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Old 09-22-2006, 06:49 AM   #1
WarStreetBrewer
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Default CFC vs. Malt 8/9 Central

Well let me tell you how my evening went. I almost lost my IPA because my CFC did something I was completely not expecting. And please laugh at me if you've heard this one before or better yet, if you figured it out yourself. I put eight pounds of DME into my roughly 4 gallon kettle and boiled it for two hours, only adding a quart of water once. Then, I ran it through my CFC, which is 45 feet long. The wort got so chilled (down to my tap temp which is probably around 50-55F) and it was so thick that the weak siphon wasn't enough to make it move.. it was essentially clogged with clear wort. (There were no hops found in the line after cleanup)

So my advice to you, if you're not laughing yet, is to add water to a small kettle if you've got one, or get a pump for the CFC.. maybe an old dialysis machine. Auto siphons do not work in 200F wort very well. I am also going to cut my CFC in half, buy more copper fittings, and make two out of it.

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Old 09-22-2006, 11:17 AM   #2
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Sounds like your chiller is working perfectly...I wouldn't advise cutting it in half. 50-55 is a decent temperature range for pitching almost all yeast, and the colder you can get your wort, the better the cold break will be.

However, if your wort is so thick at that temperature that you can't even siphon it, your beer is likely to turn out like cold syrup! For most extract recipes, you probably don't need a 2 hour boil. 30-60 mins will most likely suffice unless you're trying for a true clone of Dogfish Head's 120 minute IPA. In any case, certainly make sure you are topping up your kettle as you start to lose water to evaporation, especially with a concentrated boil like yours.

Also, try adding only a quarter to half of your extract at the beginning of the boil, adding the remainder with 15 minutes left in the boil. This technique will reduce carmelization and might thin your end product a bit as well.

Finally, 8 lbs of extract is pretty strong for a 5 gallon batch...what's your recipe?

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Old 09-22-2006, 01:00 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yuri_Rage
Sounds like your chiller is working perfectly...I wouldn't advise cutting it in half. 50-55 is a decent temperature range for pitching almost all yeast, and the colder you can get your wort, the better the cold break will be.
Most yeast I get averages 65-75F. I've never seen ale yeast that recommends 50-55F.. maybe you're thinking of lager yeast. This one was 70-75F, WL Dry English Ale Yeast. Besides, my tap water is always pretty cold, and I spent way too much money building this thing, so I think cutting it in half and selling one would make me feel better.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Yuri_Rage
However, if your wort is so thick at that temperature that you can't even siphon it, your beer is likely to turn out like cold syrup! For most extract recipes, you probably don't need a 2 hour boil. 30-60 mins will most likely suffice unless you're trying for a true clone of Dogfish Head's 120 minute IPA. In any case, certainly make sure you are topping up your kettle as you start to lose water to evaporation, especially with a concentrated boil like yours.
Funny thing, that's just what happened.. that's why it clogged, because it turned to cold syrup! I was actually going for a 120 min boil.. and yes, the 120 min. IPA... that's why the eight pounds of DME. I was originally going for 90, but plans change.
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Old 09-22-2006, 02:33 PM   #4
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Cold break will thicken the wort. Just throttle the cooling water to maintain the required outlet temperature.

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Old 09-22-2006, 02:53 PM   #5
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Adding some of your top-off water to the brewkettle before running it through the CFC might help a little, as well. You'd be starting with cooler wort, but its gravity would be reduced.

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Old 09-22-2006, 11:56 PM   #6
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Old 09-24-2006, 12:36 AM   #7
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I think a counter flow chiller would be overkill for such a small boil.

I had a 20' 3/8 immersion chiller getting 4 gallons down below 70 in 10-15 min with similar temp water.

If you know for a fact you will never go to full boils, I say go for it and make two out of it.

Like bird said filling the brew kettle to the top before draining would help. How about a weldless fitting and a balvalve?

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Old 09-24-2006, 12:56 AM   #8
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Maybe a wort wizard would help. You guys know what I'm talking about, that thing that works off the vacume created buy water leaving the CFC.

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