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Old 02-18-2009, 01:44 PM   #1
JMSetzler
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Default Copper Manifold Build Questions

I'm trying to get a better understanding of the construction of a copper tubing manifold for the MLT before I start working on mine. I have a few questions and can't seem to find definitive answers to them so far...

1. If the tubing is not soldered together, what keeps it from coming apart when using the mash rake to stir up the grains?

2. What kind of connection is made between the manifold and the ball valve to keep them together?

3. What is the best process for removing burrs from the inside of the tubing after cutting the slits?

4. Is 1/2" tubing the preferred size or should it be larger?

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Old 02-18-2009, 01:52 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JMSetzler View Post
1. If the tubing is not soldered together, what keeps it from coming apart when using the mash rake to stir up the grains?
My manifold fit tightly together without soldering. When heated the bonds seem to be tighter due to slight metal expansion.

Quote:
2. What kind of connection is made between the manifold and the ball valve to keep them together?
See my build here. I used a nipple connected to a female 1/2" pipe coupler.

Quote:
3. What is the best process for removing burrs from the inside of the tubing after cutting the slits?
I just took a long screw driver and rubbed the burrs out. If I had one a pipe cleaner would have worked just as well and been quicker.

Quote:
4. Is 1/2" tubing the preferred size or should it be larger?
I used 1/2" and had no problems with my first AG. Second coming soon.
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Old 02-18-2009, 02:01 PM   #3
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I know a lot of folks here recommend no solder. All joints on my 1/2" copper manifold are soldered except where it connects to the MLT outlet fitting. I have never had any problem cleaning it with a good garden hose spray - 45 times. I don't want to worry about my manifold coming apart with some healthy paddle action.

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Old 02-18-2009, 05:03 PM   #4
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I soldered my manifold together also, I don't want to go looking for pieces when I need to use it. I connected my manifold to the valve with a couple hose barbs and a short section of hose.

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Old 02-18-2009, 05:15 PM   #5
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I also soldered mine. However I used a stainless small dia. nail and drilled a tiny hole where it connects to the ball valve. I just use the nail as a clevis pin. No problems after about 20 batches. Cleaning is a snap with hose and a little oxyclean.

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Old 02-18-2009, 07:51 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by avaserfi View Post
My manifold fit tightly together without soldering. When heated the bonds seem to be tighter due to slight metal expansion.



See my build here. I used a nipple connected to a female 1/2" pipe coupler.



I just took a long screw driver and rubbed the burrs out. If I had one a pipe cleaner would have worked just as well and been quicker.



I used 1/2" and had no problems with my first AG. Second coming soon.
+1 on this, except I used a chain saw file to knock the burrs off of mine. Any small round metal file will work.
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Old 02-19-2009, 12:22 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by avaserfi View Post
See my build here. I used a nipple connected to a female 1/2" pipe coupler.
Is that just a loose connection or is it fastened together some way?
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Old 02-19-2009, 12:24 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gonzo brewer View Post
I know a lot of folks here recommend no solder. All joints on my 1/2" copper manifold are soldered except where it connects to the MLT outlet fitting. I have never had any problem cleaning it with a good garden hose spray - 45 times. I don't want to worry about my manifold coming apart with some healthy paddle action.
Thanks for the response. This is sorta what I was hoping to find out
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Old 02-19-2009, 12:44 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JMSetzler View Post
Is that just a loose connection or is it fastened together some way?
The manifold is loosely attached to the coupler, but the coupler is screwed to the nipple so there is a watertight seal on the cooler. I hope this makes sense.
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Old 02-19-2009, 12:54 AM   #10
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Check How to Brew - By John Palmer for how I made mine. I think in one of the Appendices Palmer shows you what parts to solder to help prevent it from coming apart. You can also use some copper wire to make two loops that slip over each end.

And FWIW, I prefer small holes instead of slits. I'd get a lot of grain particles with the slits, with the holes, barely nothing gets through.

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