chiller, fermentor, nat gas questions...

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chiller, fermentor, nat gas questions...

Postby bredmakr » Mon Dec 08, 2003 3:29 am

I'm moving up....again. My wife and I are prepairing to relocate to a new home and there will be a dedicated bay in the garage for the brewery. This is a perfect time for me to implement some long awaited upgrades. Things to consider when providing input to the questions below. I brew all grain and use whole hops in the boil kettle. Minimum batch size now is 10 gallons with a HERMS system so I have a pump to move things around.

1st - counter flow wort chiller. Performance and maitainance are my big concerns here. I'll spend the $$$ for the chillzilla if it is worth paying for in the long run.

2nd - conical fermenter. I'm tired of having to clean so many carboys for 10 gallons of beer. I'm going to take the plunge and invest in a conical fermenter. My main concern here is performance with ability to successfully draw off the yeast bed, cleaning, and portability of the unit.

3rd - lessons learned from crowd on converting from propane to natural gas. With the new location I will have a natural gas quick disconnect available to plug into the brewery. Here I'm looking for any input on the type of burners, types of gas lines, problems in conversion, etc. that others have experienced. I know that I will have to replace my 170,000 btu burners that are for propane. I want to know how much selection is out there for burners that are made for natural gas. What do they cost? Do I need to have all of the plumbing done by a plumber?

Thanks in advance for any and all input.

Mike
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conical

Postby joemez » Mon Dec 08, 2003 12:38 pm

I would also be interested in the usage of a conical. I will be trying a 10 gallon batch soon and having one vessal to ferment seems a lot easier.
As far as gas conversion. I have converted cooking equipment from nat to LP before and as far as I know you can use the burner for either or. The difference is the orifice. LP runs at a much higher pressure therefore the orifice is smaller. Since you are going to nat. you just need to find the correct drill size and drill out the one you have. Grainger sells orifice drill kits with a chart that will tell you the proper size for the amount of BTU's and pressure. It has been a long time since I purchased mine so I dont recall how much it was.
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Fermentor

Postby bigdosgood » Mon Dec 08, 2003 1:44 pm

I don't harvest my yeast so I use a 15 gallon plastic drum to ferment. It is heavy plastic so the breathing issue isn't a concrn, I have done all Ales, I only ferment for a week, then to the kegs, within another two weeks, I'm drinking! I bet Grainger is a good source for what you need on the burners. I would look around for a counterflow wort chiller, some are a lot cheaper and work the same.
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Bigdosgood

Postby fitz » Tue Dec 09, 2003 3:42 am

Where did you get your 15 Gallon drum?
I have been looking for one!
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try usplastic.com

Postby dartedplus » Tue Dec 09, 2003 5:31 am

you should try usplastic.com I have got stuff from them before. when you go to their site type in the search thing "15 gallon chem-mix tanks" and take a look at one of these. But dont hesitate to look at the other stuff. this is also where I got my hosing and quick disconnects
Hope this helps
ed
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Thanks Ed

Postby fitz » Tue Dec 09, 2003 5:34 am

Thanks Ed, I'll give them a try
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My local Homebrew supply

Postby bigdosgood » Tue Dec 09, 2003 5:51 am

I got my 15 gal barrel frm my local supplier, it is one that malt extract comes in, he lets me have them cheap. I have 2 now. I am a member of a homebrew club, The KGB, so I get a discount. Check out our site www.thekgb.org Anyway, I like that 15 gallon jug, 10 gallons fit easy and has rom to foam up too! Another big plus is the fact that I can rock it back and forth thus vigorously shaking it and putting a lot of oxygen in the wort, that may be why my last batch went from 1.068 to 1.006?
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