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Old 06-08-2012, 12:02 AM   #1
BichesBrue
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Default It may look stupid, but it works really well! (pics)

This is my 4th batch. The first two attempts, I used an ice bath to cool the wort. Then I rigged a primitive chiller for the third batch. I tried to combine the two this time...

I bought a cheap party bin from Home Depot for $5.98. It was big enough to put my whole kettle (7.5 gal turkey fryer) into it with room around all sides. I attached a small pond pump to one end of the chiller and a small length of hose to the other end:




Sanitized and drip drying...(my mastiff pup Ziggi):



When the wort was ready for cooling, I put a brick on the bottom of the bucket (to prevent the heat from melting the plastic, and to allow water circulation under the pot). I dropped the kettle in, then the chiller/pump:

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Old 06-08-2012, 12:06 AM   #2
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Looks great. Only looks stupid if it don't work.

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Old 06-08-2012, 12:08 AM   #3
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I added 5lbs ice (and a bit of water to the bottom), then plugged int he pump:



Instead of drawing tap temp water from the hose or sink, I'm drawing ice water into the chiller. What's more, I am exposing the outside of the kettle to ice water. The pump simply recirculates the water from the bin.

The temp dropped to 125 rapidly, at which point it stalled. I noticed most of the ice had melted. I added 5lb more ice and got to 80F quickly. I timed the chill.

I chilled this wort in approx 14 mins, 50 seconds. That may not sound impressive but this was a full 5gal wort!! Considering that's how long it took to chill the wort in my third batch (2 gallon), I consider this technique a big success.

I'm open to constructive criticism....

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Old 06-08-2012, 12:13 AM   #4
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The trick is to put your ice for the pump in a separate bucket from the pot. Otherwise the output from the chiller is just heating he ice and making it melt faster. I do the sad but put ice for the pump in one sink. Then the pot and regular temp tap water in the other. May need to continue to top off the ice water. But works more efficiently

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Old 06-08-2012, 12:30 AM   #5
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Are you putting your chiller in the boiling wort?

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Old 06-08-2012, 01:46 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by mikeysab View Post
Are you putting your chiller in the boiling wort?
Good point- I know I should be putting it in during the last 10-15mins of boil time, but that was a bit more difficult with the pump hanging off the side. I got it in asap, which was the last min or so, but I sanitized it separately to be safe. That brings me to my first planned improvement to this rig- I need a quick connect/disconnect fitting so I can snap on/off the pump. It's a work in progress, but I just wanted to see if it would work.
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Old 06-08-2012, 01:52 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mosquitocontrol View Post
The trick is to put your ice for the pump in a separate bucket from the pot. Otherwise the output from the chiller is just heating he ice and making it melt faster. I do the sad but put ice for the pump in one sink. Then the pot and regular temp tap water in the other. May need to continue to top off the ice water. But works more efficiently
I considered that- even had an empty tote on standby so I could redirect the hot water discharge into it. That way, the pump would continue to draw icy water, and the kettle sits in it, too. I'll try it next time. Thanks!
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Old 06-08-2012, 03:27 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mosquitocontrol
The trick is to put your ice for the pump in a separate bucket from the pot. Otherwise the output from the chiller is just heating he ice and making it melt faster. I do the sad but put ice for the pump in one sink. Then the pot and regular temp tap water in the other. May need to continue to top off the ice water. But works more efficiently
I may be over-thinking this but isn't the fact that you are pumping in a circle into the same vessel what makes this work? If you use one sink for the ice water and pot in another with outlet water, one sink will fill while the other empties right? That seems like it would kill the genoius of the water savings in this design.
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Old 06-08-2012, 04:04 AM   #9
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I may be over-thinking this but isn't the fact that you are pumping in a circle into the same vessel what makes this work? If you use one sink for the ice water and pot in another with outlet water, one sink will fill while the other empties right? That seems like it would kill the genoius of the water savings in this design.

Would use some more water, but it would chill faster

Do an experiment, see if the time saved actually saves you money, extra bags of ice can get expensive...
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Old 06-08-2012, 04:39 AM   #10
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Save some ice and money by using tap water to chill to around 100 and then switch to the ice and pump method. Also, 80C is ok, but getting the wort down to 60C is a real trick. FWIW, I chill 10 gallon batches with a 50' chiller in the wort and a 25' chiller in a separate bucket with ice on it to act as a pre-chiller. I don't recurculate so the ice doesn't melt very fast. I also use a pond pump in the pre-chiller bucket to keep the ice cold water circulating around the 25' coil. So like your method, it may look stupid, but it works.

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