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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing > Brutus 20 Constant Recirculation Direct Fired Mash Process Review




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Old 07-20-2008, 03:34 PM   #31
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Originally Posted by Lil' Sparky View Post
I don't see any problems with that. Would you start heating the HLT/BK when you start the cross recirculation?
Yes, that's right. I just want to get a good idea where I am at before I stop conversion.


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Old 08-10-2010, 07:03 PM   #32
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Got referred here when asking about 2 vessel setups. Let me see if I understand what you're doing.

You're taking your boil kettle and heating water to striker temps and then doughing into your mashtun, let the grain bed settle then add the remaining of the full volume of water needed to to the BK and start recirculating you mash runnings into your boil kettle and out of your boil kettle back over the mash until basically conversion is reached the the gravity evens out between the hole volume. So it's a constant sparge/mash with the complete volume. I like it. I don't care as much about efficiency either as long as it's consistent and 65% or above I'd say. I'll be doing all electric, so instead of direct firing my BK, it's just have a 55W element. In essence I could brew with 1 5500W heating element and two vessels and two pumps (want side by side single tier).

Or is it dough in as normal, let sit for mash time, then start the recirculation with the final volume until gravity is consistent through total volume, and then stop draining from the bk? After reading again I'm thinking it's this.



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Old 08-09-2011, 11:06 PM   #33
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Or is it dough in as normal, let sit for mash time, then start the recirculation with the final volume until gravity is consistent through total volume, and then stop draining from the bk? After reading again I'm thinking it's this.
Right. Of course, you'd need to recirculate inside the mash tun during mash if it's direct fired.

I like the system and am interested in trying it. I'm still using a turkey fryer-cooler combo for my brewing. A BK with a drain and march pump are on the list of things to get, then I'll start experimenting...

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Old 08-31-2011, 01:39 PM   #34
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There has been talk of this setup not being able to do high gravity beers. I am a big fan of belgian ales and typically brew 1.080-1.110 beers using extract right now. I am considering moving to all grain and am wondering if this setup would be able to handle these higher gravities without having to add extract?

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Old 08-31-2011, 01:59 PM   #35
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This really isn't any different than doing a no-sparge. This is what I do on my RIMS system with just one cooler and one boil kettle. I've been doing it this way for a couple years. On a mid size 1.050ish beer the eff. is about 10% lower than batch sparging. On smaller beers the difference in eff. is less. On bigger beers the eff. difference between batch sparging is more.

After a few times of doing it like you describe, I stopped adding "sparge" water at the end. I just add all my water and grains at the beginning for a thin mash, recirculate the entire time, and then drain into my boil kettle. It comes out the same, except you don't have to worry about the pH changing when you start adding water at the end. Just get your pH right at the beginning of the mash and you are done.

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Old 08-31-2011, 01:59 PM   #36
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This is going to sound dumb but what type of pump are you using for recirc and where did you get it?

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Old 08-31-2011, 02:04 PM   #37
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I'm using a march 809 food grade pump. Most big homebrew shops have them. I think I bought mine from northern brewer.

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Old 08-31-2011, 03:00 PM   #38
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Thanks.

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Old 08-31-2011, 03:01 PM   #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ohararp View Post
There has been talk of this setup not being able to do high gravity beers. I am a big fan of belgian ales and typically brew 1.080-1.110 beers using extract right now. I am considering moving to all grain and am wondering if this setup would be able to handle these higher gravities without having to add extract?
I've been doing the 2 vessel no sparge (no direct fired mash) since I started AG a few years ago and love it. For big beers, the limiting factor is the size of your mash tun. My 1.055 beers or less get 70% efficiency while bigger beers get down to 60%-65% so you need a MT that can hold the extra grain to get high gravity. To give you an idea, my 10g MT cooler maxes out at 25 lbs of grain, 1.25 qts/lb, approx. 1.080 gravity considering 60% efficiency. My new system will have a 15g MT so I can get over 1.100 beers on occasion.

Arg - You don't have to direct fire. If get a drain for your BK and pump, you've got a 2 tier no sparge system. Just mash in your cooler and then recirc the remaining "sparge" water between the BK and MT with the pump for 30 minutes and drain.
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Old 08-31-2011, 11:09 PM   #40
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I tried this on a few batches, as I thought it would make life a lot easier regarding the sparge process, but I wasn't happy with the efficiency and *already* had a three-vessel system, so I went back to my standard system.

But there's no reason why you can't do big beers... As long as your mash tun hold all the grain for a slightly lower efficiency, a big beer should work fine.



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