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Old 03-05-2010, 12:09 AM   #11
willynilly
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With HERMS you could actually leave the heat on all the time in the exchanger and then just kick the pump of and on instead of leaving the pump on all the time and kicking the heat off and on.
Um, but wouldnt you then start pumping say, 190F wort into your mash when the pump turned on? Where exactly would you put your temp. probe in that system? Bottom of the mash where it is 150F? Middle where it is 165F? Or the very top where it is 190F?
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Old 03-05-2010, 12:13 AM   #12
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yes, the first blast of wort that came in would be hot, but there wouldn't be that much of it, and who says you have to maintain that at 190*F? You could keep your exchanger water at whatever temp you wanted (170*F or whatever).

I am no expert on this style of HERMS, so I don't know where the optimal probe placement is in the tun.

I'm just about to build mine, and am going to go with an always-on pump and cycled heat.

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Old 03-05-2010, 12:19 AM   #13
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yes, the first blast of wort that came in would be hot, but there wouldn't be that much of it, and who says you have to maintain that at 190*F? You could keep your exchanger water at whatever temp you wanted (170*F or whatever).

I am no expert on this style of HERMS, so I don't know where the optimal probe placement is in the tun.

I'm just about to build mine, and am going to go with an always-on pump and cycled heat.
Right, but...

If your HEX water is hotter than your MLT target, you will always end up with temp stratification, as you have effectively removed any and all temp. control. You are dumping wort that is 160F, or 170F into a mash that is targeted at 150F lets say. It would be impossible to have an accurate and homogeneous temp.

If you are controlling the temp of the HLT anyway, which you must, it is pointless to control temp. with cycling a pump.
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Old 03-05-2010, 01:25 AM   #14
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My setup is still temporary until I fine tune things a bit. Its a HERMS with a separate heat exchanger. I'm using and BCS-460 to control the output temp of the Wort that is being recirculating. It works great for a steady mash temp and a very clear wort. Sucks to raise the temp. If I run too fast, I will stick the mash.

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Old 03-05-2010, 01:51 AM   #15
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The BCS has 6 PIDs built in, it is the size of a wallet.
Ok, but you said your control box has 6 outputs and 10 SSRs... I am just trying to understand how your system works. Seems like a lot of stuff in that box, so I must not be understanding your full rig operation.
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Old 03-05-2010, 01:56 AM   #16
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Well, in the examples I saw (it may have been here, or just a google search result) the wort constantly cycled during the mash, and the HLT temps were set to just a couple degrees above your target mash temp. The pump runs all the time, and the burner kicks on when necessary to keep the water in your HLT just warm enough to recirculate wort to maintain your mash temps.

On a side note, do most people use their HERMS coil in the HLT to run cold water through and use as a wort chiller once the wort has been transferred from the brew kettle, or is the common thing to do to use a counterflow chiller AFTER the brew kettle? I would think if you already essentially had a wort chiller built into your HLT, that would be the logical thing to do?

I'm just trying to visualize this all in my head - I'm not as handy with drafting or Visio diagrams as some of you are! I've seen some nice schematics!

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Old 03-05-2010, 02:01 AM   #17
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People do things in a number of ways. I personally am trying to keep the costs and pile of equipment to a minimum, so my copper coil will serve double duty to heat circulated wort during the mash and then to cool wort after the boil.

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Old 03-05-2010, 02:30 AM   #18
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Another question - cleaning?

Do you pretty much just heat or boil plan water and circulate it through your lines and coils in the same method you did for brewing? If you're circulating wort and then running cold water through the same lines for chilling, I would think you'd likely have some residue to address?

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Old 03-05-2010, 04:11 AM   #19
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Right, but...
If you are controlling the temp of the HLT anyway, which you must, it is pointless to control temp. with cycling a pump.
Hardly pointless, if you want to use the HERMS to step up the mash. The only reason to do it the way you're saying would be to simply maintain the mash temp. When you want to raise the temp of the mash, you want the delta T (temp difference between HL and Mash) to be high.
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Old 03-05-2010, 05:29 AM   #20
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Another question - cleaning?

Do you pretty much just heat or boil plan water and circulate it through your lines and coils in the same method you did for brewing? If you're circulating wort and then running cold water through the same lines for chilling, I would think you'd likely have some residue to address?
Seems like if you let hot water run through the IC for a couple of min right after the mash you shouldn't have too much problem with residue.
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