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Old 01-06-2013, 09:52 PM   #11
NastyN8
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I'd say I'm using roughly 3 gallons (volume, not actual liquid) of ice inside the bucket housing the copper coil. The coil is 10' of copper I believe (can't remember, but it was $13 at home depot). The pipe is 1/2". If you pour the wort (at almost boiling temps) at a steady slow pace, giving just a couple seconds of cooling time every once in a while, the wort comes out at maybe 75-80 deg. I noticed if I poured too fast that it came out really hot, but if you give it a little time then the wort chilled just fine. Honestly, with everything I was reading, I cannot believe that it chilled that fast. I'm wondering if I just stumbled on something great or if it's too good to be true.

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Old 01-06-2013, 09:59 PM   #12
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Here's the system

20130106_155430.jpg  
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Old 01-06-2013, 10:20 PM   #13
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I got it now, you're throttling the flow rate to maximize cooling time in the coil. It's actually not something new and works well on a small scale. You're cooling at rates similar to counter flow for the volumes you're working with. You'll find as you double the wort volume and start looking for final temps in the 60's that you'll need to add more ice and more time. That's why we use counter-flow and plate chillers.

As far as your other concern goes, as long as you stay on top of things, cleaning is not an issue. Just flush well after each use and sanitize with chemicals or boiling water just before each use. A pump would help with cleaning but then you might as well build a counter-flow chiller.

If you're kegging, you can actually turn the same setup into a jockey box by flowing beer from a keg through your coil and out of a tap.

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Old 01-06-2013, 11:03 PM   #14
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Curious if throwing a medium size pond pump in the bucket would improve performance. Something big enough to move the water in the bucket around so you always have cold water touching the coil.

I use an immersion chiller but I've pondered alternatives to a counterflow in case I ever throw heating elements in my kettle. This is an interesting design.

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Old 01-07-2013, 02:24 AM   #15
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We just use our hand to move the ice water around inside the bucket. It only takes a quick stir to get the ice back on the copper. You can see the ice melting as you pour through but it really is a great way to cool your wort fast. I think a longer copper coil with a bigger bucket would do even better for larger batches. I hope my design would actually do well for others!!

And in all honesty, this is so incredibly cheap that it's almost worth trying once. I bought the copper for $13, the bucket for $2, the funnel for $1, the vinyl tube for $1 and I used caulk laying around my house for almost nothing.

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Old 01-07-2013, 03:57 AM   #16
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this seems like a nice alternative to a hundred dollar Copper coil. It would also use less water than an immersion chiller...sucks I just finished Building my immersion chiller a few hours ago. I like this idea.

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