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Old 10-08-2012, 12:48 PM   #111
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Well i tried it out this weekend - and it worked but was really really slow. I think i'm going to have to build a stand to get it to be at just the right level, and get some different tubing. The good news was that it was extremely efficient, wort output temp was below 60!
More time to drink beer?
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Old 10-08-2012, 01:09 PM   #112
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You spent the money to buy the material for the chiller now spend a little more and buy a march pump. Huge improvement for me. In 5 mins I have five gallons of cooled wort. I also use a sump pump to pump ice water through the chiller.

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Old 10-09-2012, 04:19 PM   #113
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More time to drink beer?
true, but what about the added time for late hop additions and the chances of infection?

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You spent the money to buy the material for the chiller now spend a little more and buy a march pump. Huge improvement for me. In 5 mins I have five gallons of cooled wort. I also use a sump pump to pump ice water through the chiller.
it's not exactly a little more....
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Old 10-09-2012, 05:59 PM   #114
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true, but what about the added time for late hop additions and the chances of infection?
Mine was also pretty slow. As you mentioned, you can increase the height of your BK to fermentation vessel, increasing speed. Slow is not necessarily a bad thing because you have more time for the liquids to exchange heat. I am not well versed in physics, but your system is pretty efficient at <60 degrees output temp. Seems to me if you increase the diameter of the copper pipe, you increase flow of wort, but decrease the flow of cold water in the opposite direction. This combined with increased speed would seem to me to decrease cooling efficiency. There may be more surface area where heat exchange can take place, but I wonder if the difference would offset the aforementioned issues.

Not sure what you decide to do, but post more results, let us know what you decide to do.
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Old 10-09-2012, 11:51 PM   #115
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I had a height differential (Δh) of about three feet when I used my gravity flow chiller (pictured in original post). That seemed to work very well given the flow rate, and coefficient of heat transfer. My suggestion would be to increase the vertical distance (Δh) between the kettle and the chiller to about the same to increase wort flow rate, and adjust your cold water flow rate accordingly via a globe valve.

The coefficient of heat transfer is not dependent on wort flow rate alone; surface area between the two fluids, temperature difference (ΔT), and conduction coefficient of the material separating the two fluids will affect it as well.

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Old 10-10-2012, 12:53 PM   #116
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Agreed, I first want to get the flow rate up, then I'll check where the output temp is. If that's still too low for my liking, I'll restrict the coolant throughput.

Has anyone thought about using the coolant pressure (60-80 psi at full blast) to power a impeller pump? This way there'd be no electrics to worry about...

Or what about one of these sous vide pumps (high temp & food grade ) 12V or 6V

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Old 10-10-2012, 01:12 PM   #117
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I'm sorry if this question has been asked before but, I have been using a immersion chiller for many years and I live in the north east so in the winter my wort can go from boiling to 70 in about 10-15 minutes in the summer it can be as much as 30-40 minutes (Way to long !!!). Will this counterflow chill faster ? about how long on average to pitching temps ? Thanks !

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Old 10-10-2012, 02:11 PM   #118
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Think of the immersion chiller as a bulk chiller. Now think of the counterflow chiller a super efficient chiller for a smaller portion of wort traveling through it. In my neck of the woods, in February, I'm able to pretty much go from boil to primary with the 25' CFC that I use. The volume of chilling water and temp difference vs hot wort is so great that I don't have to recirculate the wort. In fact, I usually open up the pump out valve to speed up the wort transfer or slow down the cold water through the CFC so the wort doesn't get too cold.

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Old 10-10-2012, 11:06 PM   #119
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Think of the immersion chiller as a bulk chiller. Now think of the counterflow chiller a super efficient chiller for a smaller portion of wort traveling through it. In my neck of the woods, in February, I'm able to pretty much go from boil to primary with the 25' CFC that I use. The volume of chilling water and temp difference vs hot wort is so great that I don't have to recirculate the wort. In fact, I usually open up the pump out valve to speed up the wort transfer or slow down the cold water through the CFC so the wort doesn't get too cold.
Pretty much sums it up. If your CFC is efficient enough to get within 1-3 degrees of your desired temp at max wort flow, you're only limited by how long it takes to siphon or pump your wort through the chiller. My current setup is pump operated, and it takes about 10-15 minutes to empty 11 gallons from my BK into my fermenters at desired temp. I've yet to see an IC compete with that efficiency. However, with an IC, you lower the temperature of your entire mass quicker, which some argue is important to reduce DMS. So, I won't say one method is necessarily better than the other, but you can tell which method I favor by what I use.
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Primary:
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Secondary:
1. Brett Ale 2. Lambic 3. Lambic 4. none
Bottled:
About 36 gallons of beer & 4.2 gallons of mead
Kegged & conditioning:
Breakfast Stout, Belgian Dubbel, German Pilsner (lagering), Dry Stout, Oatmeal Amber Ale
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Old 10-13-2012, 01:25 AM   #120
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Finally built my chiller!

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