Keggle mash tun questions

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Prezioso85

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After a buddy gave me a 15 gal. keg I decided I'm going to convert it to use as my mash tun over my cooler I'm using now, that way I can adjust mash temps if need be. I'm leaning towards direct fire mash with a pump I already have but still tossing around the idea of rims. I now have a 12" domed false bottom, I'm wondering if this false bottom will work with direct fire or will I risk scorching and will need a different false bottom, or if I should use what I have and go to rims.
 

HopHeavy

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Since this is a new conversion, make sure there are drain holes in the rolled chime to allow expanding gas to escape rather than explode the keg and pose a hazard to someone.

If I were to direct fire my mash, I would want the same, full diameter, false bottom in the MT that I use with HERMS now. I can't imagine that the 12" FB can keep all of the grain off of the outer perimeter of the bottom, where a great deal of heat will be trapped within the keggle's chime. I think the chance for scorching your mash, even with recirculation, is pretty good. But hey, I really don't know because I haven't used what you have described myself.

While I don't really regret building my system as HERMS, I have to admit I have contemplated installing another burner under the MT to accelerate steps in my mash schedule.
 
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Prezioso85

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I am aware of the holes keggles chime, as I now use a keggle for my bk. I'm not against buying a new false bottom, cause if I do I'll put my existing into my bk to help with hop trub. Now I'm just trying to decide if rims might just be the better way to go instead of buying a second burner. Also how important is it to use a dip tube in the mash tun?
 

douglasbarbin

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I think a half-barrel keg is around 16" in diameter, which means that your 12" domed false bottom will have about 2" on all sides where the grain will not be on the false bottom. I would look at a different false bottom. I'm fairly certain that they make some specifically for keggles.
 

blizz81

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I would probably look at a Jaybird FB, something like that.


Also, if you have the opportunity / if the top is not already cut out, consider going bottom-drain. No diptubes needed. Can't direct fire in this case though, obviously.


I <3 my 120V bottom-drain RIMS keggle. I don't ask it to do much (maintain temp / minor corrections), but outside of some flow issues at the beginning (which I mitigated by adding on a BIAB bag along with the Jaybird), it easily produces very consistent and predictable / repeatable wort.
 

doug293cz

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A dip tube is quite important. If you are fly sparging, you want the pickup centered in the MLT under the FB to minimize the potential for channeling. Channeling will kill your lauter efficiency. If you are batch sparging, you want the dip tube to pick up all liquid so that any remaining puddle in the bottom of the MLT is only about 1/8" deep. This minimizes your undrainable volume, and helps maximize your lauter efficiency.

Brew on :mug:
 
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Prezioso85

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So after doing some price research, it's not going to cost a lot more to buy a rims setup and keep my 12" false bottom. Since I already have a pump and an extra t stat. Unless I really do need a bigger false bottom, even without direct fire. With that being said, for a little more money I can get the 1 1/2" tube from brew hardware that will be a lot easier to set up and enclose the electrical connections nicely, or I can build a 2" but then have to figure out the wire enclosure. Will the 2" be that much of an advantage over 1 1/2"?
 
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