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Old 07-25-2011, 12:27 AM   #1
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Default Copper heat exchanger from water heater... what is it good for?

Hey guys,

A buddy of mine replaced his water heater, but tore the old one apart to get at the copper for scrap before taking it to the dump. I got the heat exchanger from him for a couple of homebrews, and now I'm trying to decide what the best thing to do with it is.

I've attached a pic. In case it's too hard to see, the coil is all copper, and it has heat exchanging fins over the entire length. The entire HE is about 16" long and 4" in diameter.

It seems like it would be too small for an immersion chiller, although maybe I could use it as part of a counterflow chiller build? I was also thinking of using it as a pre-chiller for tap water going through a CFC or an immersion chiller.

What would you guys do with it? I'm pretty open to suggestions at this point, as I'm just making the jump from stovetop partial boils to propane burner full boils in a DIY keggle. I just need to build some sort of chiller before I do my first full boil.

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Old 07-25-2011, 12:38 AM   #2
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perhaps you could seal it into a piece of 6" PVC with hose fittings on it as a "sort of" counterflow chiller, I bet it would work very well with all of the fins on the copper. Now I gotta find a water heater to taer into...
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Old 07-25-2011, 01:22 AM   #3
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That coil is actually the water heating part of an oil boiler. I have one also and I never got around to using it. A long soak in double strength star san is a good start but I'd probably stick to using it as a prechill coil.
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