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Old 01-22-2008, 12:08 AM   #1
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Default dry hopping in conical fermenter

Yep. A few months back I became a proud owner of a Blichmann cylindriconical fermenter (LOVE it, by the way). I really want to do some dry hopping with it, and I've got some questions.

Ok, firstly, I understand that whole hop cones need to be put in a baggie so they don't clog the valves, but what about pellets? Can the little particles they break into cause the same problem?

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Old 01-22-2008, 12:13 AM   #2
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I dropped an ounce of Cascade pellets into my Blichmann (10 gallon batch) and it settled out. Beer turned out great. No problem.

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Old 01-22-2008, 11:49 AM   #3
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Pellets will work fine in a conical.

I suggest making a thick hops "tea" with some hot water before dumping it in the top of the conical. It breaks up the pellets to provide maximum contact with the beer. This way you can get great extraction of flavor and aroma in as little as seven days.

At the end, you can simply draw off the particulate matter from the bottom valve along with the trub and dead yeast.

If it works in a 20bbl conical, it'll work in yours.

Bob

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Old 05-22-2012, 01:31 PM   #4
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Bringing this one back from the dead. Should I dump the trub and yeast before I begin adding hops? And would putting all my pellet hops in a hop bag and dropping it in suffice? I appreciate it. I too have a ten gallon Blichmann conical.

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Old 05-22-2012, 01:39 PM   #5
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I'd harvest yeast and/or dump trub first, yes. Although its not a huge deal, the hop matter will settle on top of the trub if you leave it.

I'd caution about using a hop bag unless you tie it so it won't sink to the bottom. I got one caught in the dump valve when I opened it. Fortunately it was after I'd racked the beer, else it would have been disaster.

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Old 05-22-2012, 01:48 PM   #6
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Yes capture your yeast first then dry hop, I add 3 oz to my 5 gallon batches in the conical.
No problems at all, it will all settle out.

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Old 03-26-2014, 03:17 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brew-boy View Post
Yes capture your yeast first then dry hop, I add 3 oz to my 5 gallon batches in the conical.
No problems at all, it will all settle out.
Hopefully I can bring this forum back from the dead as well! lol

At any rate, I too just bought a new conical and was wondering when to dump the trub/yeasty goodness so I could dry hop. Fermentation started within about a eight hours and then incredibly active fermentation where it would percolate non stop about sixteen hours later. Now three days later, it is percolating once every thirty seconds with another blip afterwards. This coming Saturday will be a week in the conical.

Any help would be much obliged! Cheers!
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Old 12-02-2014, 06:40 PM   #8
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Same question. Making a 1.071 gravity IPA and looking to dryhop 4 ounces total in a ten gallon batch in my conical. It seems folks recommend dumping the trub first, but I tend to want to rack it fairly soon after that due to oxidation risk. I have to let air in to dump the trub for obvious reasons. Heard a lot lately that CO2 blankets are mostly a myth.

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Old 12-02-2014, 07:04 PM   #9
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I float my dry hop bag in kegs with a sanitized wine cork. My hypothesis is that the bag infuses better at the top of the beer than sitting on the bottom in the gunk. I do know that I had a hop sack interfere with the flow of the beer because it settled around the stainless tube at the bottom of the corny keg.

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Old 12-03-2014, 08:47 PM   #10
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Quote:
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It seems folks recommend dumping the trub first, but I tend to want to rack it fairly soon after that due to oxidation risk.
You're overthinking it a little.

The first trub drop should be at high krausen (about 8 to 12 hours in) to remove break and spent yeast that's settled. Cold break will probably be floating, so you won't get much.

The second trub drop should be about four days into fermentation. Just the heavy peanut buttery stuff. Once it goes a little loose, that's harvestable. Wait until 24 hrs after primary has stopped and then harvest. That's the workhorse yeast.

In that time frame, the final stages of fermentation are happening and there is still a lot of CO2 coming out of the beer. It'll displace any of the minor amount of air that comes into the fermenter. The air volume is equal to what you remove, so it really isn't much.

After harvest and fermentation, if want to remove more yeast, then I'd suggest just using a CO2 hose at the airlock port to put a pound or two of flow into the fermenter while you drop more yeast. As long as CO2 is lightly flowing out of the airlock hole, nothing is falling in, including air.

In all of these, the flow should be pretty slow and controlled. A lot of yeast and trub stick to the sides of the cone and you'll pull a hole through it all if you go too fast. It's the same friction effect you see when milling grain where the center falls first and fastest.
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