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Brews & Views Bulletin Board Service * Brews and Views Archive 2012 * Archive through February 03, 2012 * Plate chiller vs. Whirlfloc < Previous Next >

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Graham Cox
Senior Member
Username: T2driver

Post Number: 2847
Registered: 11-2004
Posted From: 72.15.96.196
Posted on Wednesday, January 18, 2012 - 12:34 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I just made an interesting discovery. I brewed two batches today that were somewhat similar, a BoPils and an American IPA. I forgot the Whirlfloc tablet for the BoPils and remembered it for the IPA.

First of all, the Whirlfloc works. Boy, does it work! There were softball-sized clumps of break material floating in the IPA wort. Unfortunately, it also seems to clog my Therminator to a much greater extent than a similar batch with no Whirlfloc. (Hops are not a factor, as I use a very large bag and remove them during chilling.)

Now, of course everybody's system is different, but the way I have mine set up is kettle -> pump -> Therminator -> homemade vortex generator back inside kettle, round and round and round we go. The Whirlfloc definitely seems to negatively impact the flow and thus the performance of my Therminator in this application.

I very rarely have clarity issues with my beers, so I think the Whirlfloc is going to be retired as not only not needed, but detrimental.
 

mikel
Intermediate Member
Username: Mikel

Post Number: 425
Registered: 02-2001
Posted From: 166.181.3.249
Posted on Wednesday, January 18, 2012 - 01:18 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Any chance the increased polyphenol content of the IPA contributed to this? I guess I'm making the assumption that the total hopping amount was higher in the IPA which could be incorrect.

I have read that over using kettle finings can be detrimental to the cold break and chill stability of beers. Also mentioned was the speed of the whirlpool where too much velocity can cause protein shear. I've always been confused as to the proper amount of whirlfloc to add on the homebrew level where I've seen suggestions from 1/2 tablet per 5 gallons to 1 tablet per five gallons.
 

Graham Cox
Senior Member
Username: T2driver

Post Number: 2848
Registered: 11-2004
Posted From: 72.15.96.196
Posted on Wednesday, January 18, 2012 - 03:28 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Both beers were highly hopped with light-colored grists. The IPA was bigger (1.069 vs. 1.056) and had about half again more hops by both weight and IBU. That said, I don't think the hops were a player. The BoPils was hopped greatly in excess of what is needed to generate and enhance protein break.

I often forget the Whirlfloc, but I've just never noticed the physical difference because I've never done back-to-back batches before. There's plenty of break without it, but the average particle size is much, much smaller and it settles into more of a loose "mud pie" in the bottom of the kettle vs. a pile of oatmeal with the Whirlfloc. The latter offers distinct advantages in some systems, I'm sure, but I'm thinking it has been a major problem in mine without me realizing it up to this point.
 

Vance Barnes
Senior Member
Username: Vancebarnes

Post Number: 4261
Registered: 03-2003
Posted From: 76.122.104.54
Posted on Thursday, January 19, 2012 - 01:53 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Graham, I have the same setup with the whirlpool return but I took a Bazooka T apart and have 2 pickup tubes with the bazookas on the sides where the domed keg bottom meets the straight wall. I use whirlflock most of the time and don't have any problems. The position of my pickups and Bazooka screens don't let much through.
 

Graham Cox
Senior Member
Username: T2driver

Post Number: 2850
Registered: 11-2004
Posted From: 72.15.96.196
Posted on Thursday, January 19, 2012 - 03:36 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I had a bazooka T on my pickup before, Vance, and it would clog with trub, so I took it off. Now I start with my pickup parallel to the floor and push it down only when the wort level has dropped below it.

I like my Therminator (it's actually Jamil's), but it is fussy.
 

Anthony Catencamp
Intermediate Member
Username: Reddog

Post Number: 251
Registered: 08-2004
Posted From: 165.189.7.2
Posted on Thursday, January 19, 2012 - 01:26 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I also have the Bazooka T on my pickup tube, but I use whole hops and they do a nice job of pre-filtering the wort before it passes through. I've used a paint strainer bag for containing my hops in the past for easier cleanup and ended up with a plugged Bazooka T from the trub. I always use Whirlflock tabs, so I get a lot of goo that settles out.
 

JeffS
Junior Member
Username: Steinie

Post Number: 96
Registered: 07-2010
Posted From: 68.80.234.33
Posted on Thursday, January 19, 2012 - 02:19 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I configured mine the similar to Vance but have added a course stainless steel type wool pad around the screen to act as a rough filter to help prevent the finer screen from clogging.

I have been contemplating an in line filter of some sort to screen particles that get through the false bottom on my MT and any trub that would also get through to the chiller. The idea came to me after looking over how a local brewpub has a similar screen coming out of their MT. My thought was if I could configure something before my pump, I could prevent particles coming out of my MT that get into my sparge arm, and would assist with trub after the boil.

Does anyone have any ideas for something like that, use something or know what would work?
 

mikel
Intermediate Member
Username: Mikel

Post Number: 426
Registered: 02-2001
Posted From: 70.190.202.254
Posted on Saturday, January 21, 2012 - 01:39 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

http://www.brewershardware.com/Trub-Filter/