Author Topic: recirculating boil kettle during immersion chilling  (Read 17717 times)

Offline kgs

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Re: recirculating boil kettle during immersion chilling
« Reply #30 on: June 12, 2012, 06:46:47 PM »
Can someone post a picture?  I'm just not getting the idea of using both an immersion chiller and pumping the wort somewhere.  Maybe it's because my set up consists of a pot and I have no experience/idea about pumps and where the wort is being pumped from/to.
Thanks

You're just pumping the wort out through the valve, through the pump, and back into the top of the kettle. It keeps the wort moving which avoids temperature gradients near the chiller.

The wort "return" for Jamil's setup is a small length of copper tubing attaching to heat-tolerant hosing with a clamp, secured to the chiller. Is that what others are using?

I'm also trying to figure out how to fit an ice-bath recirculation into this design, and admit I'm a little confused.
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Offline denny

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Re: recirculating boil kettle during immersion chilling
« Reply #31 on: June 12, 2012, 07:16:32 PM »
The wort "return" for Jamil's setup is a small length of copper tubing attaching to heat-tolerant hosing with a clamp, secured to the chiller. Is that what others are using?

I'm also trying to figure out how to fit an ice-bath recirculation into this design, and admit I'm a little confused.

I have a long piece of tubing on the output of my pump and I just stick the end of the tubing back into the kettle.
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Offline gmac

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Re: recirculating boil kettle during immersion chilling
« Reply #32 on: June 12, 2012, 07:52:01 PM »
Since my chillers broke, for today's brew I put the pot in a tub and ran tap water slowly out of the tub. I threw my thermometer in to see what my ground water temp was. 54 F.
I just let it trickle for an hour and it was good but I'm sure I'm losing something by not having a faster cold break.

Offline kgs

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Re: recirculating boil kettle during immersion chilling
« Reply #33 on: June 12, 2012, 08:04:51 PM »
The wort "return" for Jamil's setup is a small length of copper tubing attaching to heat-tolerant hosing with a clamp, secured to the chiller. Is that what others are using?

I'm also trying to figure out how to fit an ice-bath recirculation into this design, and admit I'm a little confused.

I have a long piece of tubing on the output of my pump and I just stick the end of the tubing back into the kettle.

I was thinking that, so I'm glad there isn't some logical reason it wouldn't work ;)
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Offline denny

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Re: recirculating boil kettle during immersion chilling
« Reply #34 on: June 13, 2012, 09:24:00 AM »
The wort "return" for Jamil's setup is a small length of copper tubing attaching to heat-tolerant hosing with a clamp, secured to the chiller. Is that what others are using?

I'm also trying to figure out how to fit an ice-bath recirculation into this design, and admit I'm a little confused.

I have a long piece of tubing on the output of my pump and I just stick the end of the tubing back into the kettle.

I was thinking that, so I'm glad there isn't some logical reason it wouldn't work ;)

It's totally pragmatic!  I use a little quick clamp on the edge of the kettle to hold the tubing in place.
Life begins at 60.....1.060, that is!

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Offline nateo

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Re: recirculating boil kettle during immersion chilling
« Reply #35 on: June 13, 2012, 09:40:19 AM »
It's totally pragmatic!  I use a little quick clamp on the edge of the kettle to hold the tubing in place.

I used to just use the weight of the lid to hold the tube in place, but once I came back to it and it was pumping wort all over the place. Now I run the tube through a big binder clip attached to the edge of the pot.
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Offline weithman5

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Re: recirculating boil kettle during immersion chilling
« Reply #36 on: June 13, 2012, 10:03:36 AM »
the third funnest thing about this way of life (hobby?) is reading and learning how other people solve problems and do things, then sharing that with others.
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Re: recirculating boil kettle during immersion chilling
« Reply #37 on: June 13, 2012, 11:46:51 AM »
the third funnest thing about this way of life (hobby?) is reading and learning how other people solve problems and do things, then sharing that with others.

Agreed. After all this time one of my goals is to help new brewers realize that they can make excellent beer without a lot of extra equipment. All of this may seem a bit intimidating, complicated and expensive. If I were brewing on a smaller scale I'd just chill the pot in the sink with ice like I did when just starting out.
The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. -Richard P. Feynman

Offline kgs

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Re: recirculating boil kettle during immersion chilling
« Reply #38 on: June 13, 2012, 07:41:20 PM »
the third funnest thing about this way of life (hobby?) is reading and learning how other people solve problems and do things, then sharing that with others.

Agreed. After all this time one of my goals is to help new brewers realize that they can make excellent beer without a lot of extra equipment. All of this may seem a bit intimidating, complicated and expensive. If I were brewing on a smaller scale I'd just chill the pot in the sink with ice like I did when just starting out.

Well, except that the above cheap-n-simple approach requires a lot of muscle. Even lifting 3 gallons of wort in a kettle is a lot of oomph for me.  After three and a half years, the part of the brewing process that I don't like is where I'm struggling with moving liquid: into the HLT, into the MT, into the kettle, into the cooling medium, into the fermenter, etc.  I met other women homebrewers at a local event and it was one of the first topics we discussed.  I do small batches whether I want to or not because moving 3 gallons of liquid is the outer limits of my capacity, and even that's clumsy and difficult.

My goal for summer 2013 (yes, next year) is to build an all-electric brew stand that could at least in theory be operated by someone with very limited lifting capacity and motor skills. Meanwhile, this year I'm pondering/testing/thinking about specific efficiencies that are not too expensive but can make brewing more fun and less of a hassle, even for the new brewer who doesn't want to sink lots of money into the hobby.

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Offline weithman5

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Re: recirculating boil kettle during immersion chilling
« Reply #39 on: June 14, 2012, 10:44:31 AM »
i built my little electric kettle pretty easy. at low volumes of liquid (2-3 gallon) this seems fine.  i only needed 1500 watt heater and did not require any kind of power modulator for it and is not a huge load on the circuitry.  check out the byo website about part way down (2009) in the diy projects there is a small electric brewery that i think would be up your alley. mine will end up being similar but i think i will use an immersion chiller, but am thinking of making a counterflow also.
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Offline kgs

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Re: recirculating boil kettle during immersion chilling
« Reply #40 on: June 14, 2012, 04:49:15 PM »
i built my little electric kettle pretty easy. at low volumes of liquid (2-3 gallon) this seems fine.  i only needed 1500 watt heater and did not require any kind of power modulator for it and is not a huge load on the circuitry.  check out the byo website about part way down (2009) in the diy projects there is a small electric brewery that i think would be up your alley. mine will end up being similar but i think i will use an immersion chiller, but am thinking of making a counterflow also.

I found it, thanks. Really interesting ideas in here (and useful parts list, too). Half the fun of brewing is thinking about stuff like this... mulling over tubing and pumps and whatnot.
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Offline nateo

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Re: recirculating boil kettle during immersion chilling
« Reply #41 on: June 14, 2012, 05:11:30 PM »
Agreed. After all this time one of my goals is to help new brewers realize that they can make excellent beer without a lot of extra equipment. All of this may seem a bit intimidating, complicated and expensive. If I were brewing on a smaller scale I'd just chill the pot in the sink with ice like I did when just starting out.

I was an apartment brewer for four years in Denver and Boulder. When I first moved to Missouri, I had a bunch of extra cash and plenty of space, so I bought a 15gal kettle, 10gal igloo MLT, a pump, a freezer with a temp controller, and big immersion chiller. I thought I needed it because all the cool kids were using pumps and such, so I wanted to jump on the bandwagon.

It turned out my new setup was mostly unnecessary to make better beer, so I hardly use half of it. I use my MLT on all batches now, and my freezer is constantly being used, but those other things didn't noticeably increase the quality of my beer.
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Offline kgs

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Re: recirculating boil kettle during immersion chilling
« Reply #42 on: June 14, 2012, 05:39:48 PM »
Agreed. After all this time one of my goals is to help new brewers realize that they can make excellent beer without a lot of extra equipment. All of this may seem a bit intimidating, complicated and expensive. If I were brewing on a smaller scale I'd just chill the pot in the sink with ice like I did when just starting out.

I was an apartment brewer for four years in Denver and Boulder. When I first moved to Missouri, I had a bunch of extra cash and plenty of space, so I bought a 15gal kettle, 10gal igloo MLT, a pump, a freezer with a temp controller, and big immersion chiller. I thought I needed it because all the cool kids were using pumps and such, so I wanted to jump on the bandwagon.

It turned out my new setup was mostly unnecessary to make better beer, so I hardly use half of it. I use my MLT on all batches now, and my freezer is constantly being used, but those other things didn't noticeably increase the quality of my beer.

Ok, I absolutely promise I'll make this point for the last time for a while... and forever on this thread. If I could mentally control the flow of liquid I wouldn't be interested in a pump.

See the following homebrewer of the week article:

http://www.homebrewersassociation.org/pages/community/brewer-of-the-week/show?title=brewer-of-the-week-lorena-evans

"Lifting has always been the biggest pain for me (literally and figuratively!). A stand with a pump has really been a lifesaver for me. ... the beer probably isn’t any better than when I had a bucket and a cooler."

She too notes that this isn't about making better beer, but homebrewing more easily. Huffing and puffing, climbing up and down on stepstools to pour hot water in my cooler, heaving kettles into ice baths, teetering up and down staircases with a carboy in my shaking arms, I have made good and bad beer alike with the same back-straining process. I'm now looking at eliminating "the biggest pain" and thereby increasing the fun factor.  To do that, I have to engineer parts of the process to do what my body cannot do well. Some tools at my disposal, such as gravity, are a real bargain... others will cost a bit more.
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Offline nateo

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Re: recirculating boil kettle during immersion chilling
« Reply #43 on: June 14, 2012, 05:44:07 PM »
@ KGS - I absolutely agree with using technology to solve specific problems. My point was I bought some stuff I didn't really need, 'just because.'
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Offline kgs

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Re: recirculating boil kettle during immersion chilling
« Reply #44 on: June 14, 2012, 07:02:33 PM »
@ KGS - I absolutely agree with using technology to solve specific problems. My point was I bought some stuff I didn't really need, 'just because.'

Well, at least you had a 50% return on your investment; I know a young fellow who bought a pile of high-end stuff, including a 15-gal Polarware kettle, for his one and only brew. But point well taken...
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