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Max Cooling Water Temperature

I've been lurking here for about a year and finally decide to take the plunge. 4" Crystall dragon with a Super Dephlegmator is the plan. My concern is with my cooling water. It measures 88DegF in the summer, the good news is the house and garage are plumbed with a 3/4" pipe with ample pressure. Should I be concerned?


  • Nope @Sandman you are good to go. The Super is perfect for those (like me) that have warm cooling water in the summertime.
    Oh and Welcome!

  • You should have no concerns...

    88F is warm.... mine was 80ish at my home and I had a regular dephleg, but it used a bit of water for full reflux, @Lloyd is correct about the super being what you need. I will go a step further and say for the product condenser, try it the way it comes, but be prepared to get a 2nd long one or install a danfoss thermostatic valve.... either way is well worth the money if needed, but try it as delivered first... if you came from something smaller like a 2" unit, you are going to LOVE your new SD!

    other notes:

    At our commercial distillery, the city supply line for the 3/4" must not be very far underground, it is about like the 88 you mention. great for the water heater, not so great for the drinking fountain! I am bucking for a larger and deeper supply line when they put in a 4" line for sprinklers. I think the current city portion of line is 2" and goes a hundred feet or more under the blacktop of the street, and not under grass... the new line will be 6" that completes a loop down the street to another main to reduce having to flush the current stub line. This will have more flow and hopefully be much cooler!

    You or a neighbor don't have a pool, do you? that is a great way to fill the pool ;-)

    With a standard dephleg and single pc w/ danfoss valve on a 4", I could fill 1+ 60 gallon barrels. I did, on a couple occasions, use a pump and a sprinker to water the law a few days latter when the water cooled...

  • I saw a detention pond close by that could offer possibilities! Might take a bit of piping though :D

    They see steam coming from the pond, I see efficiency, hehe.

  • welcome @Sandman! A Crystal Dragon is always a good idea - but filling the pool with it - I have not thought of this yet. :) It would give distilling an energy efficient label! :))

    StillDragon Europe - Your StillDragon® Distributor for Europe & the surrounding area

  • I actually ran the condenser on my old PDA-1 off of the pool pump inlets and outlets, just ran it on a water heater in potstill mode right next to the pool pump, that condenser was 3/16" copper line I think

  • I suppose if it was really a problem you could run a car radiator before the condenser to cool your supply a bit.

    Most of the chillers you see on the forums are cooling the condenser outlet before it returns to the reservoir. I don't see why you couldn't cool your supply line if you needed to.

  • edited September 2014

    I think that is a better solution Myles. To allow more naturally occurring heat exchange.

    But maybe it is the opposite?

    StillDragon North America - Your StillDragon® Distributor for North America

  • edited September 2014

    PC water heat exchanger about 12 bucks, I run lines into an old refrigerator and back and my temps stay well in range, of course I have a small still but I'm sure the right size exchanger could do the job.



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  • edited September 2014

    The ideal approach is to have your chiller on a pump loop chilling the reservoir only, and have the chiller manage the reservoir at a specific set point. This will allow you to pre-cool your reservoir prior to the start of the run. The reservoir itself will act as a heat sink of sorts, keeping temp as consistent as possible through the run, but also allow it to store additional cooling capacity in reserve. Inevitably though, the reservoir will rise in temperature through the run as it will likely outpace the chiller's ability to keep it at the setpoint.

    A chiller that is sized to allow for a true closed loop without a reservoir would be very large, and not cost effective for most. I'd wager a bet that a 5-7kw rig at full power would outrun a 1 or 2-hp chiller. But put that 1-2hp chiller on a 200g reservoir and you'd have no problem at all.

    While you can use your heat exchanger coolant returns to feed the chiller, and then the reservoir, that will only work well if the flow rate is appropriate for your specifically sized chiller, and from a process perspective will tie together the reservoir cooling with the heat exchanging, and these two processes aren't necessarily always balanced.

    Now, if your chiller is still undersized, an easy approach to gain more headroom is to install an air-to-water heat exchanger (radiator) like pictured above, on the coolant return, prior to returning to the reservoir. This will allow for some additional heat to be bled off much more inexpensively than a larger chiller would cost.

    But I'd always recommend the chiller plumbed to and from the reservoir, on it's own pump and control. Size the GPM flow rates based on the chiller manufacturers recommendations.

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