Originally Posted by MattSFT
I learned how to properly wash yeast, as well as the methods/tools required to capture/isolate them.
I learned that I probably screwed up my first attempt at yeast washing.
I decanted the top, kept the "middle layer", and tossed the "bottom layer"
The guy I was talking to this weekend said the bottom layer is the yeast, then the trub, then the top layer is beer/water.
The yeast I washed is currently fermenting my next brew, so I DID get yeast, I just may have thrown out a TON of viable yeast and kept the layer that was mostly trub.
I also learned that even a cheap DIY immersion chiller helps a ton with cooling your wort. I made a simple "closed loop" chiller using 20 feet of 3/8 in copper tubing ($15), twisted into shape by hand (it isn't the prettiest cooler out there), 10 feet of 3/8 in ID hose ($5), and a cheap fountain pump ($10). The pump then sits in a bucket of ice water, and the return line goes back into the bucket. I made more ice than was needed to cool 5+ gallons of wort, but I was able to cool my wort from 215 to 75 degrees in 20 minutes. My first batch took over 45 minutes, and I only did a 2.5 gallon partial boil for that one. Second batch was done with an 8 gallon kettle, so it was a full boil (got the volume perfect, didn't need to top up my fermentor at all).