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Old 01-31-2012, 08:26 PM   #1
badhabit
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Default Single Tier RIMS with only two pots

I am starting to think that I can build a single tier, direct fired, RIMS using only two keggles. Maybe I am just behind the times and these are common but I don't see them and can't find them on this site. I would love to hear from anyone that has one or can tell me the errors of my thinking. I will gas fire but I am sure you could electric heat the same way. Here are my thoughts, what am I forgetting??? Use one keggle as the Mash Tun and the second as the Boil Kettle. Heat inital H20 in the MT and heat additional sparge H20 in the BK. Recycle through the MT applying direct heat to it durring the mash. Add sparge from the BK when ready and then return the whole batch to the BK for the boil. After the boil is finished recycle through a plate chiller back into the BK until temp is good and then run off into a fermenter. I would need only one March pump. I would have to move hoses so I would use quick connects and at this point do not see me ever automating. The foot print would obviously be 1/3 smaller and the cost would be substantially less. Again please let me know if you have one of these, what I have missed or any other ideas that you have.

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Old 01-31-2012, 08:47 PM   #2
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There are plenty of advocates and users of 2-vessel systems but they do have some downsides. The first thing is that there really is no sparging in a system like this. Once the wort/water becomes homogeneous across the two vessels, it is by definition "no sparge". The only thing this lets you do that a single vessel can't do is to maintain a thicker mash and make a larger batch than would fit in a single vessel of the same size.

If you read up on "no sparge", basically anything that can be said there applies. Lowered efficiency is one of the considerations, especially when it comes to big beers.

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Old 01-31-2012, 10:53 PM   #3
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Duh!!! I guess I missed that part about not mixing the sparge with the mash before it is darined to the BK So if I were to get a third Keggle and not heat it, I could drain hot sparge H20 into it from the BK and then from it into the MT. I would have a three pot system and would have a bigger footprint but I wouldn't need to have a heat source for that third pot, just heat a little above final sparge temp befor sparging into MT while draining into the BK. Or is it worth it, just get the third heat source and make it the HLT??? Any other thoughts?

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Old 01-31-2012, 11:02 PM   #4
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The third vessel would by definition be the HLT. I have had good results with no-sparge brewing. It really does reduce the hassle, and if you have your system dialed in, then you can still get good efficiencies (>70%). There is no reason a two-vessel system won't work, but if you are fly-sparging with three vessels, you will either need a two tier, or a pump. With single tier, you will need two pumps. These are all considerations you will have to make based on the space and resources you have. I have a two tiered system, and when the bucket heater I was using to heat the HLT fried, then I moved to no-sparge until I can get a water heater element installed in the HLT.

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Old 02-01-2012, 01:44 PM   #5
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I don't understand why I would need two pumps. I can't see a time when I would need to move or circulate water in two places at the same time. Why wouldn't one pump and quick disconnects work? What am I missing?

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Old 02-01-2012, 02:17 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by badhabit View Post
I don't understand why I would need two pumps. I can't see a time when I would need to move or circulate water in two places at the same time. Why wouldn't one pump and quick disconnects work? What am I missing?
For fly sparging you would need two pumps because you would be pumping from the HLT to the MLT and from the MLT to the BK at the same time.
Batch sparging would work with one pump and quick disconnects.
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Old 02-01-2012, 02:30 PM   #7
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If you're batch sparging you only need one pump. Move from MT to BK and then xfer sparge water from HLT to MT. If you're fly sparging, moving sparge water into the MT while simultaneously moving the same amount of liquid from the MT to the BK you would need 2 pumps on a single tier.

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Old 02-01-2012, 03:11 PM   #8
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When considering "no sparge", if the system has the ability to recirculate and heat at the same time, wouldn't ramping the wort up to sparge temp and continuing to recirculating for the sparge period essentially be a batch sparge?

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Old 02-01-2012, 03:12 PM   #9
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Got it, I'm a batch sparge guy so hadn't thought about fly. Back again the question from before of not heating the third tank, just using it to hold hot H20 for the sparge.

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Old 02-01-2012, 03:34 PM   #10
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Got it, I'm a batch sparge guy so hadn't thought about fly. Back again the question from before of not heating the third tank, just using it to hold hot H20 for the sparge.
I'm still waiting for my 10g kettle but I do have my MLT and HLT completed, so I can't speak from experience yet. Both are HD coolers with ball valves installed. The MLT has the braided SS mod and the HLT does not. My plan is to have the 2nd cooler hold the sparge water till ready.

I guess it's your preference more than anything. It'll probably be less work in the long run to have the 3rd burner but more expense up front.
I'ma cheap SOB so I'm good with moving H2O around if it saves me a some $.
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