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Old 01-13-2009, 08:12 PM   #1
TommyBoy
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Default HERMS coil size

I need to buy my tubing in 1-2 weeks and can not decide on 1/2" or 5/8" O.D.

I would get 5/8" but:

Can you properly fit 50' of 5/8" coil in a 15 gallon B3 kettle? (18" dia x 15" tall)

Would the increased restriction of the 1/2" be beneficial for absorbing more of the HLT heat by the time it reaches the output coupler and goes back to the mash?

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Old 01-13-2009, 09:15 PM   #2
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The smaller the diameter of the tubing, the better the heat exchange efficiency. BUT, the more restricted your flow. I have 1/2" on mine to match all of my other plumbing, and it works very well. Dont know that you will gain anything with 5/8" since 1/2" will offer all the flow you need.

50' is A LOT of tubing too, you could get away with 25'... but that is up to you. 50' of 5/8" tubing will take A LOT of space.

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Old 01-13-2009, 09:57 PM   #3
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50' is the smallest qty I can buy at CopperTubingSales.com :: ICS Indsutries ::

The reason why I am interested in 5/8" tubing is because the I.D. of this is 1/2" and would match the rest of my setup. The 1/2" has an I.D. of 3/8". (Unless you are talking about hard copper which is sized up by the I.D.)

This whole sizing thing with copper is screwy too. Some copper is sized by the I.D. and some by the O.D. I was always told that tubing is sized by O.D. and pipe is sized by I.D. and this apparently does not apply to refrigeration tubing.

Correct me if I am wrong but I have to buy 5/8" soft copper and a 5/8" compression fitting to keep my I.D. at 1/2" and have it matched up to my hoses and connections?

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Old 01-13-2009, 10:25 PM   #4
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Ahoy hoy,
As one of Pols Padawan learners, or Jedi Apprentice in Basic, I must state, that I have deviated in my herms design from his on 2 points (so far, man I just love to tweak things and can't leave well enough alone), and this is one. I am using a 3/8" 50ft Stainless steel wort chiller for it. It 10" in diameter, and was custom made for me for just this use. It fits in the 10 gallon cooler perfectly, and despite being 3/8th, I think it is going to work just fine.
Theres another thread that has to do with the other mod im making, so Ill cheese out and post that there
a great day to you all!

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Old 01-13-2009, 10:37 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TommyBoy44060 View Post
50' is the smallest qty I can buy at CopperTubingSales.com :: ICS Indsutries ::

The reason why I am interested in 5/8" tubing is because the I.D. of this is 1/2" and would match the rest of my setup. The 1/2" has an I.D. of 3/8". (Unless you are talking about hard copper which is sized up by the I.D.)

This whole sizing thing with copper is screwy too. Some copper is sized by the I.D. and some by the O.D. I was always told that tubing is sized by O.D. and pipe is sized by I.D. and this apparently does not apply to refrigeration tubing.

Correct me if I am wrong but I have to buy 5/8" soft copper and a 5/8" compression fitting to keep my I.D. at 1/2" and have it matched up to my hoses and connections?

I think you are getting how the IDs and ODs are measured and how tubing is classified. I used 1/2" ball valves, barbs, copper tubing, compression fittings and QDs... I never went with 5/8" on anything. Now, that is not to say that the ID of the tubing is 1/2". EVERY component on my rig is 1/2"... whether it is a coupling, QD, valve, barb... etc... and they all fit together fine.
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Old 01-14-2009, 04:16 PM   #6
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Everything else I have is 1/2". I was curious about using the 1/2" copper and having it put some restriction on the rest of the system due to the I.D. of 3/8". Will this happen or is my system already restricted due to the I.D. of the 1/2" barbs (Their I.D.s are slightly less than 3/8".) used in my lines therefore the copper tubing would not add any additional restriction?

Odds are I will just get the 1/2" O.D. copper. I can see how the increased water displacement in the HLT could pose a problem when it comes time to sparge with that water.

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Old 01-14-2009, 05:21 PM   #7
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Yes, 1/2" components dont mean 1/2" ID... which is precisely the problem with using 3/8" components, because now you are down to .25" ID or so.

You will have PLENTY of flow with 1/2" OD components, I would not worry in the least.

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Old 01-14-2009, 06:04 PM   #8
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K, thanks.

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Old 01-14-2009, 08:26 PM   #9
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I starte a different thread about it but all the action's here so I'll move my question here...

Those that use a stainless HERMS coil, why? For easier cleaning?

I thought that copper had a better heat transfer coefficient than stainless (from some quick searches it seems to be about double but I'm not chem or mech engineer).

Then I came across this 25' of 5/8" convoluted copper coil from B3:

Link: Convoluted Copper - 5/8" x 25 ft | MoreBeer

Quote:

Quote:
"This 5/8" copper convoluted tubing is perfect for making heat exchangers. We use 25' in our Digital SMART mashing systems to raise the mash temperature. Perfect for immersion chillers, the inner tube in a counterflow wort chiller, or as a heat exchanger in the hot liquor tank. The tubing is twisted to make a pattern that breaks up the laminar flow inside the tubing making this a very efficient material for heat exchangers.
The coil ships in a 14" diameter that is 6.5" tall, it can be re-coiled to at least a 9" diameter, as that is what we do to them. The two ends are 5/8" non-Convoluted tubing, and are approximately 3 to 9 inches long.
"
Convoluted should really give it even a BETTER heat transfer than using non-convoluted (they're used in the better CFCs) and that coupled with using copper over stainless should give better rise times for ramps. B3 uses this in their top of the line Brew Sculptures.

I have no idea how MUCH better 25' of convoluted 5/8" copper would be than say, 25' of non-convoluted 1/2". Or how about 50' of non-convoluted 1/2"?

Given that 50' of 1/2" (about $50-60 I'm guessing?) will still be considerably cheaper than 25' of 5/8" convoluted HERMS coil (it's $175!) I wonder what would be best.

EDIT: One benefit of LESS copper is that it would sit lower in the HLT so that it would always be submerged. 50' of copper coil in the HLT would likely mean having to have a coil in a coil in many setups or keeping the HLT completely full of water.

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Old 01-14-2009, 09:48 PM   #10
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From what I have got out of this is you will get a full heat exchange with 50' of 1/2" non-convo tubing upon exiting the HLT. With the difference of pricing being $48-$50 (delivered) for 50' of 1/2" non-convo to the $180 for B3 25' of 5/8" convo it has become a no brainer in my mind.

As with having enough water to cover the coil, I have always started with a full HLT so there is no question that the coil will be covered during recirculation.

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