Patrons of the Sacred Art

OPEN TO REGISTER: Click HERE if you want to join Alchemy Forums!

+ Reply to Thread
Page 1 of 4 1 2 3 4 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 34

Thread: Distilling methods with a 500mL retort?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2018
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    58

    Question Distilling methods with a 500mL retort?

    What are some distilling methods you can use with a 500mL glass retort? If you don’t have those big metal stands say or a ‘bunsen burner’. The traditional manner of distilling they used before those things could also help in knowing.

    This is the one I will be using once it arrives, for detail and analysis purposes: https://laboratory.livingstone.com.a...-STOPPER-500ML

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    2,002
    Quote Originally Posted by KnowledgeSeeker View Post
    What are some distilling methods you can use with a 500mL glass retort? If you don’t have those big metal stands say or a ‘bunsen burner’. The traditional manner of distilling they used before those things could also help in knowing.

    This is the one I will be using once it arrives, for detail and analysis purposes: https://laboratory.livingstone.com.a...-STOPPER-500ML
    You can heat it with an electric plate, but you will be limited to lower temperatures. You can also use a portable gas stove, like the ones used for camping. Example:



    That will give you higher temperatures than electric plates, but still lower than a good Bunsen or Meker–Fisher burner.

    The alchemists and chymists used wood and charcoal furnaces to heat their glass vessels. They did not have borosilicate glass, so they had to avoid giving their glassware too sudden a thermal shock or they would crack, so what they would do is heat glass vessels inside "baths": water baths for lower temperatures and sand baths for higher temperatures. For subjecting glass vessels to even higher temperatures what they did was to coat them with refractory "lutes" (usually mixtures of clays and sand) and allowing them to dry into a "shell" that surrounded the glass vessel. That would allow them to expose the glass to higher heats that would normally not be possible due to the glass softening and deforming (the refractory "shell" would also protect the glass from direct exposure to increasing heat, thus lowering the thermal shock.)
    Last edited by JDP; 08-13-2018 at 04:23 PM.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Aug 2016
    Posts
    722
    If you want to distill something with a boiling point below 130°C you will get problems with the cooling as the surrounding air alone won't be sufficient unless you do it very very slow and rather ineffictive.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2018
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    58
    Quote Originally Posted by JDP View Post
    You can heat it with an electric plate, but you will be limited to lower temperatures. You can also use a portable gas stove, like the ones used for camping. Example:



    That will give you higher temperatures than electric plates, but still lower than a good Bunsen or Meker–Fisher burner.

    The alchemists and chymists used wood and charcoal furnaces to heat their glass vessels. They did not have borosilicate glass, so they had to avoid giving their glassware too sudden a thermal shock or they would crack, so what they would do is heat glass vessels inside "baths": water baths for lower temperatures and sand baths for higher temperatures. For subjecting glass vessels to even higher temperatures what they did was to coat them with refractory "lutes" (usually mixtures of clays and sand) and allowing them to dry into a "shell" that surrounded the glass vessel. That would allow them to expose the glass to higher heats that would normally not be possible due to the glass softening and deforming (the refractory "shell" would also protect the glass from direct exposure to increasing heat, thus lowering the thermal shock.)
    I have a portable gas stove and that was what I actually used to 'calcine' dried herbs leftover several times. So if that would help.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Aug 2016
    Posts
    722
    Watch out if you want to distill flamable substances (alcohol) with a gas burner. That can be very dangerous. For beginners I would therefore recommend electrical heat sources.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2018
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    58
    Quote Originally Posted by Florius Frammel View Post
    Watch out if you want to distill flamable substances (alcohol) with a gas burner. That can be very dangerous. For beginners I would therefore recommend electrical heat sources.
    Mainly plan on using it for essential oil or non-herb spagyrics. I will avoid using it for anything that contains alcoholic substance then if using a gas stove.

    Thanks for the heads up though. Did you mean a Bunsen burner be safe for those (Like distilling to make a herbal spagyric tincture if it does contain any alcohol), or you referred to something like a hot plate (How do you use those)?


    Btw I saw a thing where somebody put it in a pot with boiling water at the base of the retort, what do you think of that one?

    Depending on if they used a gas stove or ordinary stove: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W6i2NMBEw9c

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2016
    Posts
    722
    You probably won't have any luck getting significant amounts of essential oils out of this setup. It is too small. The resulting water can be very flavoured though.

    I can not recommend using bunsen or any other burner with a flame. Better use a hot plate.

    What you described with the pot of water is also called "Balneum Mariae" by a lot of old sources. The advantage here is you can comfortably and relatively safely distill all matters with a boiling point below 100°C as the water won't get hotter. You can further improve that setup when wrapping tin foil around the top of the pot AND the balloon of your retort. Spare out the snout, otherwise it won't be cool enough. You can try to put some cold wet cloth on the top of the retort and around the snout for improved cooling too. But it won't work well if the stuff you want to distill has a boiling point below 130°C.

    If you need higher temperatures you need to replace the water with sand. Here you have to be more careful of course but just tinker around and you'll get a feeling soon.
    Last edited by Florius Frammel; 08-13-2018 at 02:30 PM.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jul 2018
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    58
    Some updates, my item arrived and I've tried it with water bath on a hotplate but for some reason its extremely slow. I used normal water and filled up the container basically plus put the lid on? What do you think I'm doing wrong here? This was to test how it works, so its 500ml and the base is very round like a sphere (Not an oval). Sometimes the water runs out and I have to add more, only gotten some droplets so far that form a tiny part of the jar.



    How does this guy distill so fast in the video below I mean?

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W6i2NMBEw9c

  9. #9
    Join Date
    May 2016
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    1,913
    Blog Entries
    65
    You can use boiling chips which increase the surface area in which to heat from; however all in all the design of the single flask retort is not really an efficient one when talking about distillation rates. even a large retort is not ideal, water distillation vessels designed for speed look much much different.

    Also im a little worries that your flask is too full. Probably best to only fill it half way.
    Join me; on a voyage of stupidity, and self discovery: https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_c...&v=vccZSHroTG4

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jul 2018
    Location
    Australia
    Posts
    58
    Quote Originally Posted by elixirmixer View Post
    You can use boiling chips which increase the surface area in which to heat from; however all in all the design of the single flask retort is not really an efficient one when talking about distillation rates. even a large retort is not ideal, water distillation vessels designed for speed look much much different.

    Also im a little worries that your flask is too full. Probably best to only fill it half way.
    How did people used to distill when they only had things of that design (For a guide) and what about the guy who manages to distill the propane above really fast?

    Btw you mean it cannot be too full (Certain amounts at a time only)? Just poured out half and will see how it goes, hopefully it works.

+ Reply to Thread

Tags for this Thread

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts