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What do I need for recirculating mash.

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mad32brewing

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I have been brewing for a little bit and I am really interested in being able to recirculate my mash. I use the BIAB method in a 10 gallon Blichman Boilermaker G1. During the mash, I just wrap a big blanket around the kettle to insulate it and keep the temp as stable as possible. Built into the kettle is a sight glass, thermometer, and three-part ball valve with a Camlock fitting(I bought the kettle used on craigslist with all the attachments included. I will attach a pic to the bottom). I have done some research about mash recirculation and I keep on seeing things about HERMS and RIMS systems. I do not have a second kettle in my system and my kettle is not electric. Everything that I see online says that I need one of these systems to be able to recirculate my mash, to be able to keep a level mash temp. Is this true or can I just have a pump run from the ball valve to a pump and then just clip the other side of the tube to the top of the kettle or even drill a port on the top of the kettle and connect a sparge fitting to it, kind of like a Clawhammer Supply kettle? ( Here is an example: ). Would really like to know what you guys think I should, what I would need, or if this is even needed.

This is the pic of my kettle:
IMG_7523.JPG
 

Redpappy

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to recirculate you need a drain at the bottom ( which you have) hose to go from drain to a pump that can handle temps of your mash, and a exit hose to go from pump to the top of your kettle. Pump can run you from 30.00 on up.

before purchasing these items, You should think of where and what you truly want to do, to see if it will be worth it. As @jschein stated, not necessary.
 
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mad32brewing

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What would you guys then think would be the best/most economical/uses up the least amount of space, way to control my heat with the setup I have?
 
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mad32brewing

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I also use Blichmann kettles. Please realize, according to the instruction manual included with the kettle, the sight glass volume markings are not accurate.
wait really. I bought the kettle second hand so I did not get a manual with it. How off are the markings on the sight glass, because they seem to have worked fine for me so far.
 

Tobor_8thMan

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From the Blichmann Boiler Maker manual page 8 "Use of the Level Gauge. The level gauge is calibrated to reflect the level in the pot and is accurate to about 1qt for the 10/15/20 gal models, and about 2qt for the 30/55 gal models."

It's true 1 quart ( 1/4 gallon) doesn't sound much for the 10/15/20 gallon kettles, but I think it's actually worse than the manual states.

When I began using the Boiler Maker kettle in 2018 my liquid amounts were off. Over time I've determined I have to add 2.82% to adjust. So if my recipe calls for 13.9 gallons in the brew kettle, I add 13.9 + 2.82% or 14.29 (14.3) for the true 13.9 gallons.

Likewise, if I'm adjusting down from the kettle gauge marking to the actual value I subtract 2.8%. As an example. I finish brewing and want to know how much liquid I have after cooling and hop removal. I see the kettle gauge indicates 11.5 gallons. 11.5 - 2.8% = 11.178 (11.18) gallons.

Once I began adjusting my recipes for the kettle sight glass markings I now am either exact with the recipe or very, very close (since the 2.82% and 2.8% were determined over time for my equipment/setup).

Hope this helps.
 
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Mad32, I'm not understanding why you want to recirculate. It does produce clearer wort, but that's widely believed to be unimportant. Recirculation is usually intended to control mash temperatures by heating the wort externally (RIMS or HERMS) as it recirculates -- for step mashes and/or mash-out. As JSchein wrote, if there's no external heating of the wort, recirculation will only cool it. So perhaps you can clarify your goal?
 

Wagon_6

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I have an electric BIAB system and love recirculating. I do step mashes for lagers and just hold the temp and mash out for ales. With propane, I don’t think you’ll be able to recirc fast enough to prevent the wort at the bottom from getting too hot. The grain limits how fast you can recirc. I condition my grain to give it more help.

You could build a small electric RIMS with a basic controller to provide heat. I use the SS Brewtech recirc return the lays on top of the grain but under the wort.
 
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