Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  

Simple Reflux apparatus

Recommended Posts

Refluxing is often an important part in Chem, esp some of the organic synths.

but the condensers and "Quickfit" apparatus can be quite expensive and you also need constant running water etc...

so here is a Very simple and cost effective way to get the same result!


this shows what you will need for 2 of them:



this is the 500ml version in 2 pictures because it`s quite tall:






so as you can see, all you`ll need will be a long necked round bottom flask, a stopper to fit this with a hole drilled through it, and a long glass tube that fits inside this hole.

then along the tube I put several small transistor heat sinks on it.


I`ve used this apparatus twice (making esters) and it works Perfectly!

it`s worth noting that a typical bunsen flame is far to Fierce for this, so a small spirit burner or mini blowtorch will be perfect ;)



Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

The old moonshine still was a reflux/distillation apparatus. They would use a copper coil, due to it high thermal conductivity, to condense some of the spirits. This then flows back down the coil into the boiling pot. This downward flow strips water out of the upcoming stream so the stuff coming out the end, although a smaller stream, could get even richer in alcohol. By controlling the reflux level, one can sort of control how strong the shine will shine. Strong shine may only be a slow drip with most of it going back down the coil, i.e., reflux.


I remember as a child my friend's grandfather make his Armenian Rhorhkie (spelling??). It grew all types of fruit and would collect them to make his rhorhkie in the fall. When he was making it, he would burn a little amount, to test purity, until it would burn with a nice blue flame.


After he died, my friend's father, who was his Grandfather's son-in-law, took over the tradition. He didn't really have the same reflux skill. When he would burn his yuckie, it would burn yellow and make smoke. He did not have enough reflux, causing higher boilers to come up the coil. His grandfather figured the secret out intuitively and never it passed on. I didn't understand his trade secret, until chemical engineering school.

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

  • Create New...

Important Information

We have placed cookies on your device to help make this website better. You can adjust your cookie settings, otherwise we'll assume you're okay to continue.