Cooler MLT Troubles - Home Brew Forums
Register Now For Free!

Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Equipment/Sanitation > Cooler MLT Troubles

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 02-18-2013, 09:53 PM   #1
Ishraider
Recipes 
 
Mar 2009
, Oregon
Posts: 53


So i brewed a 30.5 lb grain brew last night and had problems getting the liquid to drain from my 11 gallon rubbermaid cooler MLT. I have the SS braid setup and this is the 2nd time i have used this cooler. Keep in mind i batch sparge. The first time i used it the first run off came out without too much problem. Once i sparged it, it was draining really slow but wasnt too bad. That was with a 25 lb grain bill. This time the first runoff went ok at first but after 3 gallons (out of 7) it came to a really slow pour. Even after stirring and trying to move the grains around it still just was crawling out of the MLT at a rate of MAYBE 1 gallon per 10-15 minutes. I have searched many threads of a solution and the only thing i can think of is that there is not enough surface area of my braid and therefor is taking way to long for the liquid to get to it. I could build a manifold but prefer to use the SS braid. Any suggestions? Is it possible to do some kind of "t" setup with 2 SS braids? Anyways just wanted to get some thoughts and suggestions before I take action. I homebrewed 3 years ago all the time thanks to this website and just recently got back into it. Working out all the kinks takes time and this homebrew nation has always helped me out.
Click image for larger version

Name:	2013-02-18_13-34-55_530 (1).jpg
Views:	253
Size:	19.9 KB
ID:	102206  

 
Reply With Quote
Old 02-18-2013, 10:20 PM   #2
LandoLincoln
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
 
LandoLincoln's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Feb 2011
Joliet, IL
Posts: 2,989
Liked 1115 Times on 588 Posts


This is just my personal experience, but...I've tried using a braid on my mash tun, and I ran into problems more often than not. I ran a coil of copper wire inside of it to keep it from collapsing, but that didn't do anything for me. I eventually abandoned the braid and built a manifold out of CPVC and used my drill press to drill two rows of holes near the bottom sides of each piece of pipe. The new setup works great and I've never had a stuck sparge on it, and I've brewed beers that normally people use rice hulls with, but I've never really needed them.

 
Reply With Quote
Old 02-18-2013, 10:24 PM   #3
TahoeRy
Recipes 
 
Nov 2012
South Lake Tahoe, California
Posts: 305
Liked 44 Times on 36 Posts


Throw in some rice hulls to help your lautering. When you have that much grain in a small space it tends to compact more causing drainage issues. Throw in a good amount of rice hulls to help that compaction. I'd say 1-2 pounds should do it. It won't change anything with the beer as it adds no color or flavor and only helps draining the grain.

 
Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-2013, 06:20 AM   #4
Ishraider
Recipes 
 
Mar 2009
, Oregon
Posts: 53

Well here it is. Went ahead and took the advice to build a CPVC manifold for my MLT. Here is how it turned out. My cooler is shaped funny but i think i worked it out well. I batch sparge so i should not have to worry about channeling.
Click image for larger version

Name:	2013-02-23_18-34-23_535.jpg
Views:	207
Size:	17.9 KB
ID:	103491   Click image for larger version

Name:	2013-02-23_17-35-10_385.jpg
Views:	218
Size:	44.0 KB
ID:	103492  

 
Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-2013, 12:01 PM   #5
Rbeckett
 
Rbeckett's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Dec 2011
Bronson, Fl
Posts: 995
Liked 70 Times on 49 Posts


That manifold looks really good and appears to be well constructed. You might also consider drilling a small set of holes near the bottoms of the pipes toward the inside to help speed it up a bit if it is still too slow. Rice hulls are great and are an inexpensive insurance against a stuck sparge. If the temp holds well in the cooler, then a slow sparge should help improve your effiviency a bit too. If the temp drops it is still going to be OK because you are still going to boil it before you pitch yeast abyway. Good luck and nice little mod!!!
Wheelchair Bob
__________________
What do you mean "no Kidneys"???, WTF now I gotta drink less beer...
Join the Automation sub forum in Electric brewing for a discussion of components and control systems. I did!!!!

 
Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-2013, 12:17 PM   #6
masskrug
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
 
masskrug's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Sep 2012
, Florida
Posts: 1,401
Liked 217 Times on 148 Posts


Nice job! I bet your efficiency numbers will go up as well.
__________________
Google Maps Water Report

 
Reply With Quote
Old 02-24-2013, 02:04 PM   #7
Bobby_M
Vendor and Brewer
HBT_SPONSOR.png
 
Bobby_M's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Aug 2006
Whitehouse Station, NJ
Posts: 23,330
Liked 1765 Times on 1122 Posts


Are you sure that braid was stainless? Many of the people that have trouble with it are buying Home Depot's "Stainless LIKE" toilet connection things and it's braided grey plastic. It never works.

The manifold looks good but the connection to the drain looks a little restrictive. Is that 3/8" tubing?

 
Reply With Quote
Old 02-25-2013, 05:29 AM   #8
Ishraider
Recipes 
 
Mar 2009
, Oregon
Posts: 53

Thanks everybody glad to know all the information i collected on this site worked out. It was a stainless steel braid i made sure of that cause i saw somewhere in one of the post to double check that at purchase. Yeah i think i do need to do some work on the drain. I didnt want to get rid of my ball valve set up cause those things are expensive. That is 3/8 or actually i might have used 5/16th cause it was what i had lying around. Any suggestions at minimal cost to fix that? Also i have not used the manifold for a mash yet.

 
Reply With Quote
Old 03-02-2013, 06:54 PM   #9
LandoLincoln
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
 
LandoLincoln's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Feb 2011
Joliet, IL
Posts: 2,989
Liked 1115 Times on 588 Posts


Quote:
Originally Posted by Ishraider View Post
Thanks everybody glad to know all the information i collected on this site worked out. It was a stainless steel braid i made sure of that cause i saw somewhere in one of the post to double check that at purchase. Yeah i think i do need to do some work on the drain. I didnt want to get rid of my ball valve set up cause those things are expensive. That is 3/8 or actually i might have used 5/16th cause it was what i had lying around. Any suggestions at minimal cost to fix that? Also i have not used the manifold for a mash yet.
Hmmm. Well, if this were mine...I'd take that T where you're draining from and remove that one pipe, and then move the T upwards and attach a 90 street elbow to connect a piece of 1/2" ID silicon tube...

Pictures are easier. Here. Here's the one I made for my little 5 gallon cooler. You can't see it, but there's a 1" piece of CPVC pipe that connects the street elbow to the T below it. All three of those pieces should be glued together, or else the street elbow has a nasty habit of popping off while you're stirring. All other pieces can be left unglued to facilitate cleaning. There's no real need for clamps on either end of the tube, since I made the tube a wee bit longer than it needed to be, so it helps to keep the tube in place.




 
Reply With Quote
Reply
Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Hop troubles Firebat138 Hops Growing 2 07-07-2012 12:12 AM
RIS IBU Troubles tlw08 Recipes/Ingredients 4 09-09-2009 01:14 PM
Car troubles Dr_Deathweed General Chit Chat 12 03-17-2009 12:01 PM
Big troubles saskman Equipment/Sanitation 17 09-13-2007 11:06 PM
Troubles Lost Brews All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing 10 08-01-2007 01:31 PM


Forum Jump