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General Category => Equipment and Software => Topic started by: tschmidlin on November 17, 2011, 06:54:32 PM

Title: pickup tube
Post by: tschmidlin on November 17, 2011, 06:54:32 PM
I've got a couple of kettles with ball valves in them, but they are set high enough that I often tilt them to get more out and a pickup tube would keep me from having to do that.  The outlets are smooth on the inside, so a screw in pickup tube won't work.

I could probably just shove a length of soft copper in there and bend it to suit.  Any other ideas out there?
Title: Re: pickup tube
Post by: narvin on November 17, 2011, 07:00:13 PM
You don't have a NPT port on the inside?  If you don't get a tight fit with whatever you add, you might lose siphon once the liquid level falls below the ball valve.
Title: Re: pickup tube
Post by: tschmidlin on November 17, 2011, 07:20:28 PM
No, it is welded in.  Good point about losing siphon, but some kind of cork could probably be rigged with some silicone sealant.  A little vaseline should prevent it from sticking to the kettle while it dries in shape.  Hmmmm . . . .
Title: Re: pickup tube
Post by: euge on November 17, 2011, 07:30:27 PM
You could wrap teflon tape around the copper tube until you get a snug enough fit.
Title: Re: pickup tube
Post by: bluesman on November 17, 2011, 07:35:11 PM
I'm trying to envision the fitting...a pic or two would help Tom.
Title: Re: pickup tube
Post by: bo on November 17, 2011, 07:48:13 PM
I had this same problem. I assume that you have female, half couplings welded to your kettle.

I ended up making my own fitting by brazing a copper tube inside a male nipple that screwed in from the outside. My ball valve then screwed onto this male fitting. Strange looking, but it works.
Title: Re: pickup tube
Post by: tschmidlin on November 17, 2011, 07:55:25 PM
I had this same problem. I assume that you have female, half couplings welded to your kettle.

I ended up making my own fitting by brazing a copper tube inside a male nipple that screwed in from the outside. My ball valve then screwed onto this male fitting. Strange looking, but it works.
Pics of this would help :)

I'll take some pics of mine and post them later, I'm not with my kettle right now. ;)

Teflon tape could work, but I'd have to replace it don't you think?  I plan to remove the pickup tube for cleaning the kettle.
Title: Re: pickup tube
Post by: Kit B on November 17, 2011, 08:04:01 PM
Short silicone hose inserted, rather than copper?
Title: Re: pickup tube
Post by: weithman5 on November 17, 2011, 08:09:39 PM

, I'm not with my kettle right now. ;)

.

shame when a boy and his kettle are apart ::)

is it possible to get a tap and tap threads in to the inside of the valve fitting from inside the kettle?  this would enable you to put a threaded connection into the valve from the inside wrapped in teflon.  then you could put your copper pick up etc on to just about any fitting you would want.
Title: Re: pickup tube
Post by: Slowbrew on November 17, 2011, 08:18:59 PM
I had this same problem. I assume that you have female, half couplings welded to your kettle.

I ended up making my own fitting by brazing a copper tube inside a male nipple that screwed in from the outside. My ball valve then screwed onto this male fitting. Strange looking, but it works.

I think I can see how that would work.  Don't you lose a lot of space in the connector?  Seems like this would drop 1/2" port down to 3/8" or 1/4" pretty quickly.

The idea about running a tap all the way through the coupling seems like a good one.  Assuming there is enough sidewall to support threads both internal and external.

Paul
Title: Re: pickup tube
Post by: euge on November 17, 2011, 08:28:19 PM
Tom replacing the tape would be easy- probably just a couple turns and the bonus is that it is reversible. You are not altering the equipment at all.
Title: Re: pickup tube
Post by: bo on November 17, 2011, 09:25:47 PM
I had this same problem. I assume that you have female, half couplings welded to your kettle.

I ended up making my own fitting by brazing a copper tube inside a male nipple that screwed in from the outside. My ball valve then screwed onto this male fitting. Strange looking, but it works.

I think I can see how that would work.  Don't you lose a lot of space in the connector?  Seems like this would drop 1/2" port down to 3/8" or 1/4" pretty quickly.

The idea about running a tap all the way through the coupling seems like a good one.  Assuming there is enough sidewall to support threads both internal and external.

Paul

I have a 1" female half coupler welded to my kettle, and since my ball valve is 1/2" ( don't ask) I have a lot of room to spare. A picture of it installed would not tell you anything and sorry, but  I'm not disassembling it.

If I ever build another kettle, it will have full couplers in stalled rather than half ones, for this very reason. I'm really surprised that of all the reading I did before I built mine, no one ever addressed this problem. Not to mention that half couplers are much harder to find.
Title: Re: pickup tube
Post by: denny on November 17, 2011, 10:07:02 PM
I had a similar fitting on one of my kettles and I tapped it out, added a close nipple, and was able to screw on a pickup tube using a compression fitting.
Title: Re: pickup tube
Post by: tschmidlin on November 18, 2011, 05:27:49 AM
Here's the pic.  It's a 3/8" valve welded in place.

(https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-LcLGulqLnKw/TsXp9EcsNpI/AAAAAAAAASc/CBwILWVM4x4/s640/IMG-20111117-00063.jpg)

(https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-1GlC8vsfaNg/TsXp9Lrbx4I/AAAAAAAAASY/t5zU4IneX0M/s640/IMG-20111117-00062.jpg)

Tapping it out would clearly be the "best" solution, but I'm not sure it's necessary for what I want.  I'll probably waste some money trying some other ideas first. :)
Title: Re: pickup tube
Post by: bo on November 18, 2011, 12:36:33 PM
I don't know why you want one. It's very low and on one side. I've never seen it done like that, but I like it.

If that's 3/8 pipe, then what I did won't work. There's not enough internal diameter to work with.
Title: Re: pickup tube
Post by: Jimmy K on November 18, 2011, 02:39:49 PM
Know someone that can weld stainless?  Rather than go rigging up something complicated, just cut the current fitting off, widen the hole, and weld a stainless female coupler in there. The coupler is probably wider than the pipe that's on there.
Title: Re: pickup tube
Post by: bluesman on November 18, 2011, 02:45:59 PM
Is the hole located on the radius of the converted keg?
Title: Re: pickup tube
Post by: bo on November 18, 2011, 02:57:34 PM
It sure looks that way to me. Whoever did that really knew what they were doing. That's not easy to do.
Title: Re: pickup tube
Post by: euge on November 18, 2011, 06:43:28 PM
I don't know why you want one. It's very low and on one the side. I've never seen it done like that, but I like it.

This is what I thought when first looking at the pics. A little tilting isn't such a bad thing....

Look at mine. I have to tilt! And leave about 2 cups behind. I'm going to redo it.
(https://lh6.googleusercontent.com/-nYNz57wRJnI/TsYJGH1n4CI/AAAAAAAAAR8/0ygB3TJsgtw/s640/img_0409.jpg)

I still think the teflon tape is the easiest approach. ;)
Title: Re: pickup tube
Post by: PSUhomebrewer on November 18, 2011, 08:11:08 PM
Though isn't leaving a bit behind a good thing? Depending on how you chill( whirl pool, gentle stirring) you break and hop matter should go to the center. If you try and pick up every last bit it will all transfer to the carboy/bucket. It could be worse if you use a plate chiller since it will clog the plates.

I have my keggle set to leave about a half gallon behind and I pick up from the side since I also whirlpool.
Title: Re: pickup tube
Post by: tschmidlin on November 19, 2011, 09:47:51 AM
Yes, very low and on the side.  But it still leaves a lot of wort in the kettle.  Maybe I just need to make the stand uneven so it tilts to the outlet side.  That might be the easiest fix. :)
Title: Re: pickup tube
Post by: euge on November 19, 2011, 10:49:40 AM
Yes, very low and on the side.  But it still leaves a lot of wort in the kettle.  Maybe I just need to make the stand uneven so it tilts to the outlet side.  That might be the easiest fix. :)

+1 Very elegant move sir.
Title: Re: pickup tube
Post by: weithman5 on November 19, 2011, 01:11:27 PM
from what i see, cutting a few threads would probably be the easiest and most flexible, (outside of just tilting, that to me is the simplest)  but if you don't have a tap already they can cost a few bucks.  ( some how my father's set made it to my truck when no one was looking)
Title: Re: pickup tube
Post by: bluesman on November 19, 2011, 06:30:56 PM
Yes, very low and on the side.  But it still leaves a lot of wort in the kettle.  Maybe I just need to make the stand uneven so it tilts to the outlet side.  That might be the easiest fix. :)

That sounds like the fix to me.    ;D
Title: Re: pickup tube
Post by: boapiu on November 20, 2011, 02:23:18 AM
Guess I don't get it, what are you trying to do? Is this a keggle? That is as low on the side as I can imagine, from the picture. Only way to get more fluid is tap from the bottom center of the keg. I am thinking of doing the same as I have a spare keggle. Is this the boil or the mash tun or what? Good luck, man. Hope it works.
Title: Re: pickup tube
Post by: tschmidlin on November 20, 2011, 07:38:06 AM
Guess I don't get it, what are you trying to do? Is this a keggle? That is as low on the side as I can imagine, from the picture. Only way to get more fluid is tap from the bottom center of the keg. I am thinking of doing the same as I have a spare keggle. Is this the boil or the mash tun or what? Good luck, man. Hope it works.
All three (kettle, tun, HLT) are the same, about as low as you can go, but they still retain too much sugary goodness to make me happy.  I'll try the tile method on the next batch and see if I am less grumpy about it :)
Title: Re: pickup tube
Post by: Pi on November 29, 2011, 03:08:14 PM
For my mash tun, I inverted the keg(gle) and cut the bottom out the diameter of a plastic bucket lid. Had my welder beer drinking dude put a reducer in the sankey flange and I put a foldable false bottom in. I get every drop of liquor that way. My BK is a 15 gallon SS pot fitted with a Blichman Hopblocker. Again had my welder beer drinking dude weld a 1/2" close nipple on the sidewall and make a  SS dip tube welded to a 1/2" blichman quick connect. after my boil, I give it a stir and let it settle for about 30 minutes then pump thru the CFWC. My HLT has about 6L of deadspacewhich I just have to factor in, but would like to have my welder beer drinking dude fit it with something closer to what you have.