From the HBD Archive
From: Martin A. Lodahl <pbmoss!mal@hplabs.HP.COM>
Subject: Trub Management
Date: 1989-10-23 22:25:33 GMT

The recent discussion of sediment in the primary fermentor was of
great interest to me, as I've struggled quite a bit over the process
between the end of the boil and the beginning of fermentation. Over
a succession of batches, I've finally developed a technique that
results in the fermentor being filled with cool, clear wort, leaving
the hot & cold breaks behind. To wit:

1. Force-cool the wort in the boiler. My present boiler
isn't big enough for all-grain brewing, and since
my partial-mash process produces 3.5 to 4 gallons
of concentrated wort, I dilute & chill simultaneously,
with ice. I invariably get a fabulous cold break.

2. Transfer the cool wort to my (sanitized) lauter tun.
As I was struggling through an attempt to siphon
from the boiler to the fermentor one day, my
eight-year-old asked, "why don't you just use
your lauter tun?" My jaw dropped. Since the
wort is already cool, oxidation is not a problem.
After allowing a few moments for the hops to settle,
I open the tap and let the wort drain BACK INTO
THE BOILER, until the stream runs clear and
sediment-free. I then turn off the tap, move
the lauter tun's output hose from the boiler
to the carboy, turn the tap back on (a "set mash"
caused by interrupting the flow is really not a
problem with hops), and pour the cloudy wort
back through the newly-established hops filter.

About the only part of this process I really expect to change when I
go to all-grain is to use an immersion chiller instead of ice.

That lauter tun is the single most useful piece of equipment I've
yet acquired. In addition to sparging (both grain & hops), I also
use it for racking (I have but one single carboy I use for primary &
secondary, so I rack into the tun, wash the carboy, then open
the tap and drain it back to the carboy) and bottling. I wouldn't
dream of going back to the colander. I made mine following Miller's
suggestions in CHoHB, fitting a drum tap to the base of a 7-gallon
plastic wastebasket, and fashioning a false bottom from the bottom
1.5" of a plastic soap pail, with .25" holes drilled on .5" centers.
For use, I line it with a jelly-maker's mesh straining bag.

If anyone has a better idea, I'd love to hear it!
- Martin

= Martin A. Lodahl Pac*Bell Minicomputer Operations Support Staff =
= pacbell!pbmoss!mal -or- mal@pbmoss.Pacbell.COM 916.972.4821 =
= If it's good for ancient Druids, runnin' nekkid through the wuids, =
= Drinkin' strange fermented fluids, it's good enough for me! 8-) =

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