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-   -   Hell on Earth Wort Chiller (http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f51/hell-earth-wort-chiller-73315/)

beerthirty 07-22-2008 03:57 PM

Hell on Earth Wort Chiller
I mentioned my plans to modify my chiller in another thread and said I would post results. Ater the beer evaporated I realized that the other thread was an IC thread so decided to post here. My ambient temps run about 105* and tap temps are 85* making it difficult to cool the wort fast enough for a good cold break or get to pitch temps within a reasonable amount of time(was taking 1 hour to reach 80* which was not satisfactory). this pic is after the build http://i287.photobucket.com/albums/l...1/DSCN2274.jpg

I built it in a bucket to make it easier to move around and to contain the ice. A 25' coil of 3/8" tubing(secondary coil) was placed in the bottom and one end passed through a grommeted hole(outlet). I lowered the CFC around the secondary and pushed the inlet and outlet cooling hoses through the bucket and clamped them in place. Then clamped a tube from the wort outlet on the CFC to the inlet on the secondary coil. The whole bucket sits below the kettle so it can gravity flow through both coils(although I use a pump on the outlet side to pull the wort clear of the coils). Both coils flow top to bottom to help gravity/ siphon effect. crushed ice will be poured into the middle and outside the secondary coil(ice will be added as needed, I don't plan on more than 20 lbs.) The cooled wort will come out the red capped tube on the bottom right of the pic. this pic is after testing showing the remaining ice from 18 lbs of crushed ice http://i287.photobucket.com/albums/l...1/DSCN2277.jpg
This mornings ambient was a cool blissful 96* and tap temp was running 82* During testing I let it gravity flow for the first 4 gallons and used the pump for the next 4 gallons. The water(wort) temp going in was 210* throughout the test. During gravity flow the temp started at 40*then settled at 54*. when the pump was turned on at full flow the temp climbed to 78*. I was able to reduce the full flow temp to 68* by rocking the bucket to help settle the ice around the secondary coil to get more contact between the melting ice and coil. The time to drain 8 gallons of water through the chiller was 12 minutes. This time will be reduced because I plan on using a pump instead of splitting between gravity and pump. I tried gravity to see the difference in temps that forced flow vs gravity would make. Results: the Hell on Earth Wort Chiller works great! It will allow boiling to pitch temps in a single pass under 15 mins for 10 gallon batches using only 2 bags of ice. :ban:
Draining the chiller after use will be simple. Disconnect the small hose connecting the primary and secondary coils, turn the chiller upside down and blow air through the wort oulet and the coolant inlet. I hope this helps any who have problems cooling their wort.

Bobby_M 07-22-2008 04:05 PM

If you top off the bucket with water after filling with ice, you'll get better performance. You essentially only get partial contact area between the copper and ice otherwise.

Philip1993 07-22-2008 04:11 PM

I think I get it. Is this a CFC and an reverse IC (wort inside) back to back in a bucket?

Bobby_M 07-22-2008 04:33 PM

That's what I gather from the pic although the exposed copper could also be a prechiller for the coolant before hitting the CFC though it would be less efficient.

beerthirty 07-22-2008 04:54 PM

Bobby, thanks for your input. I thought about adding water but wanted to make sure that I wouldn't be using a lot of ice. I was worried that the water would melt the ice before the job was done. With the amount of ice left over that fear was unfounded and I will be adding some water next time.
pldoolittle yes I guess you could call the secondary a reverse IC. the wort flows from top to bottom in the CFC, then straight up to the top of the secondary coil(reverse IC)where it flows through the coil on the way back down. the plumbing idea was two fold. 1)with one short uphill travel less wort would get trapped in the coils(the weight of the wort going down in the secondary would pull it up the short straight uphill. 2) as the ice melted it would collect cold water around the lower portion of the secondary coil reducing the wort temp further.
As Bobby mentioned it will probably be even more efficient with ice water bath vs just ice.

Brew-Happy 07-22-2008 05:02 PM


Without a scale I can not judge dimensions, but would a frozen 2L bottle ice block(bottle cut away) fit into the center of your copper coil?

This might help on the amount of ice.

olllllo 07-22-2008 05:12 PM

In the end, you actually want all of the ice (potential energy) to convert all of that coldness to the wort.

In an ideal picture perfect world, your wort would be at it's desired temp and all of he ice would be melted. You would have used the least amount of ice to reach your target and would be 100% efficient on your given piece of equipment.

Obviously that's easier said than done, so it is better to have a little left in the tank than not (unmelted ice).

Smaller cubes transmit their energy more quickly than blocks.

Also, consider uring salt.

Brew-Happy 07-22-2008 05:16 PM


Originally Posted by olllllo (Post 765480)

Also, consider uring salt.


Is this supposed to be USING salt or URINE salt? I can't imagine someone peeing in their wort chiller, but hey whatever works :D

olllllo 07-22-2008 05:20 PM

If you could pee at 40, your problems in wort chilling would be over.

beerthirty 07-22-2008 05:32 PM

olllllo said it all there. I dont think there will be a need for salt because I can hit desired temps in a single pass with ice left over. It is as close as the kitchen though if problems arise. next time I do plan on putting 6" of water in the bottom of the bucket with the crushed ice. Instead of rocking the bucket to settle the ice I might just put the stir spoon inside the secondary coil to push the ice down.

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