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Old 05-17-2012, 10:28 PM   #1
TarVolon
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Default My Nemesis: Siphon Hoses (and possibly physics)

Today was bottling day on my first AG batch, and I'm starting to think that bottling takes longer than the actual brew day. Or rather, starting the siphon takes longer than the actual brew day. (Yes, I know that there's a thing called an auto-siphon, and I don't have one yet. This is a venting thread not a help me thread)

I tried to start the siphon with a turkey baster. Carboy on the kitchen table, bottling bucket on the floor. No dice. Liquid rises up to the connection between the hose and racking cane, then falls back into the carboy.

So I tried to tilt the carboy while my sister operated the turkey baster. I was tilting at probably 30 to 45 degrees, and the liquid would still come up to the connection and fall back into the carboy. The difference is that a trickle would go down into the turkey baster. She could literally fill the turkey baster with beer, and the rest would get sucked back up the hose into the carboy.

After about 20 minutes of this, I threw some starsan in some water and tried to fill up the hose as best I could to get the siphon started that way. The siphon did start, but it was the most bizarre siphon I've ever seen. The beer came up to the connection between the cane and the siphon hose and then looked like it stopped completely, but it was actually trickling down. About a foot down the siphon hose, it looked like the base of a tiny waterfall. Tons of bubbling and splashing. And then it ran down the rest of the hose like it was supposed to.

I can only assume that I had a pocket of air about 5/16" in diameter (3/8" hose) and a foot long, and it was wreaking havoc with everything. Because this siphon was defying gravity left and right. I used to be pretty good in Physics classes, but I always did get lost on the practical application.



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Old 05-17-2012, 10:57 PM   #2
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Quote:
Because this siphon was defying gravity left and right.
Did you happen to divide by zero? That might have been your problem .

And I know you said you didn't want any help, but since it sounds like you're using a carboy I've seen people get a carboy cap and put the racking cane/hose on one barb and blow through a filter on the other barb to start their siphon using the pressure in the carboy. Just something to consider to take a little time off the day!


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Old 05-17-2012, 10:58 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by TarVolon View Post
I tried to start the siphon with a turkey baster. Carboy on the kitchen table, bottling bucket on the floor. No dice. Liquid rises up to the connection between the hose and racking cane, then falls back into the carboy.
If the connection point wasn't below the bottom of the bucket (or however high the inlet to your siphon is) then you won't be able to start a siphon.

Anywho, it sounds like you know you need an autosiphon
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Old 05-17-2012, 11:11 PM   #4
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This MAY help you. I know you are venting and not wanting help but you may not know this, so I will direct you to my post #28 here: http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f14/i-hate-siphoning-325366/index3.html
If you know about this this no harm done.

You may now return to venting.

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Old 05-17-2012, 11:31 PM   #5
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Phy-siiiiiiiiiics! (shakes fist at sky)
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Old 05-18-2012, 12:27 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by H-ost View Post
If the connection point wasn't below the bottom of the bucket (or however high the inlet to your siphon is) then you won't be able to start a siphon.
Now that doesn't make sense, unless I just don't know how to use a racking cane, which I guess would explain things. My racking cane is only long enough to reach the bottom of the carboy. The connection between it and the siphon hose is right at the top of the carboy, which is pretty much the top point of the whole enterprise. The bucket is a good 3-4 feet below that on the floor. But I'm pretty sure that's just how racking canes are shaped. Maybe when you say "connection point," you're thinking about something different than what I was talking about?

To all, thanks for the advice. When I said it was a venting thread, I didn't mean it wasn't appreciated, just that it wasn't my purpose (which is why I didn't put this in the beginner's forum).
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Old 05-18-2012, 12:33 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TarVolon View Post
The siphon did start, but it was the most bizarre siphon I've ever seen. The beer came up to the connection between the cane and the siphon hose and then looked like it stopped completely, but it was actually trickling down. About a foot down the siphon hose, it looked like the base of a tiny waterfall. Tons of bubbling and splashing. And then it ran down the rest of the hose like it was supposed to.

I can only assume that I had a pocket of air about 5/16" in diameter (3/8" hose) and a foot long, and it was wreaking havoc with everything. Because this siphon was defying gravity left and right. I used to be pretty good in Physics classes, but I always did get lost on the practical application.
All you have to do in that situation is simply pinch the hose where it connects to the racking cane. It will fill with beer and the siphon will work normally.
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Old 05-18-2012, 12:34 AM   #8
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Yes, sorry I thought you were describing a siphon attached to a 3-way connector. Disregard my other post.

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Old 05-18-2012, 12:36 AM   #9
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The important question is; did ya get your beer bottled? If so, that should be some sort of therapy

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Old 05-18-2012, 12:41 AM   #10
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the best is when you buy 3/8" id tubing it for some reason it doesn't seen around the crane!



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