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Old 09-30-2013, 04:36 AM   #141
kevink
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I made a little progress on the HERMS conversion this weekend. I made a coil out of 50', 1/2" X .020" wall SS tubing and mounted it in the old keggle. Before coiling, I attached compression fittings and ball valves to each end of the tubing. The tubing was filled with water and coiled around a sixtel. No kinks! Everything else was pretty straightforward with the exception of turning the coil's 90 degree compression fittings into 77 degree compression fittings. This made the male NPT threads of the compression fittings perpendicular to the tangent of the coil and keg. Before cutting the fittings apart, I enlarged the passages from 0.368" to 0.453" to match the inside diameter of the coil and increase flow (I may whirlpool and chill through the HERMS coil). The BK goes under the knife next!








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Old 09-30-2013, 08:15 AM   #142
clearwaterbrewer
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Nice work, as always! Let us know how 50' of 1/2" tubing affects flow...

 
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Old 09-30-2013, 08:34 PM   #143
kevink
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Thanks! I tested flow through the coil today with cold water, a Little Giant 3-md-hc pump, and 3/8" id silicone tubing and saw 2.6 gpm. Hopefully it's enough for a good whirlpool. What flow rates have you seen with shorter coils?

 
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Old 09-30-2013, 08:59 PM   #144
clearwaterbrewer
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I had 5/8" x 25' copper in a keg for a 30 gallon mash, and it was a bit slow... so kinda apples to oranges... maybe port&polish the inside of your fittings and keep the elbows to a minimum... worst case is you can't do fast ramp up to mash out, but I am sure it will hold and ramp decently...

 
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Old 10-05-2013, 03:49 AM   #145
kevink
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I don't think I'll ever have to recirculate mash at 2.5 gpm for 10 gallon batches, so I should be OK!

I just finished my HERMS coil support. It's made of 1/16" SS rod that wraps around the coil. It looks like a long, skinny oval and is welded together on the outside of the coil (but not to the coil). From there, it makes a straight shot to the top rim of the keg where it's fastened with an 8-32 SS bolt. The support prevents the back side of the coil from sagging which has three benefits- It eliminates twisting of the HERMS tube at the compression fittings and keeps the coil perfectly level at all times to aid draining. It also adds a lot of strength to the assembly. Before adding it, I found that setting the HLT down on the ground or a table was enough to jar the coil and cause it to sag slightly. Overkill, maybe, but if it prevents leaks at the compression fittings, helps draining, and makes me not have to think about being super careful when moving the HLT, I'm all for it!






 
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Old 10-05-2013, 04:01 AM   #146
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You did a great job coiling that tubing! Why did you decide to support it with a rod from the top instead of a some kind of foot on the bottom?

 
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Old 10-05-2013, 04:39 AM   #147
kevink
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Thank you! Your setup is looking great, too! The coiling was not easy. The trick was filling the tubing completely with water and coiling it around a totally stationary object and not letting any part of the tubing move away from the thing you're coiling it around. See pic below.

I didn't go to the bottom with the support because the bottom of the keg is sloped toward the center. Any downward force would cause the foot to slide toward the center of the keg and cause the coil to drop which is exactly what I'm trying to prevent! A bolt would cure that, but I don't like the idea of a bolt below the liquid level. The bottom foot migrating toward the center of the keg would also present a twisting force to the coil if I attached the foot to more than one coil. If the HLT bottom was flat, I definitely would have supported it from the bottom. It would have been much easier and quicker to fab. Going to the top is also stronger than going to the bottom if the support rods are the same diameter. Imagine holding a thin metal rod between your hands. If you were to push it together you could probably make it bend and your hands would move toward each other. Now imagine trying to stretch it by moving your hands away from each other. Your hands are not going to move! I think the thin, top mounted support is the most elegant solution in this case.


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Old 10-05-2013, 11:36 AM   #148
clearwaterbrewer
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yeah, 2.5G/m is 4 minute turnover for a 10 gallon batch, maybe a bit slower for first runnings.. we were trying to do 30+ gallons.. If you find you need more, you may want to try separating the tube coils by one twist of wire each to lower boundary area, but guessing it would only get you a few percent increase.. your design is simple and elegant.. very nice.

 
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Old 10-07-2013, 03:44 AM   #149
kevink
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I just mounted the sight glass to the new BK. It's a 1/2" x 3/16" polycarbonate tube. I used a 3/8 OD x 1/8" ID tube on my old BK and am not thrilled with it, so I decided to try a bigger size for this one. The top compression fitting now has a 1/2" barb fitting screwed into it so I can easily recirc PBW through it during cleaning.




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Old 10-10-2013, 05:05 PM   #150
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Continuing to look amazing! Your handiwork is truly impressive!
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