New Giveaway - Wort Monster Conical Fermenter!

Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > General Techniques > Using plate chiller to recirculate mash




Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 08-19-2012, 09:00 PM   #1
mike11b82
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Marietta, GA
Posts: 41
Default Using plate chiller to recirculate mash

SO while I was cooling today i got the idea of using my plate chiller to recirculate the mash. I'm think with two pumps it would be possible, what's every one else think?



__________________
mike11b82 is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-20-2012, 03:00 PM   #2
phoenixs4r
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: Hayward, California
Posts: 1,506
Liked 52 Times on 47 Posts
Likes Given: 38

Default

This has been brought up a lot recently, and the general consensus is that the passage ways if a plate chiller are too small to facilitate what you want to do.

Plus, having bits if unboiled mash would not be good when cooling, and plate chillers aren't the easiest thing to clean.



phoenixs4r is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-20-2012, 04:16 PM   #3
cuart682
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: portsmouth, virginia
Posts: 30
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

Default

I recirculate through a chillzilla, works great but i do not currently have a temperature controler controling my pump so i have to keep a close eye the temperature. I have done about 20 10gal batches this way and have had no problems with clogging once i have a chance to install my temp controler im sure it will be much easier to control.

__________________
cuart682 is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-20-2012, 04:19 PM   #4
GilaMinumBeer
In yo' garage, steelin' yo parts.
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
GilaMinumBeer's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Oblivion
Posts: 46,103
Liked 4526 Times on 4246 Posts
Likes Given: 52

Default

You will definitly want to filter between the MLT and PC.

__________________
GilaMinumBeer is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-20-2012, 05:12 PM   #5
TopherM
Vinz Clortho - the Keymaster of Gozer the Gozerian
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
TopherM's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: St. Petersburg, FL
Posts: 3,587
Liked 349 Times on 279 Posts
Likes Given: 18

Default

Get some quick disconnects. When recirculating the boil, go directly from the bottom of the mash to the top. When it's time to cool, recirculate through the plate chiller. Pay special attention to filter all boil additions by putting them in a muslin bag/hop spider, etc..

That'll do 'er.

__________________

Primary #1 - Cherry Wood Smoked Cranberry Cider
Primary #2 - Smoked Vidalia Onion Beer
Primary #3 - Schwartzbier
Secondary #1 - Downtown Flanders Brown
Keg #1 - EMPTY!
Keg #2 - EMPTY!
Keg #3 - EMPTY!
Bottled - NONE!

TopherM is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 02-13-2013, 08:46 PM   #6
fafrd
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Berkeley, CA
Posts: 111
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by cuart682 View Post
I recirculate through a chillzilla, works great but i do not currently have a temperature controler controling my pump so i have to keep a close eye the temperature. I have done about 20 10gal batches this way and have had no problems with clogging once i have a chance to install my temp controler im sure it will be much easier to control.
cuart682, resurrecting an old thread. Do you still recirculate through your chillzilla? If so, have you ever had problems with clogging? Do you use any filter to prevent the occasional stray grain husk from getting into the chiller?

One of the concerns I have seen raised regarding the idea of using a PC as a HERMS is related to the chiller getting gummed up with protein from the green wort (no hot break yet) - do you see any signs of that?

And lastly, did you ever get your temperature controller and if so, how well is everything working?

thanks,

-fafrd

p.s. would also love to hear from any other brewers out there that use plate chillers to recirculate mash in a HERMS/recirculating mash rig...
__________________
fafrd is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 02-15-2013, 02:03 PM   #7
cuart682
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: portsmouth, virginia
Posts: 30
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

Default

I do currently still use my cfc as a herms, I have never had any problems with clogs or anything gumming up on me. I still have not added a temperature controller to the system because it looks like I will be upgrading my entire brewery to all ele tric in the near future and don't want to spend the $ to upgrade my old brewery. Since my last post on this topic I did change my process a little though. I originally kept the water in the hlt at sparge temp and use the valve on the output to control the flow of the hot water to keep the temp correct, doing it this way was fine in the warm months but I was getting too many drastic temp swings doing it this way so now I just kelp the temperature in my hlt at about 4 deg higher than my mash temp and it works much better this way. I can't remember when but since I posted to this topic last I found another thread where the cfc herms was discussed in great length you might want to look for that thread as well think it was titled something like modified herms, hope this helps if you have anymore questions let me know I will be glad to help.

__________________
cuart682 is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 02-15-2013, 05:52 PM   #8
fafrd
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Berkeley, CA
Posts: 111
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by cuart682 View Post
I do currently still use my cfc as a herms, I have never had any problems with clogs or anything gumming up on me. I still have not added a temperature controller to the system because it looks like I will be upgrading my entire brewery to all ele tric in the near future and don't want to spend the $ to upgrade my old brewery. Since my last post on this topic I did change my process a little though. I originally kept the water in the hlt at sparge temp and use the valve on the output to control the flow of the hot water to keep the temp correct, doing it this way was fine in the warm months but I was getting too many drastic temp swings doing it this way so now I just kelp the temperature in my hlt at about 4 deg higher than my mash temp and it works much better this way. I can't remember when but since I posted to this topic last I found another thread where the cfc herms was discussed in great length you might want to look for that thread as well think it was titled something like modified herms, hope this helps if you have anymore questions let me know I will be glad to help.
cuart682, thanks for coming back to life on this thread

Looking at my original post, I guess I was confused and thought that a Chillzilla was a plate chiller, not a counterflow chiller. Glad to hear your CFC works well as an external heat exchange coil - are you going to continue to use that set-up in your new rig?

And yeah, I don't have any experience with HERMS/mash recirculation yet, but from what I understand, it ought to be much easier to control if the HLT temp is at or slightly above the desired mash liquor temp. Someone else had suggested a technique similar to your old one (HLT temp at mashout temp and controlling HLT flow rate) but I was concerned about how difficult it would be to control and potential large temperature swings (especially during any steps).

I'm looking at keeping the heat-exchange external to the HLT, like you, but am considering using a plate chiller rather than a CFC. A CFC has the advantage that clogging is not a concern but I would want stainless rather than copper which means it would have to be very long (probably 50', like the HERMS coils folks use inside their HLTs).

If a good filter is used to keep any grain particles out of the CFC, it seems like an attractive alternative.

I am interested in the chilling performance of the chillzilla - do you use it to chill boiling wort at the end of the brew cycle? If so, can you estimate chilling performance (tap in temp, tap flow rate, wort flow rate (pumped or gravity), cool wort out temp and total batch size)?

thanks,

-fafrd
__________________
fafrd is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 02-16-2013, 08:50 PM   #9
wadefisher
Brew Meister
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
wadefisher's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Lewistown / Dade City, PA / FL
Posts: 301
Liked 10 Times on 8 Posts
Likes Given: 1

Default

I do not advise using a Plate chiller for recirculating wort through. Too many problems. A counter flow chiller works wonderful for this situation. I like my CFC much better than my plate chiller overall for it flexibility and ease of cleaning compared to a Plate Chiller. Plate Chillers in my opinion are over rated for homebrewing. And yes I have and use both regularly.

__________________

www DrunkMonkeyBrewWerks dot com
wadefisher is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 02-16-2013, 11:36 PM   #10
fafrd
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2012
Location: Berkeley, CA
Posts: 111
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by wadefisher View Post
I do not advise using a Plate chiller for recirculating wort through. Too many problems. A counter flow chiller works wonderful for this situation. I like my CFC much better than my plate chiller overall for it flexibility and ease of cleaning compared to a Plate Chiller. Plate Chillers in my opinion are over rated for homebrewing. And yes I have and use both regularly.
wadefisher, you opinion on this is important to me, and if you have both plate and CFC chillers, you are in a unique position to contrast these two pieces of equipment from experience. I've used a copper garden hose CFC but never used a plate chiller. Below is my view on the contrast between these two pieces of equipment for mash recirculation - if you think any thing is wrong or if there are any important aspects I have overlook, I would appreciate the input before I have committed my design:

PLEATE CHILLER + IN-LINE FILTER PROS FOR MASH RECIRCULATION (VERUS CFC):
-very compact (highest ration of heat transfer surface to volume)
-minimum volume means highest responsiveness and minimum dead volume in heat exchange
-all metal so no concerns handling temperature on either chilling water or wort paths (no possibility of chemical leakage, even at boiling temperatures)
-can be baked in oven to 'bake off' any materials caught in the chiller (this sounds like a PITA, but at least it is an option, where with CFC it is not).
-price performance ($/m^2 of heat exchange surface area) - plate chillers seem to leave all competing technologies in the dust in this department...

PLEATE CHILLER + IN-LINE FILTER CONS FOR MASH RECIRCULATION (VERUS CFC):
-trouble / complexity of cleaning (though this needs to be considered when a good filter in in place before the plate chiller - less clear there is a significant difference in this case)
-possibility to get clogged (this seems to be the big negative versus CFC, but if a good filter can take the possibility of clogging off of the table, it seems like the plate chiller would be the better option).

If you have any thoughts where I am wrong about some aspect of this and/or have overlooked another significant pro/con, I would greatly value that input...

-fafrd


__________________
fafrd is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Reply


Quick Reply
Message:
Options
Thread Tools
Display Modes