Collapsed Mash Tun

Discussion in 'General Brewing Discussions' started by Brewer #97482, May 29, 2017.

  1. Brewer #97482

    Brewer #97482 New Member

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    I just joined this service. I brewed my first batch of beer in 1997. I love brewing. I had a very strange thing happen this weekend. Whilst transferring from the mash tun in a three kettle system to the boil kettle, the mash kettle collapsed. Anyone else experience this? I took it as a sign from the mash gods to pay for a membership.

    upload_2017-5-28_19-0-14.png
     
  2. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    No way! Hope she wasnt full? My mash tun cant collapse its made of metal metal:). Hope you wernt burnt or anything in the process and that you could atleast ferment some wort welcome too the forums;).
     
  3. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    That's a pretty small mash tun! Is it aluminum? And did you sit it on something that didn't support the entire bottom? I'm trying to figure out how that could happen and am coming up blank. Normally a pot will handle the full weight of the water and strange to me, unless it's an illusion, is the bottom appears to be bent upward. If it were due to the weight of the wort, the bottom would be bowed outward. Because of the way pressure - the weight of the wort - works, vessels burst but don't normally collapse.
     
  4. Brewer #97482

    Brewer #97482 New Member

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    #4 Brewer #97482, May 30, 2017
    Last edited: May 30, 2017
    OK. The tun is aluminum, 6010. We've used the pot for eight months. She was completely full. I don't know what 'metal metal' is. No one was injured. Got good wort for two more batches after the (disastrous, majical, mystical) collapse.

    Thank you
    For the welcome.
     
  5. Brewer #97482

    Brewer #97482 New Member

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    The tun is 32 qt aluminum. It was sitting on a 14 inch square, 1/8 inch expanded mild steel. Please rest assured, this is no illusion. The bottom is collapsed upward, right up to the sparge screen. That is about one and a half inches.

    Best regards.
     
  6. Brewer #97482

    Brewer #97482 New Member

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    #6 Brewer #97482, May 30, 2017
    Last edited: May 30, 2017
    I have a theory... Of course I have the benefit of being there.

    Before flame out on the mash, I started the pump to the boil kettle, full blast. When the flame out occurred, small particles of the grist settled on the screen and plugged it off. The momentum of the wort through hoses created a fluid displacement vacuum, and collapsed the tun.

    That's plausible!


    [​IMG]
     
  7. Head First

    Head First Well-Known Member

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    That is strange... Hard to imagine the pump could have that much pull but yes, possible. Welcome to the forum!
     
  8. J A

    J A Well-Known Member

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    Aluminum pot, stuck sparge, pump on = collapsed tun. The vacuum created by the liquid under the false bottom leaving the space quickly sucked it right up.
    There's an mathematical equation somewhere for exactly what happened, but I never took physics or calculus. :rolleyes:
     
  9. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    Oh metal metal is stainless steel its one of my many typos sorry:rolleyes:.
     
  10. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    Possible. Also if you had air in there and things were sealed and it was cooled, that could collapse it as well. Didn't occur to me that the system might be closed. The bottom is likely the weakest point - I think you might have figured it out!
     
  11. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    Well i think it leads too @Brewer #97482 what are you going to use now as your mash tun?
     
  12. J A

    J A Well-Known Member

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    I'm not used to the term "flame out" being applied to the mash process. I assume that you mean that you direct fire for mash out temp and you started pumping before that was reached? Whatever the case, the fact that the pump was pulling more liquid volume than the false bottom would allow into the space below it created a vacuum and collapsed the bottom.
    I'm wondering why you'd start pulling wort out that quickly. It doesn't look big enough for a full-volume recirc tun. Based on the pic and info given I can't visualize your system or process.
    Since it's time for a new pot, get at least a 30 quart stainless ( you can find one for $50 or less) and install a weldless ball valve.
     
  13. nflamedrash

    nflamedrash Member

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    I agree with the pump theory. I once had a stuck mash, and I mean really stuck mash(as in abandon the brew day) and the vacuum created bent my false bottom and produced all kinds of popping noises from the pot. I am not sure I understand all of the factors at play but your theory seems to work. The only part I can not reconcile is this: even with the pump on full throttle, a good mash bed would let enough liquid through to avoid the crushing vacuum; any chance you had a stuck mash at the same time? Or, the lid was on the pot at the time of the implosion?
     
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  14. Brewer #97482

    Brewer #97482 New Member

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    I got another one. The new is 'metal metal'.
     
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  15. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    "Metal metal"?
     
  16. Brewer #97482

    Brewer #97482 New Member

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    Well, nflamed, the mash bed is the diameter of the tun, 14 inches. The lid was not on. Maybe it was a stuck mash.
     
  17. Brewer #97482

    Brewer #97482 New Member

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    Oh, Nosybear, I meant stainless steel. My apologies.
     
  18. Brewer #97482

    Brewer #97482 New Member

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    You're correct JA. The kettle was 32 quart. The pump is a mag drive.
     
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  19. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    :p Aye now your speaking my language lol. Nosey will work it out a six pack and it'll all make sense ;) ha ha.
     

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