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Old 01-10-2012, 11:33 PM   #1
goofiefoot
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Default Critique My Rig Idea - Single-Pump HERMS

Before I really buckle down and start buying parts, I want to get some confirmation what I have in mind will work well. My plan to keep things simple, weldless, and relatively manual for the time being, but have the foresight to keep everything upgradeable.

I'm not concerned about my structure at this point, although I'm wanting a single-tier setup. I may build out of wood, I'm probably going to go natural gas, and I may want to later upgrade to 2 pumps and 3 burners.

Here's my proposal:


HLT:
15.5G Keg, 1/2" Copper coil (my current immersion chiller), bulkheads/ 1/2" Compression fittings for coil, bulkhead/ 1/2" ball valve, thermometer/sight glass combo

MT:
70qt Cooler, cPVC manifold, bulkhead/ 1/2" ball valve, bulkhead/thermometer, bulkhead/sparge manifold (for recirculation)

KT:
15.5G Keg, bulkhead/ 1/2" ball valve (side pickup), bulkhead/side inlet (whirlpool), thermometer/sight glass combo


Here is how I envision this working:

Step 1: Heat strike water and sparge/recirculation water



Step 2: Strike water and grains into Mash Tun.



Step 3: (This is where I could use some pointers) Use recirculation to maintain temp, if need be, or step mash. Certainly use it to vorlauf.



Step 4: Pump to kettle and start heating.



Step 5: Pump in sparge water (I batch sparge currently, and I plan to continue - but feel free to make suggestions)



Step 6: Pump to kettle.



Step 7: Boil, etc. then pump through coil, with HLT full of ice water.



Step 8: Pump to fermenter.



That's my plan. Here are a few more questions I've thought of.

Quick disconnects - applicable at every external connection here? Anything to consider?

I could stir the ice water in the HLT while cooling to avoid a warm water pocket around the coil, but are there any other solutions?

I realize will need to start circulating boiling wort through the system 15 minutes or so before the end of the boil, but any other sanitation suggestions?

What do I need to keep in mind as far as placement for the coil inlet/outlet, and the whirlpool inlet? Any standard measurements?

I'm sure I'll have more questions as I go along, but this should be a good start. I've dug through quite a few build threads here, so hopefully I've addressed most major rookie mistakes.

I look forward to any feedback!

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Old 01-11-2012, 12:48 AM   #2
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The only thing I am doing differently with my set up is raising the HLT above the rest to make it a two tier system. This way I can fly sparge the excess water from it and use the pump to take the wort from the MT to the BK. Besides that it is the exact same system I am building. Good luck on the build.

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Old 01-11-2012, 01:06 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by goofiefoot View Post
[...]
Quick disconnects - applicable at every external connection here? Anything to consider?
I went with stainless steel cam locks with silicone o rings, with male ends on all vessel fittings and pump ports, so the hoses are all female-female. On a bang-for-the-buck basis I think these QDs rule.

Quote:
I could stir the ice water in the HLT while cooling to avoid a warm water pocket around the coil, but are there any other solutions?
Any single tier system could benefit from a second pump


Quote:
I realize will need to start circulating boiling wort through the system 15 minutes or so before the end of the boil, but any other sanitation suggestions?
You'd have to circulate wort with the HLT empty to keep the wort hot enough to kill. When you're ready to start cooling, then you'd fill the HLT.

Otoh, going by your plan, as long as your HLT reaches the typical 170°F for mash out & sparging, if you circulate the mash for 15 minutes or so before sending the first runnings to the BK, it should cook anything lurking within the HEX coil.

Quote:
What do I need to keep in mind as far as placement for the coil inlet/outlet, and the whirlpool inlet? Any standard measurements?
Given how many different vessel fitting arrangements I've seen pictured here, I doubt there's a standard. But I bet there's plenty of theory

Cheers!
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Old 01-11-2012, 02:15 AM   #4
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Go for two pumps! You will need to circulate the HLT water in some way to avoid cavatation. The second pump is the easiest way to achieve this by recirculating the HLT during mash.

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Old 01-11-2012, 02:25 AM   #5
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I completely understand that 2 pumps would make this easier. Eventually, I most likely will have 2, but for the time being (especially with a baby on the way), I'm trying to save money where I can. Plus, I'm confident this can be done successfully with 1.

I'll stop by AHS again and take a look at the cam locks. I'm realizing that I'll either need a plug or a valve for when I don't have a hose connect to some of these ports.

Thanks for the good feedback. I'm looking forward to more. I can't have thought things through all that well. I'm just not that smart!

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Old 01-11-2012, 02:32 AM   #6
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what about BIAB setup? Perfect for one pump and way easy.

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Old 01-11-2012, 01:14 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adrock18t View Post
what about BIAB setup? Perfect for one pump and way easy.
That would basically eliminate my cooler mash tun, right? At this point that's the only thing I have up and running.
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Old 01-11-2012, 01:26 PM   #8
P-J
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None of the pictures showed so I fixed it for you.

Quote:
Originally Posted by goofiefoot View Post
Before I really buckle down and start buying parts, I want to get some confirmation what I have in mind will work well. My plan to keep things simple, weldless, and relatively manual for the time being, but have the foresight to keep everything upgradeable.

I'm not concerned about my structure at this point, although I'm wanting a single-tier setup. I may build out of wood, I'm probably going to go natural gas, and I may want to later upgrade to 2 pumps and 3 burners.

Here's my proposal:


HLT:
15.5G Keg, 1/2" Copper coil (my current immersion chiller), bulkheads/ 1/2" Compression fittings for coil, bulkhead/ 1/2" ball valve, thermometer/sight glass combo

MT:
70qt Cooler, cPVC manifold, bulkhead/ 1/2" ball valve, bulkhead/thermometer, bulkhead/sparge manifold (for recirculation)

KT:
15.5G Keg, bulkhead/ 1/2" ball valve (side pickup), bulkhead/side inlet (whirlpool), thermometer/sight glass combo


Here is how I envision this working:

Step 1: Heat strike water and sparge/recirculation water



Step 2: Strike water and grains into Mash Tun.



Step 3: (This is where I could use some pointers) Use recirculation to maintain temp, if need be, or step mash. Certainly use it to vorlauf.



Step 4: Pump to kettle and start heating.



Step 5: Pump in sparge water (I batch sparge currently, and I plan to continue - but feel free to make suggestions)



Step 6: Pump to kettle.



Step 7: Boil, etc. then pump through coil, with HLT full of ice water.



Step 8: Pump to fermenter.



That's my plan. Here are a few more questions I've thought of.

Quick disconnects - applicable at every external connection here? Anything to consider?

I could stir the ice water in the HLT while cooling to avoid a warm water pocket around the coil, but are there any other solutions?

I realize will need to start circulating boiling wort through the system 15 minutes or so before the end of the boil, but any other sanitation suggestions?

What do I need to keep in mind as far as placement for the coil inlet/outlet, and the whirlpool inlet? Any standard measurements?

I'm sure I'll have more questions as I go along, but this should be a good start. I've dug through quite a few build threads here, so hopefully I've addressed most major rookie mistakes.

I look forward to any feedback!
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Old 01-11-2012, 01:50 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by P-J View Post
None of the pictures showed so I fixed it for you.
Not sure what "fixed" means when all of the pictures actually showed fine before...

Cheers!
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Old 01-11-2012, 02:39 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by day_trippr View Post
Not sure what "fixed" means when all of the pictures actually showed fine before...

Cheers!
The images in the ops post do not show on my browser.

The entry for the first pix:
(IMG]http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v417/jasongoode/Brewing%20Beer/Brew%20Rig/brewrig.jpg[/IMG]
and this showed -

I changed it to this:
(IMG]http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v417/jasongoode/Brewing%20Beer/Brew%20Rig/th_brewrig.jpg[/IMG]
and this showed -

The difference? brewrig.jpg or th_brewrig.jpg

Anyway - sorry. Was just trying to help. That'll not happen again.
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Last edited by P-J; 01-11-2012 at 02:45 PM. Reason: fix
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