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Old 02-21-2012, 08:11 PM   #1
zacc
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Default My square cooler MLT manifold design

Last year I needed a new MLT but couldn’t find any designs that were fairly cheap and met all my requirements. My previous MLT used a SS braid and due to various issues I wanted something different. I used the Coleman 70-Quart Xtreme Cooler and built a copper manifold. Here were my requirements for the manifold.

• Durable material
• Easily removable for cleaning
• Not possible to break apart while stirring
• Stays in place when dumping grain
• Layout to reduce channeling when fly sparging

I came up with a pivoting design that fits in the bottom just perfectly. The end pieces are soldered together to prevent it from breaking apart when in use. In order to reduce channeling I followed the specs recommended by John Palmer. To hold it down when in use, or when dumping the grain, I drilled a hole in the bottom and put a 3” SS screw through attached with a SS nut on the inside. I also used some high temp food grade silicone to ensure the MLT wouldn’t leak. I then use a SS washer and fly-nut to hold the manifold in place.

I’ve used this around 15 times now and am very happy with the results. I typically batch sparge so I can’t speak too much for its efficiency when fly sparging but I imagine it should be pretty good. Someday I may get another kettle and HERMS setup but until then this is working great!

mt-07-09-11-00046.jpg   mt-07-09-11-00052.jpg   mt-10-30-11-00165.jpg   mt-10-30-11-00163.jpg  
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Old 02-22-2012, 06:05 PM   #2
Ridebreck
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Exactly the same concept as the manifold I currently use. The pivot works great for ease of install and removal, though mine sometimes likes to come apart sideways at the pivot. To remedy, I took some bare copper ground wire from a strip of romex and use it as a quasi twist-tie to keep them together.

Cheers.

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Old 02-22-2012, 06:57 PM   #3
zacc
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Originally Posted by Ridebreck View Post
Exactly the same concept as the manifold I currently use. The pivot works great for ease of install and removal, though mine sometimes likes to come apart sideways at the pivot. To remedy, I took some bare copper ground wire from a strip of romex and use it as a quasi twist-tie to keep them together.

Cheers.
Yeah the pivot is the key to the design. In mine the ends are soldered together and the pivot piece is between two elbows so it can't come off, the first picture shows this pretty well.
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Old 02-28-2012, 12:32 AM   #4
DanseMacabre
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Zacc,

I'm about to build a MLT and this design is great. thanks. One question about the pivot. Based on your first pic, it seems the pivot "T" freely rotates around a section of tubing that has a hole in it (so pivot opening the hole in the pipe align when manifold lays flat). My question is whether you had to drill the hole in the section of cooper tubing, or if they sell sections of tubing with holes along the length of the tubing. Sorry if the wording of my question is confusing

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Old 02-28-2012, 01:42 AM   #5
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Zacc,

I'm about to build a MLT and this design is great. thanks. One question about the pivot. Based on your first pic, it seems the pivot "T" freely rotates around a section of tubing that has a hole in it (so pivot opening the hole in the pipe align when manifold lays flat). My question is whether you had to drill the hole in the section of cooper tubing, or if they sell sections of tubing with holes along the length of the tubing. Sorry if the wording of my question is confusing
The middle section is just a ½” copper tube with a hole drilled in it. The rotating “T” section around it is a standard ½” “T” that has been shortened slightly on both ends as well as hollowed out a little with a dremel tool to allow the middle section to fit through it freely.

I cut the slots in the four main sections with a jigsaw and also made a small guide to help keep the slots uniform.
mt-07-09-11-00044.jpg   mt-07-07-11-00041.jpg   mt-07-07-11-00039.jpg  
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