So my last batch I tried out my new CFC I built and ran into a little problem. I just toss my pellet hops right into the boil since I'm sick of buying muslin bags. But I must have gotten a little blockage in my chiller and it was draining really slow. It took about 25 minutes or so to drain 5 gallons. And since it went so slow it cooled my wort down to 55F. I was thinking about rigging my dip tube off my kettle valve up differently and putting a short ss braid like what most use in a mash tun to try to fix this problem. I just wanted to get on here and see if someone has had this happen and if anyone has a better solutions to this
I've heard of people using a copper scrubbie on the end of their pickup tube. I think that may be more effective for whole hops though. The braid might work for pellet hops, I used to pour my wort through a wire mesh screen collander and it caught a lot of hop material. I just wonder what kind of flow rate you'd get.
I would suggest whirlpooling (just a good stir at the end of boiling would help) with a short stand for letting things drop out, and keeping your pickup well up off the bottom so you don't slurp up the trub/hop material. If you have a weldless coupling you can move the pickup higher and then move it down towards the end and avoid most of the trub this way.
I do use pellets. This is the first I've heard of the hop spider. It looks like an awesome idea. I've read about some people having problems with hop utilization with the paint straining bags though. What would be the best type bags to use here for pellets?