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Old 04-18-2011, 11:54 PM   #1
Mischief_Brewing
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Default 70-Quart Coleman Xtreme Marine Manifold

I know I'm not the first to convert this cooler, but I wanted to share the pics from the manifold build I did today and ask a question or two...

Built using 1/2" CPVC pipe and fittings cut with my angle grinder





It holds siphon until all but a cup of water is left.

So my question:
I've been using a 10-gallon igloo water cooler and doing a modified fly sparge with a sparge manifold on top keeping 1/2 - 1" of water over the top of the grain bed like this:


I was wondering if I could do the same with this new rectangular cooler or would I have trouble with leaving sugars in dead spots?

I've never batch sparged before and am weary of new things

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Old 04-19-2011, 02:47 PM   #2
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I have the same cooler mash tun, but I batch sparge using a braided stainless hose. My efficiency kinda blows, so I have been thinking about building a manifold like yours. Batch sparging is easy, but I would think you should be able to easily build another manifold to fly sparge.

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Old 04-19-2011, 04:11 PM   #3
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The way you have your manifold constructed you should not have the short tubes along the wall slotted, see Palmer, Appendix D. In your case only the longer pieces should be slotted, and I'm not sure about the ones close to the ends of the cooler either, that close to the wall you could get channeling down the wall that would reduce efficiency.

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Originally Posted by John Palmer in How To Brew, Appendix D
The transverse tubes in the rectangular tun should not be slotted to prevent channeling. The longitudinal slotted tubes adequately cover the floor area without the transverse tubes help. The slots can face up, down or to the side; hydraulically, it makes no difference. In a circular tun, the same guidelines apply but the transverse tubes can be slotted where they are away from the wall.
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Old 04-19-2011, 05:26 PM   #4
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The way you have your manifold constructed you should not have the short tubes along the wall slotted, see Palmer, Appendix D. In your case only the longer pieces should be slotted, and I'm not sure about the ones close to the ends of the cooler either, that close to the wall you could get channeling down the wall that would reduce efficiency.
So is that for fly sparging only? There's no channeling in batch sparging correct?
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Old 04-19-2011, 05:34 PM   #5
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So is that for fly sparging only? There's no channeling in batch sparging correct?
Oh, right, shouldn't matter for batch sparging. But your original post talked about "modified fly" sparging.
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Old 04-19-2011, 07:09 PM   #6
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I've used that cooler for camping for years and decided to convert it to my mash tun because it's thermal properties (I've never seen it's equal as far a keeping ice)

Quote:
I have the same cooler mash tun, but I batch sparge using a braided stainless hose. My efficiency kinda blows, so I have been thinking about building a manifold like yours.
My manifold is similar Mischief except narrower and doesnt have that cool section over the valve and I've gotten poor efficiency with it too, I think it's just too big for 5gal batches and the grain bed is too shallow. It would probably be perfect for 10 gal tho.

Quote:
shouldn't matter for batch sparging. But your original post talked about "modified fly" sparging
I think channeling is far less of a factor for batch sparging because you're moving the grain bed before drawing of the wort, but you still need to let the grain settle and you are still pulling the wort through the grain bed so I think it can affect your overall efficiency whether your batch sparging or fly sparging. I would modify your cross members on your manifold to pull the it away from the sides of the cooler especially if you're gonna fly or do some variation of fly sparging (JMHO)

Keep us posted with your efficiency numbers, maybe my setup is worth saving
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Old 04-19-2011, 11:47 PM   #7
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I called in sick to work today and brewed up a 10-gal batch of Irish red (1.070) using the cooler. First time batch sparging and only got 69% efficiency. Still acceptable IMO

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Old 04-20-2011, 12:03 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by Mischief_Brewing View Post
I called in sick to work today and brewed up a 10-gal batch of Irish red (1.070) using the cooler. First time batch sparging and only got 69% efficiency. Still acceptable IMO


Great reason to call in sick

Also: I have only heard of channeling from fly sparging as well.
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Old 04-20-2011, 03:53 PM   #9
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One of the downsides from yesterday's test brew was that the weight of the grains bowed the latch side of the cooler out and it was leaking steam the whole mash. I only lost 2 degrees over and hour, but I'm going to need to look into sealing up that gap. I'm sure it'll be worse as I scale up to bigger grain bills (my westy 12 clone likely being the next one).

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