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indyspirits

Mash Tun Cooling: Part Deux

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The other thought on the tube in tube is that you can pump out of your mash cooker and cycle the mash for cooling in your fermenter.  This would allow you time to start cleaning your mash cooker for the next day while your mash is cooling.  Would save you at least an hour I would think.  

 

At for the jacket side cooling, the gylcol water mixture could be run through a small plate hx with regular or boiler water, allowing for no cross over.  A smallish duda diesel plate hx would probably work just fine.  I currently crash cool my 4000L mash cooker with a reverse jacket, but I have no chiller so this is city water.  I close the return line to the boiler feed and dump down the drain.  It is not ideal and a bit slow.  The tube in tube is about 1/4 the cooling area vs the jacket, leaving me indecisive about getting the tube in tube.  I feel like there is a factor I am missing here, like the speed through which the liquid goes through the tube in tube vs mixing with the steam jacket.  All that said, the the price on Affordable is pretty good, so it makes it tempting.  I less worry about my tank and jacket with my current setup and more worry about boiler contamination, but haven't witnessed any major problems to date with my setup.  

I still think the solution should come from the design of the continuous systems.  If these are being built and employing a heat exchanger for mash on the beer heater side, then whatever that setup is should work...Not sure if this would be cheaper or more expensive than the tube in tube though.

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Surface area of the tube-in-tube is only part of the story, no?

I would imagine, coolant flow rate through the shell, coolant temperature, product flow rate through the tube, and product temperature, all need to be known before determining if the surface area of the heat exchanger is sufficient.  This is a system problem, not a component problem.

Not achieving a low enough product exit temp?  Increase cooling flow , decrease product flow until you hit your target.  Not to mention that the heat exchanger isn't really determining your flow rate, your chiller/coolant is.

My big 2" pump does around 70 gallons a minute, from 145 to 80 that's something like 200 tons needed to cool.  200 tons?  I don't care how long that snake is, it ain't gonna swallow if you don't have that cooling capacity.  Let's say you only have 2 or 3 tons of cooling capacity, now you are looking at something like 1 gallon per minute of product through the tube, length probably more than sufficient.

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...And temp of the cooling water! I can provide chillers using 100% water for cooling down to 35F. You can either pre-cool a reservoir of city water or make it a closed loop.

Other chillers can get down to 40F water, which if you're cooling a tank of water can get to around 45F tank temperature.  Put a feed valve in downstream of the chiller, bypassing the return to the tank and you can have 40F water again to the heat exchanger.

Jackets chill slower, so cooling mash with city water without auxiliary cooling often becomes problematic in the summer.

In Chicago, city water is cold all year round versus city water in Texas in the 80's.

6000 Gal tank with chiller mounted pg1.jpg

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Indyspirits

   So how do you cool that much mash in 5 minutes?  Its very simple. You do it the way my Granddaddy did.  You leave 1/2 of the water out of the corn mash recipe.  You add 1/4 of the amount of water that the recipe calls for at the correct temp for the first and second crash cools.  With one of our veriflex pumps you can pump the water over in just a little over 1 minute for a 300 gallon batch.  With the agitator on, the crash cool will be complete in 4 or 5 minutes.   You can do this in my 300 gallon mash tuns because, all of the agitator components are 3 times stronger than what is necessary.  So it's that simple, and of course it is a very old proven method.  If your agitator is strong enough on your tun you can do the same.  If you let me know the hp, shaft diameter, length of the shaft and the dimensions of your blades or impellers, I can tell you whether it is doable or not for you.  

If you run glycal through a steam jacket then you will ruin your boiler.  Cooling in the steam jacket works well if you have a good well and are rural.  You simply run your well water through the jacket without any glycol.  Davis Valley Winery and distillery use this method in there two 800 gallon mash tuns and their 300 gallon mash tun.  We sold them their Rite low pressure steam boiler.  I think that we have sold at least 30 large Rite Low pressure steam boilers.

I do hawk my equipment when people are looking for equipment or if they have a problem that they want to solve.  I also give out a great deal of good information on here.

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11 hours ago, indyspirits said:

 

11 hours ago, indyspirits said:

$2k plus my time. A lot more if it doesn't work. I was the one who posted the "nooks and crannies" question. Still very valid. 

 

I just cant imagine cross contaminating boiler feed water and glycol/water mixture is a good thing if you went the cool-with-the-steam-jacket solution.  Leaning toward a tube/shell solution as this point.

 

 

 

 

If you do decide to use a tube and shell, I am glad to sell you one.  There are certainly no hard feelings on my end.  paul@distillery-equipment.com

 

 

 

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Indy Spirits,

 

Just to give you some other ideas, to help you solve your problem.  Sometimes, a combination of methods is your best approach.  Jeffw mentioned cycling your mash through the fermenter, using a tube in tube like mine.  As he said, in so many words, you can be circulating through the fermenter, using the tube in tube, while you clean your mash tun.  This will shorten your work day.  As we all know, being able to do 2 things at once can save a huge amount of time. If your fermenter is jacketed, then you can cool with the fermenter jackets, at the same time that you are cooling with the tube in tube, which will reduce your cooling time significantly. 

Here is an idea.  You could leave out 25% of the water that the recipe calls for, and do your first crash cool by just adding the cold water, and then do your last crash cool with the tube in tube and jacketed fermenter combination.  If your agitator is not strong enough to leave out 25%, you could  leave 12.5% of the water out, and use a combination of adding the 12.5% cold water to the mash and circulation through through the tube in tube.  Another very good way, would be to add steam injection ports to the sides of the bottom of the tun and direct steam inject to cook the mash and use the jacket to do the crash cooling.  Adding the steam injection ports is no big deal, as long as the tun does not have an insulation jacket.

Silk City  makes a very good point as well, "Surface area of the tube-in-tube is only part of the story, no?"  Many times, people just don't consider all of the variables, when looking at things, so there calculations are incomplete.

Here is something else, that is very important to consider. If necessity is the mother of invention, then imagination must be the father. 

Being very good at math can be a great benefit, but without imagination, your problem solving skills will be limited.  For example 2 high school dropouts from Ohio solved the problem of powered flight, when all of the best, most educated engineers and PHDs in the world, at the time, could not get the job done. 

Edison only had a 7th grade education and he was one of the greatest inventors, that the world has ever known, and I believe that was due, in part, to his ability to imagine.  When people said  "You can't do that." It peeved his interest and many times, he would prove them wrong. While it is true that later in his career, his massive team of engineers and scientists did most of the work, it was still Edison's imagination that drove the whole thing.  Of course Tesla had a great deal of imagination as well, in combination with extraordinary problem solving and engineering skills.

When we believe that something will not work, because we don't do it that way, and we have heard, that it could not possibly be done that way, we are limiting ourselves.   When we believe that our way is the best and only way and we won't consider trying another way, then we limit ourselves even more. 

Also, if we believe that some uneducated old moonshiner from Appalachia could not possibly have anything of value to offer us, as distillers and still builders, then we are limiting ourselves yet again, because he may know things, that were learned by his ancestors, through 300 years of trial and error.  Sometimes these are simple things, but they can make all of the difference in the world, when you are starting out

 

It's best to always keep your mind open and use your imagination.  If someone tells me that I can't do something a certain way, my interest gets peaked, and I check the viability of actually doing it that way, because after all, there may be an original idea there, because it may be, that no one has tried it to find out.  Of course, original ideas are extremely rare, since we normally just build on the ideas of others, which is fine as well. 

Indy, I know you might not think so, but I think that everything I have written above, applies to your OP,  either directly, or indirectly and I sincerely hope that the information helps you with your problem

I have been laying in bed with the flu the last couple of days, using my lap top to post here.  I feel a little better now and I have spec sheets and designs to work on as well as about 100 emails to answer, so I am heading out for the office.   

 

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I don't know if there is any truth to it, but in my own search for a cheap effective mash cooling solution, I've heard a tube in tube system is very difficult to clean. Seams to me that you could just do a back flush of caustic on a loop as part of your CIP of the boiler, but I've never used one.

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Interesting. I was thinking the solids of the mash might be the problem. Most experience I have is sending wort through a heat exchanger. The channels are only 1/4" or so, but do eventually build up deposits of any hop and trub particals that get through, and has to be  occasionaly taken apart and cleaned proper. I was hoping to get a bit of feedback on cleaning from people who use a tube in tube without getting too off topic of your OP, since that seems to be the most popular alternative to your idea.

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