

Acids attack aluminum, which will eventually cause pitting and possibly pin holes. This will take a long time. Aluminum does not distill, so none of it will end up in your distillate.

What are the dangers of making moonshine at home?

  • Both are highly flammable with the potential to explode during distillation if they are not properly sealed and vented. If there is a leak releasing ethanol gas in the still, the equipment used to process moonshine, a single spark could cause an explosion.

Contents

Can you use an aluminum pressure cooker for a moonshine still?

Aluminum is safe for distilling, but it will pit after a while and it can give a slightly metallic taste. Stainless steel is probably a better option and it’s stronger. You can also use copper.

Do you have to use copper for a moonshine still?

As I mentioned above, copper is a vital component when you’re distilling spirits. However, your entire still doesn’t have to be made out of copper in order to get the sulfur-eliminating benefits. You can go with a stainless steel still and also use copper in your column packing.

What can go wrong making moonshine?

Distilling not only involves the presence of a heat source for heating the wash, but also potentially explosive alcohol vapor and highly flammable ethyl alcohol. A heat source malfunction, a leaky still, or a spilled jar of high proof moonshine could lead to an out of control fire.

Can a still be made from aluminum?

I have found that aluminum will corrode in the low pH environment of a fermentation. In a distilling environment this can dangerous if you are using the aluminum as a pressure vessel. Its also kind of gross and although not much aluminum will get into your product, its certainly not a selling point.

Is it safe to distill alcohol in aluminum?

Aluminum does not distill, so none of it will end up in your distillate. Its not an ideal material, you can’t solder to it well, etc.

Can you put fruit in a thump keg?

This is the thumper liquid and it is meant to COOL the vapor that comes in from your pot still. If you want to infuse extra flavor into your moonshine, you can also add fruits, herbs, or spices at this stage. You can choose to add fruit peel, herbs, spices, and mashed ripe fruit directly into your thumper keg.

Do you put water in a thump keg?

Making moonshine with a thumper instead of a pot still is great because thumpers essentially perform two distillations in one—without stripping the flavor the way reflux distillation does. Depending on your thumper, it’s typical to plan to fill it about halfway with liquid.

Does a thumper need to be heated?

Does a Thumper Need to be Heated? Many moonshiners do prefer to heat the thumper. The alcohol does need to stay in vapor form to be able to rise into the condenser. Wood barrels are often preferred as thump kegs because of wood’s natural isolative abilities.

How much does a gallon of illegal moonshine cost?

The selling price is around $25 a gallon if sold in bulk, or $40 for retail price. “They can make as much as $10,000 a month,” the task force said.

How do you keep methanol from making moonshine?

Always use a collection pot made of glass, never of plastic and preferably of small mouth. And remember to place this vessel away from any fire or other form of heat. Always dispose of the first bit of moonshine, in order to avoid contamination with methanol (which has a lower boiling point than ethanol).

Can you get food poisoning from homemade moonshine?

Bacteria Levels These bacteria can become a source of added methanol that makes its way into the finished product. These dangerous bacteria may also produce the toxin that causes botulism, a type of food poisoning. When the process isn’t monitored correctly, a potentially good batch of moonshine can turn deadly.

What metals can be used in a still?

Although stills can be made of all kinds of materials, the only safe materials are copper and stainless steel. Copper produces a better tasting product, but stainless steel is stronger, cheaper and easier to clean.

How do you make a still out of household items?

How to Make a Still at Home

  1. Supplies for Making a DIY Still.
  2. Step 1: Drill a 1/8-inch Hole on the Aluminum Pot.
  3. Step 2: Wrap the Thermometer with Teflon Tape.
  4. Step 3: Place the Thermometer in the Hole.
  5. Step 4: Secure the Thermometer with Hot Glue.
  6. Step 5: Drill a 3/8-inch hole in the Pot Lid.
  7. Step 6: File as Needed.

Moonshine’s Gone Legit But It Still Is Dangerous

Photograph by Scott Olson / Getty Images Home-distilled moonshine, formerly a closely guarded secret of Appalachian backwoods, is still in existence to this day. In fact, it is now officially legal. “White lightning,” as it is referred as, was originally considered an illegal and dangerous chemical by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, but it is now approved for sale and controlled by the federal government in select states in the United States. Several other states, including Alabama, Georgia, and Kentucky, have followed suit.

Many believe that over a million illegal moonshine stills are currently operating throughout the United States, making the production of clear, high-potency brew more prevalent and widespread than at any other time in history.

What Is Moonshine?

When you make moonshine, you’re fermenting a sugar source to generate ethanol, which is also called as “hooch” or “homebrew.” The traditional method of making moonshine is to boil maize and sugar together. A distillation procedure is used to remove the alcohol from the mash after it has been fermented. One significant distinction between moonshine and other alcoholic beverages such as whiskey or bourbon is that moonshine is not matured. It is the end product of this process that creates an alcoholic beverage with a high proportion of alcohol, often several times larger than 100 proof (50 percent), such as white whiskey.

That is, the ability to purchase commercially made, all-copper moonshine stills on the internet has removed a significant amount of the danger associated with the moonshine distillation process.

Plenty of moonshine is still being produced in stills constructed from vehicle radiator components and other potentially hazardous items.

Impact of Moonshine

Once upon a time, moonshine was a significant financial component of the Appalachian economy, serving as a source of money during difficult economic times and in places where poverty was prevalent. Moonshine, like every other product manufactured in the United States, underwent peaks and troughs in the supply and demand cycle. When the price of sugar increased in the United States beginning in the 1950s, the moonshine industry suffered a severe downturn. The spirit appeared to be slipping away as the United States witnessed a surge in the use of marijuana and prescription medications, which reached epidemic levels in the region.

With the current trend toward increasing costs at the liquor shop, particularly for foreign spirits, moonshining has re-entered the public consciousness.

Tennessee legalized the sale of alcoholic beverages at large box retailers such as Walmart and Sam’s Club the following year.

They are available for purchase for anything from $150 to $11,000, and everything in between. One salesman said the demand for his copper stills increased in recent years and that he has supplied stills to every state in the U.S.

Potential Dangers

Because illegal moonshine is manufactured in improvised stills, it remains a potentially lethal substance. It has the potential to be hazardous on two levels: during the distillation process and when it is consumed.

Distilling Process

The distillation process itself generates flammable alcohol vapors, which are released during the operation. The presence of flammable vapors is one of the primary reasons that moonshine stills are nearly always situated outside, despite the fact that this makes them more visible to law authorities. The danger of vaporous explosions is too large to be contained within the building. When it comes to eating the liquid, if the end result has a proof more than 100, the moonshine itself is incredibly flammable and may be quite hazardous.

Consumption

However, while the flammability of the distilling process and the product itself is a concern, more people have died from drinking moonshine than have perished in still explosions owing to the poisons in the brew, according to the National Institute of Standards and Technology. Despite the fact that the majority of stills in use today are of the all-copper form, there are still a significant number of old-fashioned handcrafted stills extant. Traditionally, antique stills have used automobile radiators in the distillation process, and they are more likely to contain lead soldering, which can contaminate the moonshine.

  • Methanol tainting may develop in bigger quantities of distilled moonshine, and it is especially common in older batches.
  • The greater the batch size, the greater the amount of methanol.
  • Methanol is extremely dangerous and can result in blindness or even death if inhaled.
  • Christopher Holstege, a physician affiliated with the University of Virginia Health System, conducted a research in 2004 in which he examined 48 samples of moonshine acquired by law enforcement from various stills.

How to Test for Purity

According to folklore, one method of determining the purity of moonshine is to pour some onto a metal spoon and light it on fire. Although lead is not harmful when burned with a blue flame, it is harmful when burned with a yellow or red flame, leading the ancient adage, “Lead burns red and makes you dead.” The spoon burning approach, on the other hand, is not fully dependable. Other poisons that may be present in the brew, such as methanol, which burns with a bright blue flame that is difficult to notice, are not detected by this method.

Public health experts are afraid that moonshine poisoning in unwell people may go unnoticed since most healthcare practitioners regard it to be an outmoded practice from years ago.

History of Moonshine

As far as historians can tell, the practice of manufacturing alcohol has been present since the dawn of civilization. Moonshine, in particular, is said to have been brought into the United States by Scotch-Irish immigrants in the late 1700s, notably in the southern Appalachian region. According to Appalachian anthropologists, the Scotch-Irish immigrants who relocated to the region in the late 1700s and early 1800s carried with them their practice of home brewing as well as their formula for high-potency hooch, which was popular during the time period.

As a result, it may be kept concealed from prying eyes such as the police or hungry neighbors “Jason Sumich, Department of Anthropology, Appalachian State University, believes this is correct.

The side of the antique clay jars was frequently marked with the letters “XXX.” Supposedly, each “X” reflected the number of times the drink had gone through the distillation process before it was bottled.

10 Most Important Safety Tips for “Moonshiners”

People frequently inquire about how to generate “moonshine.” However, it is prohibited for anyone who are not commercial distillers to do so because it is not rocket science. As a result, one of the first things a potential distiller should evaluate is whether or not such a conduct is lawful. But first, a disclaimer: the information, data, and references provided in this article are offered solely for the purpose of providing information and are not meant to be relied upon by any person or organization as a legal foundation for any act or decision of any nature.

1. Make sure to have the proper permits for distilling

In accordance with prohibition-era legislation and other legal precedents established in the early 1900s, only commercial distillers are permitted to lawfully distill alcohol for human use. Fuel alcohol can be distilled at home if the distiller has a federal fuel alcohol permit from the state in which they live. Alcohol produced with this authorization, on the other hand, cannot be drunk. State restrictions also differ, so anybody considering purchasing a still should research their local state laws before ever considering starting a distilling business.

You may find information about distilling rules and permissions in each state by searching for the terms “distilled spirits” and “fuel alcohol” in the state general statutes, which are frequently available online.

We encourage you to read our comprehensive legal statement for further information on the legality of distillation.

2. Use Proper Distillation Equipment

A professional distiller would only utilize a pure 100 percent food grade copper distiller that was built with lead free solder or a stainless steel still produced from 304 stainless steel in order to get the highest quality product. Stills manufactured from old radiators, sheet metal, plastic barrels, and other similar materials are dubious at best and highly dangerous at worst, according to the experts. Always insist on using stills that are manufactured entirely of pure copper or 304 stainless steel to avoid any potential contamination.

In addition, while assembling a still, a professional distiller would always use lead-free solder and a water-based flux to prevent lead contamination. There are several instructions and videos available on the internet that explain how to create a still image.

3. NEVER distill indoors without ventilation

A still should never be used inside without sufficient engineering and ventilation. The most effective approach to avoid being on the 5 o’clock news is to avoid doing so. Typically, before a permit for distillation equipment can be issued, distillers must ensure that their facility is appropriately ventilated according to municipal regulation. Even though your municipal code does not demand it, sufficient ventilation should be carefully addressed regardless of where you live. Hire an engineer to do these calculations and oversee the installation of air handlers, since this is the most prudent course of action.

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4. Control alcohol vapor

A leaking still could cause valuable wash to drip onto the ground before the alcohol is separated, wasting the time and money that was spent brewing it up in the first place. Even more dangerous, a leak in the column of a still might enable explosive alcohol vapor to escape. Alcohol vapor is very explosive and possibly quite hazardous, and commercial distillers are acutely aware of this fact at all times. Before using a still for business purposes, a professional distiller will examine the equipment to ensure there are no leaks.

However, here’s something fascinating to consider: When his still began to leak, Popcorn Sutton, one of the most renowned old-timey moonshiners who ever lived, put flour paste to the connections and then wrapped a cloth around the connections to stop the leak.

Although, as previously stated, it is recommended practice to shut down a still if a leak occurs since alcohol vapor is extremely volatile and potentially dangerous.

5. Never leave a still unattended

A still that is left unmanaged is a disaster waiting to happen. Murphy’s law asserts that anything that has the potential to go wrong will go wrong eventually. This isn’t always the case, so why take a chance on fate by putting a still out in the open? Consider how long it will take to run a batch of distillate when organizing a distillation session. A commercial distiller will never leave his or her still alone for any length of time.

6. Keep a fire extinguisher handy

If you’ve read the previous safety guidelines in this article, you’ve probably figured out that fire is the most significant single risk while distilling. It is necessary to have a heat source present in order to heat the wash, but distilling also includes the presence of potentially explosive alcohol vapor and extremely flammable ethyl alcohol. Whether due to a failed heat source, a leaky still, or a spilled collecting vessel with high proof alcohol, the potential for calamity exists. Commercial distilleries are frequently required to have a fire suppression system installed.

Alcohol-fueled flames should be extinguished with a fire extinguisher in the same way that an oil fire on a stovetop should be extinguished. Being prepared with little more than a bucket of water will not suffice and may even make the situation worse.

7. Use a stainless steel collection vessel

As might be inferred from reading the other safety regulations in this page, fire is the most significant single danger while distilling. It is necessary to have a heat source present in order to heat the wash, as well as a possible explosive alcohol vapor and highly flammable ethyl alcohol present throughout the distillation process to be successful. Failure of a heating element or still, as well as spillage of a high proof alcohol collection jar, might all result in a catastrophe. Fire suppression systems are frequently required in commercial distilleries.

Alcohol-fueled flames should be extinguished with a fire extinguisher, just as an oil fire on a stovetop.

8. Direct the finished product well away from the still.

A commercial distiller would recommend that you always use a stainless steel collecting vessel with a tiny opening and that you keep it away from the heat source. When using small mouth collecting containers, you may reduce the quantity of alcohol vapor that escapes from freshly distilled product, as well as the amount of product that is spilt in the event that the container of alcohol is tipped over accidentally. The greater the distance between a container and a heat source, the better the chances of it ending up on its side.

Commercial distillers with years of experience employ self-contained heat sources (rather than open flames) and guide the final product away from any possible sources of ignition.

9. Always discard the “foreshots.”

A professional distiller is aware that one of the dangers linked with the production and use of spirits is the concentration of methanol. It is possible that methanol will be produced as a byproduct of the fermentation process, and its presence in a wash poses a serious threat. Because methanol has a lower boiling point than ethanol, if there is any methanol present in the fermented wash, it should boil off before the ethanol, which is fortunate. As a result, professional distillers will either perform one of two things or both:

  • Methanol concentration is one of the dangers linked with the production and use of alcoholic beverages. A professional distiller is well aware of this. It is possible that methanol will be produced as a byproduct of the fermentation process, and its presence in a wash represents a serious threat. Because methanol has a lower boiling point than ethanol, if there is any methanol present in the fermented wash, it should evaporate before the ethanol. Therefore, commercial distillers will either accomplish one of two things or none of the two.

10. Never sell “moonshine”

For the record, we previously said this in point number one, but it bears repeating: distilling alcohol without the required authorization is prohibited without a fuel alcohol permit, and selling alcohol for consumption is illegal without a federal and state distillers permit. Permits are necessary from the federal and state governments, and permission requirements differ from one state to another, so be sure to check your local regulations. If a person does not have a permission to manufacture and sell spirits, they should not engage in this activity.

The sale of moonshine is a highly severe felony in most jurisdictions, and violating the law can result in thousands of dollars in penalties and imprisonment.

The simplest approach to avoid legal difficulty is to obtain the appropriate distillation licenses, if they are available, and to never sell “moonshine.”

How To Make A Moonshine Still Step-by-Step

Learn how to create a moonshine still and why you’ll need one for usage at home or for survival, as well as the benefits of doing so. OTHER RELATED:19 “Old World” Primitive Survival Skills You’ll WISH You Knew Before the End of the World In this article:

  • Why is it still worthwhile to make your own moonshine? What You’ll Need to Build a Moonshine Still
  • Homemade Moonshine Still Instructions
  • What You’ll Need to Make a Moonshine Still

How to Make a Moonshine Still Step-by-Step

What is a Moonshine Still, and how does it work? With a moonshine still, you may distill liquid mixtures by heating them up and then cooling them down. This process separates or purifies the liquid by separating or purifying it through the vapor that is collected.

Why Is a DIY Moonshine Still Worth Your Time?

When it comes to booze, moonshine is the term used to describe liquor that was created when it was unlawful to do so. Consequently, a moonshine still will not only create distilled water but also whiskey, which can come in useful during a disaster or survival emergency. It doesn’t matter if you’re keeping your body warm or surviving the cold. Despite the fact that we designed this still apparatus with the process of purifying water in mind, it doesn’t hurt to know that it can also be used to produce high-proof liquor.

What You Need for a Moonshine Still Construction:

It’s important to know that this is not an electric moonshine still before we get started with the project. Following are the components of a DIY still kit, in no particular order of importance:

  • Cooking thermometer
  • Teflon Tape
  • Hot glue gun with high-temperature hot glue sticks
  • Metal File
  • 3/8-inch to 3/8-inch compression adaptor (available in the plumbing area)
  • 20-foot refrigerator coil (we used a tamale steamer from a business that rhymes with Target…DOH! )
  • 5-gallon bucket Ice
  • A stove or other steady heat source (when using the still, you must ensure that whatever you are boiling remains at a consistent temperature throughout)

Homemade Moonshine Still Directions

Now, let’s get this moonshine still working, for real this time!

Step 1: Start with the Cover

Using your drill, drill a 1/8-inch hole into the lid of the metal pot that will house your still. To make things simpler, place the lid atop a scrap piece of wood and drill a hole a few inches back from the edge of the lid.

Step 2: Prepare Thermometer

Teflon tape should be used to secure the thermometer. As a first step, we were simply going to wrap the thermometer with Teflon tape to establish an airtight seal. However, we felt that some hot glue would be a good addition to further fix this item in place (rated for high temps). Most of the time, you can get away with just applying hot glue at the end of the day and skipping the Teflon altogether.

Step 3: Set Up Cover and Thermometer

Insert the thermometer through the opening. Make sure your cooking thermometer is properly inserted through the opening so that it is flush with the top of the lid.

Step 4. Secure Thermometer

Hot glue should be used to hold the thermometer in place. For those who are concerned that hot glue is a poor choice for this project (since it will be in close contact with hot steam), it is crucial to know that high-temperature hot glue sticks have a melting point that is significantly higher than the melting point of water (100 degrees Celsius). This is also true for the melting point of “other liquids” (78 °C), which is also true for water. There are a variety of alternative adhesives available, including high-temperature silicone and even high-temperature resins.

Just make sure that whatever you choose is rated for heat that is far more than the amount of steam that your liquid will produce. THERE’S MORE ON THIS:Winter Survival | What To Do When The Heat Goes Out

Step 5: Drill Another Hole

Make a 3/8-inch hole in the lid of the pot. Make another 1/8-inch hole in the lid to start the process. This will serve as a starting hole for the much larger 3/8 inch drill bit that will be used later. Place it across the lid in a position that is roughly opposite the thermometer. Using the 3/8 inch drill bit, drill a hole in the wall 3/8 inch deep.

Step 6: File

The pot cover should have a 3/8-inch hole. Make another 1/8-inch hole in the lid to start the process off. This will serve as a beginning hole for the much larger 3/8-inch drill bit that will be used later in the procedure. Place it over the top of the lid, roughly opposite the thermometer. The 3/8 inch drill bit should be used to drill a 3/8 inch hole.

Step 7: Set Up Compression Fitting

Compression fittings should be installed in the lid of the still. By twisting it through from the bottom of the lid, insert the male threaded nut of the compression fitting into the hole in the lid’s bottom. It’s likely that the fit will be imperfect, so don’t be concerned if it jiggles around a little.

Step 8: Seal Fitting

Hot glue should be used to secure the fitting. This seal must be completely airtight in order to prevent steam from escaping through it. It’s time to get out the old reliable glue gun once more! Make sure to use hot glue on the opposite side as well, working it in around the seams as you go along.

Step 9: Attach the Copper Coil to the Lid

To attach the compression fitting to one end of the refrigerator coil, use the female-threaded nut that came with the fitting. It is included with this end of your compression fitting is a piece of hardware known as a “ferrule.” It’s a little circular ring with a hole in the center that appears similar to a grommet. In order to ensure a secure connection between the female and male ends of your compression nut, the ferrule is used. The female-threaded nut should be screwed onto the male-threaded nut that protrudes from the lid of the still.

Step 10: Drill a Hole into the Bucket

To attach the compression fitting to one end of the refrigerator coil, use the female-threaded nut that comes with the compression fitting. Associated with this end of your compression fitting is something known as a “ferrule.” In appearance, it is a tiny circular ring with a grommet-like appearance. In order to provide a secure connection between the female and male ends of your compression nut, the ferrule should be used. Put your still’s lid on and screw the female-threaded nut onto the male-threaded nut that protrudes from the lid.

Step 11: Insert Second Compression Fitting

The second compression fitting should be placed into the bucket. Using a male-threaded nut from the other compression fitting, screw it into place in the bucket.

Step 12: Make the Seal Watertight

Fill the bucket with the second compression fitting. Using the other compression fitting, screw the male-threaded nut into the bucket.

Step 13: Tighten Refrigerator Coil

Tighten the refrigerator coil if it is necessary. If your coil is presently too large to fit snugly in whichever bucket you are using, you will want to shut down the coils before continuing with your project. Make use of anything cylindrical to assist you in reshaping it, such as this coffee cup that may be found in the kitchen. Just about any cylindrical form will suffice for this purpose. Work slowly and carefully so that you don’t damage your tubing, pulling down on the coil rings to compress the system until it is the proper size.

Look over to DIY Projects for more information on this project and the whole set of instructions!

A DIY version will still take a significant amount of supplies, but having one on hand will be quite beneficial in a variety of situations.

Are you contemplating the construction of your own moonshine still? Let us know what you think in the comments section below! Following that, we’ll go on to the next section.

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Follow us onYouTube, Twitter, Tumblr, and Pinterest to stay up to date! Disclaimer: The material contained on this website is solely for informative purposes. Please see our complete disclaimerhere for more information. Note from the editor: This piece was first published on May 15, 2018, however it has been modified for quality and relevancy to reflect current events.

Aluminum vs Stainless? Best Beer Brewing Pots

Follow @BeerSmith on Twitter. The advantages of using aluminum vs stainless steel pots for brewing beer is a topic of constant discussion among home brewers and on numerous discussion boards. This week, we’ll take a look at the advantages and disadvantages of each to help you make an informed selection about your next beer brewing pot.

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Aluminum Pot Pros and Cons

The fact that aluminum cookware is commonly used for food preparation means that aluminum pots are readily available and reasonably priced. Turkey pots in the 36-quart range may be acquired at a reasonable price at your local Walmart, especially soon after Thanksgiving. Aluminum pots are far less expensive than stainless steel pots – in many cases, they are half the price. Because aluminum is a greater conductor of heat than steel, your pot will come to a boil more quickly and will also cool down more quickly once you have finished boiling.

  1. This is one of the primary reasons why stainless steel is used in professional brewing equipment rather than aluminum — stainless steel is simpler to clean using caustic cleaning solutions.
  2. Not to be concerned — the layer of aluminum oxide actually preserves the pot, but it is not as attractive as stainless steel.
  3. First and foremost, aluminum pots are not associated with Alzheimer’s disease.
  4. Keep in mind that you consume soda from metal cans (though most are protected) and eat meals made in aluminum cookware on a daily basis – both of which are quite safe.
  5. Water has a pH of 7, but your beer’s is closer to 5.2, while spaghetti sauce may have a pH as low as 4.6 and the most acidic diet drinks you consume can have a pH as low as 2.5, according to the American Chemical Society.
  6. Your wort is just not acidic enough to react with the aluminum kettle you’ve chosen.

Stainless Steel

Brewing pots made of stainless steel are considered the “Cadillac” of brewing pots, with designer pots costing many hundreds of dollars or more. These pots are more costly than equivalent aluminum pots, but they are a favorite among serious brewers because of their durability. Because the passive oxide layer is not visible on stainless steel, the steel will retain its shine, making it easy to detect whether your stainless pot is genuinely clean. When cleaning big vats, stainless steel has the benefit of being resistant to oxygenated cleansers, which makes it a popular choice among professional brewers.

Because stainless steel is stronger than aluminum, which is a softer metal, it is less prone to denting and scratches when the wall thicknesses are equivalent.

Because stainless steel has a highly bonded oxide layer, it is less vulnerable to attack by acids, albeit the acidity of wort is not an issue for either metal in this application.

The primary drawback of stainless steel is that it does not transfer heat as effectively as aluminum, resulting in a longer time to reach boiling point and, consequently, longer cooling durations after boiling point.

Which to Choose?

You can’t go wrong with either stainless steel or aluminum if you choose a well-made heavy-duty pot that is large enough to hold a full boil and is heavy enough to transfer heat well. Because a hefty pot with thick walls will better transfer heat and will also withstand the occasional scratch and dent, I seek for one that is heavy and has thick walls. The diameter of an ideal pot is nearly equal to the height of the pot. In most cases, an aluminum or stainless steel pot of high quality will last a lifetime.

Stainless steel has a certain “cool factor,” but it comes at a cost that is commensurate with its coolness.

Do you have any thoughts of your own?

If you’d like to help us out, you might want to consider purchasing a pot from Adventures in Homebrewing, which is a BeerSmith Supporter.

Related Beer Brewing Articles from BeerSmith:

Tags: beer, aluminum brewing, homebrew, pots, stainless steel, vs. stainless steel Did you like this article? It is certain that you will enjoy our BeerSmith software. Produce sure you don’t make another batch of terrible beer! Give BeerSmith a shot; you’ll end up with the greatest beer you’ve ever made. BeerSmith is available for free for a trial period of 21 days.

Why Copper Is The Best Choice When Purchasing A Still

Respect the Distilling Tradition! Copper has always been the material of choice for distilling alcohol. Despite the fact that it is a pricey metal, it just produces better outcomes. For this reason, modern professional distilleries have continued to employ copper stills even in the 21st century. What other materials can be used in the construction of a still? It is possible to construct a still out of virtually any metal, including stainless steel, iron, and aluminum. They can even be formed of glass, porcelain, or clay that has been sculpted.

  • Copper is the most often used material for still construction, however stainless steel is also utilized by some distilleries.
  • Even though stainless steel is a viable alternative, copper is the favored material since it has a molecular interaction with alcohol that results in better-tasting liquors.
  • What are the benefits of copper in terms of taste for your final product?
  • Despite the fact that sulfur has an awful taste and odor, when it comes into touch with copper, it forms a chemical bond with the metal.
  • Copper sulfate adheres to the copper inside of the still, preventing it from being removed.
  • As a result of this chemical reaction, it is essential to properly clean your still after each usage.
  • Why would a distillery ever consider using stainless steel in the first place?

Copper provides a more flavorful product, but stainless steel is stronger, less expensive, and simpler to clean than copper.

It can cause issues in columns where you want steam vapors to ascend and generate a natural reflux, which might cause complications.

There are also some stainless steel stills that are made entirely of stainless steel and operate on the forced reflux method.

This design enables the distiller to make powerful alcohol that does not have a sulfur flavor, but it is not something you would want to relish in the traditional sense.

A copper still will cost you more money up front, and you will have to put in more effort to create your final product as a result of that investment.

Your final product’s scent is enhanced by using a copper still. If you wish to create spirits for personal use, it is clear that a copper still is significantly superior to a stainless steel still in almost every way. More information may be found in Previous PostNext Post.

Learn How To Make A Still At Home

Would you be interested in learning how to create a still? Take a look at this DIY water purification method and consider it. LINKED: 37 Insanely Simple DIY Projects For Complete Beginners

How to Make a Still at Home

Aren’t you annoyed when you find yourself alone on a deserted island with nothing but a refrigerator coil, a 5-gallon bucket, and a stove to rely on? (And a mason jar with a great bespoke logo emblazoned on it?) Although these and a few other basic things are required, we will demonstrate how to construct your own DIY house with these materials. Yet another way stills may be used is to filter seawater into potable water…as well as to make other things into a drinkable mixture that we are not authorized to discuss under the law.

Please don’t go completely blind on our behalf.

Supplies for Making a DIY Still

  • Aren’t you annoyed when you’re alone on a deserted island with nothing but a refrigerator coil, a 5-gallon bucket, and a stove to keep you company? Then there’s that wonderful bespoke logo on a Mason Jar, which is always a bonus. We will, however, demonstrate how to construct your own DIY home using only these and a few other basic materials. Stills may be used to cleanse salt water into potable water…as well as to make other things into a drinkable mixture that we are not authorized to discuss under the law.. Even if there are many sophisticated still designs, you can complete this one at home. Please don’t go completely deaf on our sake. Remember to drink (water) responsibly, as you would any other time of day.

Step 1: Drill a 1/8-inch Hole on the Aluminum Pot

To make things simpler, place the lid atop a scrap piece of wood and drill a hole a few inches back from the edge of the lid. The Suteck 5 Gal. Alcohol Still Spirits Kit (18L Water Alcohol Distiller Copper Tube Boiler Home Brewing Kit with Thumper Keg Stainless Steel) is a home brewing kit that includes a copper tube boiler.

  • • Alcohol stills upgrading with thumper keg – full distillation equipment, suited for beginners or experienced distillers, easy to handle and install
  • • Material and Construction – safe and durable construction
  • • Dimensions and Weight – reasonable This product is constructed of non-toxic red copper and stainless steel materials, and there is NO lead in any of the components. All of the components are made of food-grade materials, and the fermenter has been carefully thickened. Build-in thermometer – Metal Thermometers display temperatures in Celsius and Fahrenheit, allowing the operator to readily check the temperature while operating the distiller. (Dimensions: capacity: 5 Gallons / 18L
  • Height: 11.8inch
  • Diameter: 12.8inch.) Upgrade with three pots and a thumper keg, which is ideal for incorporating tastes into your product! You may use any fruits or flavorings you choose. Our Alcohol Still can be used for a variety of purposes, including seawater distillation, steam distillation, and alcohol distillation. The independent airway design allows the distillate to rise faster and deliver a higher purity
  • Multipurpose usage – there are many different ways to use our Alcohol Still, and it can be used for a variety of purposes, including alcohol distillation. You may manufacture a variety of products in the stills, depending on your preferences, including alcohol, ethanol, whiskey, water distillation, winemaking, essential oils, hydrosol, and more
  • 100% MONEY-BACK GUARANTEE, free components swapped! Purchase with confidence, knowing that if you are dissatisfied for any reason, we will issue a complete refund. Please keep in mind that the distiller’s emblem is the brand “seeutek,” as shown in the photograph. Please refrain from becoming suspicious.

Step 2: Wrap the Thermometer with Teflon Tape

To begin with, we were merely going to wrap the thermometer with Teflon tape to make an airtight seal, but we quickly realized that we needed to fix it even more firmly in place with some hot glue (rated for high temps). Most of the time, you could probably get away with applying hot glue at the end of the day and skipping the Teflon.

Step 3: Place the Thermometer in the Hole

Make sure your cooking thermometer is properly inserted through the opening so that it is flush with the top of the lid.

Step 4: Secure the Thermometer with Hot Glue

Hot glue is a poor option for this project (since it will be in direct contact with hot steam), but it is essential to remember that high-temperature hot glue sticks have a melting point that is far higher than the melting point of water (212 °), which should alleviate any concerns. Similarly, the melting point of “other liquids” (172.4 °) falls within this category. There are a variety of alternative adhesives available, including high-temperature silicone and even high-temperature resins. Just make sure that whatever you choose is rated for heat that is far more than the amount of heat generated by the liquid’s vapor.

Step 5: Drill a 3/8-inch hole in the Pot Lid

Make another 1/8-inch hole in the lid to start the process. This will serve as a starting hole for the much larger 3/8 inch drill bit that will be used later. Place it across the lid in a position that is roughly opposite the thermometer. Using the 3/8 inch drill bit, drill a hole in the wall 3/8 inch deep. The ugly burrs are difficult to notice, but they must be removed using a file.

Step 6: File as Needed

There may be some difficulty while installing a compression fitting if there are any burrs present. Take a file and grind down the burrs until they are completely gone.

Step 7: Insert a Compression Fitting into the Lid

There may be some difficulty while installing a compression fitting if there are any burrs in the surface.

Remove the burrs by grinding them down with a file until they are no longer visible.

Step 8: Seal the Fitting with Hot Glue

This seal must be completely airtight in order to prevent steam from escaping through it. It’s time to get out the old reliable glue gun once more! Make sure to use hot glue on the opposite side as well, working it in around the seams as you go along.

Step 9: Attach the Copper Coil to the Lid

Place the female-threaded nut that comes with the compression fitting over one end of the refrigerator coil and tighten it down with your fingers. It is included with this end of your compression fitting is a piece of hardware known as a “ferrule.” It’s a little circular ring with a hole in the center that appears similar to a grommet. In order to ensure a secure connection between the female and male ends of your compression nut, the ferrule is used. Attach the female-threaded nut to the male-threaded nut that is protruding from the lid with the male-threaded nut.

Step 10: Drill a 3/8-inch Hole in the Bucket

Place the female-threaded nut that comes with the compression fitting over one end of the refrigerator coil and tighten it with your compression fitting wrench. Associated with this end of your compression fitting is something known as a “ferrule.” In appearance, it is a tiny circular ring with a grommet-like appearance. In order to provide a secure connection between the female and male ends of your compression nut, the ferrule should be used. Attach the female-threaded nut to the male-threaded nut that is protruding from the lid with the male-threaded nut on the lid.

Step 11: Insert Second Compression Fitting into the Bucket

Using a male-threaded nut from the other compression fitting, screw it into place in the bucket.

Step 12: Make the Seal Watertight with the Hot Glue Gun

Similar to how you did it with the lid, use the glue to secure this guy in place nice and snug.

Step 13: Tighten the Refrigerator Coil if Needed

If your coil is presently too large to fit snugly in whichever bucket you are using, you will want to shut down the coils before continuing with your project. Make use of something cylindrical to assist you in reshaping it, such as this coffee can we found in the kitchen. Just about any cylindrical form will suffice for this purpose. Work slowly and carefully so that you don’t damage your tubing, pulling down on the coil rings to compress the system until it is the proper size.

Step 14: Attach the Coil to the Bucket

Place the second female-threaded nut over the coil on the opposite end of the coil and insert a ferrule into the nut’s female threads. Place this end of the coil into the bucket and thread the female nut onto the male nut that is protruding into the bucket from the exterior of the bucket to complete the installation. Your basic do-it-yourself project is now complete. We tied a bungee cord over the top of ours because the pot we used doesn’t lock down, which made it simpler to carry in the first place.

  1. Notes on Use: This still should not be used to distill alcoholic beverages.
  2. The boiling point of methanol is lower than that of alcohol, therefore if you are distilling alcohol, the early section of your distillate will include a high proportion of methanol in comparison to the rest.
  3. In addition to being referred to as “wood alcohol,” it is also colorless, volatile, and combustible since it is manufactured from wood.
  4. It will kill you if consumed in excessive quantities.
  5. If you were distilling salt water into potable water, for example, the boiling point of water is 212 °, so you would put the salt water in a pot and bring the water to a boil, keeping the heat source at a level that maintained a thermometer reading of 212 °.

Because of this, the water vapour will be converted to gas and will be transported via the copper tube.

Step 15: Add Ice

Okay, you don’t require quite as much as this: However, you will need to cool the gases that are produced in this still in order for them to condense back into liquid. When it comes to testing, ice is the most convenient option, and you only actually need a little bag if you’re utilizing a bucket as we did. Other methods include constructing a closed system with your bucket so that the gas cannot escape; but, in the interest of preventing someone from potentially blowing themselves up with compressed methanol, our attorneys advised us to leave that step out of the process.

  • Continue to look for more inspiration for your own creation.
  • The materials necessary for this project, not to mention the drilling and sealing that will be required, appear to be fairly extensive, but this project appears to be achievable and will be enjoyable.
  • Do you think you’ll be able to complete the project on your own now that you’ve learned how to construct a still?
  • COMING UP:
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How to Make Moonshine

Article in PDF format Article in PDF format However, if done with prudence and common sense, moonshine production may be an intriguing small-scale scientific project that can be enjoyed by everybody. With the exception of Missouri, making moonshine needs a permission in the United States, and consuming the finished product is not recommended (see below).

  1. 1st, gather your materials. When it comes to creating moonshine, it’s critical to utilize the proper materials since employing equipment made of the wrong material might have disastrous consequences – literally. In order to ensure your safety and the greatest possible possibility of producing authentic moonshine, gather the following items.
  • A pressure cooker is an electric pressure cooker. Use a pressure cooker that you don’t intend to use for anything else, or get a new pressure cooker designed particularly for manufacturing moonshine. Copper tubing. You’ll need around two yards of tubing that is 1/4 inch in diameter “in terms of width Hardware stores and home and garden supply stores carry this item. A drill with at least a 1/4-inch diameter hole “bit for drilling a hole in the pressure cooker’s lid
  • Bit for drilling a hole in the pressure cooker’s lid
  • The following: a 15 gallon (56.8 L) metal pot
  • A huge bucket made of plastic
  • Cheesecloth
  • 10 pounds of cornmeal, 10 pounds of sugar, and 1/2 ounce of yeast are combined to make this recipe.

2 Construct a still. Drill a hole in the lid of the pressure cooker and thread it so that it fits snuggly over a 1/4-inch pipe cleaner “Copper tubing is used in this application. Insert the end of the 1/4 inch tube “Insert the copper tubing into the hole, taking care not to let it protrude through the hole more than an inch. This is the condensing tube that you’ll be using.

  • The tubing should be long enough to stretch from the cooker to a sink and beyond the sink to a point near the ground. In the event that you don’t want to drill a hole in your cooktop’s lid, you may thread it through the vent and secure it in place using duct tape instead.
  1. 1Bring 10 gallons (37.9 liters) of water to a boil. Fill the pot two-thirds of the way with tap water (10 gallons or 37.8 L), then place the pot on the stove and crank the burner to the highest heat setting possible. Allow the water to come to a full rolling boil. Prepare the cornmeal according per package directions. In a large mixing bowl, combine the 10 pounds of cornmeal and the water, stirring constantly with a wooden paddle or other tool. Allow it to simmer for a few minutes, or until the water has dissolved the cornmeal and the mixture has thickened into a paste. Immediately remove the mixture from the fire and set it aside to cool before pouring it into the clean bucket
  2. 3 Combine the sugar and yeast in a mixing bowl. 10 pounds of sugar and 1/2 ounce of yeast should be mixed together. Incorporate the sugar and yeast into the mash using a wooden paddle or another big tool until it is well mixed in.
  • To begin the fermentation process, bread, brewer’s yeast, naturally occurring yeast, or even a sourdough starter can be substituted for dried yeast.

4 Start the fermentation process with the mash. Spread cheesecloth over the top of the bucket and set it aside in a cool, dark location, such as your cellar or basement, to enable fermentation to take place. In fermentation, the yeast breaks down sugar and maize starches into alcohol, which is then released into the atmosphere.

  • A layer of brown or light tan foam will emerge on the surface of the mash bucket, gradually increasing to a greater level with each passing day. Eventually, the sugars will be “used up,” and you will observe the foam, or “head,” no longer rising. When the mash stops bubbling, it is ready to move on to the next stage of fermentation. “Sour mash” is the term used to describe the dish at this phase.
  1. Brown or light-tan foam will begin to accumulate on the mash bucket’s surface, gradually increasing in height as time passes. Eventually, the sugars will be “used up,” and you will observe the froth, or “head,” no longer rising. When the mash stops bubbling, it is ready to move on to the next step of preparation. When it reaches this stage, it’s referred to as “sour mash.”
  • The liquid that comes out of the copper tube before the cooker reaches 177 degrees Fahrenheit (80 degrees Celsius) includes methanol, which burns at a lower temperature than ethanol and condenses to form steam. This low-boiling liquid must be disposed of immediately. When methanol is eaten, it causes damage to the visual nerves. It’s likely that you’ll have to dump at least two ounces of liquid before the ethanol, which may be ingested, begins to appear. Continue to monitor the temperature and collect alcohol until the temperature reaches or falls below 177 degrees Fahrenheit (80 degrees Celsius). 2 gallons (7.6 liters) of liquid should be plenty for your collection needs

5Transfer the alcoholic beverage into jars.

The finished moonshine is between 180 and 190 proof (90 to 95 percent alcohol by volume), which is almost pure grain alcohol in composition. Responsible brewers reduce the potency of this product to half its original strength by diluting it with clean spring water.

Create a new question

  • QuestionCan I use apples for the cornmeal in this recipe? Absolutely anything may be used
  • There are no restrictions. Question What can I do to ensure that the moonshine does not contain any methanol? It will be determined by the amount of mash you are distilling. Methanol vaporizes at a temperature that is lower than that of ethanol. Throw aside the first shot glass full of mash for every gallon of mash you make. Question Do you want to mix it with clean spring water? I was under the impression that water and alcohol separate when they are mixed. They do have a tendency to mingle. Inquire with a distiller or a bartender in your area. You might be thinking of water and oil, which actually separate when combined
  • However, this is not the case. Question It has been brought to my attention that I can create the mash using only water, sugar, and yeast. Is it necessary to include the corn in the recipe? No, yeast need nutrients in order to convert sugar to alcohol. To the mashed potatoes, add a small can of tomato paste
  • Mix well. Question Is it possible to use something other than a pressure cooker? Any clean, sealed vessel made of glass, stainless steel, or copper with a single steam outlet can be utilized. Because the steam is your product, it must be sealed so that it can only leave through the tube to the condenser. Otherwise, it will spark a fire. Making moonshine by directly venting alcohol vapor from the boiler is both risky and a waste of moonshine. Copper aids in the removal of pollutants, hence it is recommended that copper tubing be used in the condenser, regardless of the kind of boiler used. Question Is it possible to substitute a hot plate for a stove? The answer is yes, anything with a regulated heat source or flame will suffice. Just make sure your thermostat is set to the appropriate temperature. Question Is it possible to manufacture moonshine using an aluminum pressure cooker? Using this method is not recommended since the contents will react with the aluminum, resulting in an unpleasant flavour. Additionally, you run the danger of harming the metal. Question When the pressure cooker is closed, how can I know if the temperature is 80 degrees Fahrenheit? The stem of the thermometer should be able to fit through a tiny hole at the top of the pressure cooker’s cover. Ensure that you have sealed around the puncture with a heat resistant sealant or simply plain old water and flour before boiling your mash (really wash). Question How could the temperature of my still reach 205 degrees after you tell me to stop collecting my runoff if my heating element is set at 178 degrees with the thermostat set to high? The heat from your stove will be on, and even if it is set at a low temperature, it will cause your mash temperature to rise, resulting in it reaching 200 degrees eventually. Question Is the number of apples I use the same as the amount of cornmeal? It is technically preferable to use cornmeal rather than apples in this recipe. This is due to the fact that cornmeal has superior and more easily available nutrients for yeast growth. You should make sure that the apple mass is the same as the cornmeal, if you choose to use apples instead. Make sure that you first remove the apple’s stem and seeds before continuing.

More information can be found in the following answers: Inquire about something There are 200 characters remaining. Include your email address so that you may be notified when this question has been resolved. Submit

  • The use of a hydrometer to test for alcohol concentration and a thermometer to boil the mash will yield better results
  • The majority of individuals who produce “shine” do it outside, over a wood fire, near a cold-water creek, for the best results. This avoids the hazard of preparing alcoholic beverages within the home. Another reason to do this outside is because of the pungent stench the mash emits while it is “processing.” Allow the mash to work for as long as the head, or foam, appears to be rising, but remember that it will ferment out and get sour after approximately 10 to 14 days, depending on the temperature of the mash. Because yeast reacts more slowly at lower temperatures, avoid inviting guests over while the mash is in progress. My own experience with mash while fishing on creeks in moonshine country has been that I can smell it over a mile away. Make sure to keep the sour mash covered but not completely sealed. This would be best done in a wine maker’s flask with an air lock
  • Saccharomyces cerevisiae is a single species of yeast that is used in both bread and brewer’s yeast, among other things. A carefully cultivated variety of Saccharomyces cerevisiae, brewer’s yeast and whisky yeast are simply more resistant to greater concentrations of ethyl alcohol and take longer to die off, hence increasing their lifetime and the amount of ethyl alcohol they can produce. In contrast to bread and brewer’s yeast, neither produces by-products that are capable of causing disease, blindness, or even death. Distillers often remove the first 5 percent of the distillate, known as ‘foreshots,’ from the final product (containing esters, methylate, and aldehydes). They are disagreeable, but they are not harmful, and the scent and taste are naturally deterrents. According to the records, fore-shot distillate has never caused anybody to go blind, die, or become ill
  • It just has a foul taste.
  • Making “shine” outside, over a wood fire, near a cold-water creek can yield better results. Using a hydrometer to test for alcohol concentration and a thermometer to boil the mash will yield better results. Making alcohol in an enclosed space eliminates the hazard. Another reason to do this outside is because of the pungent stench the mash produces while “processing.” Wait as long as the head, or foam, appears to be rising on the surface of the mash
  • Nevertheless, the mash will ferment and become sour after approximately 10 to 14 days, depending on the temperature. At lower temperatures, yeast reacts more slowly, so avoid inviting guests over while the mash is in process of being prepared. Keep the sour mash covered, but not completely sealed, since I have personally smelled it from nearly a mile away while fishing on creeks in moonshine country. Saccharomyces cerevisiae is a single type of yeast that is utilized in the production of both bread and brewer’s yeast. A wine maker’s flask with an air lock would be ideal for this use. A carefully developed variety of Saccharomyces cerevisiae, brewer’s yeast and whisky yeast are simply more resistant to greater concentrations of ethyl alcohol and take longer to die off, hence increasing their lifetime and the amount of ethyl alcohol they are capable of producing. In contrast to bread and brewer’s yeast, neither produces by-products that are harmful or even fatal. A distillery’s first 5 percent of the distillate, known as the “foreshots,” is often removed (containing esters, methylate, and aldehydes). Their odor and taste are naturally repulsive, yet they do not pose a threat to human health. It has never been proven that fore-shot distillate is dangerous or poisonous
  • It just tastes terrible.

Things You’ll Need

  • Pressure cooker
  • 5 feet in length (1.5 m) Clean bucket with a lid and 1/4″ copper tubing are all you need. Cheesecloth or an old, clean white tee-shirt will work well here. Cornmeal, sugar, and yeast are all ingredients.

About This Article

Summary of the Article X A hole should be drilled in the top of the lid of a pressure cooker and copper tubing should be threaded through it to manufacture moonshine. Bring a large saucepan of water and cornmeal to a boil, stirring constantly, until the mixture thickens into a paste. Allow the liquid to cool for a few minutes before adding the sugar and yeast. Ferment this combination for several days before straining it and adding the liquid to the pressure cooker (see recipe below). Warm up the mash to 177 degrees Fahrenheit by running the copper line through a sink of cold water and into a clean container on the floor, then turn off the heat.

The remainder will be made into moonshine.

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