You probably heard, more than once, that the best types of moonshine stills need to have two properties: to be made of copper and to be lead-free.
Copper is the preferred material for moonshine stills, as it has various beneficial characteristics, such as absorbing aggregates with sulfur, diminishing bacterial contamination, presenting great heat transfer properties, inhibiting the creation of toxic substances and improving the whole quality of the resulting product. But, while its benefic properties have been quite easily understood, the lead-free part still needs to be carefully explained.
Lead – Description and Effects
Lead is a hefty metal which, once, in your body, has the tendency of sticking to various key parts of it. One of the main issues is that lead is difficult to digest and eliminate, hence, it can easily stick to the respiratory system, if inhaled. By acting like this, lead will produce, in time, damage to your body, starting with impeding the creation of Adenosine Tri Prosphate (which is known better as ATP), the basic energy foundation needed by living creatures in order for their organisms to work properly.
Moreover, once in your body, lead is distributed just like any mineral, which means that if it reaches the blood stream, for instance, it can damage the red blood cells, leading to anemia as well as other worse illnesses, in time.
In general, on the long run, exposure to lead can produce the following severe health effects:
- An attack on your brain and nervous system
- Behavioral changes (such as bad temper)
- Hearing problems
- Kidney damage (which can results into kidney failure)
- Renal and reproductive problems
- Stomachaches and numerous gastrointestinal issues
- Various locomotive problems (difficulty in expressing)
Lead Poisoning In Relation To Your Copper Moonshine Still
Lead poisoning is, as you can see, dangerous to all human beings and can be present under two forms: acute toxicity (where you are exposed to high lead levels in a short period of time) and chronic toxicity (where you are exposed to small lead levels in a long period of time).
Fortunately, lead intensities in your body can be detected using a microscope which analyses the blood cells and the changes that occur with them, an X-ray which sees the lines of your bones or urine test. Measuring the blood lead levels is the best form of analysis, as it will show how much lead is flowing in your blood stream; thou, this does not mean that this is all the lead contained in your body.
Now, when it comes to your moonshine still, the danger of lead contamination is located in the solder which unites the parts of your still. This happened frequently in the past, as the hoary forms of stills used old car radiators as vapor condensers, which were lead-soldered, thus leading to poisoning. As lead contamination can only be stopped if you cease to use the material which contains lead - thus rendering your entire still inefficient –, you can easily see how buying a whiskey still which contains lead will cost you time and money.
Hence, do yourself a favor and, after you choose a copper moonshine still, make sure that the soldering is 100% copper free.
Posted by Jason Stone on