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General Category => Equipment and Software => Topic started by: bendbrew on January 30, 2010, 02:28:05 pm

Title: Manifold vs. Screen/Braid
Post by: bendbrew on January 30, 2010, 02:28:05 pm
Okay-so I will shortly be getting my 70qt Coleman Extreme.  My next decision is whether to build a manifold or use a stainless steel screen or braid.  I have read that the issue appears to be efficiency.  Anyone have an opinion either way?  Thanks.
Title: Re: Manifold vs. Screen/Braid
Post by: Hokerer on January 30, 2010, 03:21:41 pm
I batch sparge with a smaller Coleman Xtreme using the braid and I consistently get 80-85% brewhouse efficiency.  Have never used a manifold but I wouldn't think it would be much better than that.
Title: Re: Manifold vs. Screen/Braid
Post by: dhacker on January 30, 2010, 06:08:32 pm
You planning to fly or batch sparge?
Title: Re: Manifold vs. Screen/Braid
Post by: bendbrew on January 30, 2010, 10:34:58 pm
Batch appears to be the simplest but keeping options open may be beneficial.  Can you fly sparge in a rectangular cooler?
Title: Re: Manifold vs. Screen/Braid
Post by: Hokerer on January 31, 2010, 08:54:21 am
Batch appears to be the simplest but keeping options open may be beneficial.  Can you fly sparge in a rectangular cooler?

Sure, you can fly sparge in a rect cooler.  It'll probably eliminate the braid as an option for you though.  With fly, it becomes all important to make sure that your collection method provides coverage for a much of the area of the grain bed as possible.  For a rect, that means manifold (round coolers could also use a false bottom).  With batch sparge, since you drain the whole thing each time, you're not worried about channelling and such so a braid works great.
Title: Re: Manifold vs. Screen/Braid
Post by: denny on January 31, 2010, 09:59:13 am
You can use a braid in a rectangular cooler to fly sparge, but it needs a more complicated configuration that it would for batch sparging.  My experience comparing manifolds and screens is that screens clear the wort faster and are a bit less prone to stuck runoffs.
Title: Re: Manifold vs. Screen/Braid
Post by: a10t2 on January 31, 2010, 11:02:15 am
For batch sparging, it really doesn't matter much, if at all. You're just trying to dump the liquid out as quickly as possible. For fly-sparging, you need a design that will drain the entire grain bed as uniformly as possible. There's an entire chapter on how to build a manifold in How To Brew.

I batch sparge with a CPVC manifold and am glad I went that way, because I can take it apart and clean it. I tried a braid for a few batches but wasn't comfortable with the little bits of grain that got stuck inside.
Title: Re: Manifold vs. Screen/Braid
Post by: yugamrap on February 02, 2010, 11:55:42 am
I have a CPVC manifold that I use in both of my MLTs, and it works great.  I batch sparge, and also use a pump to vorlauf and move wort to my boil kettle.  I haven't used a braid, so I can't make any direct observations as to whether either works better in my system.  However, I know some brewers who do use braids and, as Denny said, the wort seems to clear a little faster.  I went with the manifold because I already had the CPVC around the house, and because I hadn't come across the braid idea yet.  I'm sure you'd be happy with either a braid or a manifold - it's really a matter of preference and how much tinkering you want to do.