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Old 07-06-2011, 01:27 AM   #1
lmerg
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Default Bayou Burner using lots of propane

Hi,

We're using a bayou burner (Example Here) and noticing that it uses a lot of propane (normal 15# tanks). I haven't started weighing our usage with each batch, but I intend to. I'm judging this based on the usage reported in some of the Brutus Herms threads of 3 10g batches per tank. We are getting perhaps a bit more than 2 5gal batches per tank. But without weighing, it's tough to be exact (yeah, yeah, this would be better with hard numbers, I agree).

I think it's the flame adjustment. A bit of yellow on top but mostly blue. So that's nearly impossible to control with the little spinning air vent. Is this a problem with the burner in general? Or are we just bad at this?

OMG, will this ruin my beer? (just kidding)

Thanks in advance,
Luke

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Old 07-06-2011, 01:35 AM   #2
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I almost always have a small amount of yellow flame on top of the blue with the same burner. I think it's unavoidable. The air vent seems almost useless to me. That said, I usually get about 5 sixty-minute boils on five-gallon batches from one tank.

Are you sure your tanks are full?

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Old 07-06-2011, 01:36 AM   #3
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Fairly sure, unless the local hardware store is running a Blue Rhino scam.

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Old 07-06-2011, 01:47 AM   #4
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You know, if you're genuinely worried about that, you can get tanks filled instead of traded and that way you only pay for what you're actually getting. Ends up being about the same price but you get a much fuller tank. I get mine filled at Uhaul.

Tom

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Old 07-06-2011, 01:49 AM   #5
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Thanks. I'll look into that. I'm much more worried that either the burner is inefficient or there is user error.

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Old 07-06-2011, 01:56 AM   #6
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Yeah I have heard, and experienced, that the Blue Rhino tanks are not always as full as they should be. They tend to be lighter after the exchange then after I get them filled at the local hardware store.

As for the gas you are using, do you keep the burner on at full blast for the full boil, or do you turn it down?

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Old 07-06-2011, 01:58 AM   #7
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I try to turn it down and readjust for the most efficient flame. But it still feels (which isn't a very good measure of reality) like we're burning through propane way too fast. I'll probably weigh the tank before and after the next 10g brew. I wonder how true value would feel if I showed up with a grain scale during the tank exchange...

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Old 07-06-2011, 02:38 AM   #8
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I started listening to the sound. A "roar" is blowing off propane. A high blue flame with minimal yellow tipping that's almost silent is efficient...maybe a low hissing sound. My first boil I tried to get things cranking by turning up the flame...not the right method with these burners.

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Old 07-06-2011, 03:54 AM   #9
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Are you using it in windy conditions? Does the flame come around the side? And flame on the side of your pot is wasted fuel. Wind is a killer, blowing away the heat, wasting fuel.

Do you try using wind blocks? You can wrap Al foil around the legs so 3 sides are closed off and you have access to light the flame still. I've heard people using foil up around the side of the pot to make sure the flame is being used as efficiently as possible. That in conjunction with maintaining a small rolling boil instead of a big rolling boil will likely make your tank last longer.

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Old 07-06-2011, 04:12 AM   #10
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Dang I have Blue Rhino. If I get 5 batches out of one I think I'd be happy with that. I am expecting worse. I don't have the bayou, I have the Brinkmann but should be about the same thing I would think. The thing has been really nice for me so far tbh (1 batch). I was kinda hoping that the old lady would let me buy another tank too because I feel like I have to turn it back in with some left every time seeing as how you can't start a brewday and run out of pane half way through. Another problem is we don't have a scale here at all besides a 3 pounder. Would be nice to weigh the thing and know what I am dealing with exactly. Thanks for bringing up the topic.

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