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Old 11-30-2012, 10:52 PM   #91
rickert76
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One more thing, my local home brew store had a kettle valve and screen for around $35 to convert my cooler to a mash tun. It would cost more than buying the individual parts but it would be all stainless steel instead of brass fittings.

 
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Old 11-30-2012, 11:06 PM   #92
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rickert76 View Post
One more thing, my local home brew store had a kettle valve and screen for around $35 to convert my cooler to a mash tun. It would cost more than buying the individual parts but it would be all stainless steel instead of brass fittings.
Are you sure you aren't getting into brewing yourself? You will be the most knowledgeable non-brewer on this forum.

I personally stayed away from the LHBS for all of my valves and piping. As much as I try to support them, I want to save some money also. The brass can be "conditioned" for lack of a better term. John Palmer discusses this method somewhere, I'm thinking in his book. Anyway, if you are paranoid the small amount of brass that contacts wort or beer will affect it, there's a way to de-lead the outer layer using vinegar and peroxide.
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Old 11-30-2012, 11:48 PM   #93
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I stand by the cooler conversion parts I sent you in the PM the other day. Stainless ball valves have zero risks associated with them (there are some with brass/bronze depending where they are made, which is virtually impossible to find out if what you're buying is made in a safe way/area). Plus, with the 3 piece valve, you can completely take it apart, without removing it from the mash tun, clean it really well and then put it back together again. For that reason (among others) it's the only type I'm using. IMO, well worth the cost difference. Besides, I think it would add to the gift factor if YOU made him the mash tun from the cooler. Not just buy someone else's mash tun.
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Old 11-30-2012, 11:51 PM   #94
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rickert76 View Post
One more thing, my local home brew store had a kettle valve and screen for around $35 to convert my cooler to a mash tun. It would cost more than buying the individual parts but it would be all stainless steel instead of brass fittings.
If your LHBS has all the parts you'll need (washers, valve, screen, etc.), to me, that's worth a couple extra bucks the convenience. It took me awhile to track down all those fittings in lowe's. Then I had to go to four different stores to find the right size washers (not all 5/8 ss fender washers are created equal and lowe's and hd didn't even have 5/8 ss washers). Plus, they might even help you assemble the thing.

 
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Old 12-04-2012, 02:42 PM   #95
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OK, here's my quick update. I am getting my blichmann this afternoon and I did get the stainless ball valve, etc from my LHBS and i went to Lowes to pick up parts for a wort chiller but it seems as if my local stores only carry 20' or 50' copper coil. Is 20' going to be enough?

 
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Old 12-04-2012, 02:48 PM   #96
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I would get the 50'. I would make a chiller with at least 30-35 of it, then use the remaining to make a small coil for a "pre-chiller". If you have hot tap water during the summer, you would put the pre-chiller in some icewater to cool it down prior to sending it through the main chiller.

20' is pretty short.

 
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Old 12-04-2012, 03:02 PM   #97
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbrewski View Post
I would get the 50'. I would make a chiller with at least 30-35 of it, then use the remaining to make a small coil for a "pre-chiller". If you have hot tap water during the summer, you would put the pre-chiller in some icewater to cool it down prior to sending it through the main chiller.

20' is pretty short.

That sounds like a pretty smart idea. I guess I will do that but that means now I will have to figure out how to make 2 instead of just one...and figureout how to cut copper i assume there is a tool for that?

 
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Old 12-04-2012, 03:10 PM   #98
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rickert76 View Post
That sounds like a pretty smart idea. I guess I will do that but that means now I will have to figure out how to make 2 instead of just one...and figureout how to cut copper i assume there is a tool for that?
Do a test with the 50' coil before you buy it (if they let you or don't stop you). See how easy/hard it is to bend compared with the 20' coil. The stuff at the Lowe's I got mine from had different wall thickness between the two coils. So, while the 20' was pretty easy to form, the 50' was a total pain in the ass to try and form. What's on the shelf at the store by you could be different, but [IMO] it's best to check before you buy it, get it home, and start trying to bend/form it. Unless you have a good friend that's also a plumber and has the tools to do the forming for you that is.
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Old 12-04-2012, 03:24 PM   #99
rickert76
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Golddiggie View Post
Do a test with the 50' coil before you buy it (if they let you or don't stop you). See how easy/hard it is to bend compared with the 20' coil. The stuff at the Lowe's I got mine from had different wall thickness between the two coils. So, while the 20' was pretty easy to form, the 50' was a total pain in the ass to try and form. What's on the shelf at the store by you could be different, but [IMO] it's best to check before you buy it, get it home, and start trying to bend/form it. Unless you have a good friend that's also a plumber and has the tools to do the forming for you that is.

Thanks for the tip. I will definately check into that. I do know a plumber but I doubt he wants to give up his time to help me. Do you think that the PSI of copper has anything to do with how thick the coil is? I did see some PSI ratings on the Lowe's website and wondered if that would make a difference.

 
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Old 12-04-2012, 03:26 PM   #100
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If you're doing the DIY route, I know some HBT members have bought their copper from this site, https://coppertubingsales.com/storef...i29phti4l83ve4. They have much better prices than Lowe's and HD. Personally, I prefer a 50' chiller.

If you're going to cut the tubing, you'll need an inexpensive pipe cutter. To use one, you tighten the cutting wheels so they touch the pipe, not tightening too much as to avoid kinking the pipe. You spin the cutter around the pipe a few times, further tighten the cutting wheels and repeat until the pipe is completely cut. It's actually pretty easy.

I guess another option is to buy one. I have one of morebeer's 50' super chillers. It's definitely well built and I like having the garden hose fittings on it. My wife bought it for me last Christmas.

 
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