Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Equipment/Sanitation > 3/8" vs. 1/2" tubing for IC
Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 07-24-2007, 01:55 PM   #1
Brewer3401
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Brewer3401's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Southeast Louisiana
Posts: 1,351
Liked 4 Times on 4 Posts

Default 3/8" vs. 1/2" tubing for IC

Anyone have any tech data on the difference(s) ?
Is 50' of 3/8" better than 25' of 1/2"


__________________
Fermenter: Blonde Ale
Brite tank: -0-
Kegged: -0-
Brewer3401 is offline
 
Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-2007, 02:16 PM   #2
bigben
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Location: My House
Posts: 522
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

Default

Well, I think total surface area is the most important thing...so if my calculations are correct...

50' of 3/8" = 58.875' of surface area
25' of 1/2" = 39.25' of surace area.

I think that's right...so I guess 50' of 3/8" is better because it has more surface area. Although maybe the amount of water at any given point has a lot to do with it. So, maybe a 1/2" of water can cool more in a given area than 3/8" of water.

Basically, I don't know.


bigben is offline
 
Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-2007, 02:18 PM   #3
mot
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: MN
Posts: 628
Liked 2 Times on 1 Posts

Default

yep 3/8 does give you more surface area...but bens right who knows if the water in the 1/2 inch will cool more than the 3/8. Would need to do some testing and that kind of testing doesnt sound fun to me lol....any engineer here want to figure this out!
mot is offline
 
Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-2007, 03:22 PM   #4
thebikingengineer
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Columbus, Ohio
Posts: 210
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

Default

You'll probably have better luck with the 3/8". You'll never really max out the flow rate of the 1/2" tubing, and that extra 19' of area is pretty significant. To be more exact than this, you'd need to set up a thermodynamics problem, it would most likely be quite complicated, and it would only work in theory. Get your wort moving (via gentle stirring) while you're cooling to get down to temps very quick.
thebikingengineer is offline
 
Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-2007, 03:31 PM   #5
Brewer3401
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Brewer3401's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Southeast Louisiana
Posts: 1,351
Liked 4 Times on 4 Posts

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by thebikingengineer
You'll probably have better luck with the 3/8". You'll never really max out the flow rate of the 1/2" tubing, and that extra 19' of area is pretty significant. To be more exact than this, you'd need to set up a thermodynamics problem, it would most likely be quite complicated, and it would only work in theory. Get your wort moving (via gentle stirring) while you're cooling to get down to temps very quick.

Thanks for the info. I have a wort stirrer. I go from boiling to 100 F in 10 minutes. Have a new rig: 240 gph pump to push iced water directly to the IC. Haven't used yet, but tested and the coils get to 40 F, and the water exiting is down to 38 F. I'm projecting a 20 minute total to get to 50 F and using a LOT less ice than before (I used a pre-chiller, and never got the exiting water lower than 58 F)
__________________
Fermenter: Blonde Ale
Brite tank: -0-
Kegged: -0-
Brewer3401 is offline
 
Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-2007, 03:31 PM   #6
Bobby_M
Vendor and Brewer
HBT_SPONSOR.png
Vendor Ads 
Feedback Score: 4 reviews
 
Bobby_M's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Whitehouse Station, NJ
Posts: 22,827
Liked 1340 Times on 878 Posts
Likes Given: 35

Default

50 feet of 3/8" OD tubing has a surface area of 707 square inches.
25 feet of 1/2" OD is 471 incu.

I'm pretty sure the 3/8 is a better choice on many counts. It allows you to distribute the coils across a greater area of wort to reduce stratification. It also puts more of the overall coolant volume in contact with the copper to make sure it can pull heat. The only downside is that the coil will be a little flimsy on its own, I bound/spaced my coils with some copper wire to keep it a ittle more rigid.

I contributed some content in the wiki on this stuff: http://www.homebrewtalk.com/wiki/ind...ersion_Chiller
__________________
Welcome to BrewHardware.com. I love you.
New 100% Stainless Steel Heating Elements are IN! ULWD 5500w Ripple, 2000w, 1500w, etc
Chugger Pumps, Pump Kits, Camlocks, Sightglasses, Clear USA made Silicone Tubing, RIMS, Electric Install Parts, etc.
Bobby_M is offline
 
Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-2007, 04:06 PM   #7
Brewer3401
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Brewer3401's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Southeast Louisiana
Posts: 1,351
Liked 4 Times on 4 Posts

Default

I remember an article I read years ago about this. I thought they said the smaller diameter would work better - more surface area contacting the wort.
__________________
Fermenter: Blonde Ale
Brite tank: -0-
Kegged: -0-
Brewer3401 is offline
 
Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-2007, 04:16 PM   #8
Bearcat Brewmeister
Pour, Drink, Pee, Repeat
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Bearcat Brewmeister's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Cincinnati, OH
Posts: 705
Liked 21 Times on 7 Posts

Default

I did some calculations on this a year ago for a CFC (heat transfer + fluid mechanics) and you are correct - it only gives you the theoritical answer. The key is surface area to volume ratio. Smaller tube diameters have a higher surface area to volume ratio and are therefore more efficient. Smaller diameters should create a more turbulent flow which is critical in heat transfer. If the flow stays laminar, the water near the wall heats and forms a sort of insulative layer which reduces the heat transfer.
__________________
Kegged: APA, Old Ale, Bock, Robust Porter
Secondary:
--
Primary:
Imperial Milk Stout
Next Up: --
Projects: Brutus Strut-stand (Done), Freezer Conversion (Done), HERMS (Done), Lager Fermentation Mini-fridge Extension (Done)
Drinking: Great Lakes Edmund Fitzgerald, Fuller's 1845, New Glarus Moon Man, Tröegs Troegenator
Bearcat Brewmeister is offline
 
Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-2007, 04:25 PM   #9
evanmars
EAC Wannabe
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
evanmars's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Springport, Michigan
Posts: 940
Liked 58 Times on 38 Posts
Likes Given: 11

Default

Is the water in a 3/8" chiller after the first 25' still significantly cooler than the wort? If it isn't, it doesn't matter how much longer you make the coils. It isn't going to pull out any more heat.

However, if that is the case you could put in two separate 25' coils. That way you would have double the surface area. I'd figure that even if the temp of the wort was still hotter than the coil, this would work faster.
__________________
Consistency is only a virtue if you're not a screwup

Primary - Duck Lake EPA
Duck Pee (Cream of Three Crops variant)

Secondary - 0
Kegged - 0 No kegs anymore :(
Bottled - 0
evanmars is offline
 
Reply With Quote
Old 07-24-2007, 07:31 PM   #10
thebikingengineer
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Columbus, Ohio
Posts: 210
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

Default

I've got one 25' 3/8 coil and can get 5.5 gals down to pitching temps in ~15 minutes with a whirlpooling method. I stick by spoon in with the IC (in the boil) and gently stir while I'm cooling. This gets the cool wort moving around the pot which brings the overall wort temperature down very quickly. The output water temperatures can get very, very hot. This lets me know that the process is working.


thebikingengineer is offline
 
Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
"American" or "Imperial" Oatmeal Stout Recipe: Critiques please! cladinshadows Recipes/Ingredients 4 01-04-2012 11:21 PM
"Video Surveillance on the Fly" or "Urine trouble now mister!" Tenchiro Debate Forum 1 05-23-2009 06:33 PM
3/8" to 1/2" Tubing (Mash Tun Question) azallgrain All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing 0 12-06-2008 05:46 AM
"The Shield" viewers - have you seen "Sons of Anarchy?" Laurel General Chit Chat 2 09-10-2008 07:41 PM
A Good "Lagering" Temp for my "HefeLagerAle"? Evan! General Techniques 0 10-26-2006 08:25 PM


Forum Jump

Newest Threads

LATEST SPONSOR DEALS