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Jun 08, 2022 View:

Stills second column is creating a vacuum

Hi I have a question.  When im running my two column still 4 plates on the first and 16 on the second column. It seems like the second column is crating a vacuum and not letting the reflux drain back into the still. Has anyone seen this? 


Yeah, usually it's the higher pressure in the pot holding back the condensate draining.  The pressure drops as you move higher in the column.  Typically you might see something like a P trap and a dip tube on the boiler to ensure the drain is submerged.



It has a dip tube that is fully submerged at least a couple feet.   

If I have both drain valves closed and open them each just a crack I dont get the suck from column one to column 2.  but if I open both It will suck the liquid out of the bottom of the short column one and into the bottom of column two.   


Let me summon some continuous column gods for you.....


-Calling CaptainKB! Calling Captain KB! Come in Captain KB



-Dr Paul Hall. Paging Dr Hall!



And we all know we need a witness. I need a witness. CAN I GET A WITNESS FORM THE CONGREGATION. JOSEPH DEHNER! BEAR WITNESS UNTO ME!




(these are the people I think can help you, Silk city is also another person but he already commented and doesn't think I am that funny so I left it at that)




What I've found is running your steam pressure very low prevents anything charged in the kettle from pushing up into the second column. There is a definite PSI point for us where it starts to happen, so we keep it well below that. That being said, I'm still struggling to get a consistent 190+ for a whole run because we can't hold our steam pressure at a steady PSI.