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Old 01-24-2014, 07:12 PM   #1
avm221
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Default HERMS system idea

Ok I have an idea.

To reciralate the wort could I set the mash ton to drain into my HLT the from the HLT to a pump back to the mash ton. Add a little heat to the HLT to keep a stabe temp ot when I need to raise the temp. I dont have a coil in my HLT is that an issue? I was thinking more this might help with extracting more sugars. Im thinking this would make a better filter with the grain bed too along with clearer beer.

Any thoughts?

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Old 01-24-2014, 07:25 PM   #2
BrewCrewKevin
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You actually will not extract more sugars that way.

It's definitely possible. The problem is that you have nowhere to heat up sparge water in the meantime. That's why people typically just have the wort run through a copper coil and back to the mash tun. Because in the meantime, your HLT is heating up your sparge water.

The way you want to do it here, you won't really have a way to sparge. So while you're recirculation, yes, you will have water constantly running through your grain bed. However, to maximize extraction you need to rinse it with clean water.

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Old 01-24-2014, 10:19 PM   #3
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so if i did recirculate for a while then i would have to turn off the pump and valves get all the liquid back into the mash ton and heat up water swap a hose to the BK dump the first runnings and then i could do a sarge with the pump. i get that with a coil into the HLT it would work easier but i just don't have that and don't have the money for that right now so i'm trying to work with what i got.

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Old 01-25-2014, 12:23 AM   #4
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If you don't have the money, I would wrap the MLT with blankets and not disturb it.
If you're set on raising temp, do it with decoction steps or by just adding a bit of heated water from the stove.

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Old 01-25-2014, 03:21 AM   #5
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I would agree with acidrain. I don't have the money for a HERMS either. So I mash in a cooler. Once you dough in, just give it a really good stir and you should get a pretty efficient mash.

Also, I think your logic is flawed because I think the pump is the most expensive part. A pump is like $100, so you're like 75% of the way there! Even a home-made copper coil with no fittings (just clamp a proper sized hose over the end) could be done for very little money. I'll bet you could get a coil going for $40.

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Old 01-25-2014, 02:45 PM   #6
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I finally finished my HERMs system a couple months ago and I absolutely love it. It was a little expensive in the end but I just chipped away at it over time and made little upgrades until I actually had a full blown system. I've got the same basic set up as you but I have a converted keg for HLT with coil and 5500 watt element connected to PID. The reason I love this set up so much is the ease at which I mash and sparge. The 5500 watt element was only $15 on amazon and it heats up the HLT very fast. I recirculate through the HLT during my entire mash to hold a constant temp, then raise the temp in the HLT to 170 and continue to recirc to mash out. This essentially is vorloffing and mashing out all at once, then when I drain my first runnings out of the mash tun I've got 15 gal of 170 degree water waiting to be used for my batch sparging. The recirculating during the mash and the
Ability to Mash out easily is nice with the HERMs, but the best feature to me is having the sparge water temp controlled and ready so I don't have to watch a temp gauge and and just propane burners, I can spend my time doing the other things that need to be done on brew days.
imageuploadedbyhome-brew1390664668.038731.jpg

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