Grainfather

Discussion in 'General Beer Brewing Equipment Discussion' started by Steam brew, Mar 19, 2015.

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  1. Mar 19, 2015 #1

    Steam brew

    Steam brew

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    Several brew supply firms are advertising the grain father what are your thoughts on this product, I have been asked if I would like one as a retirement present at this moment I feel inclined to wait:party:
     
  2. Mar 19, 2015 #2

    Covrich

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    Get er brewed were advertising them coming into stock soon.

    Look great but for £599.. I think I may have to go for a cheaper plastic boiler for now:oops:
     
  3. Mar 23, 2015 #3

    Fil

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    Wait a few weeks till they land in the uk and the actual models on sale get the once over by a few brewers.. on paper/utube.. they look great, the company seems responsive to the feedback they got in their local market when first released and teething issues have been addressed.. there is an honest review by a uk brewer who got his hands on one and some build quality issues were raised which may have been addressed already? the glass lid and miniture spirits bottle cap used for a grain stopper on the central overflow have been questioned from a design point of view..

    i have one ordered.. and am a lil impatient as the delivery date has been put back twice now ##@&%$£@!!!!!
     
  4. Mar 23, 2015 #4

    Hoonigan

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    I think Brew UK have them in stock, pictures on their Farce Book page...
     
  5. Mar 26, 2015 #5

    Fil

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    well finally i have a G/F .. all looks good came well packed, chiller completely assembled ready to connect to the beer and water supplied with more fittings than needed by most..

    fits together well and easily and everything fits inside including the chiller for neat storage..
    [​IMG]
    note the big label tied to a lid clamp warning against clamping the glass lid down.. i didnt ;(
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]


    all in all very nice - all ready for a clean and a test brews tomorrow pm or saturday..
     
  6. Mar 28, 2015 #6

    DoctorMick

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    Grrrrrrrr, the pictures above have made me very jealous. Waited in all day for mine to be delivered ready for a brew day tomorrow and it hasn't turned up!
     
  7. Mar 30, 2015 #7

    DoctorMick

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    Woohoo, got it. Looks like quite a bit to setup but I'm sure I'll manage.

    @Fil - how did your brew go?
     
  8. Apr 1, 2015 #8

    Fil

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    fraid it didnt, ended up spending the w/end finishing off the lil jobs in the brewshed (finally complete!!), finishing circa 9pm, tho i did get the G/f cleaned out with pbw well rinsed and drained ready for use..
     
  9. Apr 1, 2015 #9

    baggybill

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    Lol, not used to seeing 'G/f' and brain interpreted it as 'girl friend' for a second there <gulp> :oops:
     
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  10. Apr 1, 2015 #10

    Fil

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    substitute radox for PBW and its a good treatment for a girlfriend too, though i find they drain themselves a lot better.. ;) and tbh i cant say ive kept a girlfriend on the boil for a solid 90 minutes .. 90 seconds perhaps - now keeping them fumming for 90 days is a doddle but it wont brew anything good..
     
  11. Apr 8, 2015 #11

    Cornish Knocker

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    Would be very interested how you guys find using your G/F. Tempted to get one for a 'big' birthday of mine later in the year and having seen a couple of reviews on You Tube they do look the business.

    Keep us all posted. :thumb:
     
  12. Apr 11, 2015 #12

    Fil

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    Finally got around to testdriving my G/Father..

    :cheers: It works and it works well.... To save me fingers (yes im lazy) im just gonna cut n paste what ive already posted on the subject over on Jims..


    In addition the control box isnt a programable controller but just a basic control box with a switch to turn the pump on and off a simple temperature controller stc200 iirc, and a 2nd switch to use, or bypass the temp controller,
    with a 3rd switch on the unit itself to switch between low and hi power for the element.

    I will be looking at upgrading to a reflashed stc1000 with the cooling relay repurposed to pump control the stc1000+pi..
     
  13. Apr 11, 2015 #13

    DoctorMick

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    Good read that @Fil. The obvious thing I noticed is that when you were recirculating not much went through the overflow where as when I did it there was loads going thru. I'm guessing I didn't dough in properly so the water didn't filter thru which would explain my poor efficiency.
     
  14. Apr 11, 2015 #14

    Fil

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    DrMick cheers.. did you push down on the grain with the top plate at all? i didnt, i just pushed it down onto the level of the grain without compacting at all.

    I cant say i doughed in excessivly..

    for the first 20 mins or so the recirculation liquor was both murky and was filling the tube above the plate and returning down the centre tube, but it soon sorted itself out and started to run clear and find its level below the return tube height.

    One thing you could try is limiting the return flow with the valve?? the pump is afaik magnetically coupled so should be suitable for flow restriction..
    why else fit a manual valve on top of the automatic stop.

    Not what i did but you could stand the malt tube on the sparge ledges when adding the grain and then lower it into the mash liquor? effectively underletting which afaik makes for a better absorption requiring less effort doughing in?

    though my simple single base malt grain bill may also have contributed???

    did your liquor run clear during the mash?
     
  15. Apr 11, 2015 #15

    MyQul

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    Not quite sure what the above means (re:recirculating?overflow?) but re: your poor efficiency/doughing in - I used to very carefully pour my grian so as not to get dough balls which used to take me ages. I then read about using a balloon whisk. Now I just chuck my grain in my pot and give it a good stir with the whisk - works really well at breaking up any dough balls. Not sure whether thisis relevant to your problem . Might help?
     
  16. Apr 11, 2015 #16

    Fil

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    the G/F #1 brew is sat at a comfy 18.5C and is Very active, i loaded the airlock with starsan and its bubbling so much its foaming out the top ;)
     
  17. Apr 11, 2015 #17

    DoctorMick

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    @MyQul - good tip, I'll give that a go.
    @Fil - I think my problems stemmed from having a 7.5kg grain bill so I think that combined with not stirring properly has just caused the efficiency issues. That said, it wasn't terrible and I've still got a strong beer. Had another whiff of the fv and it smells absolutely amazing, can't wait to get it bottled up and the next one on.
     
  18. Apr 11, 2015 #18

    Fil

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    wow testing its limits straight out of the box ;) i like your style DrM.. ;)
    according to this US calculator http://www.brewersfriend.com/brewhouse-efficiency/

    i ended up with just over 80% B/h efficiency, and the grain wasnt that fresh having been sat for over 9months here.
     
  19. Apr 11, 2015 #19

    MyQul

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    Deffo think the 7.5kg grain bill was the cause of your poor efficiency. This happens to me as a maxi - biaber. When I try to fit 5.5kg (for my fuller London Porter) and 15L of water in my 20L pot my mash is really thick and when I sparge in my sparge bucket there's not enough room for the grain to freely swim around and wash all the sugery goodness off. So I ended up with about 21L when I always aim for 23L
     
  20. Apr 11, 2015 #20

    DoctorMick

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    I got 70% according to that link. Next brew is much more standard so it'll be interesting to see the difference. Sg was 1.072 so it's still going to be a bit pokey.
     

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