Boil kettle drain techniques

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buzzbromp

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Draining to my fermenter is always low due to hop buildup. Any good techniques or equipment that helps with this issue? I use a bazooka filter. I haven't tried whirlpooling yet. I assume I just stir the hell out of the cooled wort. Does this work well for both pellets and whole hops? Doesn't much of the pellet break up remain floating in the wort?
 
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buzzbromp

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Slow not low, sorry about that. I need to stop posting with my iPhone.
 

Pezman1

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Many use a hop-spider, but I use a one gallon paint strainer bag for two ounces or less of pellet hops, and a five gallon strainer for more. I use a heavy duty clip to secure it to the BK rim. Works perfectly for me. Pez.
 

acidrain

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+1 on the strainer bag.

Cool the wort and give it a fast stir to get a whirlpool going, let is set for about 20 minutes, and then drain.
If you're using a siphon, keep it off the bottom, and suck from the side of the kettle.
If you have a drain valve (or are thinking of installing one), if it's off the bottom about an inch, that's the best.
Either way, drain it down pretty low, and then watch as it gets close to the bottom. You'll see the break material sitting on the bottom.
With practice and care, you'll be able to pull off perfectly clear wort.
 

lockwom

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I stopped using the Bazooka. It clogged with all manner of trub: hot and cold break, etc, let alone hops. When I upgraded to a 70 qt cooler for mashing/lautering, and it works great compared to manifolds or braids.

My boil technique is to whirlpool with a pump inline with the chiller a few minutes before flameout. This sanitizes the silicone lines, pump, and chiller. Nothings clogs when I use pellet hops, even in DIPAs, but the trub and hops collect in a huge cone in the middle of the brewpot. Then a side diptube picks up avoiding the cone.

March/Chugger pumps seem expensive, but I keep discovering new tricks for them.
 

SpeedYellow

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Another option, which I do, is to not bother with any hop bag or whirl pooling, but instead use a 6-gal bucket (with spigot at the bottom) to settle everything for 20-30 mins. Then just open the spigot into your fermenter, and the inch or so of junk left in the bucket is your hops and trub.
 
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buzzbromp

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I don't quite follow how you use the silicone lines and the pump for the whirlpool. What is the silicone for? do you use it as coolant?

Whirlpooling causes the hop and protein break to deposit in the center? I would of thought it was heavier and got pushed to the wall. I guess if it deposits on the center, the bazooka would limit any benefit. I will look into the strainer bags for the hops.
 

lockwom

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The bazooka clogged for me, regardless of chilling, whirlpooling, pumping, etc. Break material clogged the screen.

I can't take credit for this picture, but I found it on Google Images. Good example of side dip tube after a vigorous whirlpool:

http://i7.tinypic.com/3462cls.jpg

You can see that a HUGE screen is necessary to trap that kind of trub.

Strainer bags are only worthy for whole hops. Otherwise, they are a pain from clogging, because a lot of bittered wort is trapped in clogged mesh.

As for silicone, it's great tubing for pumps that imparts no flavor, and is tolerant well beyond boiling temperatures.
 
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buzzbromp

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It seems like getting a long bazooka and bending it such that it raps it around the perimeter of the wall would work with a whirlpool. Maybe even have the filter jog upwards a little here and there would help.
 

OtisLamb

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Draining to my fermenter is always low due to hop buildup. Any good techniques or equipment that helps with this issue? I use a bazooka filter. I haven't tried whirlpooling yet. I assume I just stir the hell out of the cooled wort. Does this work well for both pellets and whole hops? Doesn't much of the pellet break up remain floating in the wort?

What has always worked for me is to put the grains in a grain bag, or, if needed two. Also, I used hop bags. One for each time needed. I use bags which can be cleaned and reused in future brews. This seems to eliminate most of the sludge from the brew pot. I still pour the wort through a large strainer into a funnel with a finer strainer. Hope this helps. :)
 

ajf

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I use whole hops and a false bottom in the kettle. Works fine unless I forget to put the false bottom in, but wouldn't work if I used pellet hops.

-a.
 

el_caro

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How important is it to reduce unwanted material being transferred from the kettle into the Fermentation vessel?

Is there any evidence that the final product will be clearer or taste any difference if transfer of this material is avoided?

Will it not just settle out in the Primary especially if cold crashed?
 

bigdongsr94

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In response to el_caro:

I see some of the more senior brewers in the board say they just dump the whiole pot in. I really need to just try this. I suspect you get the same beer but more if it. More trub too but that settles and then you are left with more liquid. I don't like diluting my beers and I typically leave .5 gallon or more of sludge in my brew pot and my final bottle count is a little short.i could account for this but why not get all you can out of it first. If that makes any sense.
 

kapbrew13

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With the new hop strainer I only get break material. Just dump it all into the primary. Brews have been great so far.
 

Paul_Aris

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So a False bottom in my Keggle won't help if I use pellet hops. Right now I am using a 5 gallon paint strainer set up to strain and contain my hops during the boil. Contains most of the hop material but I still get a lot of break material using wirlflock.
 

LovesIPA

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In response to el_caro:

I see some of the more senior brewers in the board say they just dump the whiole pot in. I really need to just try this. I suspect you get the same beer but more if it. More trub too but that settles and then you are left with more liquid. I don't like diluting my beers and I typically leave .5 gallon or more of sludge in my brew pot and my final bottle count is a little short.i could account for this but why not get all you can out of it first. If that makes any sense.

I'm not a senior brewer by any stretch, but I have literally just dumped everything in the kettle - hops, break material and all - and have gotten clear beer in the end.
 
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Last time I used whole hops with pellets my intake kept clogging (side wall dip tube) and I had a hell of a time trying to use my pump to whirlpool as I usually do.

The pellet/whole hop combo seems to be a nightmare. I have a a few lbs of whole hops I need to get rid of as they are getting old and I was thinking of adding them to my existing DIPA recipe. Figured I'd get any bonus bitterness/flavour from them. I need to figure out how to prevent a clog up by tomorrow! This is going to be a massive beer.

(Oh and while Oxyclean may not be registered as a sanitiser by the FDA, in reality it does work.)
 

MindenMan

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I too used to lose a lot of my wort due to not filtering out the trub and hot/cold break. I tried the paint strainer suggestion, and it works great. I put one filter on top of another in a metal strainer, and pour through the 4 layers of strainer. A little bit of "silt" gets through, but everything that has settled and flocked out pretty much gets caught in the strainers. Ever since I started using Irish Moss, I have been getting better results. The strainers start to clog and the trub is another layer of fitration for the trub. My pot does have not a spigot yet, so that is why I pour, but I don't lose the usual 1/2 gallon like I used to.
 

matt2778

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With the new hop strainer I only get break material. Just dump it all into the primary. Brews have been great so far.

+1 to this technique. I use to stress over getting only the clearest wort into to my fermenter but after a few brew sessions whilst having a few too many I've found the f it technique works just as well. Ive found that clear beer is more about a good hot break and a rapid chill than the trub being transfered ymmv though. I do use a hop spider on any brew with over 3 ounces of hops though, not so much for clarity but because I can hang and drain the spider to minimize my hop losses.
 

PastorofMuppets

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To be honest adding a ball valve to my BK was a wonderful investment.
I have a 1/2 inch ball valve and a small amount of tubing when opened it flows into a sanitized paint strainer bag into my fermenting bucket. I keeps tons of stuff out. Required when i make IPAs but useful anytime really. It also helps aeration nicely on the way out, but i also use bottled oxygen.
 

Yooper

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Last time I used whole hops with pellets my intake kept clogging (side wall dip tube) and I had a hell of a time trying to use my pump to whirlpool as I usually do.

The pellet/whole hop combo seems to be a nightmare. I have a a few lbs of whole hops I need to get rid of as they are getting old and I was thinking of adding them to my existing DIPA recipe. Figured I'd get any bonus bitterness/flavour from them. I need to figure out how to prevent a clog up by tomorrow! This is going to be a massive beer.

(Oh and while Oxyclean may not be registered as a sanitiser by the FDA, in reality it does work.)


I agree that mixing pellets and whole hops has been an issue! All pellets, no problem and they don't clog my pump. All whole hops, I use a bazooka tube- no problem!

But together- argghhh! I have to bag one or the other. If I have more leaf hops, I use the bazooka screen and bag the pellets. If I have more pellets, I bag the leaf hops and let the pellets settle out. Since I do ten gallon batches, and lots of IPAs, I normally use 6-10 ounces of hops in the boil so I had to figure out something!
 

mageac

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I also use a hop spider but the one from stainless brewing with (a 300?) micron screen. does a great job with pellet hops but nothing for hot break. but that goes straight through my plate chiller (gravity fed) and into the primary. always have extremely clear beers using either gelatin or cold crashing and time.
 
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I agree that mixing pellets and whole hops has been an issue! All pellets, no problem and they don't clog my pump. All whole hops, I use a bazooka tube- no problem!

But together- argghhh! I have to bag one or the other. If I have more leaf hops, I use the bazooka screen and bag the pellets. If I have more pellets, I bag the leaf hops and let the pellets settle out. Since I do ten gallon batches, and lots of IPAs, I normally use 6-10 ounces of hops in the boil so I had to figure out something!

I think it's the protein break mixes up with the pellets and leaf hops to form a super glue! Didn't help I had 2 lbs of hops in that beer.
 

sexyPIGBrewing

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Last time I used whole hops with pellets my intake kept clogging (side wall dip tube) and I had a hell of a time trying to use my pump to whirlpool as I usually do.

The pellet/whole hop combo seems to be a nightmare. I have a a few lbs of whole hops I need to get rid of as they are getting old and I was thinking of adding them to my existing DIPA recipe. Figured I'd get any bonus bitterness/flavour from them. I need to figure out how to prevent a clog up by tomorrow! This is going to be a massive beer.

(Oh and while Oxyclean may not be registered as a sanitiser by the FDA, in reality it does work.)
oxy clean is not a sanitizer. it is a cleaning solution. star san or something of that nature should be used to sanitize any equipment on the cold side of the brewing process AFTER it is cleaned of organic deposits
 
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