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ghetto alchemist
04-10-2013, 02:06 PM
A recent post from thrival and Karl has inspired me about what can be accomplished making our own equipment, so in the spirit of sharing, I figure that I might do the same.

Of course, I also love looking at pics of other peoples distillation porn, so here is mine.

707
This one is my basic distillation rig, distilling diethyl ether in this pic.
The flasks are my vacuum flasks that I already documented here (http://forum.alchemyforums.com/showthread.php?2280-Temperance-Ghetto-Style).
The heating element is an electric frypan than I bought for a couple of dollars from the dump
The condenser I made myself using copper plumbing pipe and PVC fittings
The temp guage in the water was new off ebay, but only $10 or so.
The bucket is a recycled old laundry powder container
And the water pump for cooling is a cheap water fountain pump.

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706
This is my fermenter for brewing alcohol.
The bucket is another repurposed laundry powder bucket
Drilled a hole in the lid, added a rubber grommet and poly pipe.
The glass was borrowed from the kitchen.

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705
This is my hydrometer for measuring alcohol percentage.
It is just 2 old sryringes joined together with some poly pipe.
I used the plunger pieces inside to keep the water/alcohol out.
Also had to add some weight in the bottom, I only used what was around at the time.
The toothpicks + washer were the right weight and the washer holds everything centered.
The poly pipe makes it flexible in the middle so it can be easily adjusted to float perfectly straight

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708
My pipette for separating liquids.
Not much to say really.
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Maybe something here might be of use to somebody.

Regards
G Alchemist

lwowl
04-10-2013, 04:38 PM
A recent post from thrival and Karl has inspired me about what can be accomplished making our own equipment, so in the spirit of sharing, I figure that I might do the same.

Of course, I also love looking at pics of other peoples distillation porn, so here is mine.

This one is my basic distillation rig, distilling diethyl ether in this pic.
The flasks are my vacuum flasks that I already documented here (http://forum.alchemyforums.com/showthread.php?2280-Temperance-Ghetto-Style).
The heating element is an electric frypan than I bought for a couple of dollars from the dump
The condenser I made myself using copper plumbing pipe and PVC fittings
The temp guage in the water was new off ebay, but only $10 or so.
The bucket is a recycled old laundry powder container
And the water pump for cooling is a cheap water fountain pump.

This is my hydrometer for measuring alcohol percentage.
It is just 2 old sryringes joined together with some poly pipe.
I used the plunger pieces inside to keep the water/alcohol out.
Also had to add some weight in the bottom, I only used what was around at the time.
The toothpicks + washer were the right weight and the washer holds everything centered.
The poly pipe makes it flexible in the middle so it can be easily adjusted to float perfectly straight


Maybe something here might be of use to somebody.

Regards
G Alchemist

Love your ingenuity for making equipment for the lab. I wrote a longer short reply but this board timed out on me.:mad:
Anyway here's the link to my latest DIY rig for dry distilling or sublimating plant matter.
http://www.alchemylife.org/Pages/Roasting_Salamander.htm

For that I used a cheap 20$ electric griddle and three pyrex casserole dishes. I have a used electric skillet that goes to 420 F.:cool: for separating plant sulfur tars without burning them.

Your hygrometer looks quite interesting. How did you calibrate it?

I assume you know that redistilling diethyl ether can generate explosive peroxides. Are you generating your own diethyl ether by distilling sulfuric acid and alcohol?

I've made my own water cooled condenser from pvc pipe for the jacket with a copper arm inside. Some day I'll put up more pix of my distillation porn.:)

lwowl

Kiorionis
04-10-2013, 04:54 PM
I like your hydrometer Ghetto Alchemist :cool:

I posted this in another thread, but i'll repost it here too:
http://imageshack.us/a/img546/1570/img0463tx.jpg
just a simple circulatory vessel I made once :)
I've been using a hot glue gun to seal the joints.
The glue has been working fine for circulation and alcohol distillation temperatures.
probably would start to melt off if brought above 100C...

ghetto alchemist
04-10-2013, 05:49 PM
Thanks for the kind words and link lwowl, I really enjoyed reading your site.
You have a lot of experience and have done some pretty awesome stuff...Eg distilling pyroligneous liquor.

I also notice that you're making medicines from the same sources as myself, made me smile.

lwowl:

Your hygrometer looks quite interesting. How did you calibrate it?
I put in it straight water for the lowest reading (0%) and made a scratch, and then dropped it in the highest strength alchohol that I can distill (probably 95%) and made another scratch. And I've just assumed that the relation between the 2 marks is a linear one.

lwowl:

I assume you know that redistilling diethyl ether can generate explosive peroxides.
Yeah I do know, I figured that the copper pipe in the distillation train would help to prevent the formation of peroxides. But I did make a point to use all the ether the same day that I distilled it.

lwowl:

Are you generating your own diethyl ether by distilling sulfuric acid and alcohol?
Unfortunately no, I distilled it out of starter fluid.
It is my dream to make my own ether from scratch, you can probably tell that the alcohol is no barrier, but getting clean sulfuric acid is a bit difficult for me. All the paths that I know to sulfuric acid are a bit messy.
I have toyed with the idea of heating sulfur and saltpeter, or adding hydrochloric acid to sodium metabisulphite and piping into peroxide, but they are both rather daunting for me.

lwowl:

Some day I'll put up more pix of my distillation porn.
Look forward to it, although I already snuck a peek at your wood distillation setup ;)

Regards
G Alchemist

ghetto alchemist
04-10-2013, 06:01 PM
Thanks for your sharing and thanks for your pic Kiorionis.

Kiorionis:
I've been using a hot glue gun to seal the joints.
The glue has been working fine for circulation and alcohol distillation temperatures.

I'd have never believed it, but you've already proven it works.
And now that I think about hot glue really is an excellent and logical ghetto solution for luting.
It should be relatively non reactive and non toxic too.

Hmmm....I wonder if it can stand up to Nitric acid......

Regards
G Alchemist

Kiorionis
04-10-2013, 08:27 PM
doubt it. it seems to become much too soft during alcohol distillations to withstand an acid. now that I think about it I've had slight problems with alcohol bubbling up the glue during distillations. This only happens when I've become inattentive and didn't put enough over the joint to begin with. and this also with PTFE tape around my inner glass joints too. It's a bit of a group effort during my distillations :p
(for alcohol, I use a boiling water bath and an alembic)
It doesn't appear to dissolve in alcohol though, which makes me happy.

I've also used it with spirit of urine in a retort setup at 40C and it worked fine.

I've been looking into other options for distilling mineral Mercury.

Axismundi000
04-11-2013, 09:52 AM
I wish I had a more practical and craftsman way sometimes then I could do cool stuff like this. Regrettably I have never been very practical, more academic; so I have to pay for equipment which a lot of people can just make for themselves.