Legal Stuff

Federal and State Distillation Laws

Can a Still be Legally Owned According to Federal Law?

According to federal rules, stills of any size are legal to own if not being used, nor intended to be used, to produce alcohol. In other words, if a still is only being used to filter water or make essential oils, and these actions do not involve the distillation of alcohol, a still of any size is legal to own. 

Distillation equipment can also be legally used to produce fuel alcohol if the owner possesses a federal fuel alcohol permit. The permit is free, is easy to obtain, and is available here:

When is a Still Illegal to Possess?

It is illegal for individuals to produce alcohol for consumption without proper permits. The only permit that allows for production of distilled spirits for consumption is a commercial federal distilled spirits plant (DSP) permit. This is only available for commercial operators. Federal law provides no exemptions for the production of distilled spirits for personal or family use.

Additionally, state laws apply to the ownership and operation of distillation equipment. Rules on distillation vary from state to state, but in general, it is illegal to produce alcohol for consumption or for fuel, on the state level, without proper permits. Make sure to review your state's laws for rules on the ownership and operation of distillation equipment before purchasing parts from us and manufacturing a still.

TTB Reporting Requirements

The federal TTB requires that anyone who manufactures distillation parts or complete distillers keep sales information. They also have the authority to make distillation equipment manufacturers report this data. We have been told by the TTB that we do NOT have to report customer data at this time.

Read the actual federal statutes regarding distillation equipment here: 27 CFR Part 29, Subpart C - Stills.

Terms of Service

Clawhammer Supply, LLC does not advocate the violation of any State or Federal law, regulation or statute. All products sold are intended to be used in accordance with the proper licensing or permitting procedure of the respective jurisdiction of the user. By your purchase of any of our products, you acknowledge and agree that you have read this Disclaimer and that you will comply with all such State or Federal law, regulation or statute regarding the use of any product that you have purchased from us.

Additional Information From Our Lawyers: Obligatory legal jargon provided by our lawyers can be found here.