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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > General Beer Discussion > Some one tell me which to choose!...Plate Chiller or Immersion Chiller
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Old 12-19-2013, 09:30 PM   #1
nolabrew85
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Default Some one tell me which to choose!...Plate Chiller or Immersion Chiller

I have gone back and forth with this over the past several days. I am upping from 5 to 10 gal batcher, so I need to upgrade my 25 ft immersion chiller. my Boil kettle is a keggle with whirl/pool or side pick up dip tube. I really just worry about the PITA of the therminator getting clogged. I also don't want to fool with the extra hassle of clean up. I also worry about how much cold break/trub will go right into the fermenter. I also worry about potential extra DMS production while all the hot wort is sitting there for 25 minutes while I whirlpool before chilling and then chill (as per blichmann instruction). I do not want to recirculate. On the other hand, I do like how the Immersion Chiller is easy to clean and how it can chill all the wort at once to avoid more DMS production. I also like that I can leave a lot of the cold break behind chilling in BK. However, I worry about contamination with the lid off (or at least spaces in the lid) with the immersion chiller in there (even with the lid on after it has chilled while it is whirlpooling before draining). Even though I will use my old chiller as a prechiller, I am still not sure how long the 50 ft immersion chiller will cool 10 gal of hot wort. I don't want it to take over 30 minutes from flame out to fermenter. TELL ME WHAT TO DO!!


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Old 12-19-2013, 09:40 PM   #2
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Stop worrying.


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Old 12-19-2013, 10:35 PM   #3
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It takes me about 10 more minutes to cool down 10 gallons as opposed to 5 with my 50' chiller. I was thinking about a plate chiller for a long time, but my IC seems to still do the job.

A big pro to a IC is that you can visually inspect all the parts that touch the wort for cleanliness.

Edit: I put the lid on after it drops below 120F (which is pretty fast) Never had an issue with DMS.
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Old 12-19-2013, 10:41 PM   #4
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Get a 50' chiller, adapt the discharge end of the 25' chiller so that you can hook it to the 50' chiller. When it's time put the 50' chiller in the hot wort, and put the 25' chiller in a bucket of ice water; run the water through the 25' to drop the water temp even more before it goes into the 50', and should reduce your cool down time quite a bit.

Other than that I would say RDWHAHB.
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Old 12-19-2013, 10:42 PM   #5
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Xanax?

Either way will work. Your 25 foot IC will get the job done but if you want to upgrade to a 50 foot then sell your 25. Doing the construction yourself you might spend another $30 or $40.

A plate chiller will do the same job but there's more "moving parts" in that you have match your water temp to what you want your wort temp to be as it's coming out...unless you use recirculation which you've said you don't want to do.

Basically you have two questions. Would you prefer ease (IC) vs something that's a little more painful but once you dial it in it does it's work?

The second is how much do you want to clean up? For the plate chiller you should probably do backflow, clean with pbw, then bake it and before you use it run some star san through it. For someone that doesn't want to do recirculation I'd say stick with the IC and then decide once you've used the 25 footer if you want to upgrade to the 50 footer.

In the mean time...have a homebrew, sit back and enjoy the possibilities.
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Old 12-19-2013, 11:01 PM   #6
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I like these responses!
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Old 12-19-2013, 11:25 PM   #7
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I just made the decision between a plate chiller and counter flow chiller. I ended up going with the plate for size and relative affordability compared to CFCs you would find at LHBS. Sure, I could DIY, but I'm too busy to even brew lately, so my time was a major consideration. I also didn't like how the cfc I had been borrowing was just big and clumsy. Plate chillers are very compact

It seems that using a hop bag goes a long way in keeping plate chillers clear. I guess I'll find out .
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Old 12-20-2013, 01:08 AM   #8
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I wouldn't worry about it taking 30 minutes to get into your fermenter at proper pitching temps. Commerical breweries take longer than that.
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Old 12-20-2013, 01:32 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Trox View Post
Get a 50' chiller, adapt the discharge end of the 25' chiller so that you can hook it to the 50' chiller. When it's time put the 50' chiller in the hot wort, and put the 25' chiller in a bucket of ice water; run the water through the 25' to drop the water temp even more before it goes into the 50', and should reduce your cool down time quite a bit.

Other than that I would say RDWHAHB.

That a great Idea. I think this would work the best.


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