The Great Bottle Opener Giveaway

Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > DIY Projects > Three tier Brew Rig Liquid Distribution System

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 03-03-2009, 05:42 PM   #1
ClutchDude
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Austin, TX
Posts: 421
Liked 4 Times on 3 Posts
Likes Given: 2

Default Three tier Brew Rig Liquid Distribution System

Anyone who uses a three tier brew rig knows the somewhat worried idea of having 7-8 gallons of scalding liquid in the air, with only lengthy hoses to distribute.

With the propane delivery already working fine, I'm thinking that high temperature hosing beverage hosing + quick disconnects + a bunch of ball valves + 20' of 1/2" copper tubing + ton of solder & flux = a good distribution system for your liquids.

Below is a paintshop-tastic plan of the system. The black lines represent copper tubing. I'll try throwing together something more professional/user friendly tonight.



Here's the brew showplan:
Notes: A Keggle or Cooler will be under each triangle and it's ball valve hooked to the QD. To connect this to the QD, a high-temp beverage hose with proper fittings are used. I'm 99% sure I don't need a vents but someone may point out I need them.

1. Attach water source (Filtered hose water) to bottom QD.

2. Filling the HLT- All valves but #2, #4 and # 7 are closed, water is forced to the very top. Fill HLT with needed water.


3. Disconnect water source. Open Valve #1 to drain any water in the system. Heat HLT to needed temp.


4. HLT hits needed temperature. Close #1, #2,#4, #7. Open HLT, #8, #9 to prewarm mash tun then mash grains. Close HLT when done.



EDIT: Add phots, so splitting post.

__________________

Landed In Texas.
Primary 1: Blonde?(9/14/2013)
Primary 2: Empty
Sanke madness!
Sanke Spiral Ring Installing, Sanke Coupler diassembly, Keggle Heatshield, Sanke fitting to Soda kegs

Last edited by ClutchDude; 03-03-2009 at 08:48 PM. Reason: Photosize, Nit picking....
ClutchDude is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 03-03-2009, 08:20 PM   #2
ClutchDude
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Austin, TX
Posts: 421
Liked 4 Times on 3 Posts
Likes Given: 2

Default

5. Mash over! Open Mash tun, #6 and #5, collecting Vorlauf (first 2 qts) to recycle, allowing rest into Kettle.


6a. Hopefully, you put enough water in you HLT and can simply pull your sparge water from that, at the proper temperature of course. All that's needed is to close the MLT valve and open the HLT valve, letting the sparge water flow in.


6b. You DIDN'T get enough water. Reconnect water source. Close #5, #6, #8, #9 and open #2, #4, #7. Sure, you MIGHT get some mash wort, but not enough to affect the sparge water. Heat water, then reverse the last opening process-close #2, #4, #7, and open #5, #6, #8, #9 . Then go to 6a.


7. Since this system is setup for batch sparge, simply repeat mash process. Open HLT valve, closing when you've got the water. Open MLT when you've sparged.


One last post to get the photos!

__________________

Landed In Texas.
Primary 1: Blonde?(9/14/2013)
Primary 2: Empty
Sanke madness!
Sanke Spiral Ring Installing, Sanke Coupler diassembly, Keggle Heatshield, Sanke fitting to Soda kegs

Last edited by ClutchDude; 03-03-2009 at 08:34 PM. Reason: Photo size
ClutchDude is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 03-03-2009, 08:23 PM   #3
ClutchDude
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Austin, TX
Posts: 421
Liked 4 Times on 3 Posts
Likes Given: 2

Default

Last one...
8. Your runnings are collected in the kettle! Time to boil! Close all valves up.


9a. Last 5-10 minutes of boil, hook your CFC up to the bottom QD. Open valves on kettle, #3 and #2 to allow boiling wort to sanitize the system. This MIGHT be too much wort out of the keggle. Collect and return. Close Kettle valve.


9b. As an alternative, why not just use your MLT/HLT to sanitize? Add water and star san to your HLT or MLT.


Connect your CFC to the bottom QD.
Then open the valve to whichever tun you utilized.


10 Boils done! open kettle valve, allowing it to circulate through the CFC collect into your fermenter.



11. System sanitizing time! Empty MLT and kettle when cooled. Rinse them down and then reconnect all hoses. Add star san to HLT at the very top. Close all valves but the initial ones, #2, #4 and #7. Connect your water source and fill HLT with water, mixing the star san. After disconnecting the water source, open #1 to empty the system. Close all valves.

After this, open each level of valves, first #9, #8, #7, #6. Let it sit, then open #5, #4, #3. After sitting, #2 and #1. All excess water will drain out via the bottom discharge. Keep in mind this only the SECOND TIME #1 opens.

Stuff something into the 4 open air pipes and store your tower away!

Caveats:
1. I'm not sure valves #9, #6, and #3 are even needed. With the valves already on the vessels, nothing enters the hosing. However, any liquid flowing down may fill that pipe all the way to the QD. But it should empty anyways as the pressure decreases. Then again, that's if I use the socket side here....

2. The bottom discharge could be eliminated if you had a hose with a QD fitting. One more thing to lose though...

3. Even with being sanitized, you have no way to air it out. bad stuff grows in the dark and wet. You might need to preclean the system before using or perhaps attach an air compressor to blow it clean.

4. Need to attach to tower (a concern if you don't have a beefy tower you can screw it to.)

5.The biggest problem: Can you honestly clean the copper enough to keep odd tastes from cropping up? If not, you're looking at using a LOT of high temp hosing.

6. One hose infection can affect the entire system.

Good things over current 3 hose/3 valves system.
1. upgrades to fly sparge easily.
2. No hoses can slip out, resulting in scalding, lost water, or precious wort.
3. Eyes automation, replacing valves with solenoids and temperature sensors.
4. MUCH easier to get water to HLT and to chill wort.
5. Pressures not a worry, since the three-tier already allows liquids to fall. The only pressure needed is your source water when filling the HLT.

So that's my plan. Probably over-engineered/too complex/dangerous/waste of money. I'll leave that to you guys to point out, so let me hear them.

__________________

Landed In Texas.
Primary 1: Blonde?(9/14/2013)
Primary 2: Empty
Sanke madness!
Sanke Spiral Ring Installing, Sanke Coupler diassembly, Keggle Heatshield, Sanke fitting to Soda kegs

Last edited by ClutchDude; 03-03-2009 at 09:34 PM. Reason: Nitpicking more...
ClutchDude is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 03-03-2009, 08:28 PM   #4
IrregularPulse
Hobby Collector
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
IrregularPulse's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 42,000
Liked 2747 Times on 2698 Posts
Likes Given: 111

Default

What?
.....


The pics are really to small beyond the first and maybe try drawing in sketchup. I've got clue after reading that post what you're trying to do. Is it 3 seperate vessels?



ok I admit I stopped reading after step 3. Not the most user friendly instructions/diagrams.

__________________
Tap Room Hobo

I should have stuck to four fingers in Vegas. :o - marubozo

Last edited by IrregularPulse; 03-03-2009 at 08:31 PM.
IrregularPulse is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 03-03-2009, 08:40 PM   #5
ClutchDude
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Austin, TX
Posts: 421
Liked 4 Times on 3 Posts
Likes Given: 2

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by IrregularPulse View Post
What?
.....


The pics are really to small beyond the first and maybe try drawing in sketchup. I've got clue after reading that post what you're trying to do. Is it 3 seperate vessels?



ok I admit I stopped reading after step 3. Not the most user friendly instructions/diagrams.
Fixed the photo size.

Yes, it's three separate containers, in a tower configuration like bdavanza's rig. , Except a littler taller and a little more space between each level.


Imagine a Keggle under the top and the bottom triangles and a cooler under the middle.
__________________

Landed In Texas.
Primary 1: Blonde?(9/14/2013)
Primary 2: Empty
Sanke madness!
Sanke Spiral Ring Installing, Sanke Coupler diassembly, Keggle Heatshield, Sanke fitting to Soda kegs
ClutchDude is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 03-03-2009, 08:46 PM   #6
Dog House Brew
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Dog House Brew's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Indiana
Posts: 927
Liked 9 Times on 9 Posts
Likes Given: 2

Default

Deos it really need to be so complex to gravity feed liquid? If your structure is stable, I have no problem with having vessles any where. Just me. I would get a pump to recirc and chill. Use it to pump to fermenter. Just too much thought for a simple problem.

__________________
Dog House Brew is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 03-03-2009, 09:09 PM   #7
ClutchDude
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Austin, TX
Posts: 421
Liked 4 Times on 3 Posts
Likes Given: 2

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dog House Brew View Post
Deos it really need to be so complex to gravity feed liquid?
Oh heavens no. The system I have now works well enough.

But what sort of brewer WOULDN'T take a chance to complicate his brew rig if only to make things more efficient or awesome?

However, if it turns out that I'm doing something stupid in this plan, I fully expect to get called out on it. It'd be better to hear y'all embarrass me or point out flaws than to suffer a tragedy on brew day.
__________________

Landed In Texas.
Primary 1: Blonde?(9/14/2013)
Primary 2: Empty
Sanke madness!
Sanke Spiral Ring Installing, Sanke Coupler diassembly, Keggle Heatshield, Sanke fitting to Soda kegs
ClutchDude is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 03-04-2009, 12:46 AM   #8
HomebrewJeff
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Lincoln Park, MI
Posts: 300
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by ClutchDude View Post
But what sort of brewer WOULDN'T take a chance to complicate his brew rig if only to make things more efficient or awesome?
Well, I am all for modifying your rig, (In fact, I actually enjoy modifying my system more than brewing!! ).

I see what you are trying to accomplish, but I guess I'm not really seeing the benefit based on the cost, especially the ball valves. On my system I use a hose to fill the HLT, I have a copper -> cpvc drain that goes into the mash... and then a hose going to the kettle from the mlt. It's three valves + the water source, very easy to clean, and it's very simple to follow. I think if I had to do this everytime, I would find excuses not to brew:
Quote:
6b. You DIDN'T get enough water. Reconnect water source. Close #5, #6, #8, #9 and open #2, #4, #7. Sure, you MIGHT get some mash wort, but not enough to affect the sparge water. Heat water, then reverse the last opening process-close #2, #4, #7, and open #5, #6, #8, #9 . Then go to 6a.
__________________
HomebrewJeff is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 03-04-2009, 02:13 AM   #9
ClutchDude
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Austin, TX
Posts: 421
Liked 4 Times on 3 Posts
Likes Given: 2

Default

The thing I'm aiming for is to have one pipe handling all of the plumbing duties of the brew process. To me, it's like a great game of pipe dream. Turning a valve takes, what, 2 seconds?

Heck, if I had the cash, I'd go the solenoid route and make it all push button, with the eventual hopes of automating even that.

I am thinking of isolating the MLT to Kettle line, removing two valves and making 6b more like flipping two switches. I'll sleep on it tonight and revise it tomorrow morning to reflect a few changes.

__________________

Landed In Texas.
Primary 1: Blonde?(9/14/2013)
Primary 2: Empty
Sanke madness!
Sanke Spiral Ring Installing, Sanke Coupler diassembly, Keggle Heatshield, Sanke fitting to Soda kegs
ClutchDude is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 03-04-2009, 02:50 AM   #10
bsay
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Fort Collins
Posts: 574
Liked 3 Times on 3 Posts
Likes Given: 1

Default

That's a lot of disconnects and valves. Why not just have the water go into the HLT, connect the HLT to the MLT, MLT to the Boil Kettle, and have a drain on the boil kettle for to the fermenter? If you want to have a CFC, then add a valve and splitter (or QD) to the water line so it can be connected to the CFC.

No offense to your setup, it just seems to be more expensive and complicated that it should be.

__________________

Check out my Homebrewery Virtual Tour!

Who says you can't brew all-grain indoors?
Brewing 2.5 gal batches with a 2gal cooler MLT in my cramped apartment. Pictures coming soon!

Ask me about my Keezer/2.5 gal brew setup!

bsay is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Reply


Quick Reply
Message:
Options
Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Single tier brew system how many pumps? xxdcmast DIY Projects 19 07-12-2011 07:25 AM
How to monitor liquid transfer amounts in a 3-tier system stoutaholic DIY Projects 9 03-14-2009 05:51 PM
Is the Alcohol Distribution System in the US Flawed? Austin_ General Beer Discussion 26 01-12-2009 04:43 PM
Gas beam for single tier Brew system... dWiGhT-TX Equipment/Sanitation 1 09-20-2008 08:32 PM
Three Tier Distribution System: Good or Bad? benko Commercial Brew Discussion 4 08-20-2008 09:57 PM