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Old 02-28-2012, 01:56 PM   #1
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Default Modifying a stock pot for kettle cooling (with illustrations)

Hello!

So, I have drafted up a concept of what I am planning.

pottle.gif

As you can see, it is a large stock pot that has had a thermometer, cooling coil and siphon tube modified onto it.

I bought four glass carboys, but then found out later that they were not capable of being heated to the temperatures found after mashing. Basically, if I dump my hot mash into these carboys they will shatter.

The solution it seems is to create a way to cool the mash before putting it into the carboys. The problem then becomes how to avoid contamination.

My idea is to put a glass siphoning tube into my mashing pot. The mash will be brought to a full boil. Then, I will use the cooling coil to bring it down to a reasonable temperature. After that, I will use the siphon to draw it into the carboy(s) without exposing it to contamination.

The carboys have rubber stops for lids. I plan to put a glass siphoning tube into them just like the mash pot.

The first step will be to put four holes into the stock pot:
1.gif
There are three at the top. Two are for the cooling coil and the other is for the siphoning tube. The one on the side is for the thermometer.

Next, I will put rubber stops into the holes to seal them off:
2.gif
This should form a pretty decent seal.

Finally, I will put small holes into the rubber stops and force my instruments through them:

4.gif
4lid.gif
It should all be pretty secure at that point. I figure if I draw a siphon and quickly pop the siphoning line onto the glass tube from the carboy, I should be able to avoid much contamination.

Does anyone have any ideas or suggestions? I want to add some kind of filter at the bottom to collect the grain and such but haven't worked that out yet.

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Old 02-28-2012, 03:15 PM   #2
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I think you may have your terminology mixed up...or I'm just confused because of a lack of coffee so far today.

Are you referring to the wort when talking about dumping it into your carboys? You wouldn't dump the mash in, you would mash out and drain the wort out of the grains to boil. Then cool, then transfer to your carboy.

Your built in wort chiller looks good. There are a couple of other designs of ones that are built in. You can probably just do a search to look some up. Most people have a port towards the bottom of the pot to transfer the cooled wort to their fermentors of choice. Good luck and keep posting your progress...it could be useful for someone else.

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Old 02-28-2012, 06:24 PM   #3
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I'm sort of lost as well...

The glass carboys are what your cooled wort will be put into so the yeast can ferment it into Beer.

Yes, you have to be careful with your sanitation when cooling the wort before putting it into the carboy, but I see a few issues with this design.

Unless this is also your brew kettle where the boil is taking place, you will have to transfer the boiling hot wort into this kettle.

If this is your brew kettle, I doubt the rubber stopper with the thermometer will be able to withstand the boiling of the wort. Not to mention the mess that will happen when it is knocked loose when stiring the wort.

Finally, having the pot uncovered should allow for a faster cooling and maybe even the last remains of DMS to escape. Not to mention keeping the wort moving somehow (stiring, whirlpooling) will allow the cooler to work more efficiently.

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Old 02-28-2012, 10:14 PM   #4
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It seems I had my terminology mixed up. To my credit, it was pretty late at night when I posted.

Yes, this will be the brew kettle, as well. I think the rubber stops will do just fine. They are auto-clavable science-grade stops. I pressure sterilized them last night before the post and they stood up just fine.

To keep the contents of the wort from spilling out, I will make the holes in the stock pot very small and then force a larger rubber stop in. The same applies when inserting the chiller and thermometer into the stops. I will put smaller holes and force the equipment in, to insure a solid fitting.

You know, I was thinking of adding some kind of stirring device and an additional hole for ventilation but had not put it into the design yet. When I get back from work this afternoon, new pictures will be uploaded with all the new bells and whistles.

Rswilson411, KurtB, thank you both for your input. It gave me a lot to think about and I know it will help insure the best final product.

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Old 02-28-2012, 11:38 PM   #5
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I don't think you want a lid on your brew kettle either. DMS is boiled off during the hour long boil and you want that to happen. Having a closed lid will cause it to condense back into the beer. Just to revisit the stopper issue one more time, a piece of metal under direct heat from a flame may still wind up being a harsher heat source than a pressure sterilization. I would test with water before going to the beer just to be safe. Looks like a really neat idea.

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Old 02-29-2012, 04:36 AM   #6
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I'm worried that pressure buildup in a closed design will blow those, not so much that the rubber would give out. Something to consider.

If at all possible, do a valve and dip tube at the bottom instead. Siphoning is another contamination risk (auto siphon helps). A whirlpool would be useful, but other than those modifications it looks fantastic! I'm impressed! Oh, and yes to ventilation. You typically lose a bit during boil, and you don't want pressure building. With ventilation your stoppers might even work as planned.

Keep up the good work, I have been following several of your threads and your resourcefulness is inspiring.

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Old 02-29-2012, 12:48 PM   #7
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Zepolmet,
I think I have come up with a solution that should be able to take care of all of it. It has a flappable lid. That way, I can keep it open during boil and then close it when I start the chill phase. Don't worry, I will run it with water for a good several hours before I even think about putting beer into it!

Joshua,
Another hole has been put into the design at the bottom. I think this system will really be able to do what I need. Actually, I have pretty much revamped the whole thing.

So, here is what I have now:

finalinternal.jpg

As is visible, I added the flap at the top and put an additional tube into the side near the bottom. The original siphoning tube is now going to be an intake. The one at the bottom will be connected to a water/sludge pump. That way, the water keeps flowing. The pump will then feed the worth back into the pot through the top.

Now, here is where it gets really interesting. I realized that I could then filter out the grains and such right after mashing by connecting another addition. Basically a little box with a valve intake at the top, a filter, and a valve out that would lead to the pump.

I then thought, hell, I could just put the grain bill into this at the beginning. Basically, I will lift the lid on this and fill it full of my grains/hops/etc. Then fill the mashing tub with water. After mashing, I will turn off the pump and clamp the line leading into the filter-box. Then, I will empty out the junk, unclasp the intake, turn on the pump and continue onto boiling the wort.

When it finishes boiling, I will connect the cooling apparatus to the sink faucet and let it run, after closing the top-flap. Once cooled, I will pitch the yeast into the system someplace, the filter-box or flap, and disconnect the line leading back into the pot.

Taking the line, I will connect it into the fermentation bottles' intakes and let it drain/siphon in.

Also, when I remove the grain, etceteras, I will fill the filter-box with water, to avoid oxidation.

final.jpg

Maybe this can help explain it all a bit better.

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Old 02-29-2012, 01:44 PM   #8
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I have no idea what you are trying to do here.

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Old 02-29-2012, 01:49 PM   #9
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Basically, I want to combine a mash tun and a wort kettle, all the while trying to make the system completely closable. When it comes time to cool down the wort, the system gets closed up to prevent contamination. Then, it is pumped into the fermenters when it is cooled.

The system would also make it very easy to dry hop and what not.

finalexplain.jpg

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Old 02-29-2012, 02:48 PM   #10
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I'm not entirely following your plan here, but I can offer one suggestion. Insert the stoppers from the inside. That way pressure actually seats them more tightly rather than pushing them out. Good luck.

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