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Old 06-04-2008, 02:40 AM   #1
Don
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Default Brew sculpture how do they work?

I've seen a lot of different sculpture, some have 1 pump some have two, I know some of that is weather you are using a single tier or 2 tier system.
But what is the process when you brew with a sculpture?

I'm thinking of building one and not sure what I want it to do or which way to go.

RIMS & HERMS are the two different systems, what I am trying to figure out is what is the sequence whey you brew with them?

Thanks

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Old 06-04-2008, 12:15 PM   #2
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I have a two-tier setup and one pump.



I use the top tier as the HLT. When I start out, I heat up my strike water and also the water in my heat exchange tank. I gravity-feed my strike water into the MLT as I add my crushed grain to it.

When mixed, I pump it through my heat exchange and back into my MLT for the entire time that it's doing its conversion.

When that's done, I do some combination of gravity feeding sparge water (again, from the HLT on top) into the mash tun while pumping the run-off from the mash tun over to my boil kettle.

When the boil is done, I pump through my plate chiller and into my carboy.

Lastly, I pump whatever's left of the HLT water through all of that to give it a good rinse from everything that just went through it.

So on a 1-tier, you'd be doing similar things, just also pumping your strike & sparge water from your HLT. In a 3-tier, you can get away with no pump at all, with the HLT gravity-feeding to the mash tun, and the mash tun gravity-feeding to your boil kettle, and your boil kettle gravity-feeding to your carboy.

Make sense?

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Old 06-04-2008, 12:30 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Don View Post
RIMS & HERMS are the two different systems, what I am trying to figure out is what is the sequence whey you brew with them?
...and for clarity (no pun intended), RIMS and HERMS are really more of "add-ons" rather than "types". Plenty of good-beer-brewing folks out there don't use that step and prefer controlling the temp with a burner under the MLT or simply letting it all sit unattended in a well-insulated vessle like a cooler. RIMS and HERMS expand on that by recirculating the mash through a temperature-controlled area in an attempt to maintain temp and also filter the liquid through the grain bed continuously so that you get nice clear runnings into your boil kettle.

I opted to do it for those reasons to some degree, but mainly because I'm a gadget freak. Fine beer can be made with all options.
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Old 06-04-2008, 02:09 PM   #4
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That is all correct, I dont have a RIMS or HERMS. The single tier stand with burners are considered a direct fired mash, and with pumps you can add the feature of recirculating. Which is really quite critical when direct firing so as to avoid scorching.

From left to right...
Boil Kettle, Mash Tun, Hot Liquor Tun
Pumps used to transfer typically from right to left...

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Old 06-04-2008, 02:52 PM   #5
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Brewing AG whether you have a sculpture or not is essentially the same. If you don't understand the AG process, I suggest you start there first. Several people have posted videos here about their AG brew day that are very good. Once you understand the process, recognizing how a stand is used is easy.

Sculptures allow you the ease of taking care of everything "in place" so you don't have to lift, dump, scoop, etc. Multi-tier stands use gravity for all/part of moving the liquids from one to another. Pumps allow you to eliminate the need to rely on gravity.

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Old 06-04-2008, 02:55 PM   #6
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Sparky makes an excellent point. AG is the horse and a sculpture is the cart (literally and figuratively)... don't reverse them. These systems are just tools to make the all grain brewer's day easier. They're the how, not the what. Ok, I shut it.

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Old 06-04-2008, 03:23 PM   #7
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Here are two stands, one using gravity and eliminating a pump, and one using two pumps.

While gravity is free and saves you the 120 bucks for a pump, it does take up more room in height. In the end it will accomplish the same thing though.

As for RIMS and HERMS....well IMO I dont think they are necessary. If you insulate your MT you're not going to loose much heat. And our setups allow you to gently heat the MT if you do. I have yet to even consider a step mash since they aren't really necessary , so all you really need to do is make sure you are maintaining your temps.



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Old 06-04-2008, 07:08 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lil' Sparky View Post
Multi-tier stands use gravity for all/part of moving the liquids from one to another. Pumps allow you to eliminate the need to rely on gravity.
And this is why I went with a 3 tier gravity rig. Gravity never fails where as pumps can. Now if one day I'm brewing and gravity is gone, I guess the messed up brew day wont be a big deal.
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Old 06-04-2008, 07:33 PM   #9
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Yep, if gravity stops working, we've got bigger issues to worry about.

I'll also add - pumps and low brew stands also eliminate the need to rely on ladders and/or lifting heavy stuff over your head.

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Old 06-04-2008, 08:58 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lil' Sparky View Post
Yep, if gravity stops working, we've got bigger issues to worry about.

I'll also add - pumps and low brew stands also eliminate the need to rely on ladders and/or lifting heavy stuff over your head.
so does hardline pumping.
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