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eric19312

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Hey I'm itching to buy a new piece of gear and thinking it is time to retire my old 50' copper IC. I'd like to get rid of copper as I find the LODO guys kind of persuasive enough on the issue I already got rid of the last of the copper fittings I was using upstream. I'm not interested in a plate chiller as I really only brew hoppy beers and can't imagine the agony of getting a clogged chiller at the end of a long brew day. I want to get rid of the IC after last brew when I went to remove my chiller from the wort there were two dang hornets doing the back stroke in my kettle. I want to chill with the lid on tight.

So I have my eye on either the Stout SS CFC or the Exchilerator Maxx with the SS upgrade. The Stout is cheaper as sold but looks like I'd need a lot of fittings I don't have to get it hooked up to my brewery. The Exchilerator has that water mixing co-helical wrap. Maybe that does something to mix the water to improve performance. I also like the thermometer on the Exchilerator.

I'm looking to see if anyone has tried the SS Exchilerator and has any comments good or bad.
I'm also looking for a picture and description of how you guys with the Stout unit are attaching it to your systems. Maybe it is not so difficult but I couldn't find any pics on the web and know a few on here have gone that route.
Any other choices I should be considering? My batch size is 17 gallons and my ground water is not super cold.

Thanks!
 

matt_m

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There is one maybe substantial difference depending on how you want to use it. The ID of Stout inner tube is 10 mm (0.39") where the Exchillerator is 0.25". Theoretically that would allow a substantially higher flow rate if you are looking to whirlpool through the chiller. I do not get a good whirlpool in 5 gallon batches with a Riptide pump and the copper Exchillerator so I only use it for single-pass cooling to my fermenters. I usually get down to about 80 in one pass but again, that's with copper. My glycol chiller cools it the rest of the way to pitching temps before I'm done cleaning up. The Exchillerator Brutus doubles up the inner tubing but that's still just over 80% the cross section of the Stout. Personally I'd rather be able to simplify my plumbing to be able to chill and whirlpool on the same circuit but that's personal preference.

BTW, shipping is substantially different too. Stout wants $54 shipping to Michigan where Exchillerator is $10 flat rate.
 

Tom R

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Hey I'm itching to buy a new piece of gear and thinking it is time to retire my old 50' copper IC. I'd like to get rid of copper as I find the LODO guys kind of persuasive enough on the issue I already got rid of the last of the copper fittings I was using upstream. I'm not interested in a plate chiller as I really only brew hoppy beers and can't imagine the agony of getting a clogged chiller at the end of a long brew day. I want to get rid of the IC after last brew when I went to remove my chiller from the wort there were two dang hornets doing the back stroke in my kettle. I want to chill with the lid on tight.

So I have my eye on either the Stout SS CFC or the Exchilerator Maxx with the SS upgrade. The Stout is cheaper as sold but looks like I'd need a lot of fittings I don't have to get it hooked up to my brewery. The Exchilerator has that water mixing co-helical wrap. Maybe that does something to mix the water to improve performance. I also like the thermometer on the Exchilerator.

I'm looking to see if anyone has tried the SS Exchilerator and has any comments good or bad.
I'm also looking for a picture and description of how you guys with the Stout unit are attaching it to your systems. Maybe it is not so difficult but I couldn't find any pics on the web and know a few on here have gone that route.
Any other choices I should be considering? My batch size is 17 gallons and my ground water is not super cold.

Thanks!

Here's my Stout. I bought garden hose adapters for the water connections, and added an instrument "T" with a tri-clamp thermometer to the wort output. I wouldn't change a thing.
IMG_0084.JPG
 

Tom R

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No photos in use. But it's nothing fancy.

Kettle is connected to Riptide (which is a couple feet below kettle) with a few feet of 1/2" silicone tubing and camlocks, pump is connected with more 1/2" tubing to tri-clamp on CFC, and output of CFC has 10' of tubing with 1-1/2" TC fittings to racking arm of conical.

I run 160F PBW through it all immediately after use, then rinse, then disassemble to dry.
 
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eric19312

eric19312

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Thanks that was sketch I came up with too. Hoses with TC on one end and cam locks on other end. I’m adding up the parts...that thermometer looks to be $50 and another $20 fo the instrument tee, plus clamps and gaskets lol it adds up.

...so with the Riptide are you getting a reasonable whirlpool when you return to the kettle?
 

Tom R

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I'm not whirlpooling, I use leaf hops, so a bazooka screen works OK on the kettle drain. I'd like a false bottom like I had on my smaller BK. It's on the list.

I chill to about 80F in one pass to the conical, and glycol takes it down from there.
 
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eric19312

eric19312

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I'm not whirlpooling, I use leaf hops, so a bazooka screen works OK on the kettle drain. I'd like a false bottom like I had on my smaller BK. It's on the list.

I chill to about 80F in one pass to the conical, and glycol takes it down from there.

ok thanks I'll wait to see if anybody is getting a reasonable whirlpool. It's key to my brewing style. I want to chill kettle to about 180 then circulate pellet hops and wort through the CFC for 30 minutes and then proceed to the fermentor in one pass.
 

moto125

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Sorry to bring up an old post, but is there any problem in going from the 1/2" ID of the stout CFC to a 1.5" TC for an instrument T and then back down to 1/2" Camlock? I suppose that would just mean the instrument T has a big more liquid sitting in it to read the out flow temp, right?
 

Hwk-I-St8

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Unless you're brewing large enough batches where an immersion chiller is no longer viable, I see no reason to do anything other an immersion chiller. Easy to use, easy to clean, no risk of clogs, you can visually see that it's clean, etc.

If you have concerns about copper, why not a SS immersion chiller. The SS Hydra will address your concerns, is a direct replacement for your existing rig/process and they are very fast.

I have a hydra...would never consider a different chiller unless I wanted to move to SS....then I'd get the SS version. If I were brewing 20G batches or something like that, then I'd consider a more scalable solution like a counter flow chiller.

My overall philosophy is to not assume that the type of equipment the pros use is better...many times it's just what's necessary due to scale...chillers fall firmly into that category. If you're brewing 5-10G batches, take advantage of the better solutions for smaller scale brewing.
 

matt_m

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Unless you're brewing large enough batches where an immersion chiller is no longer viable, I see no reason to do anything other an immersion chiller. Easy to use, easy to clean, no risk of clogs, you can visually see that it's clean, etc.

Or for Steam Condenser users. Most everything I've read says drop in the IC with 10-15 minutes left in the boil. That's going to change everything with the boil at that point and put all that steam in the air. Maybe its safe to do so at FO and let it rest ~10 minutes?
 

Spartan1979

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Or for Steam Condenser users. Most everything I've read says drop in the IC with 10-15 minutes left in the boil. That's going to change everything with the boil at that point and put all that steam in the air. Maybe its safe to do so at FO and let it rest ~10 minutes?

I switched from an IC to a CFC when I went to electric with a steam condenser. I just couldn't figure out a good way to make it work.
 

Hwk-I-St8

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Or for Steam Condenser users. Most everything I've read says drop in the IC with 10-15 minutes left in the boil. That's going to change everything with the boil at that point and put all that steam in the air. Maybe its safe to do so at FO and let it rest ~10 minutes?

Oh yeah, that's a really good point. I brew electric in my garage, so I'm planning to get a condenser if I ever get a sink installed. I usually put my IC in with 5 minutes to go (same time I add whirlfloc). If it were me, I'd put up with 5 minutes of steam (that's probably about what you'd get boiling eggs or pasta) vs having to deal with a CFC or plate chiller, but, as I'm sure you can tell, I'm pretty committed to staying away from those unless absolutely necessary.
 

TheMadKing

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Thanks that was sketch I came up with too. Hoses with TC on one end and cam locks on other end. I’m adding up the parts...that thermometer looks to be $50 and another $20 fo the instrument tee, plus clamps and gaskets lol it adds up.

...so with the Riptide are you getting a reasonable whirlpool when you return to the kettle?

I have the same setup and yes I get a good whirlpool in the kettle

I also don't bother with thermometers on the chiller since I whirlpool my entire kettle while chilling as low as my tap water will go. I don't care about the chiller temp, only the bulk temp because of that.
 

TheMadKing

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Unless you're brewing large enough batches where an immersion chiller is no longer viable, I see no reason to do anything other an immersion chiller. Easy to use, easy to clean, no risk of clogs, you can visually see that it's clean, etc.

If you have concerns about copper, why not a SS immersion chiller. The SS Hydra will address your concerns, is a direct replacement for your existing rig/process and they are very fast.

I have a hydra...would never consider a different chiller unless I wanted to move to SS....then I'd get the SS version. If I were brewing 20G batches or something like that, then I'd consider a more scalable solution like a counter flow chiller.

My overall philosophy is to not assume that the type of equipment the pros use is better...many times it's just what's necessary due to scale...chillers fall firmly into that category. If you're brewing 5-10G batches, take advantage of the better solutions for smaller scale brewing.

Reasons I stopped using an immersion chiller:

-I can't have the lid on while chilling
-I can't whirlpool effectively and get a nice tight trub cone
-I have a heating element in my boil kettle so it would have to sit on top of the heating element

I agree plate chillers are silly on the homebrew scale and very prone to clogging and hiding gunk. I had one and sold it within 6 months

I love my stout CFC
 

Hwk-I-St8

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Reasons I stopped using an immersion chiller:

-I can't have the lid on while chilling
-I can't whirlpool effectively and get a nice tight trub cone
-I have a heating element in my boil kettle so it would have to sit on top of the heating element

I agree plate chillers are silly on the homebrew scale and very prone to clogging and hiding gunk. I had one and sold it within 6 months

I love my stout CFC

All valid concerns. I'm lucky in that I have a BrewBuilt kettle that has a factory notch in the lid (with rubber "plug"). My Hydra fits perfectly. While chilling, I have a sanitizer soaked towel wrapped around the chiller tubes effectively sealing the opening from bugs etc.

I haven't had an issue with whirlpooling but I don't have any non-IC batches to compare to. Trub has not been a problem (and I brew a lot of NEIPAs with lot's of WP hops).

I'm electric too...I set the hydra on the element which has not been a problem.
 

Dustin_J

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Reasons I stopped using an immersion chiller:

-I can't have the lid on while chilling
-I can't whirlpool effectively and get a nice tight trub cone
-I have a heating element in my boil kettle so it would have to sit on top of the heating element

I agree plate chillers are silly on the homebrew scale and very prone to clogging and hiding gunk. I had one and sold it within 6 months

I love my stout CFC

+1 . This is pretty much word-for-word why I recirc through a Stout CFC instead of using an immersion chiller in my electric setup.
 

TLaffey

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Hey I'm itching to buy a new piece of gear and thinking it is time to retire my old 50' copper IC. I'd like to get rid of copper as I find the LODO guys kind of persuasive enough on the issue I already got rid of the last of the copper fittings I was using upstream. I'm not interested in a plate chiller as I really only brew hoppy beers and can't imagine the agony of getting a clogged chiller at the end of a long brew day. I want to get rid of the IC after last brew when I went to remove my chiller from the wort there were two dang hornets doing the back stroke in my kettle. I want to chill with the lid on tight.

So I have my eye on either the Stout SS CFC or the Exchilerator Maxx with the SS upgrade. The Stout is cheaper as sold but looks like I'd need a lot of fittings I don't have to get it hooked up to my brewery. The Exchilerator has that water mixing co-helical wrap. Maybe that does something to mix the water to improve performance. I also like the thermometer on the Exchilerator.

I'm looking to see if anyone has tried the SS Exchilerator and has any comments good or bad.
I'm also looking for a picture and description of how you guys with the Stout unit are attaching it to your systems. Maybe it is not so difficult but I couldn't find any pics on the web and know a few on here have gone that route.
Any other choices I should be considering? My batch size is 17 gallons and my ground water is not super cold.

Thanks!
I have a SS Exchilerator, maybe an early version, and it works well for me. Depending on tap water temp, I sometimes do an initial cooling with tap water and then switch to prechilling the tap water with ice and my old copper IC. My batch size is 10 gallons.
 
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eric19312

eric19312

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Saw some activity here and thought I'd mention what I ended up deciding to do and how it worked out. First very much agree with @TheMadKing 's list of reasons to go CFC.

So I went with the Stout CFC. I wanted SS and decided longer run with larger diameter inner tube would be better than the Exchillerator design. I do run boiling wort through the chiller for last 5-10 min of boil to assure sanitization and then at flameout turn on the chilling water and drop the kettle temp to about 190 for my whirlpool hop additions. I have a Spike 20 gallon kettle and a chugger center inlet pump and can achieve a slow spin with the pump. But I don't bother with that anymore. After dropping kettle to 190-195 I stop the pump, and add my whirlpool hops. A few minutes later I spin the wort with my SS mash paddle, put the lid on the kettle and let it steep and settle out at same time. When that is over I go direct to the fermentor in a single pass without issue, wort is clear enough for me and I get a decent cone in the kettle.

I did end up getting the instrument Tee and thermometer, these work together just fine:
 

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@eric19312 what are your thoughts on this chiller after a few months of use? I’m considering the stout as well. I have a stainless Hydra currently.
 
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eric19312

eric19312

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@eric19312 what are your thoughts on this chiller after a few months of use? I’m considering the stout as well. I have a stainless Hydra currently.

I'm really happy with the Stout.

I switched from 1/2" copper IC and seems like chilling time and water usage is similar (haven't tested with a stopwatch or anything, just noting that getting from hot to pitching temps with my 55-60F ground water takes time with either unit). What I like the most is how easy it is to leave all the hot break and hop trub in the brew kettle. Never had this kind of whirlpooling success with immersion chillers. I guess the trade off is all the cold break will end up in the fermentor but you get fantastic cold break with single pass chilling and if you want to eliminate that you have choice to let it settle in the fermentor and dump it before pitching yeast.
 

NewJersey

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I have a northern Brewer ss cfc and like it a lot.
I wish I had gone with the stout for improved whirlpooling through the chiller, but I work around it ok.
A couple minutes before FO I start whirlpool without going through chiller and continue for 5 minutes after FO. I then continue to whirlpool through chiller. (Weaker whirlpool, but it's worked)
The idea of just plopping an IC in the bk again is enticing because it's so simple, but I like how the cfc process works better personally
 
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eric19312

eric19312

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I have a northern Brewer ss cfc and like it a lot.
I wish I had gone with the stout for improved whirlpooling through the chiller, but I work around it ok.
A couple minutes before FO I start whirlpool without going through chiller and continue for 5 minutes after FO. I then continue to whirlpool through chiller. (Weaker whirlpool, but it's worked)
The idea of just plopping an IC in the bk again is enticing because it's so simple, but I like how the cfc process works better personally

The whirlpool velocity through the Stout CFC with a chugger pump is also modest. I'm actually achieving a much better whirlpool with manual stirring (pump off). I turn off my pump before adding the whirlpool hops and then use my big stainless mash paddle to stir the kettle for 20-30 seconds to create my whirlpool. It's enough stirring to make a nice cone and minimizes the amount of hop material in the CFC.
 

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I have a northern Brewer ss cfc and like it a lot.
I wish I had gone with the stout for improved whirlpooling through the chiller, but I work around it ok.
A couple minutes before FO I start whirlpool without going through chiller and continue for 5 minutes after FO. I then continue to whirlpool through chiller. (Weaker whirlpool, but it's worked)
The idea of just plopping an IC in the bk again is enticing because it's so simple, but I like how the cfc process works better personally

That would be my first choice. I use Camlock QD, so 1/2" NPT wort I/O is about as good as it gets. Plus I can add any other plumbing fixtures that capture my fancy.
 

superiorsat

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The whirlpool velocity through the Stout CFC with a chugger pump is also modest. I'm actually achieving a much better whirlpool with manual stirring (pump off).

As long as your wort is circulating gently it will/should leave a nice tight trub cone in the middle of the kettle. My CFC ( built for future much larger batches in mind ) is 57' of 1/2" ID copper inside a 7/8" copper pipe and one of my chugger pumps whirlpools gently and leaves a great looking cone. Let say on a 12 gallon batch of Neipa with a half hour whirlpool and 12 ounces of hops just thrown in loose the cone looks like a mountain in the middle of the kettle, LOL. When your whirlpool slows down I believe is where the trub and hops drop to form the cone. If the whirlpool is moving too fast a lot of stuff stays in suspension and settles in the fermenter instead. I like to run my pump and hold the temp during the whirlpool, but that is just how I do it.
 

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Group W

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I have a SS CFC with a 3/8” inside tube. The openings are very small so I use a SS hop spider, which reduces hop utilization. Thinking of going to a Stout CFC and ditching the hop spider.

Anyone here using a Stout CFC and throwing significant amounts of pellet hops in the kettle to WP without clogging?
 

Tom R

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I've whirlpooled a couple ounces of pellet hops through my Stout CFC without issues.

By the way, it has an ID of about 7/16", not much larger than your 3/8" ID.
 

Group W

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Ah, 3/16" is pretty tight.
I use a Riptide, and get a good whirlpool in my 23 gal kettle.
It is. The CFC inner tube is 3/8”OD and the outer tube is 5/8”OD. To get a stronger whirlpool in the kettle I created a valved bypass circuit around the CFC. It all worked well for years with a MKII pump and hop spider. But I want to simplify and remove the bypass circuit and the hop spider. I do a lot of IPAs and kettle hops get around 7 ounces of pellets, mostly late and WP in 6.5 gal. I may just go ahead with the changes and run an APA first. I can always go back to using the spider. Thanks for your comments.
 

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No issues here with the Stout. I'll often dump in my whirlpool hops and circulate wort through the chiller to sanitize it for about 10 minutes returning through a hose hung over the edge of the kettle. I've not tried whirlpooling through.
 

Staticsouls

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I used the stainless cfc from northern brewer but the whirlpool was weak. I now recirculate through the herms coil with two water in the hlt and ice blocks. I use maybe 15 gallons of water to cool
 

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Finally pulled the trigger on the Stout counter flow chiller. I won’t get the chance to use it for another month or so (in the process of moving), but first impression, this thing is built like a tank. I’m surprised by how heavy duty it is. Was packaged extremely well in the box too. Can’t wait to use it.
 

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Finally pulled the trigger on the Stout counter flow chiller. I won’t get the chance to use it for another month or so (in the process of moving), but first impression, this thing is built like a tank. I’m surprised by how heavy duty it is. Was packaged extremely well in the box too. Can’t wait to use it.
I got a Stout CFC. Used it 3 times. Outstanding!!!
 
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