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  1. Good afternoon, seeking advice on some maintenance issues that came up. Taking apart our still this week, new compression gaskets, seals, etc followed by detailed inspection. Found a few things that worry me. Solder breaking down? Also, found a very small leak at the base of my 4 plate column (the leak looks to be on the bottom side of the pan and very slow), see pics for clarification. This is an Arnold Holstein still, about 13 years old. They recommended Sodium Hydroxide and Citric Acid for regular cleaning. About 4 years ago I switched to a buffered alkaline detergent (PBW) and then follow it up with a Citric Nitric, RO rise in between. Hoping my chemical choice hasn't helped in the solder degradation. It is difficult to get a response from the manufacturer, and its never timely. The boss wants the still put back together asap, so I most likely will not be able to wait for Holstein's response. I'm wondering why this is happening, what steps I can take to repair the solder and prevent it from happening again. Additionally, my local welder and plumber don't want to mess with trying to fix the solder without knowing what it is (neither of them have experience with stills) and I'm getting pressure to use JD Weld and just get it back up and running. Any advise?
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