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Messages - Gribble

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Equipment and Software / Re: 809 March Pumps
« on: October 10, 2011, 03:46:22 AM »
if you get the pump primed (being a mag drive it will not prime itself, i dont know why) you can restrict the outflow (close the valve) and it will be just fine.  I dont usually run it during the mash, just the last 15 minutes to settle the grainbed, but it does run the entire sparge with the valve mostly closed.

Equipment and Software / Re: 809 March Pumps
« on: October 10, 2011, 01:28:23 AM »
I actually hadn't turned it off when it stopped, I had about 2 gallons more to transfer over, but since I have a dedicated wort pump and water pump, the wort pump might have built some beerstone up from cooling and transfers, but I'll definitely share your perspective on the sugars stopping it since I was running 1.082 wort through it at the time. 

Equipment and Software / 809 March Pumps
« on: October 09, 2011, 07:52:46 PM »
I've been using my pumps for a while now, and they work great.  Both of them are hard piped into my system and have never had a performance issue until last night.  My wort pump seized up in the middle of transfer giving me the "opportunity" to yank it apart, thank god for unions.  I take good care of my pumps always flushing them out and running pbw and acid 5 through them but when I tore the pump head apart i found the shaft and impeller bore coated with a good amount of beerstone.  So I guess pulling the wort pump apart is going to become a regular maintenance item.  I was wondering if anyone else has had this same problem.




The gasket is in the socket.  The plug fits into the socket and the cam arms are then pulled down and the cams inside the socket fit into the groove on the plug and lock it into place.

Tight.  No Drips at all.  I run two 809 march pumps as well as my supply water at 60 psi, never had a problem

Equipment and Software / Re: Quick Question: Blichmann Ball Valve NPT
« on: October 08, 2011, 08:29:14 AM »
Well I'm glad Rich at IHBHS has taken over posting on here.  The Cam Lock couplers that I introduced to IHBHS from proflowdynamics are indeed much easier to operate than tri clamps.  instead of having to deal with 4 seperate pieces (each side of the fitting, clamp and gasket) which takes two hands to put together and is not easy to do in a rush situation, like switching a hose full of hot wort from one tank to another, can actually be accomplished one handed.  The Cams provide a tight secure connection that is leak free and just as sanitary as a tri clamp fitting.  Prices range from $3.72 to $5.99 depending on which type you need sure beats the $12.00 for a tri clamp that doesn't include a clamp or gasket.  The food grade gasket housed inside the socket section is easily removable for cleaning and sanitation and can be ordered separately between $0.12 and $0.39 a pop (depending on if you want the standard buna n or silcon gasket).   Check em out.

You could always get away with using cam lock couplers.  they are just as sanitary as triclamps and much easier to operate.  I get mine from  They even have a section strictly for homebrewers

Equipment and Software / Re: temp control
« on: October 08, 2011, 12:37:44 AM »
I prefer the ranco's to the johnson simply because of the probe.  The ranco probe is a lot more forgiving.  If you pinch it you dont have to worry about it springing a leak (analog controllers like the johnson use a closed system so when the temp changes the pressure inside changes and kicks off and on the unit) and kissing it goodbye.

Equipment and Software / Re: Proper Drill for Milling Grain
« on: October 08, 2011, 12:30:50 AM »
I use a 2 roller barley crusher with a 7 amp 3/8 chuck dewalt and i couldnt ask for a better system.

Pimp My System / Re: Anybody use Minibrew?
« on: October 08, 2011, 12:26:23 AM »
I've never used their equipment before, but I use similar fermenters in my brewery, except mine are rotomolded hdpe inductor tanks from  It appears as if they are using 1/2 ball valves which if you've ever used a conical know is too small especially if you've let the yeast set for more than a week.  It just packs up way too much to move.  I use 1" valves on mine and still run into that problem occasionally.  I dont really fancy the stands they use either.  I like my metal tri-stands.  Aside from the battle between hdpe and stainless, I think hdpe is worth it considering the price difference.  I mean I can get two hdpe's for the cost of one blichmann stainless and my hdpe gives me 2.4 more gallons to work with than blichmanns 14.4  anyway thats my $.02

Pimp My System / Pilot Brewery
« on: October 08, 2011, 12:12:01 AM »
Here's Phase One of our quest of going pro.  

We needed a walk in cooler for our fermenters and for our grain storage.  We decided to go with an 8' x 8' cooler framed with 2x4's and covered with plywood.

Each 4x8 section once assembled was covered in mylar bubblewrap insulation, similar to the carboy wraps.  Once all the sections were assembled all of the seams were covered with aluminized tape on the inside and carpenter in a can on the outside.

The whole thing is kept cool by a modular 10,000 btu AC unit that we got a Lowes.  This keeps it at a nice 60 degrees without overstressing the unit.  Currently we have five 15 gallons plastic conical induction tanks and about 400 lbs of grain inside.

For our brew system we of course use The Great Northwestern Brew Baron.

Our Mill, a 2 roller Barley Crusher, with the ability to run a 3/8 Drill.  The Barley Crusher is attached to the lid of our grain bucket for minimal dust.

Our workspace.

Not pictured are the two cabinet freezers (one for cold crashing and lagering, the other for bottle storage) and a chest freezer (keg storage) each on their own temp controller.  We also have an area for bottling and filling pigs.  Some of the other stuff that I've built since we started but don't have pictures of is a dual Corney Keg washer which doubles for cleaning out the Mash Tun and Kettle, a basin sink out of a 55 gal poly drum, and various re designs to the Brew Baron.
All together with the cost of the Brew Baron, the walk in cooler, and all the other ancillary stuff you're looking at $5,000+

Pimp My System / The Great Northwestern Brew Baron
« on: October 07, 2011, 11:48:10 PM »
This is the Great Northwestern Brew Baron.  At the heart of this HERMS is the Blichmann Therminator which is used not only for cooling the boil, but heating the mash as necessary by transferring heat from the HLT to the Mash Tun using two 809 March Pumps.  All of the water side is hard piped using 1/2" Copper which use 1/2" Cam Lock fittings to connect to all the hoses.  The kettles also use the same 1/2" Cam Locks.The kettles are all keggles with welded fittings for sanitation.  The Mash Tun and HLT have welded in Thermowells for the Ranco Temp Probes.  The HLT Controller kicks on and off the solenoid valve for the propane, and the Mash Tun Controller kicks on and off the two pumps.  The HLT is equipped with a sight glass and a thru wall thermometer, and the Mash Tun has the same thermometer along with a False Bottom w/ Pick Up tube and a vorlauf with a clip on sparge ring adapter.  Hope you all like it and I hope it gives your guys some ideas for your own system.

Before I built the Control Box everything was manually operated including push button ignition.  Since then the propane system has been upgraded to a pilot light solenoid system and everything can run either on automatic through the ETC's or manually.


Mash Tun

Vorlauf Tube w/ Sparge Ring attached

Flase Bottom, Thermowell and Thermometer probe

Diverter Panel during construction back when each burner was push button ignited.

Going Pro / Re: Do I got what it takes?
« on: October 04, 2011, 05:20:11 AM »
Yeah man, we're hopefully going to be setting up in Kennewick, currently we're brewing in Badger Canyon right outside of West Kennewick.

Going Pro / Re: Do I got what it takes?
« on: October 01, 2011, 04:36:02 AM »
I am currently in the process of going pro.  I have been brewing for 7 years, worked at a commercial brewery (Ice Harbor) for a year and a half and decided to make the switch to business owner/brewmaster.  My business partners and I built up our hombrew operation to professional level (increased temp controls, conicals, etc) and have been brewing pilot batches while the paper work is getting taken care of.  I am in the fortunate situation to have partners that take care of the paper work and marketing etc so I can enjoy continuing to "just make beer."  Of course my duties aren't limited to strictly making the beer.  I still have meetings and approvals on things but not having to be 100% hands on with all the dirty business stuff is going to be a god send and make me not hate brewing.

Homebrewer Bios / Ryan Gribble
« on: July 16, 2011, 11:39:07 PM »
Hey all, just a quick post to let everyone know I am back to the forum.  I started out as IHBHS but since I no longer work at Ice Harbor Brewing Homebrew Shop I started my own account here. 

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