Need a sparge arm recommendation.

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Shred

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So, I 'm new to AG. Did a BIAB and after my first batch decided it was time to upgrade. I built a 10 gallon, cooler mash tun today and I'm planning to use my (used-once) 5-gallon cooler as a sparge water/HLT.

Does anyone have any good DIY or affordable but effective commercially available sparge arms?

Thanks!
 

RoadKing

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You don't need a sparge arm. As long as you don't dump the water in so hard it disturbs the whole grain bed your fine.
 
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Yeah? So just run a food safe hose off the spigot?
 

outside92129

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You only need the sparge arm if you're doing fly/continuous. If coming from BIAB i would recommend doing batch for now. Once you get that dialed in you can add the bits for RIMS/HERMS - there's additional learning curve associated with that and there are additional negative ways to affect your beer.
 

jpalarchio

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I put the sparge arm into that homebrew gadgetry folklore that we all fall for when we're starting out. I messed around with building various manifolds and always eyed that fancy spinning whirligig in the homebrew stores; now I just use a silicone hose sitting on top of the grain bed.

Look at the Blichmann Autosparge; aside from the valve that keeps you from overflowing, it's just a hose with a float.
 

Bobby_M

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You don't even need a sparge arm if you fly sparge. Basically the only requirement is that the flow is not intense nor digs a deep hole in your grain bed. It is true that laying a hose on the top of the grain bed works ok, but after a while it does burrow into the grain by a few inches if you don't have a foam float. I really like using locline to position the outlet on top of the grain and it stays there wonderfully.
 

LovesIPA

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Something to break up the flow of water and distribute it more evenly on the grain bed is all you really need. I use a spaghetti colander. I do continuous (well, sorta) sparging with it and I get good efficiency. Last batch came in at 80.9%.
 

goodsuds

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If you're dead set on getting a sparge arm I'll make you a deal on a Listermann Sparge Arm. My Step-dad gave me a Listermann mash tun setup that came with a brass sparge arm and various parts. I've yet to use any of it and think I'm just going to keep the buckets for bottling and I've been trying to figure out what to do with the rest of it. I'd rather see it get put to use than thrown out or scrapped. If you want it I'll send it to you for free, provided you pay shipping. It can't weigh much so I doubt it'd be more than a few bucks.
 

Komocabo

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I built mine for about 10 bucks with CPVC. Here are some pics in action :mug:

I just use a funnel at the top.

ForumRunner_20130827_204439.jpg


ForumRunner_20130827_204448.jpg
 

Komocabo

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That recipe maxed my mash tun.10 gal batch of IPA with 27# of grain and about 8-9 gals of strike water. Had to add some wood to raise the arm up a bit.
 
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@ everyone... thanks!

@goodsuds, I really appreciate the offer! I'll PM you. Even if it's not perfect, it's better than the nothing I have now. :)

I was thinking of just doing a hose with several holes in it. It seems like everyone is against using a sparge arm. Is it just that it's not necessary or is there some sort of negative impact?
 

HeyNoPie

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It just really isn't necessary. As long as the water is delivered gently, that's all you need
 

Komocabo

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I use one cuz it was fun to build, and I find it functional as I use a single tier system with no pumps (yet). So I a sparge by hand... gathering water from the HLT to go to the MT. It probably doesn't make a difference in quality compared to just gently pouring, but, as far as I know, many breweries use them, so why not for $10 and a small/fun project that requires zero cleaning when done with the brew day. Normally only hot water flows through, and it doesn't touch the grains... just twist apart and let it dry. It's kinda fun. :mug:
 
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