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General Category => General Homebrew Discussion => Topic started by: oscarvan on February 04, 2011, 10:44:06 PM

Title: Hop mess.....
Post by: oscarvan on February 04, 2011, 10:44:06 PM
OK, every brew things are getting a little better, a few items left on the to do list... (other than the thermometers)  ;D

so far I've been using pellets, no bags. It is however annoying when I get to the bottom of the BK and the wort starts clogging up the strainers over the bucket and it turns into a Chinese fire drill, as I can't stop the flow as it will kill the syphon through the 90ยบ turn to the bottom of the barrel....If you follow.

So, I'm thinking about putting a false bottom in the bottom of the BK.

Will the ones with the larger holes (1/8" -ish ) stop the hops? Will it clog them up?

I may have to use bags except that I don't think the hops will be able to give off their juices as efficiently....

Comments please, thank you.
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: Hokerer on February 04, 2011, 11:01:19 PM
Some options...

1. Forget the strainer altogether, lot's of folks (myself included) let everything go into the fermenter.  It'll settle out.

2. Once the strainer clogs, let the rest go in the bucket.  That'll cut down a lot of the gunk.

3. Line your bucket with one of those paint strainer bags, rack, and then lift the bag (and the gunk) out of the bucket.
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: thirdhand2 on February 04, 2011, 11:09:14 PM
I use Jumbo tea strainers. Since I feed my wort thru a counterflow chiller I need to keep the gunk out.

http://www.fantes.com/images/7617infusers.jpg

Art
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: jaybeerman on February 04, 2011, 11:15:36 PM
I think dean mentioned, a few days back, having to put his arm into the wort to clear hops from his screen.   :D  A few years back I had to do the same thing in two of three batches.  Moments after cleaning up from the third batch I ordered a false bottom for my kettle.  I now run a bazooka under the false bottom (3/32" holes).  If I use pellets I use them early in the boil and pretty much always use whole hops for flavoring/aroma.  No clogs even when i brew american barleywine and IPA.  cheers, j
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: tom on February 04, 2011, 11:43:27 PM
+1 on the bazooka. I have it mounted along the side of the kettle so it doesn't interfere with the whirlpool.
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: Tim McManus on February 04, 2011, 11:46:06 PM
We took the bottom flange for a toilet flange (http://www.lowes.com:80/pd_253223-138-435093_0__?productId=3137595&Ntt=flange&pl=1&currentURL=%2Fpl__0__s%3FNtt%3Dflange%26page%3D2) and dropped a nylon mesh paint straining bag (http://www.lowes.com:80/pd_126392-968-11581/12FF_0__?productId=1008385&Ntt=paint+strainer&pl=1&currentURL=%2Fpl__0__s%3FNtt%3Dpaint%2Bstrainer) in the middle of it and clamped it around the outside.  Then, we took an old wire tomato holder (http://www.lowes.com:80/pd_27485-82704-89901_0__?productId=3333744&Ntt=tomato&pl=1&currentURL=%2Fpl__0__s%3FNtt%3Dtomato) and used that to suspend the strainer in the boil kettle.

So for about $15 we can transfer from the mash to the boil kettle with the strainer, and then throw hop pellets inside of it.  None of that stuff ever gets through the bags and to the bottom of the kettle.  The whole contraption will be nicely suspended in the boil kettle and you can throw most anything into it that you want to add to the wort but not have it get left at the bottom of the kettle.

Yeah, I brew with another guy and after a few pints we look at everything in the garage and ask ourselves, "I wonder if I can brew with that...."
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: tubercle on February 04, 2011, 11:53:55 PM
Some options...

1. Forget the strainer altogether, lot's of folks (myself included) let everything go into the fermenter.  It'll settle out.

2. Once the strainer clogs, let the rest go in the bucket.  That'll cut down a lot of the gunk.

3. Line your bucket with one of those paint strainer bags, rack, and then lift the bag (and the gunk) out of the bucket.

#3
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: euge on February 05, 2011, 12:28:14 AM
How about putting one of these stainless steel scrubbies around your pickup tube?

(http://ep.yimg.com/ca/I/easonr_2115_3884416)
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: punatic on February 05, 2011, 12:30:49 AM
How about putting one of these stainless steel scrubbies around your pickup tube?

(http://ep.yimg.com/ca/I/easonr_2115_3884416)


Those make excellent column packing.
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: Tim McManus on February 05, 2011, 01:36:07 AM
How about putting one of these stainless steel scrubbies around your pickup tube?

(http://ep.yimg.com/ca/I/easonr_2115_3884416)


I wonder if these work better than rice hulls for a stuck mash.
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: maxieboy on February 05, 2011, 01:38:47 AM
Converted keg BK IIRC. If you use all leaf hops, the domed, perforated FB works great. You can use pellet too, just make sure to use an ounce or two of leaf to help filter the pellet hops and hot break material.
 I took it a step further and wrapped my ABT false bottom on both sides in SS screen, raised it off the botton a tad, giving me 205 sq. in. of straining area. Awesome! I still use an oz or two of leaf if I can't use all leaf(my pref) to help out since I use a PC. I have brewed 10g Pliny clones with it's metric assload of hops and nary a hiccup.
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: lonnie mac on February 05, 2011, 01:41:08 AM
How about putting one of these stainless steel scrubbies around your pickup tube?

(http://ep.yimg.com/ca/I/easonr_2115_3884416)


Those make excellent column packing.

Ah, I have often wondered...!
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: kgs on February 06, 2011, 03:06:59 AM
How about putting one of these stainless steel scrubbies around your pickup tube?

(http://ep.yimg.com/ca/I/easonr_2115_3884416)


Those make excellent column packing.

Ah, I have often wondered...!

I have used these when racking from a primary into a bottling bucket. It's shocking how much these strainers pick up even when I think I'm racking clear beer.

That said, for the last several batches, I have been pouring the cooled wort through a 12" mesh strainer into a sanitized bucket and then funneling it into a fermenter. I didn't think the strainer was fine enough to catch the pelletized hops, but durned if it doesn't--in fact, I have to use a sanitized spoon to scrape aside hop stuff so the wort will keep on flowing. I have a theory that "sparging" the wort through the hop debris also gives the wort one last bump of hop goodness. It certainly has reduced the amount of trub in the fermenter. I regret not having brewed something to rack onto the last yeast cake -- it looked perfect. My fermented beer also looks much clearer.
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: bluesman on February 06, 2011, 03:51:15 AM
Another option is to whirlpool for 10 min and let the hop and trubs settle just prior to chill and transfer. A paint stirrer or mix-stir on a cordless drill will work for whirlpooling.
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: dzlater on February 06, 2011, 12:06:34 PM
Umm.... why not just use bags ?
If the bags are large enough so the hops aren't compressed inside it works real well.
I use those paint strainer bags.
Easy cheap and reusable.
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: oscarvan on February 06, 2011, 12:18:54 PM
How large are these bags? I'm doing a full 10 gallon boil in a keggle....
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: dzlater on February 06, 2011, 01:02:35 PM
5 &1 gallon
take a look here for a few ideas
http://www.google.com/images?hl=en&client=firefox-a&hs=hhP&rls=org.mozilla%3Aen-US%3Aofficial&biw=1245&bih=568&tbs=isch%3A1&sa=1&q=paint+strainer+bags+homebrew+hops&btnG=Search&aq=f&aqi=&aql=&oq= (http://www.google.com/images?hl=en&client=firefox-a&hs=hhP&rls=org.mozilla%3Aen-US%3Aofficial&biw=1245&bih=568&tbs=isch%3A1&sa=1&q=paint+strainer+bags+homebrew+hops&btnG=Search&aq=f&aqi=&aql=&oq=)
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: oscarvan on February 06, 2011, 01:27:08 PM
Aaaah.... good stuff. Led me to these:

http://www.filterbags.com/filter_bag_pricing.htm

Which brings up the question: What micron rating to keep the hops in, but allow sufficient wort flow?
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: tubercle on February 06, 2011, 01:34:34 PM
I use 1 gallon paint strainer bags from lowes. Just tie a knot and throw them in. Use 2 or 3 if necessary to keep from crowding the hops. I never fill them over 1/4 full of leaf hops.
 
Those in the know say that you have to bump up the amount of hops to get the same extraction without the bags but I don't know what that ratio is.
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: oscarvan on February 06, 2011, 01:52:02 PM
OK, did I mention I use pellets, and would the bags work for those?

Next question..... I have a pickup tube with a 90 that gets all of the wort out of my BK, including the hot break... I am now starting to read that that is not good. Some people have just the drain valve on the side of the kettle, and whirlpool the wort to keep all the trub from getting out. Don't worry about the 1/2 gallon or so you may leave behind, just figure it into the grain/water bill.....?????
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: Mark G on February 06, 2011, 02:10:38 PM
OK, did I mention I use pellets, and would the bags work for those?

Next question..... I have a pickup tube with a 90 that gets all of the wort out of my BK, including the hot break... I am now starting to read that that is not good. Some people have just the drain valve on the side of the kettle, and whirlpool the wort to keep all the trub from getting out. Don't worry about the 1/2 gallon or so you may leave behind, just figure it into the grain/water bill.....?????
That's basically what I do. I have all my recipes scaled to 6 gallons. Usually half a gallon or so stays behind in the BK with most of the hops/break. Then I lose another quart or so to the yeast cake at the bottom of the fermenter. Then I always end up with just over 5 gallons into the keg.
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: tubercle on February 06, 2011, 02:20:19 PM
....I have a pickup tube with a 90 that gets all of the wort out of my BK, including the hot break... I am now starting to read that that is not good. ...

 You're starting a whole new argument now ;D ;D

Tubercle will go on the record by saying if trub gets in the fermenter, I just stretch, yawn, scratch and pitch the yeast. YMMV.
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: maxieboy on February 06, 2011, 03:10:06 PM
Bags. Been there, done that. I'd much rather toss the hops straight in. Love watching the cones rolling around in the boil, giving up the goods. No futzing with bagging hops, cleaning bags, calcs for utilization, etc. Economy of movement and process is the way I roll...
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: denny on February 06, 2011, 04:34:56 PM
I use bags for whole hops and the pellets go through the pump and into the fermenter.  I've found that I like using the bags.  It makes cleanup easier and I haven't found any detriments to the beer.
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: alikocho on February 06, 2011, 04:48:46 PM
+1 on using bags. Also allows you to press wort out of whole hops as you drain.
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: euge on February 06, 2011, 06:07:09 PM
OK, did I mention I use pellets, and would the bags work for those?

Next question..... I have a pickup tube with a 90 that gets all of the wort out of my BK, including the hot break... I am now starting to read that that is not good. Some people have just the drain valve on the side of the kettle, and whirlpool the wort to keep all the trub from getting out. Don't worry about the 1/2 gallon or so you may leave behind, just figure it into the grain/water bill.....?????

Mine is at 90 degrees too. It's not a wrong approach and I rarely leave more than a cup of wort in the kettle. When using whole hops I use bags to keep the seeds out of the pump. The bags work very well- very little mess. I think (not sure) one might need to scale up the amount by 30% if using bags though I haven't done so yet.

I plan to use the scrubbies for my next large batch and toss the whole hops in au natural.
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: alikocho on February 06, 2011, 06:13:44 PM

I plan to use the scrubbies for my next large batch and toss the whole hops in au natural.

I've found the scrubbies work well to block stuff, but it's securing them in place that always gets me. They seem to have an inherent desire to wander away from where you put them.
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: euge on February 06, 2011, 06:31:19 PM

I plan to use the scrubbies for my next large batch and toss the whole hops in au natural.

I've found the scrubbies work well to block stuff, but it's securing them in place that always gets me. They seem to have an inherent desire to wander away from where you put them.

Nice bit of info there. Thanks. Was wondering about this happening. Zip-ties and hose-clamps are wonderful... :)
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: punatic on February 06, 2011, 06:32:23 PM
SS tie-wire.
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: alikocho on February 06, 2011, 06:37:34 PM

I plan to use the scrubbies for my next large batch and toss the whole hops in au natural.

I've found the scrubbies work well to block stuff, but it's securing them in place that always gets me. They seem to have an inherent desire to wander away from where you put them.

Nice bit of info there. Thanks. Was wondering about this happening. Zip-ties and hose-clamps are wonderful... :)

except that zip ties tend to melt in the boil...
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: euge on February 06, 2011, 06:54:22 PM
I'll investigate this. The wire is probably the safest bet.
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: oscarvan on February 07, 2011, 12:48:38 AM
OK, so we have an overwhelming consensus that there is no right way to do this.....

You are NOT helping......... ;D
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: euge on February 07, 2011, 02:40:22 AM
OK, so we have an overwhelming consensus that there is no right way to do this.....

You are NOT helping......... ;D

Awww but we are enjoying ourselves! 8)
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: kgs on February 07, 2011, 02:51:03 AM
I'll investigate this. The wire is probably the safest bet.

it's been a very long time since my USAF days, but once upon an airplane, when I was a jet mech, I could safety-wire just about anything into place.
Title: Re: Hop mess.....
Post by: oly on February 07, 2011, 05:58:26 AM
Careful with those stainless steel mesh ball scrubbies. I've read that these come very dirty with oil and gunk from the manufacturing process.  The Copper 'chore boy' scrubbies are supposedly free of grease.