gas fired rims biab

For those who use gas to fire their BIAB brews.
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gas fired rims biab

Post by Thonz » 3 years ago

Hi all!

I'm going from a single vessel AG system to a BIAB for the ease of use and the speed. I want to use a false bottom to keep the bag off the bottom of the kettle and recirculate the wort via a small solar pump. I guess this has already been done before, so I think you'll be able to tell me if and where I made some wrong assumptions.

Let me know what you think!
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Last edited by Thonz on 15 Jun 2014, 02:51, edited 1 time in total.

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Post by mally » 3 years ago

Hi Thonz,

I am not sure if your ideas are a variation or completely different from this thread here.
Could be interesting reading for you.

I wouldn't want to discourage you so maybe make your own mind up eh?

:luck:
Last edited by mally on 15 Jun 2014, 03:27, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by Thonz » 3 years ago

Yes, I read that thread thoroughly. I don't have the basket insert that he has, so I don't think I will run into the problems that he has. I will however run into problems with my temperature probe, since it's off to the side so getting an accurate reading may be a bit of a challenge.


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Post by PistolPatch » 3 years ago

Might also have to check the solar pump will handle hot wort etc.

The other thing to remember with this is that making sweet liquor is a very small part of the brewing process. The time, cost, cleaning and maintenance of all those bits which really only save you from applying some heat a few times during the mash and stirring it can be a real increase in work for you rather than a work saver. (Maybe have a read of this thread as well.)

Welcome aboard too Thonz :salute:.
Last edited by PistolPatch on 15 Jun 2014, 16:54, edited 1 time in total.
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gas fired rims biab

Post by Thonz » 3 years ago

The only extra things to clean is the valve at the bottom of the pot and the false bottom, since I use every part of the recirculation (hoses and pump) during cleaning anyway.

The pump is rated for 95 degrees C, we'll above mash out temps.


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Post by PistolPatch » 3 years ago

[EDIT: Maybe before I spent all the time writing the below, I should have checked Thonz if you read the link I wrote above? Not sure you did???]

That is fine but you need to stop and think about your cleaning process. I have two kettles. I have a syphon and I have taps and I know which of these creates the most work. I have access to pumps but have never employed them because I already see how much work a single tap costs.

By the way, your first post here said, "I'm going from a single vessel AG system to a BIAB for the ease of use and the speed." I couldn't understand that. BIAB is the single vessle AG system."

Anyway, what I'd like to see you do here is write down, step by step, how you will handle your kettle, pump, ball-valves etc once the boil has finished.

Is that a fairer question?

My total "work" on a double batch of producing sweet liquor and boiling it is probably twenty minutes including cleaning the kettle and measuring my KFL.

And that is probably a good way to finish this post. You should know the importance of measuring KFl before thinking about RIMS or anything else.

:peace:
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Post by Thonz » 3 years ago

Of course I read what I wrote above. What this BIAB-setup brings me is no sparge trouble anymore, while still being able to do step mashes, along with some speed increase and an increased precision in mash temps.

My cleanup will be the following:

End of boil>hook up sanitized silicone hoses to the plate chiller and into the carboy>chill all the wort from the kettle into the carboy>disconnect hoses>clean kettle>connect hoses>fill kettle with cleaning solution (oxy)>circulate cleaning solution through plate chiller and kettle>rinse.

That sounds reasonably well thought out right?


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Post by PistolPatch » 3 years ago

Thonz wrote:That sounds reasonably well thought out right?
It sounds like it is but it isn't :P. (I'm not taking the piss here btw. What you wrote above is what you would see on many a forum and everyone would cheer you on but with no real practical, considered advice. You would then fade off gradually disappointed in what you spent time and money on or worse still, went on to encourage others to follow in your footsteps.

This is one of the very few places that you will get the correct information handed to you individually but there are limits to how much time can be spent on one person. Your next post here for me at least, will be a make it or break it post so maybe...

Go and grab a beer, slow down and just enjoy having a read of what has taken me around an hour and a half to write to you...

Firstly, I love automation and gadgetry. I have a whole room of spare parts here in my apartment :o of things that I thought would save me time and money. None of them did. What I seem to spend hours on now, is writing so that new brewers like you can save hundreds of dollars and hours of wasted time.

Your post started with...
Thonz wrote:Of course I read what I wrote above.
:lol:. I hope that was a typo Thonz! I wanted to make sure you had read what I wrote and linked!!! If you did read what I linked, you would know that ball-valves can be a big problem. A ball-valve is a ball inside a cylinder and that cylinder retains liquid which if not flushed out completely, will become stagnant and infectious.
Thonz wrote:What this BIAB-setup brings me is no sparge trouble anymore
Pure BIAB doesn't involve any sparging at all so I am a bit lost on this one. Need more info from you.

The Cleaning Checklist.

I am going to totally ignore the plate chiller. (I have one here if you haven't bought one yet in my spare parts cupboard. Let's just ignore those extra hoses etc.)

You have to clean and sanitise a kettle, a pump, one ball-valve at least and several hoses. (No plate -chiller).

For a start, because you have a ball-valve attached to it, the kettle needs to be cleaned and sterilised. This means flushing/draining it, rinsing it a few times, scrubbing it, rinsing it again and then adding water and boiling it so as you get to the stage where you can be flushing your ball-valve with water that won't stagnate. (But, as soon as you connect it again to your other hoses/plate chiller, all you will get is the mess from them back into the kettle. Do you start again? Or, have you thought of a way of dumping the sludge, detergent water, rinse water, boiling water, etc from each cycle? Have you accounted for the cost and time and amount of water you need to re-heat to run through the system and dump many times?

That is just a glimpse of the reality of how more parts and 'time-saving' devices/systems can cost you dearly.

By the way, every ball-valve in your system, to be cleaned and sanitised properly, will have to be open and closed many times on each 'cycle'.

...

Just thinking, a good thread on any forum might be, "Been using my automated system for 3 years now. Everyone should have one. Love it and here is what I do..."

You might have to shorten the title but you get the idea ;)

:peace:
PP
Last edited by PistolPatch on 17 Jun 2014, 20:33, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by majorphill » 3 years ago

Thonz

Your setup is almost exactly what I use. I have electric elements under my false bottom (a perforated pizza tray). I nearly always step mash (only because I can) and I use one of these to make it easy.

I once had a herms system running but it just gave me extra bits to clean and for no benefit. (There is a common thread developing here). ;)

Before I start the mash I heat bit of hot water in my kettle and flush the tap. Occasionally I will get a bit of detritus but usually nothing. Takes 5 minutes and not much effort.

When I start my mash I turn the pump on and run the wort from bottom to top in an effort to keep temperatures fairly even throughout. I give the grain an occasional stir as well. Not much effort required. I have my temperature probe attached to the top hose outlet.

Once my mash is finished I put the ends of both hoses into a bucket of hot water and run the pump. That cleans everything and takes very little time and not much effort.

Once I have finished the boil and have run my wort into my "No Chill" containers, I boil a bit of water in the bottom of the kettle, clean the kettle and run the hot water out. That seems to work and (touch wood) I have never had a problem. That's it. Doesn't take much time or effort.

Now ... :think:

Since reading this thread I have been wondering why I do it like this.
I have a tap because my first kettle was an electric urn which had a tap. I put a tap in my new kettle because the old one had one and it worked. :sleep:
I recirculate because I wanted even temperatures and it was part of my old herms system... and then I stir by hand as well. :scratch:

I am thinking that if I remove the pump and tap part I'll also remove four "not much time and effort" steps and replace it with one clean a syphon step.

In conclusion , your system will work well and I am going to try out the "keep it simple " method. :headhit:

Majorphill
Last edited by majorphill on 18 Jun 2014, 09:53, edited 1 time in total.


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Post by PistolPatch » 3 years ago

I love it when I don't read a question properly :P.
majorphill wrote:Once my mash is finished I put the ends of both hoses into a bucket of hot water and run the pump. That cleans everything and takes very little time and not much effort.
For some reason, I thought all the hoses were going to be staying on during the boil. (I think I was thinking HERMS :roll:).

Anyway, its nice to take my high horse for an occasional gallop :).

Even though I have now read the initial question correctly, I still think this is going to be creating unnecessary work and risk of quality.

I better go and add an edit to some of my posts above :sneak:.

:)
PP

Hold on, just re-reading Thonz's posts and I don't think I did get it wrong. Jonz, you have mentioned that you intend circulating cleaning solution after the boil. Much better off doing what Phill does. Get rid of the pump at the end of the mash and deal with cleaning your kettle manually. Or better still, just don't use anything. An occasional stir and temperature check is all you need.
Last edited by PistolPatch on 18 Jun 2014, 18:57, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by AFewTooMany » 3 years ago

I just stir and it all seems to work out :party:

Also didn't realise people spent so much time cleaning and sterilising. I give the kettle a good going over with a washing up sponge and make sure the elements (electric) are shiny. A few rinses and done. Rinse it at beginning of brew day and go


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How to clean a ball-valve step by step.

Post by PistolPatch » 3 years ago

AFTM, your kettle doesn't need much cleaning and needs no sanitising but anything you attach to it does. For example,

Many ball-valves or taps attached to kettle or urns never reach a very high temperature. It is a myth that all taps attached to kettle will reach boiling point. I doubt any urn tap would and a lot of gas-fired ball-valves wouldn't either. (Sight gauges are probably even more of a worry.)

The second thing about ball-valves which I haven't explained properly here is that the ball is inside a cylinder so this means there is always liquid trapped in the ball-valve. To clear the liquid in the ball-valve properly requires either pulling it apart or opening and closing it many times when you flush, clean, rinse and sterilise.

Some people's kettle set-up and cleaning routine combine to result in a happy situation where they will never have a kettle tap problem. I always mention it as in my early brewing days, a mate of mine poured 1500 litres of beer down the drain and everyone said, "Don't worry about your kettle as it gets sterilised during the boil." Finally he did pull the ball-valve apart and nearly died form the smell.

Since then, I have pulled other people's apart and always they have stunk. Since then, I always tell people top do 'the nostril test'. In other words on brew day, before you fill and fire your kettle, put a hose on the kettle tap and open and close it whilst breathing in with the other end of the hose up your nostril. If you smell anything bad, pull that tap apart before you brew!!!

My Cleaning/Sanitation Schedule for Kettle Taps/Ball-Valves

I won't go into other problems with some kettle taps but despite the fact that I have mine well set-up, I still regret the day I put ball-valves on my kettles. Compared to an auto-syphon or a jiggler syphon, they are a lot of work. The syphons are a little clumsy during transfer (unless you put some thought into it) but only take a minute to clean/sanitise. In contrast, a kettle tap is 'eloquent' during the transfer time but takes ages to maintain properly. Here is what I have to do...

1. Lift the kettle onto the lawn and pour out all the trub (and measure the trub if I am collecting numbers).

2. Hose the kettle out onto the grass.

3. Scrub the kettle interior with a scourer and then rinse with the hose.

4. If the kettle had beerstone, I would give it an acid wash.

[If I had nothing attached to my kettle, the above is all you need to do. With ball-valves etc you will also have to...]

5. All during the above, open and close the kettle tap several times to flush the dead space in the ball-valve.

6. Put the kettle back on the burner and boil about 4 litres of water. (I have 70 litre kettles and a very nice pick-up set-up but I still need to boil about 4 litres in the kettle. That takes well over 5 minutes of gas to do so as I am re-heating the big base of the kettle as well.

7. Once boiling, tilt kettle and run boiling water through the tap opening and closing it many times.

8. Make up about 3 litres of starsan and run that through ball-valve opening and closing many times.

Automation

Above I asked whether Thonz had read a link I posted above. I still don't know if he has. Maybe now I have written the above, a post like this one in that link might make more sense?

Every thing you add to your home brewery is a complication. There are probably many analogies I can use but for those who know about milking cows, I'd say, if you had two, or even five cows, would it be faster to milk them by hand or to automate it?

Was going to think of another analogy but have been stuck on phone for last hour so will just hit Submit now I think.
Last edited by PistolPatch on 19 Jun 2014, 18:26, edited 3 times in total.
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gas fired rims biab

Post by Thonz » 3 years ago

So you're all saying that a ball valve on the bottom of the kettle will only give me more work in cleaning, opposed to the ease of use it gives me during the brewing process?

I can also purchase a 3 piece valve and take it apart at the end of the brew day and soak it in oxy or pbw.

The rinsing of my kettle I now do with washing up detergent, a pad and water. It has always lasted me well.


The thing I see is that recirculating the mash does not help in getting accurate temps and better heat distribution?

I'd still like to use the valve though!


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Post by majorphill » 3 years ago

Thonz

As I said in my post above "Your setup is almost exactly what I use". It works well. Try it.

As I also said, after having tried it, I am going to remove the pumping arrangement to simplify the process and would remove the tap if I could.

Majorphill


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Post by Thonz » 3 years ago

I don't have enough space above my stove to lift the grain bag out of the kettle. I want to keep the valve so that I can drain the wort out of the kettle, take the kettle off the stove, take out the bag and pour the wort back in to get it to a boil (don't worry, I can bring 70L to a heavy rolling boil on my stove).

If the circulation does heat the wort better than just stirring, I'm going to stick to stirring and don't use a pump.


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Post by PistolPatch » 3 years ago

[I think this thread is a good example of how you actually have to slow down and visualise each step of brewing when you think you have thought of a new brewing practice.]

I read your post above when you posted it a week ago and had no idea how to respond. In that post, you did not reply to the info offered previously by several of us but did suddenly throw in new critical information such as...

"I don't have enough space above my stove to lift the grain bag out of the kettle. I want to keep the valve so that I can drain the wort out of the kettle, take the kettle off the stove, take out the bag and pour the wort back in to get it to a boil (don't worry, I can bring 70L to a heavy rolling boil on my stove)."

So what we have been picturing (you doing a full-volume single vessel brew) is suddenly turned on its head. This info should have been in post #1. Your system above now has a heap more problems than I originally thought (how do you lift 70 litres of wort?) but I certainly don't have any more time to spend on this thread as I'm pretty sure what I and others have written here has only been skimmed and certainly not acknowledged or digested by your good self. Hopefully the considerable time spent here has been of value to someone else though. Fingers crossed!
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Post by Silverbrew » 3 years ago

Definitely have helped me pistolpatch I was contemplating going this route. I already spend enough time cleaning and sanitising I don't not want to do more work!!! So thank you this thread has help me.


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Post by PistolPatch » 3 years ago

Glad to hear it Silverbrew and welcome to the forum :salute:

(I'd forgotten about this thread. Looks like I was a bit grumpy when I wrote my last post here. Whoops! :))
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Post by guicamargo » 1 year ago

Great topic. Ty for sharing

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