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Old 11-05-2013, 08:41 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by jcorni View Post
How about you drain your wort through a paint strainer into another vessel,then simply lift the strainer out then run through the plate chiller.
This. People don't talk about this one enough, and I think it's fertile ground. It would essentially be a grant with filtration capabilities. You could use it as a hopback, too. But, you then have 2 other issues to deal with:

1. You potentially expose the wort to HSA, if that sort of thing holds merit with you.

2. You go back to using gravity, since the pump no longer forces wort through the chiller. You could use a sealed vessel, but then you'd be chasing leaks and it might just clog anyway...leaving you to handle a hot filtration chamber spilling wort everywhere....ask me how I know....
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Old 11-06-2013, 04:22 PM   #22
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I've been using a Therminator for a few years now and love it now that I have all the bugs worked out of my system. I had the same problems with it getting clogged until I got a hop spider. I bought a stainless one from www.arborfab.com and love it. I didn't really care for the hop bag. Hop utilization doesn't seem to be an issue. If the hop spider is very full, I'll recirculate the wort through the spider for a while. No need to whirlpool. Just connect hoses and pump.

I also use camlocks for all my connections, including the water in/out. Having one type of connector simplifies things.

I save the cooling water and immediately start to heat it while cooling the wort. This dramatically cut down on my cleanup time. No time wasted waiting for cleaning water to heat. Once my kettle is empty, I change my connections and back flush the Therminator with hot water until the output is clear. Then I circulate 155 degree oxy clean/TSP90 solution through the Therminator and BK for 15 min or so. I dump the cleaner and repeat the flush with hot water for 10-15 min. Then I soak the Therminator in Starsan for a little while and drain. I always store the Therminator full of distilled water. If anything is left, it won't dry out and clog (a trick I learned from a local brewery). Store with camlock dust caps on.

It was a pain at first and I lost a few brews along the way but now I can cool and cleanup in less than 45 min from flameout. Hope this helps!

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Old 11-08-2013, 02:47 PM   #23
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I found a pretty good article about plate chilling and the desire to go back to IC, good read. http://www.love2brew.com/Articles.asp?ID=455

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Old 11-08-2013, 05:36 PM   #24
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Plate chiller is a CFC.
It's one kind of CFC. CFC around here usually refers to concentric tube heat exchangers as opposed to plate chillers.
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Old 11-08-2013, 07:10 PM   #25
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A hop spider seems to be the default solution to clogging issues of a plate chiller. Ive thought about using one, but I just can't believe there isn't a drop off in oil/acid extraction when using a hop spider, either for bittering or flavor.
There most certainly IS a drop off in Alpha Acid conversion / "utilization"; probably not so much extraction of non-isomerized alpha acids or oils.

-You can measure the temp both inside of and outside of a hop spider (plastic or stainless) in the boil and you will see that the temp inside is several degrees below boiling.

At home brew scales does this really matter that much?? Probably not. Could increased utilization from FWH your bittering additions offset this? Probably.

Note: I'm not defending plate chillers; I think they're a giant money pit and a PITA, too. I have both an immersion chiller and a plate chiller currently but I'm either going with a Jaded Brewing double pipe CFC or a convoluted stainless CFC for the long-term.

I really like hoppy beers and lagers so recirculated cooling is quite important to me; the combination of hops and cold break make a plate chiller almost a non-starter if you want to recirculate back to the kettle to cool the entire volume of wort quickly. Hops in either format post SOME challenges when recirculating in the kettle but when they combine with cold break they form hop CONCRETE that clogs almost anything. -There are brewers on these forums using Stainless hop spiders AND the brewhardware trub filter and they end up clogging both when recirculating; it's a real challenge.

Immersion Chillers and CFCs (non-plate CFCs) ARE the lower hassle way to recirc while chilling. I want to clean-in-place so CFC for me all the way! (I also REALLY like the perf of a CFC used for HERMS mashing so the added cost of a CFC is worth it as it can be used both for HERMS and for chilling.

-I DO REALLY wish that someone made a convoluted CFC with more than 12' of tubing, though... An 18ft - 24ft convoluted CFC would be great and future-proof as it could support scaling up to 30 gallon batch sizes.



Adam
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Old 11-08-2013, 07:12 PM   #26
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It's one kind of CFC. CFC around here usually refers to concentric tube heat exchangers as opposed to plate chillers.
He knows; he's just being a pedant.
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Old 11-11-2013, 04:35 PM   #27
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He knows; he's just being a pedant.
Right; and true.
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Old 11-11-2013, 04:47 PM   #28
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Originally Posted by Xpertskir View Post
A hop spider seems to be the default solution to clogging issues of a plate chiller. Ive thought about using one, but I just can't believe there isn't a drop off in oil/acid extraction when using a hop spider, either for bittering or flavor.
The hops go in the basket, there you can stir them as much as you want, or lift the basket, or pump wart on top of them, brewers choice.
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Old 11-12-2013, 05:58 PM   #29
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+1 Hop Spider. No problems ever. If you notice any drop in AA's let us know please.

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Old 12-03-2013, 10:14 PM   #30
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I think we all struggle with this issue.

I have a home fashioned hop spider, though have never used. It seems the small hop bags are also problematic if you try to use more than 2-3 oz hops, it seems that there is probably poor contact with the hops.

I'd really like to "free hop" and just dump them in, however, when doing really high hop rates with hopbursting, and lots of hops in an IPA, its a real problem. I tried installing a whirlpool arm in my lid, but in order to use it, I need to put the lid on the boil kettle. Since this would only be used for "whirlpool" or flamout hops, is that going to cause DMS problems? What if I left lid partially askew so steam could escape during the 20 minute whirlpool rest?

When using a whirlpool with immersion chiller, all the hops, hot break and cold break is really considerable. I couldn't get a good cone.

I think a large hop spider would accentuate boil-overs. Is this a concern? I like the look of the stainless spiders from stainless brewing. Anybody care to comment on those?

I have plugged by therminator, but I now use it to prechill water for my immersion chiller. crazy. I may try to unplug it, but I think its hopeless.

TD

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