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Scottish Gin Fairy

Pump type for transferring pure ethanol

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Hey peeps,

I am after some safety advice. Does anyone use centrifugal pumps for transferring NGS? Our gin distillery is very small and we dont treat it as an ATEX zone as its fairly well ventilated and the volumes of alcohol are small. We need a transfer pump but I dont see the point in getting an air operated diaphragm pump, which is more expensive than the centrifugal pump i am looking at. Should I be stumping up for the diaphragm pump?

Thanks, SGF.

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We use a Yamada NDP-15BST and it works great. They can be had cheap on ebay.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/YAMADA-NDP-15BST-DUAL-DIAPHRAGM-ALUMINUM-PUMP-SUPPLY-1-4-NPT/273026716080?epid=1910924745&hash=item3f91a911b0:g:MdMAAOSwItJaXPIs:rk:1:pf:0

That ad says it's aluminum but it's actually stainless (the BST denotes stainless) we run it off of a 25 gallon compressor.

 

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A centrifugal pump head on its own is unlikely to be the cause of any potential hazards. It's the motor turning the pump head you should be concerned about. Some motors can spark, which can ignite flammable vapors. You'll want to make sure the pump's motor is rated for use in areas where potentially flammable vapors may be present, either through normal use or in the case of equipment failure.

Air diaphragm pumps—though they pose much less of a sparking risk—are not necessarily intrinsically safe. Both laminar flow and the reciprocating action in the pump both have the potential to build up static electricity during normal use. As a result, many air diaphragm pumps are available in ATEX, UL, etc. versions that are fully groundable, so that any static electricity that does build up can be dissipated to ground.

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We went with a smaller yamada with an aluminum air motor, stainless bits & pieces, and teflon seals & balls. Handily enough it came with an attached grounding strap. We paid about a grand on ebay after shipping. It was the NDP-20BST. Great little pump.   

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