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Old 05-30-2010, 04:41 PM   #1
g-nome
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Default Contraption for using March pump to remove beer from carboy

Does anyone have a set up to prime a March pump with water in order to suck beer out of a carboy. I just got my pump yesterday, and need to start experimenting. Eliminating the need to ever move full carboys and eliminate siphoning altogether is my goal....oh and without having to buy a special pump for this process (one that self primes).....

I was thinking of a two valve manifold (or some Y valve close to the top of the carboy) so you can quickly switch from water to beer to minimize the air in the line.

If you have found a system that allows the March pump to be used for this purpose, please show us a pic. If you have tried this and it proved to be too much of a hassle or detrimental to beer, please include your story. If you own a self priming pump for this purpose, how do you like it?

Someday when I go to kegs, I will just find an air tight cap, and force beer out of the carboy....but I like multi-purpose equipment.

Regards

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Old 05-31-2010, 12:00 AM   #2
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I would not use a march pump to move fermented beer. Autosiphons work great, I hook it right up to a corny QD on the keg, or just use a racking cane and tube full of sanitizer.

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Old 05-31-2010, 12:59 AM   #3
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seems like a hassle to me.

march owners: would this introduce o2 to the finished product?

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Old 05-31-2010, 06:30 AM   #4
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I agree with the others. There are much easier ways to rack the beer. My favorite is to use CO2 with a carboy cap and a racking cane to push the beer out with gas pressure. No siphoning or pumping required. Another popular alternative is the autosiphon which also works very well, although it does require you to elevate the carboy. I'd worry about the potential for oxidation problems using the pump. Even a tiny air leak could cause problems as the air would be whipped into the beer as it passed through the pump head possibly greatly increasing the damage. There are diaphragm type pumps available for racking wine and that might be a better choice if you insist on pumping. These are not designed to handle hot liquids, but should work for pumping beer from a fermenter.

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Old 05-31-2010, 01:55 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Catt22 View Post
I agree with the others. There are much easier ways to rack the beer. My favorite is to use CO2 with a carboy cap and a racking cane to push the beer out with gas pressure. No siphoning or pumping required. Another popular alternative is the autosiphon which also works very well, although it does require you to elevate the carboy. I'd worry about the potential for oxidation problems using the pump. Even a tiny air leak could cause problems as the air would be whipped into the beer as it passed through the pump head possibly greatly increasing the damage. There are diaphragm type pumps available for racking wine and that might be a better choice if you insist on pumping. These are not designed to handle hot liquids, but should work for pumping beer from a fermenter.
I like this idea. I don't have a carboy cap. Other than the racking cane and tubing, can you tell me if there is any other equipment I need to get to do this? How/with what do you connect the co2 to the carboy cap?
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Old 05-31-2010, 06:54 PM   #6
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IMO, the best way to go about it is to use an SS racking cane with the carboy cap. You will need to improvise an adapter in order to hook up the CO2 gas line to the carboy cap. Basically, you want to get a barb x male flare fitting that will match the gas line flare fitting. A friend of mine gave me one of these and I don't know where he bought it. You could also use something like a barb x barb nylon fitting. Insert the barb into the carboy cap nipple and attach the gas hose to it. It doesn't take much gas pressure at all to get the liquid moving. A few psi will do it. You could also use a plastic racking cane, but the SS ones are more durable. Your gas line is likely 5/16" ID if it's like most others. Keep that in mind when picking up the barb adapter. There are a number of ways you could rig this up and which way you do it makes no difference so long as you can get the gas into the carboy somehow and avoid leaks. The racking cane and tubing should be no problem at all.

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Old 06-01-2010, 02:58 AM   #7
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I think I use a 1/4" barb by 1/4" flare fitting for the CO2 hookup in the carboy cap. Use 2-3 psi CO2. Works like a charm.

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Old 06-01-2010, 03:26 AM   #8
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It sounds like using CO2 is the elegant solution, but I am not planning moving to kegs anytime soon, and a second diaphragm pump might actually come in cheaper than a tank, regulator, and associated fittings. Is there anyone currently using a diaphragm pump for beer transfer? If so, what makes and models are available or more suggested?

If a March pump would aerate beer when transferring, what do the pros use to move their beer? Do they worry about aeration from their pumps (such as hot side aeration on the way to the fermenter) or after fermentation? Or do they use a different pump as well, or CO2? (CO2 for large volume transfer seems inefficient).

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Old 06-01-2010, 04:40 AM   #9
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I don't have one, but here's one source with a description:

http://www.eckraus.com/PMP120.html

I don't know what the big guys use, but I'm certain that take extra precautions to keep air out of their systems. The problem with out little pumps and possible oxidation issues is that it would be a hassle to keep air out while priming the pump and getting the wort moving. Obviously, it could be done, but would likely be a major PIA. A centrifugal pump in itself is not the problem, but could be if there were even minor air leaks.

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