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Old 05-24-2012, 06:14 PM   #11
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Most of the wort that enters the braid will do so within the first several inches from the bukhead. A short braid 6-12" long will work nearly the same as a long length formed in a loop or figure 8.

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Old 05-24-2012, 08:24 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by wilserbrewer View Post
Most of the wort that enters the braid will do so within the first several inches from the bukhead. A short braid 6-12" long will work nearly the same as a long length formed in a loop or figure 8.
As long as you're batch sparging, this is true.
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Old 05-24-2012, 10:52 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Bobby_M
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.
+1
By the time I wised up and got a false bottom I had already gone through three braids. There are several techniques that peoria suggest to prevent crushing the braid but I didn't find any of them to work for more than a handful of batches, save yourself the time money and headache and invest the $25 in a false bottom. It's a far superior product
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Old 05-25-2012, 12:27 AM   #14
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As long as you're batch sparging, this is true.
haha...I think I got ya Denny...this is true regardless of batch or fly sparging, hence why the braid is not great for fly sparging....no?

I have a hunch that whenever I see an elaborate braid running around the perimeter of a cooler that the first few inches near the bulkhead are doing most of the work sucking the wort through the path of least resistance.
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Old 05-25-2012, 12:51 PM   #15
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I got some great advice on one of these boards for braid reinforcement. I crush finely, often use rye or wheat, and I'd had my share of sticky sparges. Then I bought one of these:




http://www.mcmaster.com/#cadinlnord/9663k27/=hor077

and installed it in the braid. No more crushed braid, and my sparge rips no matter what I mash. Well worth a few bucks to avoid the aggravation. I think it was about $12 with shipping - i couldn't find it in the local hardware or HD.

Be sure to order the stainless spring, not galvanized.

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Old 05-25-2012, 01:29 PM   #16
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Winding copper wire from Big Box Store around something that's the same diameter of the hose braid is another option, one I might be doing this weekend.

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Old 05-25-2012, 08:33 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by wilserbrewer View Post
haha...I think I got ya Denny...this is true regardless of batch or fly sparging, hence why the braid is not great for fly sparging....no?

I have a hunch that whenever I see an elaborate braid running around the perimeter of a cooler that the first few inches near the bulkhead are doing most of the work sucking the wort through the path of least resistance.
No, the braid is fine for fly sparging. But you need to configure it to cover the bottom of the mash tun evenly, unlike batch sparging where a single straight piece is fine.

I'm about to brew my 422nd batch withe the same piece of braid. I'm always amazed when I hear people talk about crushing it. I've never reinforced it and I've never had a stuck runoff, although I crush really finely. What the heck are you people doing?
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Old 05-25-2012, 09:45 PM   #18
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+1 on the fact that stainless braid is not likely to be crushed (unless you're crushing it with the mash paddle). I have almost a hundred brews on my braid. It's used in a RIMS, so I don't have to stir much. I still avoid contacting it with the paddle though.

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Old 05-25-2012, 09:48 PM   #19
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You just need to be aware of the braid and where it is. I either stir "horizontally", parallel to the braid, or above it. If I feel it, I move the spoon so I'm not contacting it.

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Old 05-26-2012, 02:31 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Denny View Post
I'm always amazed when I hear people talk about crushing it. I've never reinforced it and I've never had a stuck runoff, although I crush really finely. What the heck are you people doing?
It makes you wonder if all braids are created equal. I've never had a totally stuck mash, but I've had some that required a serious, time-consuming intervention to get things moving again. Especially with rye or wheat.

Even though I stir to the sides and don't touch the braid when I'm mashing, the one I replaced recently looked like a truck-flattened armadillo tail, purely from the weight of the mash. And that happened very early on.

Maybe using one of the bigger (about 1" ID water tank) braids would solve that.

My results so far with the spring reinforcement make me think, hmm, as many complaints as we hear about stuck mashes, why not just add the spring/copper coil from the get-go?
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