How to Build a Copper "Moonshine" Still - Part 1

This video on building copper distillation equipment covers tools and safety. Safety: Always use gloves, safety goggles, and a VOC mask. Also, make sure you work in a well ventilated area. Tools: To build the copper still featured in this video, you'll need locking pliers or a clamp of some sort, a hammer (preferably ball peen), a mace / dolly, anvil, sledge hammer, or some sort of scrap metal to hammer against, and a stiff wire brush or some sand paper. Additionally, you'll need a plumbing torch. Regular propane will do. MAP gas is not necessary. Also, oxy acetylene is overkill. Don't use it unless you are a skilled metal worker because it could damage your copper still. This how to make a copper "moonshine" still video series runs through the process of building 5 and 10 gallon Clawhammer Supply copper "moonshine" stills ( Or, for more info, feel free to call (970.541.0569) or send us an email at Thanks!

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How to Build a Copper Moonshine Still - Part 2 - 2017
Part 1 - Part 3 - Part 4 - Part 5 - This is part 2 of our series on How to Build a Copper Distiller ( which is also sometimes called a “moonshine still”). When making a copper still you’ll need the following: (2) 90 degree, half inch street elbows; (2) ½ by ½ by ¾ tees; (1) 45 degree coupling; (2) small pieces of half inch copper tubing; (1) larger piece of ½ inch tubing; (1) piece of ¾ tubing; A long piece of 1 ½ inch tubing; An inch and a half to half inch reducer coupling; Some solid copper rivets; (1) large rectangle for the still boiler wall; (1) thin rectangular piece of copper for the collar A “C shaped” piece to serve as the still’s vapor cone (1) slightly tapered piece of copper for the cap skirt, which i have here; And 1 circular boiler bottom (by the way, all of this should be c-110, food grade copper); And the last thing you’ll need is 1 cap plate, which is actually thicker than the rest of the copper. In the next video we’re going to talk about the extremely important process of cleaning the still parts before assembly.

How to Build a Copper "Moonshine" Still - Part 3
This how to make copper "moonshine" still video series runs through the process of building 5 and 10 gallon Clawhammer Supply still parts kits (, start to finish. In the last video we discussed prepping the copper still boiler, which included bending the tabs, sanding the edges, and riveting. To reiterate, bend gently and slowly. Make sure to score the edges with sandpaper or a wire brush before riveting. And, when riveting, gently tap rivets until they expand just enough to hold the copper in place. Excessive hammering will make it difficult to solder the boiler seam of the distiller. In this video we discuss soldering the still boiler wall and the bottom of the distiller. The key to soldering is, as we've already mentioned, making sure the seams you're soldering have been scored or "roughed up" with a wire brush or sandpaper. The second key to making soldering easy is managing heat. The mantra here should be "slow and low." First of all, it's important you're using the right kind of heat source. The best gas to use in a torch when soldering copper is regular propane (blue bottle). Don't use MAP gas, and definitely don't use oxy acetylene. MAP and oxy acetylene are overkill and will get your copper too hot. Use a low amount of heat and don't heat the material too quickly. Also, don't apply heat directly to the area you are soldering. Heat the areas around the area you're soldering. NOTE: I did not clean the seams of this copper very well and I applied too much heat! The pressure of being on camera got to me. Don't make the same mistakes I did. Clean your seams very well before lapping the copper and be careful with the amount of heat you apply. It doesn't matter if you solder the inside or the outside of the still seams. The inside is a bit more difficult to solder, but it makes for a cleaner looking still. In this video I soldered the inside of the still boiler. This required me to apply heat to the outside of the still boiler. Remember, it's best to not apply heat directly to the area where you are soldering. When soldering the boiler, make sure to solder the seams and the rivets. Both will need to be soldered to seal the boiler. After the still boiler seam has been soldered, bend the copper so it is as close to a perfect cylinder as possible and drop the bottom into the still. It should rest on top of the bent tabs, inside of the boiler. Apply heat to the outside of the still and apply solder to the inside. Solder the area where the boiler seam is lapped last.

How to Build a Copper "Moonshine" Still - Part 4
Part 1 - Part 2 - Part 3 - Part 5 - This is part 4 in our series on how to build a copper still where we will be shaping the boiler. We are going to start by bending the teeth up on the boiler. I should mention that these types of stills, small copper distillers, are often sometimes called moonshine stills. They can be used, though, to distill all kinds of products such as distilled water, essential oils, fuel alcohol, and distilled spirits (of course with the proper permits on the latter two). So we will bend the tabs up with the pliers by very meticulously grabbing each tab and just bending it upwards so it sits at a final resting place of about 90 degrees to the boiler. You want to grab the tab right where it meets the boiler and just bend it up. If you have a pair of sheet metal pliers it will make this job go a lot faster. I have some but I figure most folks won't so I just went ahead and did this with a regular pair of pliers. Like I said, it takes a bit longer but you get the job done just the same.

How to Build A Copper "Moonshine Still" - Part 2
This video series on building a copper "moonshine" still runs through the process of building 5 gallon and 10 gallon moonshine stills by Clawhammer Supply ( First, use a wire brush or some sandpaper and score the edges that will be soldered. This includes the "teeth" at the bottom edge of the boiler and the seam where the rivet holes are located. If the edges are not roughed up at this stage, it will be difficult to get solder to stick to the material. This step is not shown in the video, but it is very important. Next, the "teeth" on the boiler must be bent perpendicular to the copper still boiler. They will form a ledge that the still bottom will sit on, once the boiler has been built. The closer to a 90 degree angle the teeth are bent, the easier it will be to solder the still boiler bottom. Next, the boiler sheet should be bent, by hand, so it forms a cylinder. Bend slowly and carefully. Try to not "kink" or bend the copper sharply. Bend until the rivet holes on either end of the boiler overlap one another. Once bent, the rivets should be set into place (in the pre-drilled rivet holes) and lightly hammered to secure the copper. Do not excessively hammer rivets. They only require a few medium strength taps. Once they fan out enough to hold the copper in place without moving, they are set. If they are hammered more than that, they will warp the copper still boiler and make it more difficult to solder. These copper still kits are designed to be easily assembled by someone with any level of experience with sheet metal fabrication and soldering. The parts are pre-cut and should fit together perfectly. Soldering may be a bit tricky at first, but we show plenty of examples and give quite a few pointers so even someone with no prior experience can figure it out. Have a question about the kits or on assembly the assembly process? Feel free to call (970.541.0569) or send us an email at Thanks!