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Old 04-13-2008, 03:48 AM   #1
_Edge
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Default Another MLT conversion, CPVC $25 + cooler

I thought I would post my MLT cooler conversion because I haven't seen anyone do it exactly like this. This is my first and I want to know if I should expect any problems on brew day.

Also, since I'm taking the time, I thought I would post exact specifics so that folks could go to the store and cut things themselves without doing annoying CPVC calculations (as I had to do). If you have this cooler, you should be able to go out and buy what I did and put it together in just a couple of hours.

I should note first that the idea is from here and here, but with CPVC instead of copper. There are a few differences. First, I left more space at the end of the cooler -- I think the physics palmer writes about works at that end too. Second the CPVC is a little closer on the long side. this is mostly a function of the CPVC attachments.

Shopping list:
• CPVC lengths of 3/4" diameter (less than 5 feet total) cut into lengths of:
o 6x 5 ¼”
o 3x 4 5/8”
o 2x 1 7/8”
o 1x 4 1/8” (this may vary)
o 1x 1 ½”
• 4 CPVC 90 degree joints
• 5 CPVC T joints
• 2 CPVC 45 angle joints
• 1 female threaded to non-threaded CPVC adapter (I had to use 1/2 inch for this adapter because that's what threads into the 1/2 inch nipple. You may need to wrap heat resistant tape around it to get a snug fit)
• 5 ¾ inside diameter (ID) x2” outside diameter (OD) zinc fender washers
• 1 ¾ ID x 1" OD SS (or other hot water-safe) washer
• 2 rubber 5/16” ID 2" OD washers
• 1 2 1/2" brass pipe nipple
• 1 1/2" brass ball valve
• 1 1/2" hose barb adapter
• teflon tape
• 1 ¾” ID 1” OD Rubber washer saved from the cooler

Total bill: $25 with some extras included in case I screwed up (which I did)

The assembly is pretty simple.

1) remove the original plastic stop valve. they normally screw out. Save the rubber washer for re-use.
2) assemble the nipple and ball valve. You will need between 3 and 6 washers as spacers so that the seal is tight enough that water does not leak out. The rubber washers should be put in from left to right (see picture), this will ensure the rubber seals to the cooler. Also, make sure to wrap the threads with teflon tape to prevent leaks.
3) cut the CPVC to the specified lengths.
4) drill holes in the PVC with about a 1/8 drill. Remember that the last 7/8 of an inch on both sides of the CPVC are going to be attached to the joints so don't drill there. Also even the smallest CPVC length should be drilled so you you can extract wort from the dead space -- it is long enough by about 1/8 of an inch for drill space.

p1010004.jpg   p1010007.jpg   p1010001.jpg   p1010003.jpg   p1010005.jpg  

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Last edited by _Edge; 04-15-2008 at 01:19 AM. Reason: Changed from PVC to CPVC
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Old 04-13-2008, 03:50 AM   #2
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2 more pictures I wanted to upload

p1010012.jpg   p1010004.jpg  
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Last edited by _Edge; 04-13-2008 at 05:37 PM.
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Old 04-13-2008, 12:24 PM   #3
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I have the same type of set up in a cube cooler. It works fine. I used CPVC because it is rated for hot water.

I also take it apart to clean it, found too many remnants from previous brews if I tried to clean it by blasting water through and soaking.

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Old 04-13-2008, 12:30 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by _Edge
Also, I know some people are wary of PVC with hot water. I'm not. As long as it's not above boiling temps you should be OK.
Are you just coming up with this, or do you have a source/reference? If it is safe, great. (Just to play devil's advocate here) But it you are not SURE that it is safe, it's probably not a good thing to say - so you trust it enough to use it yourself, fine, your choice, but do you trust it enough for other people to use it based on your recommendation?

It still seems smarter to just use CPVC instead. The rated max temp of PVC is usually 140-160F (and I've seen the melting point listed as 176F), but the max temp of CPVC is usually 200-220F.
Is it really so much more expensive that it makes it not worth being on the safe side?
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Old 04-13-2008, 03:03 PM   #5
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Quote:

Are you just coming up with this, or do you have a source/reference? If it is safe, great. (Just to play devil's advocate here) But it you are not SURE that it is safe, it's probably not a good thing to say - so you trust it enough to use it yourself, fine, your choice, but do you trust it enough for other people to use it based on your recommendation?

It still seems smarter to just use CPVC instead. The rated max temp of PVC is usually 140-160F (and I've seen the melting point listed as 176F), but the max temp of CPVC is usually 200-220F.
Is it really so much more expensive that it makes it not worth being on the safe side?
Probably not. especially since the ball valve is easily the most expensive part. I searched again after reading your post and found different data on melting point/safety ratings. I'll probably go buy CPVC today (for $10 total, I'm sure) and re-post this thread.
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Old 04-14-2008, 11:53 PM   #6
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Ok, it's all reposted with CPVC instead of PVC. Even when I went to 3/4" CPVC, the measurements all worked out perfectly. If there is one thing I can say, it's that this is easily replicated -- and with no mistakes I used less than 5 feet of CPVC.

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Old 04-15-2008, 12:55 AM   #7
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Looks great I have most of my 38 qrt done except or the manifold itself. I bought an Igloo Wheelie Cooler with no spigot since no one around here had a decent size cooler with a spigot on it so I had to do it myself which was fun. I tested it yesterday and had no leaks and only dropped 1 degree over 1 hour.

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