Did my first brew with my new 20gal Blichmann Boilermakers this weekend, and used a Hop Stopper (http://www.theelectricbrewery.com/hop-stopper
) . Unfortunately, it clogged pretty severely and I lost about 2.5 gal of wort.
I did not see the warnings about not being able to recirculate wort or whirlpool both of which I did, so it is likely user error, but I do like to be able to recirculate for whirlpooling capabilities and to be able to incorporate 2 stage chilling (1 pass with groundwater, another pass with .
I am doing some research to come up with a better method but I am really confused as to what to try next
I've come up with some options, and would like some of your input:
1). Continue using the HopStopper, but use as directed - this will not allow me to whirlpool ever, nor even recirculate through the CFC in order to sanitize. I could then run through my CFC with groundwater and through a second CFC where the water side is being pumped with icewater. I assume I could still do a hop steep or stand, just no whirlpooling.
2). Continue using the HopStopper, but resort to using hop bags or a hop spider so that I can pull the hops and I assume I can at least recirculate and whirlpool , but hot/cold break may still collect on the HopStopper and clog it.
3). Use no screen at all (naked pickup tube - see pic 7 http://www.blichmannengineering.com/boilermaker/boilermaker.html
) and use hop bags or a hop spider and pull the hops at the end of the boil. This would allow me to whirlpool and recirculate.
4). Use no screen at all but allow free floating hops (pellet and whole), do no recirculation, but whirlpool after knockout with a paddle for 20 min and then start pumping with the assumption that the cone has formed. I fear whole hops may run a risk of clogging me up though.
5). Use a Blichmann Hop Blocker, but use hop bags when using Whole Hops?
Any other thoughts/suggestions/advice is welcome.