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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Equipment/Sanitation > HERMS Coil diameter and length question
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Old 05-09-2012, 01:20 AM   #1
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Default HERMS Coil diameter and length question

I'm setting up my HERMS system and had some issues with bending the HEX coil. I bought a 20' x 1/2" piece of copper and bent it into a coil. In the process I destroyed 5-6 ft of copper rendering it unusable. Then I found out it was 1/2" ID after I tried to fit it in the compression fitting. I'm usually not this stupid. On top of all of that, the way the coil wraps it does not line up properly with the plumbing design and I'll have to trim more to get it to line up.

So my question is...... Is a 14' x 5/8"OD copper Herms coil to short and fat to efficiently work in a 5 gallon Herms system?

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Old 05-09-2012, 02:18 AM   #2
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More coil under water with sufficient heating capabilities means faster temperature transitions. Less coil under water means slightly slower. I think you should be fine, perhaps throttle back on the re-circulation rate some, which could be a good thing depending on your setup (if stuck mashes are an issue)

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Old 05-09-2012, 05:53 PM   #3
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Thanks! I'll be able to give it a test run next week. Hopefully it will heat up properly between regulating flow and HLT temp.

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Old 05-09-2012, 06:45 PM   #4
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Especially if your using copper, I wouldn't worry about heat transfer. If you wanted to use a stainless coil, then obviously you'll want more coils than if you were to use copper.

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Old 05-09-2012, 07:37 PM   #5
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I would give it a test run with H20. Use a $20.00 thermal "gun" (newegg sells them) to measure the temperature delta across the Hx versus the water it is sitting in. I use a 50ft SS immersion cooler in my HLT as my HERMS coil. With the immersion cooler half way submerged in 175 degree HLT water it takes about 5 minutes with my March 815 at full flow to bump 33 lbs of mash from 151 up to 152. that is a sufficient cycle time to me!

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Old 05-09-2012, 07:44 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FredTheNuke View Post
With the immersion cooler half way submerged in 175 degree HLT water it takes about 5 minutes with my March 815 at full flow to bump 33 lbs of mash from 151 up to 152. that is a sufficient cycle time to me!
can you explain your setup a little more? 1 degree per 5 minutes sounds incredibly slow...

i have a 12 foot x 1/2" stainless coil that steps 5 gallons at 1 degree per 50 seconds. but that is also driven by a 4kW heating element...

longer doesn not always = better (thats what he said....)
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Old 05-09-2012, 08:23 PM   #7
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25 gallon HLT filled with about 16.5 gallons of sparge water at 175F. 50ft SS immersion wort chiller halfway in it. Picture below. 25 gallon MLT with false bottom (2 gallons deadspace) below 33 lbs of grain with 9 gallons of water sucked into it (plus deadspace so 11 gallons of strike water). March pump pulls from below deadspace, thru immersion coil and back into MLT via sparge arm (plastic aquarium links - forgot what they are called). When the hotter water is returned to the MLT it takes about 5 minutes for the bottom of the grain bed to heat up. MLT temp is taken via an 8" thermal well with a temp probe connected to an aquarium temp controller). Remember you are changing the temperature of a LOT of grain - I do 15 gallon batches.




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Old 05-09-2012, 08:26 PM   #8
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This pic shows my 8" thermal well with almost all of a batch of grain removed....

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