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Old 05-22-2012, 01:16 AM   #1
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Default Chugger pump issues

First off, I will say that I have emailed chugger, and asked for their opinions. I love community forums and what they have to offer, which is why I'm posting here as well.

1st issue lies in pump operation. When I first received my chugger pump, I hooked a 90* street elbow to the inlet, and the outlet, and ran my lines both inlet, and outlet, to another pair of 90* street elbows to camlocks. I made sure everything that was pre-pump, was at least 1/2" diameter. After the pump I'm pretty sure is also 1/2" ID but I didn't go crazy about it.

Running this set up, the pump ran perfectly, had several brew days and everything went well.

I decided to build myself a ghetto stand out of some bed frames I had laying around (it works, but please don't do this, it was too much work, and ultimately I will be replacing it with real steel soon) Since I got lazy towards the end, I decided to mount the pump VERTICALLY and re-do my setup.

The pump is now mounted vertically, with 2 90* street elbows for the inlet, and the valve mounted directly to the output, then back to whatever I'm going to pump from. I've attached a picture:



It primes fine (Yes i know how to properly prime the thing, again had several brew days with no issue when the pump was mounted horizontally) but once I barely crack the valve it looses prime and does the dying cat noise (I literally had a neighbor look into the garage and I'm pretty damn sure he thought I was murdering a cat)

My thoughts are:

1. inlet line too short. It's 13" long, and I remember it being longer when it was horizontal.

2. the 2 90* fittings on the inlet are causing flow restriction. They are both 1/2" ID but maybe it's too tight of a bend?

Also, I'd like to bring up another issue that hopefully won't cause alarm, but it sure didn't make me happy.

I decided to take the pump apart, hoping for a grain lodged in the propeller or something, and found instead metal shavings attached to the impeller.



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Old 05-22-2012, 03:03 AM   #2
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Why the two elbows? Seems like just one would be fine for what I see in the pics. I believe the march manual recommends something like a minimum 5x the diameter of the inlet of straight pipe before the first elbow, which is how I configured mine. I'd try ditching the second elbow and see if that helps, if not, stick a coupler between the inlet and first elbow.

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Old 05-22-2012, 02:04 PM   #3
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As a rule of thumb with any pump. Do not restrict the inlet. The elbows on the inlet cause restriction of the flow to the pump. Take a cocktail straw and try to drink a McDonalds milkshake....you will feel the restriction...same prinicipal here. The inlet line length does not matter...Just remember no restrictions on the inlet tot he pump. As for the metal shavings...Did you drill anywhere on your Kettles? I have seen this before but it is usually fillings from something done on the system. There are no metal wearing parts on the Chugger. If you stil have problems call me anytime 800-810-1053 MIKE

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Old 05-22-2012, 02:39 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Markd27 View Post
Why the two elbows? Seems like just one would be fine for what I see in the pics. I believe the march manual recommends something like a minimum 5x the diameter of the inlet of straight pipe before the first elbow, which is how I configured mine. I'd try ditching the second elbow and see if that helps, if not, stick a coupler between the inlet and first elbow.
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Originally Posted by chuggerpumps View Post
As a rule of thumb with any pump. Do not restrict the inlet. The elbows on the inlet cause restriction of the flow to the pump. Take a cocktail straw and try to drink a McDonalds milkshake....you will feel the restriction...same prinicipal here. The inlet line length does not matter...Just remember no restrictions on the inlet tot he pump. As for the metal shavings...Did you drill anywhere on your Kettles? I have seen this before but it is usually fillings from something done on the system. There are no metal wearing parts on the Chugger. If you stil have problems call me anytime 800-810-1053 MIKE

Hi! Thanks for the prompt reply via email as well as message board. I'd like to respond here as the solid info regarding these pumps is surprisingly scarce.

I used two elbows so I could do two.things, place the inlet at the center of the pump and try to help reduce kinking from sagging. I had issues with line length and sagging on the previous horizontal setup. I didn't think it would cause that much flow restriction but if you believe so, I'll either buy a center inlet pump head or go back to horizontal layout.

In regards to the metal, all of my kettles have been drilled long before using a pump.

Mike I may be calling you later for a center inlet head. Thanks again for your quick support via email and message board.
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Old 05-22-2012, 06:47 PM   #5
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I try to have the run to the pumps as straight up and down as possible. This helps with priming, and keeping the pumps primed. Any air bubbles just flow straight up through the pump, and keep rising.

I've never had an issue with restricting the output making the pump lose prime. The impeller just keeps spinning.
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Old 05-22-2012, 07:00 PM   #6
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call me ..I will hook you up !

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