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Doubling Down: SS Brewtech Conical + FTSS + Glycol Power Pack

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martianpc

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Very secure. The TC is rock solid and the jar is held on by its own ring band. I found a place called EcoJar and bought heavy duty stainless steel jar rings. I also use NorCal CO2 anti suck back lids so I was familiar with the fitment.

But whoa is me if that sucker did fall out and 11G of beer spills out....damnnn.
Yeah that would suck. I'd avoid pressurizing until that valve is closed!
 

Morrey

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Yeah that would suck. I'd avoid pressurizing until that valve is closed!
Good point about pressure from carbing. Even a slow build up of pressure from the BO valve being closed could cause problems. Out of fear of something going wrong, I will plan to dump into the jar and close immediately w/o letting that valve stay open. If something did go wrong unexpectedly, that would be one epic mess to clean up. The yeast will compact down in the jar when refrigerated and give me a protective layer of beer on top. Your post made me rethink my process....all good[emoji106]
 

Morrey

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I needed a few items from BrewHardware.com and added in a Teflon 1.5" TC gasket to try on the racking arm's valve body. As we all know, that valve's TC clamp can be loosened and the valve rotated to move the racking arm downward. The gasket that Ss includes is "grippy", and even with some keg lube applied, still is a bit clingy. Loosening the TC clamp too much makes me a tad uncomfortable since leaking (or a complete blowout) could result.

Anyway, this Teflon gasket makes the valve slide so easily, and the TC clamp doesn't need to be loosened much at all for the valve body to rotate. Works well.
 

boasist

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Nice, I felt the same way on the gaskets, and I found these at morebeer, they work great just like you mentioned about yours.

I'm thinking of selling a BME chronical and getting the unitank, it looks great.
 

Morrey

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Nice, I felt the same way on the gaskets, and I found these at morebeer, they work great just like you mentioned about yours.

I'm thinking of selling a BME chronical and getting the unitank, it looks great.
I'd be willing to bet the gasket you linked is the same thing I bought as they appear identical. I like the feel of this gasket much better for this one particular valve/application.

You'd be pleased with a uni tank. I am carbing a beer right now as the gravity got down to around 1.015 and I anticipated 1.010. Basically I shut the BO valve and let it carb naturally while it finished up...next I'll rack to keg and make final CO2 volume adjustments. It is now at 1.009 (I was close) and my internal pressure is 10 psi so I almost nailed it this time. The tank is awesome and I just ordered another....basically replacing my brew buckets.
 
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martianpc

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I needed a few items from BrewHardware.com and added in a Teflon 1.5" TC gasket to try on the racking arm's valve body. As we all know, that valve's TC clamp can be loosened and the valve rotated to move the racking arm downward. The gasket that Ss includes is "grippy", and even with some keg lube applied, still is a bit clingy. Loosening the TC clamp too much makes me a tad uncomfortable since leaking (or a complete blowout) could result.

Anyway, this Teflon gasket makes the valve slide so easily, and the TC clamp doesn't need to be loosened much at all for the valve body to rotate. Works well.
Great call on the ptfe gasket. I never thought of that. Just ordered a 10 pack from Amazon. Wish I could have just bought one from BrewHardware.com but 10 was cheaper with free shipping than just 1!
 

Morrey

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Great call on the ptfe gasket. I never thought of that. Just ordered a 10 pack from Amazon. Wish I could have just bought one from BrewHardware.com but 10 was cheaper with free shipping than just 1!
Until your post, I never thought about looking on Amazon for TC gaskets, sight glasses, fitting, etc. Once you said you found the ptfe gasket on Amazon, I see they sell all kinds of TC related gear. Apparently dairy operations also use TC fittings for dairy related uses....not surprising, Amazon is another resource offering lower prices than other places I have been using.
 

boasist

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Just picked up the 7gal with the heating/chilling package. All is right in the world.
 

Morrey

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Just picked up the 7gal with the heating/chilling package. All is right in the world.

Yeow! That was easy peezy! LOL

A month ago I ordered the 7G myself to give me a 5.5 gal (1 keg) version of the 14G tank in use that gives me 11G (2) keg batches. Was intended to be here before Christmas as a gift but see it wont be here on time. Awwww :(
 

martianpc

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Until your post, I never thought about looking on Amazon for TC gaskets, sight glasses, fitting, etc. Once you said you found the ptfe gasket on Amazon, I see they sell all kinds of TC related gear. Apparently dairy operations also use TC fittings for dairy related uses....not surprising, Amazon is another resource offering lower prices than other places I have been using.
I try to support BrewHardware.com anytime I can though. For creative fittings and unique parts he can't be beat. Not to mention custom parts and service, I'm willing to pay a small premium for that. Amazon works in a pinch though.
 

Morrey

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Agreed. Bobby will make/build/design/modify just about anything we can dream up. That alone is worth tons plus he can give great customer service where Amazon is not based on any kind of service at all. Bobby's got to make a living and I know he is small volume in the big scheme of things. Supporting him keeps him in business, buying from Amazon saves us a buck here or there but Bobby disappears. I'll still shop BrewHardware....not going to abandon him. A bit of competition always keeps prices in check.....a good thing I say.
 

Dockside_Brewing

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I buy from Bobby. Great service and You will get no support from Amazon. I also buy from Brewers hardware. I like supporting the small guys. If that means spending a little more so be it. You get what you pay for.
 

jready

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Man I love the Unitank. I brewed another IPA last weekend, got home from a business trip Wednesday night checked gravity and had about a point left to go. Raised the temp up to 68, closed the BO valve and this AM it is sitting at about 10 psi I will probably give it till Sunday then dump and crash.

Any suggestions on the dump? Last time I made a terrible mess doing that under pressure?
 

dunnry

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Man I love the Unitank. I brewed another IPA last weekend, got home from a business trip Wednesday night checked gravity and had about a point left to go. Raised the temp up to 68, closed the BO valve and this AM it is sitting at about 10 psi I will probably give it till Sunday then dump and crash.

Any suggestions on the dump? Last time I made a terrible mess doing that under pressure?
If you are going to do a dump, you should probably do that before you pressurize. It's going to be a foamy mess otherwise. Most breweries will do the yeast collection (or dump) first and then carbonate (if unitank) or transfer to brite tank for carbonation.

I would probably just try to pull a pint or two from the racking port until clear and then keg it without dumping first. After you keg, you can dump the yeast carefully with 1-3 psi.
 

Morrey

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If you are going to do a dump, you should probably do that before you pressurize. It's going to be a foamy mess otherwise. Most breweries will do the yeast collection (or dump) first and then carbonate (if unitank) or transfer to brite tank for carbonation.

I would probably just try to pull a pint or two from the racking port until clear and then keg it without dumping first. After you keg, you can dump the yeast carefully with 1-3 psi.
Absolutely...good info! Next time when you are not on a road trip....

11G Spotted Cow Ale clone with Kolsch yeast. Did 3 "mini" dumps of about one pint each"

Day 4 Trub dump to clear trub out of way.

Day 7 Yeast dump to harvest 2575 PC which is not avail again until next year.

Day 11 Final dump to clear beer before shutting off BO valve at 1.013 and starting to self-carbonate. Will finish off with CO2 stone now that temps are dropping.

I have dumped about 3 pints which is slightly below the 1G I planned to lose. I'll still have .25 G in the cone if all goes as planned when kegging.
 

Gustatorian

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Anybody know how to lower the temp parameters of the Glycol chiller? Mine currently drops to 32ºF but won't go any lower. The SS instructions are greek. I've done it before but have since forgotten.
 

jready

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So, I tried the roll the pressurized unitank to the back door and shoot trub and dry hops out the dump valve and it actually worked well a quick hosing of the deck and all is well!!
 

byounger

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Anybody know how to lower the temp parameters of the Glycol chiller? Mine currently drops to 32ºF but won't go any lower. The SS instructions are greek. I've done it before but have since forgotten.
Will it allow you to set the thermostat down lower? Or is it set low and just not achieving the temp? My SS chiller has no problem crashing a 1/2 bbl conical to 35 (I have the SS chiller set to 25 I believe). I just push the down arrow to get the thermostat to lower.
 

Dockside_Brewing

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Absolutely...good info! Next time when you are not on a road trip....

11G Spotted Cow Ale clone with Kolsch yeast. Did 3 "mini" dumps of about one pint each"

Day 4 Trub dump to clear trub out of way.

Day 7 Yeast dump to harvest 2575 PC which is not avail again until next year.

Day 11 Final dump to clear beer before shutting off BO valve at 1.013 and starting to self-carbonate. Will finish off with CO2 stone now that temps are dropping.

I have dumped about 3 pints which is slightly below the 1G I planned to lose. I'll still have .25 G in the cone if all goes as planned when kegging.
What carbonation method are you using? I have 10 gallons that has been in the uni for 7 days at 62 degrees and just bumped up to 68 for another 7. My plan is to cold crash after that, add gelatin and then carbonate. Looking for 2.5 on this beer. I estimated the stone wet pressure at 3-4 psi.

 

Morrey

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I looked for the uni tank's pressure gauge to be at 13 psi which is the equilibrium of the serving pressure/temp to achieve the carb level I'd use for the beer style I made. You'll carb better (I think) when you get your temps down as you indicated was your plan.

I set my carb stone up with a gas post identical to yours and loved it!

I already had around 8 psi on the tank carbing naturally after shutting off the BO at 1.013 and letting fermentation finish up. Dropping the temps prior to final carb will drop this pressure some, but the system needs some positive pressure to prevent contraction. If the BO valve stays open during crash, suck back will occur and draw sanitizer back into the tank.....be careful of this. I set the regulator low at 15 psi so I wouldn't overshoot. But since you are going to be starting at 0 psi, I think you'll be safe to set your CO2 regulator at 20 psi and watch closely. If you cant be close to the tank to watch it, look up your temp and carb volume you want to achieve, then set your gas regulator at that level. I'll say off the cuff that 13 psi may be about your sweet spot (depends on your beer temp), but 20 psi will get you there more quickly if you are close by to monitor and not over carb.
 
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Dockside_Brewing

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I looked for the uni tank's pressure gauge to be at 13 psi which is the equilibrium of the serving pressure I'd use for the beer style I made. You'll carb better (I think) when you get your temps down as you indicated was your plan.

I set my carb stone up with a gas post identical to yours and loved it!

I already had around 8 psi on the tank carbing naturally after shutting off the BO at 1.013 and letting fermentation finish up. Dropping the temps prior to final carb will drop this pressure some, but the system needs some positive pressure to prevent contraction or suck back if the BO stays open. I set the regulator low at 15 psi so I wouldn't overshoot. But since you are going to be starting at 0 psi, I think you'll be safe to set your CO2 regulator at 20 psi and watch closely. If you cant be close to the tank to watch it, look up your temp and carb volume you want to achieve, then set your gas regulator at that level. I'll say off the cuff that 13 psi may be about your sweet spot, but 20 psi will get you there more quickly if you are close by to monitor and not over carb.

Thanks for the info. This recipe calls for 2 week fermentation and a FG of 1.007. I am going to check the gravity later today to see where I am at. Since I am adding gelatin. Just need to figure out best time to close the BO valve prior to cold crashing to have a little positive pressure. I really want another unitank... I have lots beer I am wanting to brew.
 

Morrey

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Thanks for the info. This recipe calls for 2 week fermentation and a FG of 1.007. I am going to check the gravity later today to see where I am at. Since I am adding gelatin. Just need to figure out best time to close the BO valve prior to cold crashing to have a little positive pressure. I really want another unitank... I have lots beer I am wanting to brew.
To get the gelatin in the top 3" port, you'll have to open the tank which will zero any previous pressure in the tank. Gelatin works best when beer is cold and ready to carb.

My process for this would be to put in a few pounds of CO2 pressure thru your BO tube and shut the BO valve. Then step down your temps. Stepping slowly may help prevent chill haze but this is debatable. I have a glycol chiller so I can take down temps from 68 to 35 in around 1.5 hours...but I do it in steps of 5F per hour to avoid haze.

Anyway, once crashed, vent off any remaining pressure, open the port and add gelatin. I'd add back some CO2 pressure, bleed off to purge as much O2 as possible, then shut BO with a bit of pressure left on the tank. Leave it sit a day or two before carbing.

I feel adding gelatin may be a bit risky adding the possibility of oxidation into the equation and have found that most beers will drop clear given some time in keg. You'll have to decide that, and if you plan to drink it up in a hurry, I'd go the gelatin route.
 

Morrey

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Ss 14G Uni Tank. Trying to be O2 free as much as possible: During dry hop additions at the end of active fermentation or the addition of gelatin when crashing, I open the 3" port on top of the tank for access. I am pushing CO2 in thru the BO cane while I have the top port open in an attempt for the escaping CO2 to keep O2 from dropping into the tank. I know I am not 100% O2 free with this technique, but what else can I do? Maybe someone is using a technique I haven't thought of....thanks!

*I am also posting this on the LODO thread, so if you see this there, I am not trying to be disrespectful.
 

Dockside_Brewing

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I just sketched out an airlock system for gelatin/dry hopping to minimize O2 contamination. Parts ordered. I can't use it on the beer currently sitting in the fermenter but I will try it on my next batch.
 

Matt617

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What carbonation method are you using? I have 10 gallons that has been in the uni for 7 days at 62 degrees and just bumped up to 68 for another 7. My plan is to cold crash after that, add gelatin and then carbonate. Looking for 2.5 on this beer. I estimated the stone wet pressure at 3-4 psi.

I see you added the leg extension AND have the casters; what is your experience with the stability of the unitank with them?
 

Dockside_Brewing

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I love the leg extensions with the casters. Stable, easy to move around and I can add the sight glass to the bottom. The shelf on the bottom keeps it nice and sturdy and I have a place for my blow off tube bottle. Also less bending over!
 
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Matt617

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I got these guys and their corresponding parts and they do the trick: https://www.usplastic.com/catalog/i...dtWPNa_Nntnrimj56O5WMvpdB5FhlaZ4iHxoC-MLw_wcB

I never cold-crash that low (usually around 40), but I still get crazy condensation, even with replacing the stock tubing with thicker-walled tubing. Wish there was a work-around for this...

Did you buy two of those to connect to each other, just one, or is there a male adaptor to buy also? Please post a pic if you can.
 

Morrey

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If you'll look back at post #505, page 13 in this thread, I bought this QD which is working perfectly for my 4 fermenters. This is a 2 pc set and only one of the two pieces is shown in the post. But you'll need the male and female set that clicks together...leak free.
 

Dockside_Brewing

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If you'll look back at post #505, page 13 in this thread, I bought this QD which is working perfectly for my 4 fermenters. This is a 2 pc set and only one of the two pieces is shown in the post. But you'll need the male and female set that clicks together...leak free.

These are the ones I used and they work great. Make sure you get the valved version.
 

Morrey

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Two quick notes on the Uni Tank(s):

14G Uni with FTSs Heat and Glycol Cooling. (5th beer in this system) This weekend I brewed a house recipe Hoppy Wheat w/Lemongrass I designed using US-05. My brewery is in an outdoor mancave, unheated and non-air conditioned, but an enclosed structure with electricity and municipal water. Near the coast in SC is rarely in the frigid zone...until this winter. I set my controller at 65F and was quite afraid the temps at night of 16F and the highs in the day not getting over 38F would create a situation the FTSs heat pad could not handle. I draped a mover's blanket over the tank to assist the neoprene jacket with an additional layer of insulation, and to my surprise, the tank is holding rock solid at 65F. The yeast is off gassing like a machine gun and I am surprised the system is holding temps so well...but quite pleased.

7G Uni. My 7G uni tank pre-order was to be delivered for Christmas but Ss was delayed, then it sat on a UPS truck for a week due to snow issues. I finally got it and assembled while I brewed on Saturday. There are a few design changes (compared to the 14G uni) due to space limitations, and one of these bigger changes is 3 legs instead of 4. I opted for the leg extensions to give the dump and racking valve arms some much needed room to operate in tight quarters. Bringing the center of gravity higher on 3 legs seems to create a somewhat unstable platform at least while the tank is empty. I'll hope that a filled tank is more stable but still have that uneasy feeling the system is a bit on the tipsy side with leg extensions. I did a quick pressure test with 13 psi, and the tank was at 0 psi the next morning. I'll bring it back up to pressure and hit the TC's with star san spray to see if I can quickly identify a leak, but I did note the dump valve acted sluggish like it didn't want to lock in the closed position. There may be a seating issue here so I'll check again. As long as the leak is not in a welded area, I can easily replace the leaky fitting. More to come on the 7G soon.
 

Dockside_Brewing

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Thanks for the info. I will be following your progress. That may tilt me toward a second 14 gallon vs. a 7 gallon.
 

Morrey

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Thanks for the info. I will be following your progress. That may tilt me toward a second 14 gallon vs. a 7 gallon.
Once I get some weight in the tank-even if its a PBW wash or Star San passivation, I'll reply back. The pressurization leak (I hope) is something minor. The 7G tank hopefully will serve my purpose well for single keg or experimental batches, and in tandem with the 14G for 2 keg batches, I should be good to go.

I will see how 5G of liquid in the tank impacts stability. I may also try removing the leg extensions if a stability issue still exists. Will update again soon.
 

martianpc

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I recently made a 5-gallon batch in my 14 gallon tank, it seemed to work fine. I thought about buying a 7 gallon but I'm having trouble finding a good reason
 

Morrey

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I became concerned when Ss mentioned that a 5.5G batch in a 14G tank will work, but may struggle to cold crash since so little of the beer is exposed to the cooling coils. I suppose if a person didn't opt to crash this would not be a factor, but I like to dump the trub after crashing to begin carbing in the tank, again, best to have temps low during carbing. I guess it all depends on what you plan to do with the tank. Did you happen to cold crash your 5.5G batch?

Then again, if crash speed is not a big issue, maybe I felt concerned for nothing. In my area it gets really hot in the summer so I tried to factor all of this in when deciding.
 

martianpc

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I became concerned when Ss mentioned that a 5.5G batch in a 14G tank will work, but the unit may struggle to cold crash since so little of the beer is exposed to the cooling coils. I suppose if a person didn't opt to crash this would not be a factor, but I like to dump the trub after crashing to begin carbing in the tank, again, best to have temps low during carbing. I guess it all depends on what you plan to do with the tank. Did you happen to cold crash your 5.5G batch?
I did, I have a glycol chiller and I crashed to 32 degrees and held for a a week or so. I'm sure it would have been more efficient with more volume but it still worked. I set my glycol bath to around 14 degrees Fahrenheit.
 

Morrey

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That was a wise move to set your GC to 14F with limited coil contact. I run my chiller at 28F, but if I am ever faced with running the 14G tank with a 5.5G batch, I'll bring my chiller temp down as you suggested.
 

martianpc

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I think my biggest concern with the unitank, is that even after very thoroughly doing a CIP and a full breakdown cleaning with PBW and starsan I still smell hops when I stick my nose in and take a wiff. My last beer had tons of dry hops so I'm sure that's partly why. I think the smell is in all the silicone gasket seals. Everything seems perfectly clean but I do worry about the smell.
 

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I think my biggest concern with the unitank, is that even after very thoroughly doing a CIP and a full breakdown cleaning with PBW and starsan I still smell hops when I stick my nose in and take a wiff. My last beer had tons of dry hops so I'm sure that's partly why. I think the smell is in all the silicone gasket seals. Everything seems perfectly clean but I do worry about the smell.
Are you removing all of the Tri clamps, fittings, and gaskets after CIP to clean them?
 
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