Step 3: The condenser

Picture of the condenser
the pot was easy. the condenser takes a bit of finagling. whatever the inside diameter of your thermos is, you want to find something like a 20oz soda bottle or some suitable tube-like thing that is a bit smaller and wrap your copper tubing around it to make a neat little spiral (careful, copper kinks easily).  tube benders are available.  they are basically big springs that slide over the tube and allow you to bend without kinking.  filling the tube with salt, sugar, or even sand can work as well.  i was just really careful and bent slowly and it worked fine for me.

the bottom end of the spiral exits through a hole cut in the lower side of the thermos. the top will exit a hole cut in your thermos lid (see pic). seal the area around the exiting tube at the bottom. seal it well and let it dry completely before you use it. test it before you go full throttle, as well.

thread the top of the copper through the hole in the center of the lid (if it is a screw type, like mine, you want to be able to unscrew the lid to fill and empty) and attach an appropriate coupler that marries with the one coming from the pot. spend a little time in the plumbing department of your local hardware store and i'm sure you'll find something that will work (look at the pictures). just do not use anything that contains lead. very important!

anyway, let's learn how to use this thing.
Texan19952 years ago
will the tightness of the coil affect the shine?
pdub77 (author)  Texan19952 years ago
no idea
faked3 years ago
Do you have to have a thumper on a moonshine stil?
I used a coil from s coffee maker and also the thermometer that was apart of the coffee maker it works good b/c it mean u can boil the ally And not over do it to make it the best
TANZMEISTER5 years ago
I've had good luck with small batch distillation (1.5gal and under) by utilizing marbles.  3 feet of 3" glass tube (Google is your friend) filled with glass marbles hasn't ever needed to be chilled to cause proper condensation.  In fact, I've had better luck achieving a higher proof in fewer runs then any other method I've tried. 

bertus52x115 years ago
I have just posted an Instructable that could be helpful for you cooling (see under "classic heat exchanger".
Squintz896 years ago
You can also get a large spring that goes over the pipe that you can get from your local hardware store
pdub77 (author)  Squintz896 years ago
true. they will help keep the copper tubing from kinking.
It has to be the soft copper though right?
pdub77 (author)  Squintz896 years ago
i don't really know what gauge of tube i used. i got it in the plumbing dept. of lowes. it was 1/4 inch, i know that. i got it in a ten foot length that came coiled in a box. hope this helps.
very nice haha hey where did you find that rubber stopper because I have a tea kettle just like that
optix7 years ago
You can fill the copper tubing with sand to make it keep a round shape. This prevents kinks, and makes it easier to work with.