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Police find a still in a Maplewood apartment
Minneapolis Star and Sickle (Star and Tribune) ^ | December 11, 2006 | Herón Márquez Estrada

Posted on 12/12/2006 7:00:25 AM PST by akorahil

Residents and building staffers are curious about just what it is that their neighbor, a self-described chemical engineer, has been cooking up in his Maplewood apartment. That's where police found a still operating on top of a stove, along with several gallons of "product" that might or might not be moonshine.

"In my 18 years, I don't think I've ever even seen a still, except on the 'Beverly Hillbillies,' " said Maplewood Police Lt. Dave Kvam, who raided the apartment Friday.

Police have more questions than answers because they haven't yet talked to the apartment dweller about the still and fermenting corn. He didn't appear to be home Monday.

(Excerpt) Read more at startribune.com ...


TOPICS: Local News
KEYWORDS: alcohol; still
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1 posted on 12/12/2006 7:00:26 AM PST by akorahil
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To: akorahil

So what, as long as he was making it for himself and not selling it. My grandfather made the stuff his whole life, there is a limit but a few gallons is no big deal.


2 posted on 12/12/2006 7:02:16 AM PST by Abathar (Proudly catching hell for posting without reading the article since 2004)
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To: akorahil

I thought it wasn't illegal to make it but to sell it without giving the feds their cut??


3 posted on 12/12/2006 7:02:52 AM PST by Lx (Do you like it, do you like it. Scott? I call it Mr. and Mrs. Tennerman chili.)
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To: akorahil
Police find a still in a Maplewood apartment

They walked in on Al Gore? Oh, wait, that's a "stiff," not a "still."


4 posted on 12/12/2006 7:04:39 AM PST by jdm
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To: Abathar

Apparantly, in MN, it's illegal (per the article). I agree though, that it shoudln't be a big deal. Homebrewing beer and wine is a growing hobby around the country. As long as it's not done with the intent of selling, it shouldn't be a big deal.


5 posted on 12/12/2006 7:04:58 AM PST by Hurricane Andrew (History teaches that wars begin when governments believe the price of aggression is cheap.)
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To: akorahil
Police find a still in a Maplewood apartment

This explains Keith Ellison!

6 posted on 12/12/2006 7:05:25 AM PST by ConservaTexan (February 6, 1911)
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To: akorahil

So they raided his apt because they were curious?
What did the warrant say; "just curious"?


7 posted on 12/12/2006 7:05:35 AM PST by smoketree (the insanity, the lunacy these days)
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To: martin_fierro

moonshine ping


8 posted on 12/12/2006 7:08:25 AM PST by visualops (artlife.us)
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To: smoketree

Very good questions. I wondered myself.


9 posted on 12/12/2006 7:09:56 AM PST by Carolinamom ("I don't have time to be fingerpointing." ---President George W. Bush)
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To: akorahil

Can't be. Alcohol is legal.


10 posted on 12/12/2006 7:10:46 AM PST by AppyPappy (If you aren't part of the solution, there is good money to be made prolonging the problem.)
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To: smoketree
So they raided his apt because they were curious? What did the warrant say; "just curious"?

More likely, they had reasonable cause to suspect that the funny smells coming out of the apartment were meth-related. Just a guess.

11 posted on 12/12/2006 7:11:42 AM PST by r9etb
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To: Abathar
Unless I'm mistaken (and it's quite possible), there is no legally-permitted amount of liquor that may be distilled without a federal license. If you do not have a distiller's license, you may not make your own distilled alcohol, period.

Your grandfather, like thousands of other good people, simply never got caught.

12 posted on 12/12/2006 7:12:18 AM PST by Oberon (What does it take to make government shrink?)
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To: smoketree
You can smell 'shine cooking for miles. If he was cooking a batch indoors, everyone in the building new about it. And they probably weren't very happy about it.
13 posted on 12/12/2006 7:12:30 AM PST by 300magnum (We know that if evil is not confronted, it gains in strength and audacity, and returns to strike us)
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To: Lx

Yeah. Especially if it's for the gas tank. Avoid those fuel taxes.


14 posted on 12/12/2006 7:13:32 AM PST by jwalburg (It wasn't the Executive that Thomas Jefferson referred to as "the Despotic Branch.")
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To: Abathar

He's a chemical engineer. There is a good possibility he may be working on alternative fuels, trying to get rich. More power to him, I say!


15 posted on 12/12/2006 7:13:36 AM PST by L98Fiero (The media is a self-licking ice-cream cone)
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To: akorahil
"Just some home made ethanol for my car, officer."
16 posted on 12/12/2006 7:14:05 AM PST by Ditto
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To: Lx

"I thought it wasn't illegal to make it but to sell it without giving the feds their cut??"

It's a protection racket and the Dons in Washington want their cut.


17 posted on 12/12/2006 7:14:10 AM PST by dljordan
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To: Oberon
Unless I'm mistaken (and it's quite possible), there is no legally-permitted amount of liquor that may be distilled without a federal license. If you do not have a distiller's license, you may not make your own distilled alcohol, period.

The nanny state at work :-/ (or rather the Beer/Liquor/Wine industry spent lots of money lobbying for such legislation, to keep competition down).
18 posted on 12/12/2006 7:14:53 AM PST by af_vet_rr
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To: akorahil
He didn't appear to be home Monday.

Let's get outta here, Jed - it's them revenooers agin!

19 posted on 12/12/2006 7:17:01 AM PST by Izzy Dunne (Hello, I'm a TAGLINE virus. Please help me spread by copying me into YOUR tag line.)
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To: Oberon

Other than tax purposes I don't see what the big deal is. I guess maybe there are health concerns from the fusel oils in the initial distillation? More than likely that is just an excuse so the tax man can his cut.


20 posted on 12/12/2006 7:19:40 AM PST by Betis70 (Go Sharks!)
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To: akorahil
He didn't appear to be home Monday.

"Dear Minnesota Police and newspapers,

I was planning on being at home later in the week, but thanks for tipping me off. Good luck finding me. Suckers!

Signed,
The dude in the article."

Brilliant cop work here, just brilliant.
21 posted on 12/12/2006 7:20:36 AM PST by July 4th (A vacant lot cancelled out my vote for Bush.)
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To: L98Fiero

He's a chemical engineer. There is a good possibility he may be working on alternative fuels,


Maybe he was trying to fuel his hangover......:)


22 posted on 12/12/2006 7:21:38 AM PST by padre35 (We are surrounded, that simplifies our problem Chesty Puller)
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To: Izzy Dunne
"It's just for medicinal purposes"

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

23 posted on 12/12/2006 7:22:31 AM PST by digger48
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To: akorahil
Me and my old drunken roommate(RIP) used to make our own whiskey 20 years ago for about $1.50 a quart.

We called it FEROCIOUS CIRROSIS TOTAL AMNESIA FRONTAL LOBOTOMY WHISKEY.

We used snow to cool down the condenser until we actually ran out of snow and had to steal the neighbors snow in midnight snow raids.

We had the only completely shoveled front yard in North Minneapolis. Right down to green grass.

24 posted on 12/12/2006 7:22:49 AM PST by Manic_Episode (Some mornings, it's just not worth chewing through the leather straps...)
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To: smoketree

LOL.


25 posted on 12/12/2006 7:23:05 AM PST by savedbygrace (SECURE THE BORDERS FIRST (I'M YELLING ON PURPOSE))
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To: Abathar
"So what, as long as he was making it for himself and not selling it."

Ah, but BATFE prohibits the distillation of ANY quantity of ethanol for ANY reason! Look on their website. Yo can do it, but you need permission and a license and registration and taxes must be paid.

If I wish to distill flower essences for perfume, there are some that are ok, but there is a flower whose essence contains ethanol, and according to BATFE, I must get permission and register my still and get inspected, since collecting that flower essence involves distillation of ethanol.

You can get a special permit to make ethanol from garbage to be used as fuel, but you must first get permission, and the ethanol must be denatured as it is distilled.

There is no limit for distilled spirits (no amount you can distill without a permit, permission, and license), but you can make 200 gallons of beer and 200 of wine, but if you take a batch of wine and distill it to brandy you are a bootlegger and felon facing stiff penalties.
26 posted on 12/12/2006 7:24:48 AM PST by DBrow
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To: jdm
Oh, wait, that's a "stiff," not a "still."

Or, a SHILL. It gets confusing.

27 posted on 12/12/2006 7:26:46 AM PST by SpinnerWebb (Islam... if ya can't join 'em, beat 'em.)
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To: Oberon
You are correct. I looked into building a still a few years ago. I didn't realize it was illegal until I did that. On the internet, the only plans I found were from New Zealand, where small home batches may be made.
28 posted on 12/12/2006 7:27:13 AM PST by PrincessB
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To: Oberon

you would be mistaken in Tn and GA. Both states allow limited distilling for personal consumption.(Makes great x-mas gifts also).


29 posted on 12/12/2006 7:27:34 AM PST by ping jockey (We have sissy's for leaders and WE will pay the highest cost.)
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To: af_vet_rr

Tax revenue.
In addition to sales tax in most states, there are excise taxes, which are quite high in some states ($3-$5 per gallon).
http://www.taxadmin.org/fta/rate/liquor.html


30 posted on 12/12/2006 7:27:39 AM PST by visualops (artlife.us)
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To: L98Fiero

"There is a good possibility he may be working on alternative fuels,"

You need a special BATFE permit to do that. Instructions are on their website.

The USGov wants to know about every single drop of ethanol distilled in the USA and protectorates.


31 posted on 12/12/2006 7:30:18 AM PST by DBrow
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To: ping jockey
you would be mistaken in Tn and GA. Both states allow limited distilling for personal consumption.

I don't doubt that, but I do doubt whether such production is within the Federal code. The ATF wants its revenue.

32 posted on 12/12/2006 7:35:14 AM PST by Oberon (What does it take to make government shrink?)
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To: Betis70
Other than tax purposes I don't see what the big deal is

Vicki Weaver was murdered by a Federal Agent over a $50.00 tax beef.

The FBI incinerated 65 people in Texas over a $200.00 tax beef.

MamaGov gets mighty pissed when she don't get her cut. She makes the Crips and Bloods look like choirboys.

L

33 posted on 12/12/2006 7:38:10 AM PST by Lurker (Historys most dangerous force is government and the crime syndicates that grow with it.)
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To: DBrow

"The USGov wants to know about every single drop of ethanol distilled in the USA and protectorates."

Eww.


34 posted on 12/12/2006 7:41:19 AM PST by L98Fiero (The media is a self-licking ice-cream cone)
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To: Manic_Episode

And I had one in my high-school dorm room closet.


35 posted on 12/12/2006 7:42:12 AM PST by Dr. Bogus Pachysandra ("Don't touch that thing")
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To: 300magnum

Why didn't they just ask him? If he is evasive then ask to see what he has. But a raid sounds like Waco tactics. The batfe could have arrested Koresh any number of times when he was in town or jogging. A military attack was completely unnecessary.
This business of "raiding" peoples homes is out of control.


36 posted on 12/12/2006 7:42:17 AM PST by smoketree (the insanity, the lunacy these days)
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To: PrincessB

Home still.....

Get a stove top pressure cooker and modify the pop off valve to receive tubing. Plastic will do.

Buy a length of coppper tubong, 1/4" id is fine. Roll it into a coil around a a mandrel roughly 3 1/2 inches in diameter. An old orange juice or coffee can will do.

Obtain a used #10 can from a cafeteria some where and drill a 1/4 inch hole in the side near the bottom. Place the copper coil (minus the mandrel) in the #10 can and feed the bottom end out the hole. Seal with JB weld epoxy or solder around the joint to stop leaks.

Connect the length of tube from the pressure cooker to the coil. Fill the #10 can with water. Voila.... a still.

Place the beer, the fermented product, in the cooker and bring to a boil. Regulate the heat to produce a simmer. The alcohol will boil off and condense in the coil dripping out into a receptacle. If steam comes out the bottom of the coil, reduce the heat. If the water in the #10 can gets hot, remove and replace with colder water.

For corn likker, ferment cornmeal and sugar with wine yeast.


37 posted on 12/12/2006 7:44:12 AM PST by bert (K.E. N.P. Rozerem commercials give me nightmares)
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To: Lx

"I thought it wasn't illegal to make it but to sell it without giving the feds their cut??"

No there is a several gallon limit.


38 posted on 12/12/2006 7:47:57 AM PST by MeanWestTexan (Kol Hakavod Lezahal)
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To: Oberon

"Unless I'm mistaken (and it's quite possible), there is no legally-permitted amount of liquor that may be distilled without a federal license."

You are mistaken. There is a reasonable limit -- 20 gallons or somesuch.

Wine and beer is quiet a bit.


39 posted on 12/12/2006 7:48:56 AM PST by MeanWestTexan (Kol Hakavod Lezahal)
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To: Lx
Ok, here's how it works.

You are allowed to BREW up to 200 gallons per year per household.

Brewing means adding yeast to sugarwater and letting it ferment. Basic brew. If you use designer yeast, you might possibly get 20 ethanol.

That is legal.

Now, if you attempt to separate the water from the alcohol in that brew, you will be arrested.

It isn't the equipment you use, (yes, the fedgov does confiscate stills) but it is the PROCESS of separating the water from the alcohol that is really, really bad.

Put a can of beer in the freezer, you are using a process called "jacking", which is illegal.

The operation to create hard liquor starts with brew, or mash or whatever. Then it goes to the separation phase. You begin the process of removing the water from your brew. The most efficient way to do this is to add heat via a distiller.

You need a license from the fedgov to do this.
40 posted on 12/12/2006 7:49:24 AM PST by Al Gator (Refusing to "stoop to your enemy's level", gets you cut off at the knees.)
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To: Al Gator

20 ethanol = 20% ethanol

sheesh


41 posted on 12/12/2006 7:51:11 AM PST by Al Gator (Refusing to "stoop to your enemy's level", gets you cut off at the knees.)
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To: akorahil
Far be it for me to defend the Feds here but a still is basically a fuel air bomb in the making.

You guys do know that.

Right?

Beyond the Tax reasons, most of us would not look kindly on having our neighbors creating bombs.

I for one am glad that it's hard to get a permit for a still.  

BTW, I am also a Homebrewer.  

Cheers,

knewshound

Latest article;
42 posted on 12/12/2006 7:52:11 AM PST by knews_hound (Sarcastically blogging since 2004.)
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To: bert
Ahhhhh .... corn squeezins. Been years since my old uncle Art let me swill some of his.

Nam Vet

43 posted on 12/12/2006 7:52:53 AM PST by Nam Vet (Bozone (n.): The substance surrounding liberals that stops bright ideas from penetrating.)
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To: Manic_Episode

LOL


44 posted on 12/12/2006 7:54:08 AM PST by wallcrawlr
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To: Oberon

Correction to my own post, after calling the BATF.

All distallation is apparently forbidden, but there is apparently either no criminal penalty (or a policy of not prosecuting --- he wasn't sure) for amounts under a certain gallon amount.


45 posted on 12/12/2006 7:56:01 AM PST by MeanWestTexan (Kol Hakavod Lezahal)
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To: knews_hound

lol, You got that right!

How many idiots have ended up in little pieces!!

Tell St. Peter how you went for that fourth step, and then developed a pin hole in your slobber box. End of story.

HeHeHe, St. Pete will let you in, but assign you to the stupid section.


46 posted on 12/12/2006 7:56:36 AM PST by Al Gator (Refusing to "stoop to your enemy's level", gets you cut off at the knees.)
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To: MeanWestTexan

"but there is apparently either no criminal penalty (or a policy of not prosecuting --- he wasn't sure) for amounts under a certain gallon amount."

I don't think I would want to be trying to sell that line to a judge.

LOL,


47 posted on 12/12/2006 7:58:17 AM PST by Al Gator (Refusing to "stoop to your enemy's level", gets you cut off at the knees.)
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To: MeanWestTexan

Do you happen to know what that gallon amount is?


48 posted on 12/12/2006 8:02:07 AM PST by Oberon (What does it take to make government shrink?)
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To: MeanWestTexan

http://www.ttb.gov/spirits/faq.shtml

Also, Title 26, Chapter 51, Section J, Part I, para 5601 has the fedgof laws about separating alcohol and water.

I know of no small quantity exemption for distilled spirits, but if there is one I'd really like to know! Can you post it?

Thanks!


49 posted on 12/12/2006 8:03:20 AM PST by DBrow
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To: Al Gator
My brother is a Mechanical Engineer and when I started asking him about building a still a few years back he looked at me like I was nuts.

The pinhole scenario was exactly what he said.

I will stick with brewing. I can get the same alcohol content with none of the hazards.

Cheers,

knewshound
50 posted on 12/12/2006 8:04:42 AM PST by knews_hound (Sarcastically blogging since 2004.)
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