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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Equipment/Sanitation > Wort Cooling inside Copper tube
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Old 07-08-2011, 01:44 AM   #1
bassplayer142
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Default Wort Cooling inside Copper tube

Hi everyone, I would like to first thank everyone for participation in the site and the fact that this site exists for homebrewers new and old.

Me and my family are getting more serious into homebrewing, and my engineering knowledge and lack of time calls for more serious upgrades for more time and quality efficiency. We have been cooling wort the traditional way with a wort chiller and hose but I want to revamp this.

My strategy is to fix a valve to the bottom of our brewpot. Once the brew is done boiling I would open the valve and the wort would come through a tube to a pump. This pump would push the wort through a copper coil immersed inside a ice filled cooler or container. The goal is to have cooled wort immediately upon exiting the coil.

Some problems I have determined are as follows.

1. cleanliness and clogging problems in the copper coil and pump
2. Speed of flow vs exiting temperature (slower flow should definitely decrease the temperature more efficiently)
3. cost
4. Which pump? (I've looked into a few like the march 809 pump, but the price is steep).

Has anyone implemented this strategy before or have any knowledge whether it will work or not? Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!


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Old 07-08-2011, 01:49 AM   #2
MalFet
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What you are describing is basically a low-tech counterflow chiller, but with less effective heat transfer. You'll need to keep the ice bucket water moving around, either manually or with an aggressive bubbler.

Why do you need a pump? It sounds like you are trying to build a gravity driven system.


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Old 07-08-2011, 02:14 AM   #3
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Have a search for counter flow chiller or CFC, and also plate chillers. Basically what you want to do.
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Old 07-08-2011, 02:55 AM   #4
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I'm planning on doing this exact thing actually minus the pump though it will all be gravity driven.

Some things I have considered in the designing phase:
- smaller diameter copper tubing will allow for more surface area per volume of wort to cold water.
- you need something to filter out the hops so you do not clog the copper coils. I built a simple hop spider.
- flow rate can be made up for with longer coiling.
- cleaning and sanitizing the copper coils will be difficult. I'm thinking shooting boiling water through it before and after will be my best bet. maybe some sanitizing solution as well.
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Old 07-08-2011, 10:09 AM   #5
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Awesome, thanks for the help. Now I know a few names and that it works!
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Old 07-08-2011, 01:21 PM   #6
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Pick up a Plate Chiller, they are simply the most efficient way to get your wort down to pitching temps. CFC's are next in line, the advantage is ease of cleaning and not having to filter all your hops out before sending the wort through the chiller. You could also check out the Whirlpool Chiller, it's basically an immersion chiller with a recirculating arm and a pump used to keep everything constantly moving to drop your temps faster.
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Old 07-08-2011, 11:48 PM   #7
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Thanks everyone, I think the Plate chiller route is definately the best way to go since I won't need a pump or have to worry about more copper and ice... etc

Thanks again!
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Old 07-08-2011, 11:51 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bassplayer142 View Post
Thanks everyone, I think the Plate chiller route is definately the best way to go since I won't need a pump or have to worry about more copper and ice... etc

Thanks again!
Oh you don't need a pump, but you'll buy one in the future. Just give it time, you'll get sucked in to it just like all the rest of us.


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And I'd like to see my 1.080 beers ready from grain to glass in a week, and served to me by red-headed twin penthouse pets wearing garter belts and fishnet stockings, with Irish accents, calling me "master luv gun," but we can't always get what we want can we? :)
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