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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Equipment/Sanitation > Recirculating Mash Question
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Old 02-07-2012, 01:50 PM   #1
flyfishnc
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Default Recirculating Mash Question

Any downside to recirculating wort in the mash tun with a pump? I don't have a RIMS or HERMS system, as I use a single infusion mash and fly sparge. Currently, I vorlauf into a pitcher (and pour it carefully back into the MLT) until the wort is clear. I didn't know if there would be a lot of heat loss while recirculating or if it would be enough to do affect the beer. I'd have to throttle down the output of the pump a good bit.

Thoughts?


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Old 02-07-2012, 02:00 PM   #2
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I don't think the benefit of wort clarity is worth the effort, power, and heat loss you'll experience in a non-heated system. Even if you wanted to start integrating a pump into your system for other reasons, I'd only use it in the last 5 minutes to vorlauf.

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Old 02-07-2012, 02:27 PM   #3
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Commercial systems don't heat their vorlauf lines, if you want to do it, go for it

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Old 02-07-2012, 02:29 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wailingguitar View Post
Commercial systems don't heat their vorlauf lines, if you want to do it, go for it
Commercial systems generally use heat jacketed tuns to maintain temperature, so any heat lost in the recirc plumbing can be accounted for...

Cheers!
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Old 02-07-2012, 03:14 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by day_trippr View Post
Commercial systems generally use heat jacketed tuns to maintain temperature, so any heat lost in the recirc plumbing can be accounted for...
The brewpub I briefly worked at never used the steam jacket on the mash tun. 90 minute mash and no heat loss. Recirculate about 10-15 minutes.

This is what I got after 10-15 minutes of (pumped) recirculation while brewing a marzen this wk-end (home system):



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Old 02-07-2012, 03:33 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by day_trippr View Post
Commercial systems generally use heat jacketed tuns to maintain temperature, so any heat lost in the recirc plumbing can be accounted for...

Cheers!
I have brewed on at least 11 commercial systems from 1bbl to 50 bbl, only 3 had steam jackets on the mash tun and they were never used. Misplaced Canuck's experience with the place he worked is typical. The tuns were insulated, yes, but then most home mash tuns are as well.
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Old 02-07-2012, 04:09 PM   #7
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I recirculate during my entire mash. I use a keggle as my mash tun with a pico false bottom with a honeywell furnace valve and a PID to keep the mash right at the right temp. and recirculate the whole time. Never had an issue and really helps with clarity pre boil/hops, for post boil clarity I use a brewers hardware trub filter. So Go for it, try it out and see how you like it. It works well for me. Just my $0.02.

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Old 02-07-2012, 05:21 PM   #8
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Old 02-07-2012, 05:37 PM   #9
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I recirc through out mine as well. While I have no automation, I monitor the temp and fire the MLT as needed.

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Old 02-07-2012, 05:57 PM   #10
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My mash tun is a 10 gallon cooler and not fired. So, I couldn't re-heat when temps drop. I recently bought a pump and was going to try to expand its use into the mash steps. You know, gotta try to show a little ROI to SWBO. I would only be using it for a few minutes to vorlauf, not recirc the entire mash.

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