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Old 03-05-2012, 03:06 PM   #1
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Default Mash Tun with stainless steel braided weave hose

So I've seen many videos where a stainless steel braided weave hose (from tiolet supply line hose) is used for filtering the grains after mashing/during the sparge. However most use a 12" hose and I am wondering if there is any merit to using longer ss hose (as I've seen 2' and 4' lengths in the hardware store) to prevent clogging or "stuck sparge". Thanks for any input.

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Old 03-05-2012, 04:00 PM   #2
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I would think it depends on the diameter of your mash tun. Not that I'm trying to imply there's some magic ratio or anything. 12 inch doesn't sound like enough to me but considering the way it works I don't believe it's the most efficient method of lautering. How is it oriented? Does it make a loop?

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Old 03-05-2012, 07:27 PM   #3
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I've got a much smaller braided steel screen, and I've never had a lautering problem. However, I'm considering using John Palmer's method of making a loop of a braided hose as an upgrade. (Either that, or I'll just buy a nice false bottom and a rotating sparge arm...) lol

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Old 03-05-2012, 07:35 PM   #4
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I have a 12" piece for a hot water heater supply. So its about an inch in diameter 2 batch and works great so far

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Old 03-05-2012, 08:41 PM   #5
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Most stuck lauters with braid systems occur when the braid gets crushed and mutilated close to where it connects to the bulkhead. If you've got a few inches of uncrushed braid, it will drain fine. Loops and extended lengths just serve to get caught up in your mash paddling activities. If you're trying to fly sparge, it's much better to go with a false bottom or manifold for a more laminar pickup. At least they can stand up to the paddle.

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Old 03-05-2012, 08:42 PM   #6
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Thanks all. I just didn't want to overkill the technique. As simple as possible works for me. I haven't decided on length but if I go with the 2' or 4' length I will have to coil it around in the bottom of my 10 gal. round beverage cooler.

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Old 03-05-2012, 10:10 PM   #7
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I toyed with the idea of the 2+foot but I decided to with the girth over length (yeah I said it...) I didn't like the way it coiled. But the braid on the water heater supply line is alot stiffer and for extra support I coiled some copper wire up like a spring and put it inside the line and did the same on the out side

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Old 05-24-2012, 05:10 PM   #8
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Default Drainage problem?

I am fairly new to the all grain brewing and I have used info from a number of sites to make my equipment, etc. I made a mash tun from a 10gal igloo cooler with the braided stainless steel hose. I have a 'T' on the inside of the cooler coming in and the hose in a complete circle following the circumference of the inside of the cooler. There is copper wire inside the braid to keep it from crushing so I know that is not causing the slow drainage.

Only having done a few batches I don't know how fast my mash tun should drain... That being said, my mash tun starts flowing great after the mash when I am beginning my vorlauf and the grain bed seems to set, but then the drainage slows to a near trickle and takes forever to drain.

I have tried recirculating, clearing the hose with back pressure, adding water. It always starts out great and then creeps along... Am I doing something wrong or is it typically that slow? I just wonder if the braid is so tight that it filters very fine particles that is causing such a slow drain.

On the positive side, I did a batch last night and using a brewhouse efficiency calculator came up with 87%! And I checked my numbers a few times... I have had great results with my beer, but it just takes such a long time.

WOULD LOVE SOME HELP!

Thanks,

Kevin

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Old 05-24-2012, 05:38 PM   #9
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Two things: 1. use rice hulls, a handfull. 2. Drain slowly and if you get air bubble in the hose, pinch it and it should eventually go away and you'll have a better siphon.

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Old 05-24-2012, 05:56 PM   #10
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What he said. Rice hulls add little to the overall cost of a brew (from what I understand), and nothing to the flavor. If they fix your problem, it might be a good way to do it. I have a couple of other suggestions.

1. Check your connections on your mash tun spigot and tubing. If you're getting air bubbles, then you're breaking your siphon in the drain process, and could be slowing things down. Use hose clamps if necessary.

2. What's your crush like? If your crush is too fine (mostly flour), your extraction will be great, but you risk a stuck lauter. This is especially a concern if your crush is mangling the barley husks too much. The best mills crush the starchy part while leaving the husks (mostly) intact. The husks (and rice hulls if you're using them) provide the filter bed for your lauter, and if you've got too fine of a grist, then you're looking at the likely culprit of your stuck sparge.

If adjusting your crush is not feasible (Like if you're using someone else's mill, like the LHBS shop's) then introducing rice hulls will probably solve your problem.

If you don't already have your own mill, I highly recommend it if you're going to be brewing for awhile. Consistency is a wonderful thing, if you create a great "everyday" beer to keep on tap or have bottles around all the time. Getting the same, good crush every time is invaluable. I recommend the Barley Crusher or Rebel Mill. I bought the Rebel myself and absolutely LOVE it.

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