6" Copper Configuration

Hi guys. Mate and me scored a 2 metre length of 6" Copper pipe.
We are going to make a bubbler/flute column, 5 bubble plates. My mate built has his own bubbler he built out of copper and we built our own bubble cap plates.

The question is, what is the talk of height for 6" modules or if we go perf plate, the distance between plates?


  • edited May 2014

    Hey Milky, should be enough for almost 2 columns there, my 4" is at 4 1/2" sections including the ferrels! It is a perf Plate.

    It is what you make it!

  • Genral rule for plate spacing is equal to column dia. If you intend to use high vapour speeds then you need to increase it. Vapour speed and plate design are closely inter-related.

  • @Myles is right, height between the plates is very often equal to the column diameter and I asked an honest-and-truly distilling professor about that because some of the very large alcohol stills don't seem to follow that convention (the plates are spaced MUCH closer together).
    His response and I'm paraphrasing here... modern alcohol columns have been heavily influenced by the petrol-chemical industry where it is "normal" for the height to diameter ratio to be very much the same. It has automatic safety margins built in, its easy to produce and replicate, scales up or down easily and is a no-brainer for engineers to follow. And it looks "right" because that's what almost everyone sees.

    You can space 6" plates on 4.5 to 5" centers with no problems. But if you put in 3" sight glasses there is precious little room left. So 6" between the plates just somehow seems to work out nicely.

  • Thanks for the replies guys! I really appreciate it.

    Yeah Lloyd, we were thinking of going 6" high with the plates with 3" sight glasses to keep the peepers the same size of the bubbler/flute my mate already built. Got enough of 3" copper left over from it.

    He is going to put this column onto a 80litre SS boiler made from an 80litre eyewash bottle we got out of the scrap bin at work.

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