The glass duck

Perforated & bubble cap plated columns

Re: The glass duck

Postby Tesla101 » Tue Feb 11, 2020 4:21 pm

Hey woodduck, congrats on a great build. I love how modular it is - basically 3 stills in one.

It's exactly what I've bee looking for - my desert island still is a glass bubbler that I can use for browns and neutrals and for gin as well.

If I had a tenth of your skills I'd probably have a crack at building one, but I think I'll just order from FSD instead. (And because I want something that works out of the box)

Until I have enough pennies I'll have to make do with the T500. I'm trying to convince SWMBO that I'm saving at least $100/month already by distilling my own so I should be able to own my dream still in a couple of years :laughing-rolling:
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equipment: T500 pot still (Pot Head) & reflux column (Skinny Bitch)
(saving up for a proper FSD still)

Re: The glass duck

Postby woodduck » Tue Feb 11, 2020 5:32 pm

Thanks mate.

The whole reason I did my build thread was to give blokes like you the confidence to have a crack. I didn't use any fancy tools or skills really. If it's going to take you 2 years to save up for a still why not buy a bit of copper hear and there and slowly build one. I've done a couple of videos on how to build different still components, they might help? (Happy to do more if people want them?) It's not that hard, all the info you need is right here on this forum just do some reading through the build threads and tips from the work bench section and you'll be fine.

Best of luck :handgestures-thumbupleft:
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equipment: 4 plate 6" copper bubbler, 6 plate 4" glass bubbler with 500mm packed section three way thumper sitting on a 50 ltr keg boiler with 6000watts, 2" pot still and a 2" boka.

Re: The glass duck

Postby db1979 » Tue Feb 11, 2020 7:42 pm

woodduck wrote:Thanks mate.

The whole reason I did my build thread was to give blokes like you the confidence to have a crack. I didn't use any fancy tools or skills really. If it's going to take you 2 years to save up for a still why not buy a bit of copper hear and there and slowly build one. I've done a couple of videos on how to build different still components, they might help? (Happy to do more if people want them?) It's not that hard, all the info you need is right here on this forum just do some reading through the build threads and tips from the work bench section and you'll be fine.

Best of luck :handgestures-thumbupleft:

:text-+1: start with the little parts and you'll get some confidence. I didn't have fancy tools either - drill, rotary tool (ozito version of a dremel), hammer, files and a cheap propane torch. Stepped drill bits help but aren't essential. I have a piece of steel that I cut a 10 mm notch into to help bend over the easy flanges.
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equipment: Eve - 4" x 4 plate solid state bubbler (sieve plates), 330 mm packed section on a keg boiler with 2 x 2000 W elements.
Currently having a makeover: 2" x 4 plate solid state bubbler (1" bubble caps, no sight glasses...maybe not for much longer!) on a bain-marie boiler.

Re: The glass duck

Postby Zak Griffin » Wed Feb 12, 2020 5:15 am

Have a look at my Heart of Gold build thread if you haven't already seen it mate. Aside from the sightglasses, which are a bit fancier than necessary, I built the whole thing in a 2mx2m garden shed with about $200 worth of tools.
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Re: The glass duck

Postby Tesla101 » Wed Feb 12, 2020 7:07 am

Thanks for the encouragement guys. :text-thankyoublue:

I do have a few projects on the go that I need to finish first, like renovating a 100 year old out-building into a music studio that's going to take another year or so.

After that's done and I have some free time I'll definitely look into doing a build. At least I can start buying some of the stuff I couldn't build, like the glasses, tri-clamps, etc. from FSD and start chipping away at it.
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Posts: 222
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Location: Melbourne-ish, VIC
equipment: T500 pot still (Pot Head) & reflux column (Skinny Bitch)
(saving up for a proper FSD still)

Re: The glass duck

Postby justlearning » Wed Feb 19, 2020 11:05 am

woodduck wrote:Thanks mate.

The whole reason I did my build thread was to give blokes like you the confidence to have a crack. I didn't use any fancy tools or skills really. If it's going to take you 2 years to save up for a still why not buy a bit of copper hear and there and slowly build one. I've done a couple of videos on how to build different still components, they might help? (Happy to do more if people want them?) It's not that hard, all the info you need is right here on this forum just do some reading through the build threads and tips from the work bench section and you'll be fine.

Best of luck :handgestures-thumbupleft:


Yours is the one that got me keen and manage me decide to have a go.
Ripped off most of my design From yours! :teasing-neener: :handgestures-thumbupleft:
Thanks for the inspiration!
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equipment: 2" Reflux Liquid Management with a window
Based on the Carriage Still on this site

Re: The glass duck

Postby woodduck » Wed Feb 19, 2020 11:32 am

Glad to hear you got something out of it.

I think this is a great hobby for those that like to tinker, plenty of fun to be had building.
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equipment: 4 plate 6" copper bubbler, 6 plate 4" glass bubbler with 500mm packed section three way thumper sitting on a 50 ltr keg boiler with 6000watts, 2" pot still and a 2" boka.

Re: The glass duck

Postby B-Man » Tue Apr 07, 2020 10:50 pm

I have just read 13 page of pure awesome. this is basically how I imagined making my bubbler.
I was thinking about buying the premade bubbler plates. while I am handy maybe not as handy as you and I think if I tried to do everything I don't think I would ever get around to finishing it.
once up and running I can then change the plates if required.

few questions
If you were building this again would you change anything?
would you tig or soft solder it?
what did you use to soft solder? just a big ass soldering iron? those are some nice joins!
what did you sort out for doing neutrals? did you add a second packed section?

my PC plan ended up being very similar to yours but I did have a slightly different albeit not confirmed plan on the RC. by the looks of it yours seems to work great so I might use that design instead at least I know it had a decent response time. My current T500 gives me the shits.
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Re: The glass duck

Postby woodduck » Wed Apr 08, 2020 7:09 am

Thanks mate.

I'm not sure if you can buy pre-made glasser plates? I know 5 star sell caps and other plates so I'd give Andrew a call. I didn't build my own caps because I thought they would be better, I did it because I wanted to hand craft as much as I could.

No wouldn't change a thing, I like it how it is. The ducks nuts wasn't all that successful but the actual still works well I think.

Definitely soft solder for me. I found tig to be a bit painful. I enjoy using soft solder. I use a lpg torch, very simple, you don't need a lot of heat for soft solder. I'm pretty sure you can see it in the couple of videos I did on building a pc and the easy flange in the "tips from the workbench " section.

I tried 300mm of extra packed section but didn't rate it so I put 2 extra plates in that 300mm section so for neutrals I run 6 plates and 500mm packed section. I think it works well, 96% at 2.5lph straight from wash and I think it comes out pretty clean. Probably wouldn't pass a professional taster but I don't sip vodka I use my neutral for girls drinks like panty dropper and lemonchello.

Yeah my rc is super responsive and I like that. It may not hold full reflux at 3000w but I don't think it really needs to? I bleed my fores off while the column stacks the fractions. I don't leave my still in full reflux for a long period.

You won't know yourself if you go from a t500 to a 4" :laughing-rolling:

Good luck with the build. Start a thread so we can watch and help out as you go :handgestures-thumbupleft:
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equipment: 4 plate 6" copper bubbler, 6 plate 4" glass bubbler with 500mm packed section three way thumper sitting on a 50 ltr keg boiler with 6000watts, 2" pot still and a 2" boka.

Re: The glass duck

Postby db1979 » Wed Apr 08, 2020 7:20 am

woodduck wrote:You won't know yourself if you go from a t500 to a 4" :laughing-rolling:

Good luck with the build. Start a thread so we can watch and help out as you go :handgestures-thumbupleft:

:text-+1:
Great advice WD :handgestures-thumbupleft:
Soft solder is all we need.
I'm happy with my 330 mm packed section on 4 plates but I run my neutrals slow at about 1.5 L per hour and I strip first, then spirit. Height is a restriction for me though so if you can go higher with more plates and bigger packed section, why not?
B-man if there is only one thing you copy from woodduck's build, copy his RC.
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Posts: 1758
Joined: Sat Dec 29, 2012 3:47 pm
Location: South of the big smoke in banana bender land.
equipment: Eve - 4" x 4 plate solid state bubbler (sieve plates), 330 mm packed section on a keg boiler with 2 x 2000 W elements.
Currently having a makeover: 2" x 4 plate solid state bubbler (1" bubble caps, no sight glasses...maybe not for much longer!) on a bain-marie boiler.

Re: The glass duck

Postby B-Man » Wed Apr 08, 2020 10:45 am

woodduck wrote:Thanks mate.

No wouldn't change a thing, I like it how it is. The ducks nuts wasn't all that successful but the actual still works well I think.

I did like the fact you could pull 5L/h? using the ducks nuts. I have read that many numbers lately correct me if im wrong.

woodduck wrote:Definitely soft solder for me. I found tig to be a bit painful. I enjoy using soft solder. I use a lpg torch, very simple, you don't need a lot of heat for soft solder. I'm pretty sure you can see it in the couple of videos I did on building a pc and the easy flange in the "tips from the workbench " section.

I can solder better than tig thats for sure but need a tig to do my keg boiler so thought it might get more use tigging the copper. Although have read people have had issues with pinhole leaks in the RC due to tigging

woodduck wrote:I tried 300mm of extra packed section but didn't rate it so I put 2 extra plates in that 300mm section so for neutrals I run 6 plates and 500mm packed section. I think it works well, 96% at 2.5lph straight from wash and I think it comes out pretty clean. Probably wouldn't pass a professional taster but I don't sip vodka I use my neutral for girls drinks like panty dropper and lemonchello.

Im not a straight vodka drinker either it turns into white russians or mix with OJ
You went with a 15mm bath depth right. So if i was to go 20 or 25 that would help with the neutrals too?

woodduck wrote:Yeah my rc is super responsive and I like that. It may not hold full reflux at 3000w but I don't think it really needs to? I bleed my fores off while the column stacks the fractions. I don't leave my still in full reflux for a long period.

Im planning on only running 2 2400w elements to heat then switch 1 off so that wouldnt matter. As you say i cant see a need for it.
Are you running a 65w magnetic pump? I got a 25w magnetic that does its job atm but can see it will be under powered.

woodduck wrote:You won't know yourself if you go from a t500 to a 4" :laughing-rolling:

Thats the plan. No point fucking around. I cant see a point slowly upgrading


woodduck wrote:Good luck with the build. Start a thread so we can watch and help out as you go :handgestures-thumbupleft:


Cheers will do.
Will take a bit to get organised. Hope to have it done b4 summer.
Last edited by B-Man on Wed Apr 08, 2020 10:52 am, edited 7 times in total.
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Re: The glass duck

Postby woodduck » Wed Apr 08, 2020 11:08 am

I only got 5lph when I fucked around and filled the thumper properly and that didn't last long as they don't hold enough alcohol to be worth the extra dicking around. I now just use them to catch the odd puke really. If you go for a thumper it needs to hold more than mine.

I now run 4 plates with 25mm baths. Not sure if it was a good choice or not? I didn't see too much difference.

My rc will hold 2400w ok. I use a household pressure pump and recirculate from a rain water tank.
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equipment: 4 plate 6" copper bubbler, 6 plate 4" glass bubbler with 500mm packed section three way thumper sitting on a 50 ltr keg boiler with 6000watts, 2" pot still and a 2" boka.

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