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Old 20-06-2015, 10:00 PM   #21
Tony1951
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COOLING TEST WITH BOILER FULL.

After the boil, I took measurements of the cooling rate when the boiler had 25 litres of water at between 98C and 90C.

Eight degrees centigrade was lost in 105 minutes which works out at a cooling rate of one degree C every 13.1 minutes. This is significantly slower than the earlier observed rate of one degree every nine minutes. This may be due as Winstonia suggested to the vessel being only part filled on the earlier test.
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Old 21-06-2015, 08:31 AM   #22
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It looks and doesnt sound too bad.. when you going to brew with it I am interested to see ho wit actually goes..
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Old 21-06-2015, 08:37 AM   #23
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It looks and doesnt sound too bad.. when you going to brew with it I am interested to see ho wit actually goes..

I need to get the Cooper's Irish Stout out of the FV first. It will have been in there for two weeks on next Tuesday. It is already at 1010 so I can probably put it in the keg then. Maybe Wednesday I can get onto brewing the mild, but I don't know how I am going to cool the wort. At the observed cooling rate it will take about 13 hours to come down to pitching temperature. Maybe I should research no cool methods.

I'll write a brew day report in the place set aside for them.

Cheers
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Old 24-06-2015, 04:00 PM   #24
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I have one of these and I love it. As some people have already said, the quality of it is surprisingly good. I half expected it to be flimsy and poorly put together considering the cost, but was actually very nicely surprised. It's no Braumeister, obviously, but for £100 shipped it's a steal. I feel like I've adequately satisfied my urge for some shiny stainless steel, whilst also managing to avoid the big dent in the wallet that usual coincides with that.

The thermostat also worked a lot better than I expected; I found it to only be a few degrees out. I did struggle to get a rolling boil though, even with the thermostat set to 110C, so I had to remove the probe from the underside of the element and secure it elsewhere. This effectively makes the thermostat useless as it puts the reading way off, but now I get a really vigorous, constant boil. Actually almost too vigorous Thinking of building a voltage controller/dimmer to be able to have better control over the power of the element. Also didn't need to replace the thermal cutoff with a higher-rated one, as you do with a lot of other boilers.

The double wall insulation is pretty thin but again I actually found it to be more effective that expected. When it's full of grain you'd be surprised at how well it holds it temperature. Next brewday I'm going to wrap it in a towel as well, which I think will keep me within around 1-2C of mash in temp after 60 mins.

One negative is that there are no volume markings and no sight glass. Not the end of the world, I plan to etch them on the inside as detailed here http://imgur.com/a/dCvS5, but a bit of a pain.

One thing I would definitely recommend is using a hop spider, if you're using pellets. I was going to, then decided against it, then wished I had. The bazooka screen got completely blocked and I ended up having to pick the whole thing up and pour the cooled wort out into the fermenter! Which felt pretty sketchy.

All in all I'd definitely recommend, I'm looking forward to brewing with it again. Let me know if anyone has any questions about it or wants any up close photos of parts etc.
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Old 24-06-2015, 05:18 PM   #25
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So I'm guessing with this you'd add your grains in bag.then when done remove them and boil.adding hops in bag so as not to block the strainer at the tap. Is this what you would call an all in one..needing only a cooler ..
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Old 24-06-2015, 05:47 PM   #26
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OK -

I used the boiler today to make a brew with the remains of the Geterbrewed IPA kit. I found no problem in mashing, but wrapped a blanket around the pot to make sure there was no loss of heat. I ended the hour long mash at exactly the same temperature that I started with.

My large pot is in use elsewhere as a brewing bin (stupid move) and I stuggled a bit with sparging. I pulled out the grain bag and successively rinsed it into a 4 litre pan that was really too small for the 3kg of grain. Eventually, I decided I had sparged enough after about four 1.6 litre spargings and got on with the boil.

This came in quite quickly and was pretty violent. I had left about eight litres of space above the wort and I think I needed it. The water was jumping about with a fair bit of energy. When I put the lid on, it started to froth up, so I leftit open so I could monitor the level to avoid boil over. It was fine like that and stayed inside the pot.

At the end of the boil, I topped up with cold water to where I reckon 23 litres should be. I did this because I didn't want the zero minute hops to cook too much as I don't have a cooler and will have to leave the wort to cool slowly in teh insulated vessel. It will take about twelve hours to come down to pitching temperature according to the way it was cooling the other day when I tested it with only water.

I note the comments above about the filter getting blocked - not looking forward to that as I have 66grams of pelleted hops loose in there right now..... Hoping it will drain correctly.

All in all, I'm very pleased. The powerful heater element shortened my brew day very much and I was at last able to make a full 23 litre AG brew rather than the 9 or 10 litres I managed so far. Huge brewery smells blowing out of the back door and around the garden while it was going. Excellent fun.
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Old 25-06-2015, 08:38 AM   #27
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One thing I would definitely recommend is using a hop spider, if you're using pellets. I was going to, then decided against it, then wished I had. The bazooka screen got completely blocked and I ended up having to pick the whole thing up and pour the cooled wort out into the fermenter! Which felt pretty sketchy.
A hop spider would be a good idea BUT - I was lucky. I got all my wort out without any trouble. The rate of flow did reduce drastically over the draining, but I got out everything above the level of the tap. I was left with what looked like a pile of poo in the bottom that was about a half inch above the bazooka filter. I scooped it out and will put it in the compost bin. It is just trub and hops.

The insulation in this thing seems far better than I first thought. Even now 17 and half hours after switch off, the temperature in the FV is 45C! it will be a few hours yet before I can pitch. The cooling rate in the boiler over the range 100c to 45C is about 3C per hour.

It was easy to clean with a hosepipe in the garden. I tried not to squirt the electric bits. A very easy clean finish both inside and out.

A great buy I'd say. Very pleased.
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Old 25-06-2015, 09:00 AM   #28
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Have you considered getting a no chill cube? It will cool down faster and less chance of infection as the cube is sanistised and air tight.
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Old 25-06-2015, 09:04 AM   #29
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Have you considered getting a no chill cube? It will cool down faster and less chance of infection as the cube is sanistised and air tight.
I will certainly consider it Yeastface. I'm feeling a little tetchy at the possibility that it could still go wrong. I kept it sealed all night since switch off at 1600 hrs yesterday, but I am feeling uneasy that even at 1000 hrs next day it is still sitting above 40c in the FV.....
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Old 25-06-2015, 11:12 AM   #30
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OK -

I used the boiler today to make a brew with the remains of the Geterbrewed IPA kit. I found no problem in mashing, but wrapped a blanket around the pot to make sure there was no loss of heat. I ended the hour long mash at exactly the same temperature that I started with.

My large pot is in use elsewhere as a brewing bin (stupid move) and I stuggled a bit with sparging. I pulled out the grain bag and successively rinsed it into a 4 litre pan that was really too small for the 3kg of grain. Eventually, I decided I had sparged enough after about four 1.6 litre spargings and got on with the boil.

This came in quite quickly and was pretty violent. I had left about eight litres of space above the wort and I think I needed it. The water was jumping about with a fair bit of energy. When I put the lid on, it started to froth up, so I leftit open so I could monitor the level to avoid boil over. It was fine like that and stayed inside the pot.

At the end of the boil, I topped up with cold water to where I reckon 23 litres should be. I did this because I didn't want the zero minute hops to cook too much as I don't have a cooler and will have to leave the wort to cool slowly in teh insulated vessel. It will take about twelve hours to come down to pitching temperature according to the way it was cooling the other day when I tested it with only water.

I note the comments above about the filter getting blocked - not looking forward to that as I have 66grams of pelleted hops loose in there right now..... Hoping it will drain correctly.

All in all, I'm very pleased. The powerful heater element shortened my brew day very much and I was at last able to make a full 23 litre AG brew rather than the 9 or 10 litres I managed so far. Huge brewery smells blowing out of the back door and around the garden while it was going. Excellent fun.
With mine - I also have no chiller - at turn-off I add the last hop addition, let it stand for 30 minutes, then drain the hot wort into my FV. This takes something like 6 - 8 hours to cool to pitching temperature. But an added bonus is that the near boiling wort will totally sterilize the FV. Works for me.
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