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Old 01-28-2011, 03:20 AM   #1
dtfeld
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Default DT's Conical Build

Bought a 15 gal fully draining Ace Rotomold "inductor tank" from www.spraysmarter.com for $63 deliver to Georgia. Couldn't resist! Ordered Monday, here Wednesday, good communications from Landry.

The first order of business is to build the dump/racking valves. I'm thinking of a little different appraoch in that I'm not going to add a racking valve to the tank by drilling/bulkhead etc. at the bottom of the tank.

Instead, I'm going to build as the following pics show, but before I do, looking for any feedback both pro and con.

The pictures are upside down sitting on my bench, but the idea is this. There is a reducer from 1-1/2" FPT tank threads to 1-1/4" PVC. Ive installed a 1-1/4" PVC tee directly below the tank with a 3/8" ball valve for racking/sampling. Below that is 1" ball valve for dumping/collecting. There is about 6 oz of volume below the racking valve and above the dump valve that will be lost when transfering to the cornies.

I'll use the dump valve in a traditional way making several trub/yeast dumps over the course of the fermentation (making sure the small racking valve doesn't get clogged by "bleeding" it), and would expect that at the end of fermentation, there would only be a minimal amount of yeast left on the top on the dump valve's ball. Now all I have to do is open the racking valve to transfer clear beer to the corny. Chose a 3/8" for the racking to force a slow flow rate as to not disturb any risidual yeast, and I expect to loose the volume between the bottom of the racking valve and the dump valve.

A few other thoughts...

1. Painting the outside - Has anyone painted these to reduce light infiltration? I was going to mask off the graduations at to be able to see the contents/volume and paint a nice color. I'm mostly concerned about an off flavor permeating the plastic and tainting the beer. Would this go away with time/soaking?

2. Thoughts on how to get that plastic odor out? Soak? With what?? Water? Star San? PBW?

3. PVC Cement - Is the purple primer/ clear cement OK to use? Is there another cement to use. I've always used this stuff for drain pipe, never potable water, but no indications on the lables. I think the medical word would call this an "off lable" application.

Have at it! Thanks.

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Old 01-28-2011, 04:39 AM   #2
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It's always nice to see these.

1. I think paint fumes are permeable through plastic. Maybe cover with duct tape?
2. Soak the whole thing with oxyclean, maybe?
3. I suggest silicone.

I also suggest 3-piece SS ball valves.

What are your thoughts about...

1. A stand
2. Fermentation control

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Old 01-28-2011, 11:47 AM   #3
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I have a roughly 3'x4' space that I plan to make into a fermentation/lager chamber. If this works, I plan 2 conicals with valves about 4' off ground, each in a separate compartment. Below would be lager chamber cooled by 5000 btu ac ( got one off showroom floor for $50). I'll pipe cold air up so each conical can be independently temp controlled

Transfer to the conical via pump, and if i can seal these, gonna try pressure transfer to cornies

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Old 01-28-2011, 01:48 PM   #4
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I love the idea of these plastic conicals but, for the price, I worry about scratches. I try to replace my buckets every year, so investing $150 in parts for a plastic conical doesn't make a lot of sense to me.

Is there some way to make the interior of the plastic conical more scratch resistant without making it less food safe?

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Old 01-28-2011, 02:21 PM   #5
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I'm planning to CIP. Use PBW at recommended concentration after ferment complete, rinse and let dry. May have to use a brush on the tough residue, but plastic on plastic should not scratch. Will use exact same process to santitize prior to wort transfer with Star San.

Reminds me anybody have a source for a small CIP ball?

I dont see a need to scrub these at all and if it really bothered me, I can always replace. Even if I replaced every year it would take about 10 years to equal the price of a 14.5 SS. I've had some of my buckets for 10 years +, so I'm not really concerned.

My biggest concern is the materials imparting an off flavor, hence I'm going to build 1 and see how it goes. Most people on here (including some commercial outfits have used these to great success), so I'm willing to give it a go. Basically for about $300, I'll have a dual/independant fermenters and a lager chest capable od holding about 12+ cornies.

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Old 01-28-2011, 03:41 PM   #6
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I wouldn't worry about light infiltration, that plastic should inhibit most of it, plus, if the conical is in a fermentation chamber you shouldn't have a problem.

You could rinse it really well w/ oxiclean, rinse with water, then you could pour a few cans of cheap beer in there to see if the plastic absorbs the odors from it. After a few batches you prob won't have any issues anyway.

Plastic will scratch plastic, esp if you use standard carboy brushes with the hard plastic bristles. They make a brush for Better Bottles that's made of really soft plastic that would prob be OK to use, otherwise you could just use a soft rag or washcloth to scrub the really stuck-on stuff; CIP may be all you need tho.

Good luck, post more pix when it's done.

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Old 01-28-2011, 07:04 PM   #7
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Made the rack to hold the Fermenters this afternoon. Still have to add cut outs for the cooling/return ducts. Planning 3-4" pvc.

Cold will go from bottom of the lager chamber (coldest) to the top of the fermentation chamber and hopefully sink from there. Return will go from the top of the fermentation chamber to the top of the lager chamber.

Gonna fill it with water and see if I have any leaks. Then let it soak.

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Old 01-28-2011, 07:06 PM   #8
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One other thing I noticed about these Ace Rotomold tanks...they are graduated up to 16.5 gallons.

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Old 01-30-2011, 06:03 PM   #9
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Default 15 Gal Open Flow

There are so many uses for these Ace tanks. We are a spray parts company, but have recently seen a demand for the Ace open flow tanks through the home brew markets. I have provided a link to a small selection of what tanks we offer and if you see something we don't have please give us a call and we can get our hands on it.

Ace Tanks

Thanks,

SpraySmarter.com

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Old 01-30-2011, 06:46 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dtfeld View Post
Made the rack to hold the Fermenters this afternoon. Still have to add cut outs for the cooling/return ducts. Planning 3-4" pvc.

Cold will go from bottom of the lager chamber (coldest) to the top of the fermentation chamber and hopefully sink from there. Return will go from the top of the fermentation chamber to the top of the lager chamber.

Gonna fill it with water and see if I have any leaks. Then let it soak.
Whoa, you're building a fermentation room? Sweet!
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