Mash Lauter Equipment

Discussion in 'General Brewing Discussions' started by surfmase, Jan 7, 2015.

  1. surfmase

    surfmase Member

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    Hello Everyone,

    I have been giving a lot of though recently to the different types of equipment and the processes used to mash and lauter. This is mostly because I plan (long term) on upgrading my setup to allow for larger batches, easier process control, and hopefully more efficient and consistent results, and I want to spend my money wisely.

    From what I gather, small commercial breweries use 1) a HLT, a MLT and a BK or 2) a HLT, a LT and a MT/BK (that is they pump the mash to a LT and the lauter back into the MT/BK.) I assume that multi-rest mashing is the norm rather than single temp infusion, so what are the common techniques for heating the mash? I've heard of steam jackets, does this mean that conduction is the means of heat transfer, do they also allow steam to bubble into the tun or even infusion or herms rims?

    When looking at common homebrew setups, the advanced brewer seems to use herms or rims without mixing the mash but rather recirculating the wort. What is interesting is that here most of the advanced systems are single kettle systems almost like a fancy BIAB setup (braumeister, braueule, wengert), or they have a gas heated tun with a motorized paddle in the tiered setup. I have not yet seen the herms or rims setup. Why is that? Perhaps because space here is much more valuable? I have read some users claiming high efficiency with BIAB, so why make it more complicated, are there distinct technical differences? Maybe this is just the nature of the hobby.

    I understand that comparing homebrewing and commercial brewing is not easy because many factors are weighted differently depending on the scale, but I would argue that better and easier control and higher efficiency is also a goal for the homebrewer, and who else understands this better than the commercial brewer?

    Please feel free to add your thoughts.
     
  2. Ozarks Mountain Brew

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    here is a good example of a good herms set up for the hobbyist anyway, you can use larger pots with this system too, long video but he eventually explains the process.
    basically you recirculate for an hour or so then slow sparg for another hour giving you very good efficiency. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=In-eYNEUs8Y

    Plans and equipment are here http://www.theelectricbrewery.com/ or here http://ebrewsupply.com/
    As you can see it takes up quit a bit of space and the initial cost can be 4 or 5 thousand before your done.

    I personaly use a rims in 1 and sometimes 2 pots but I put everything away after each brew and thats why such a small footprint, my efficiency is very good if done right somewhere around 80% with 2 pots, the initial cost is about 2 to 3K for my system, I don't have a video but I'll look for one later
     
  3. surfmase

    surfmase Member

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    Thanks for the video, I'll watch it when I get a minute free.

    I stumbled upon the electric brewery and brutus 10 a while back and immediately decided I needed something like that. But after reading a very long thread here http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f13/why-doe ... ab-319142/ I got to thinking if these germans here are onto something. http://www.speidels-braumeister.de/brewing-video.html

    what kind of efficiency do you think they get from their 200L braumeister (basically a recirculating BiaB)?

    what kinf of efficiency do you think a craft micro brewery gets?
     
  4. Ozarks Mountain Brew

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    the real difference in efficiency in very minor and you can just add more grain to get the final alcohol level you need if your at the 70% range, the system Kal uses on the electric set up claims to get up to 90% with the 1 hour recirculation mashing and 1 hour slow sparging, I don't think you can get any better that that in my opinion, and microbreweries probably don't even get that high.

    one thing to note with the braumeister there is no sparging so I'm guessing a 70% efficiency would be common on that system but again just add more grain and you don't have to change anything
     
  5. Ozarks Mountain Brew

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    another issue would be time, my set up takes from 5 to 7 hours to set up brew, clean and tear down, the 3 pot herms is about the same, a standard brew in a bag or braumeister could take a lot less time if your not sparging or tearing down.

    Ive brewed in 4 hours using a bag
     
  6. surfmase

    surfmase Member

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    So I gathered up some things to build a manually controlled HERMS. Using a small DC food grade pump, I recirculated the wort to the stove where my copper immersion cooler was resting in the HLT, then back to the mash tun. My false bottom is like this Läuterhexe http://www.mattmill.de/html/lauterhexe.html but I only have one ring of coil equidistant from walls and from center of tun. In the video the guy has a hose resting on top of the mash causing a swirling of the water as it reenters the tun. I found that this caused some cavitation in the grainbed so I propped the mash paddle under the exit of the hose to counter that. I want to find something better for next time.

    This was the first run on this system and I have a way to go to get it tweaked. I did 3 rests each for 30 min plus about 20 min to heat to each next rest, then a 30 min sparge, then a 90 min boil, and got a 47% brewhouse efficiency :( (65% on old system). Probably the wort was channeling through the grainbed, perhaps due to bad lauter tun design? I had a big bière de garde planned, but so much for that. Plus I lost more during the boil than expected. expected gravity 20L of 1.07, what I got was 15L of 1.05.
     

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