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Old 03-16-2010, 12:59 AM   #1
lustreking
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Default HERMS HEX tubing diameter

I'm finally getting close to building my heat exchanger, and I had a question. I found a roll of 3/8" x 20' refrigeration tubing for $20. Will the 3/8" (OD, not ID) tubing be ok to use?

This will be a standalone HEX, not in my HLT. It will be in a 2 gallon beverage cooler with a 1500 watt water heater element.

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Old 03-17-2010, 02:08 PM   #2
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I believe mine is a 3/8" and it works like a charm. I think that the only problem would be going too big, not too small. The wort will heat up fast w/ copper anyway, and if it was really big the center of the wort flow may not heat fully but you'd still increase temps. But I'm no expert on heat transfer w/ respect to copper and beer wort, so ymmv

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Old 03-17-2010, 02:23 PM   #3
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I have about 10-12 feet of 1/2" in mine and will be looking to downsize to 20-25 ft of 3/8" this weekend. The 1/2" was tough to bend in a small enough diameter and I just couldn't fit more than 10 or 12 loops in my HEX.
A long, long time ago I tried 1/4" which failed miserably. Couldn't get enough flow through it to work.
3/8" seems about right.

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Old 03-17-2010, 02:42 PM   #4
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I decided to go with it. I bought the copper, then yesterday ordered all of the fittings to adapt the 3/8" OD tubing to 1/2" hard copper from McMaster.

I've ordered from them before, but every time I'm amazed. I ordered at 9:46am yesterday, it shipped by 10:30 am yesterday, and should be on my doorstep by the time that I get home from work today.

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Old 03-17-2010, 03:56 PM   #5
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Do you have part numbers for the fittings?

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Old 03-17-2010, 05:05 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bjornbrewer View Post
Do you have part numbers for the fittings?
This displays ok on my screen, but it's pretty wide. Hopefully it looks ok for you.


1 5520K29 2 Each Solder-joint Copper Tube Fitting For Water, Reducing Cplg W/ctr Stop 1/2" Sckt X 1/4" Sckt
2 5520K713 4 Each Solder-joint Copper Tube Fitting For Water, 90 Deg Short Elbow Tube End X Sckt, 1/2" Tube Size
3 5520K21 2 Each Solder-joint Copper Tube Fitting For Water, Female Adapter For 1/2" Tube Size, 1/2" Npt
4 6739K59 2 Each Hose Couplings For Coolant, Plug, 1/2" Nptf Male, 3/8" Coupling Size
5 5520K71 1 Each Solder-joint Copper Tube Fitting For Water, Tee, Sckt X Sckt X Sckt For 1/2" Tube Size
6 5520K44 1 Each Solder-joint Copper Tube Fitting For Water, Cap Socket End (female) For 1/2" Tube Size

Line 1 is the reduction coupling to go from the 3/8" refrigeration copper to 1/2 copper pipe.
Line 2 are street elbows to bring the hard piping vertically up from the coil, then horizontal when it exits the cooler
Line 3 are female 1/2" NPT fittings
Line 4 are for the quick connects that I use
Lines 5 and 6 I'm going to use to attach my thermocouple for the PID that will control the HEX.
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Old 03-17-2010, 05:47 PM   #7
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Thanks

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