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Old 02-11-2007, 09:04 PM   #1
Brewpilot
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Aug 2006
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I am building a new 10 gallon mash tun from a beverage cooler. I have heard of multiple issues with the plastic false bottoms not being rigid enough, AND that there have been issues with them being too bouyant and floating into the mash. Anyone have any preferences?? I bulit my first false bottom for my 5 gal... but plan to buy all of my new components.

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Old 02-11-2007, 11:02 PM   #2
runhard
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Apr 2006
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Brewpilot,
For my first gravity fed system I made a stainless steel false bottom out of a perforated stainless sheet. My father-in-law got me the sheet as he works for a company that does all kinds of stuff with steel including SS. www.thomasnet.com would be a good place to search for something local. I simply cut mine to fit the rectangular Rubbermaid and lifted it off the bottom with some 1.5 inch CPVC spacers. I drilled a hole it the center and then attached a tube from the drain to the false bottom.

 
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Old 02-12-2007, 02:19 AM   #3
ajf
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I've never had a problem with the rigidity of the 5g Phalse Bottom, but I can't speak for the 10g size.
Whether you have plastic or stainless, you should add foundation water till it is above the outlet tube, and then bleed a small amount of water out of the spigot before adding any grains. This will fill the outlet with water and eliminates any buoyancy problems, but more importantly prevents airlocks from causing a stuck sparge.

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Old 02-12-2007, 03:18 AM   #4
Brewpilot
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Aug 2006
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Yeah, I have always added my strike water, then added grains, so foundation has never been an issue. I am going to donate my 5 gal system to a friend that is interested in beginniing homebrewing. Lucky duck!!

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Old 02-12-2007, 04:08 AM   #5
RichBrewer
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I've never had a problem with the rigidity of my Phil's Phalse Bottom but you are correct when you say it floats. I have to hold it down with my stir spoon when I add the grain. I've had a few issues with grains getting under the false bottom and clogging the valve. I'm thinking about getting rigid copper pipe to connect the false bottom to the outlet. This should hold it down better.
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Old 02-12-2007, 08:00 PM   #6
Brewpilot
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That is why I am looking into the SS bottom... I have enough issues when I brew!

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Old 02-12-2007, 08:19 PM   #7
Lil' Sparky
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I use one of these in a converted keg. It's came with a rubber o-ring to hold it in place. Needless to say, I quickly discovered that didn't work. I just got a SS hose clamp and use that to hold it down in place, and it works like a champ. Just something to consider...

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Old 02-12-2007, 09:39 PM   #8
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I have the SS false bottoms for my 5 gallon and my 10 gallon coolers. They work great, no problems with them at all.
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Old 02-13-2007, 08:40 PM   #9
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Well, I have not been so lucky. I switched to a ten gallon rubbermaid mashtun with a stainless steel false bottom connected to a weldless fitting with high temp tubing: I have had three stuck mashes in a row. The bottom is not perfectly domed and I think grain is getting under it when I stir grains into the foundation water. It has been a bit of a nightmare. My old system had a fitted plastic bottom that sat over the drain fitting, so this was never an issue. I am debating returning the false bottom for a better fitting one or maybe just going to a bazooka T, although I do not batch sparge...
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Old 02-13-2007, 10:26 PM   #10
The Pol
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Speaking of the bazooka T... anyone know what the efficiency is like with a mesh screen like the bazooka tubes as compared to the false bottom when fly sparging???

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