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argon

firmitas, utilitas, venustas
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After a fairly lengthy hiatus I stumbled on this thread and picked up a 30L system a couple of weeks back. Figured I don't need my double batch 3V anymore as I just don't get through the volume. I'll part that out and sell soon.

Working from home more these days, so able to have brew days going on in the background. These all in ones make brewdays so much easier... much more hands off which suits me. Loving being able to clean and pack it all away underbench.

First brew last week a simple Bitter. Missed my numbers only due to a poor grain crush, so spent this week building a new hopper for my mm2. Got very clear wort into the fermenter after modifying the pickup to an SS elbow facing down against the base. Haven't bothered with the bazooka.


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Second brew day on the system today 6.3% ESB. Crush was way better. Hit pre boil OG. Mid boil now.


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JDW81

I make wort, the yeast make it beer.
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Great to see you back and contributing again Argon!
 

CEO Keg King

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Did a brew the other day, all was going well when suddenly lights out in the Guten on ramp up to boil at about 85C, no warning, just complete lights out, no power to controller or pump.....WTF !...... so back up plan enacted, grabbed my newly acquired hang over the side bucket immersion heater, and plumbed in a spare 240v pump to circulate from the digiboil to the Guten, as I essentially run 2 kettles for bigger volumes, and got things back on track, not ideal, but saved the day, well worth the investment as a back up tool, and handy anyway.
View attachment 118402View attachment 118403

After investigation, it turns out there is a sneaky little inline thermal fuse rated at 227 degrees Celsius 10 amp on the main power wire hiding under some white heat shielding wrap from the thermal cut-out button to the main power switch, that also supplies the pump switch power, and this had failed cutting all the power coming in.
View attachment 118404View attachment 118405
Now I carefully inspected every thing in this compartment, and could not see any evidence of excessively high temps, so my conclusion is it just failed, not sure why they have it as the thermal cut-out disc in the same area is rated at about 150C would probably be adequate.
View attachment 118406
I have replaced this wire with a decent thick gauge wire (Brown wire) and no thermal fuse and all is good again, but bringing this incident to everyone's attention so as to preempt a future WTF ! moment half way through a brew. I had a plan C as well, gas burner with an old keg kettle that I use as a sparge tank with the bucket heater and a cheap thermostat arrangement, like the Inkbird, but cheaper.

I always like a back up plan or two, and this strategy paid off to get me through the day, something to think about!
Just saw your post on this. That thermal fuse is an important part of making the equipment safe. It can be that you got a faulty one but to be on the safe side suggest it be replaced. Send me a PM and I will arrange to send a spare to you. Best we do the right thing. This is a backup to the bimetallic cutout switch in case that should ever fail to open when the kettle boils dry. Have seen a bit of this when people have dry mashes as the pump can easily suck the bottom dry. Best to throttle the pump back in this situation.
 

goatchop41

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Got very clear wort into the fermenter after modifying the pickup to an SS elbow facing down against the base. Haven't bothered with the bazooka.
I've been thinking about ditching the helix from my setup and just using the SS elbow that I have in this manner. How far from the base does your elbow sit? Care to share a pic?
 

argon

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Yeah here you go. may be 2 to 3mm off the base. Losses including trub end up being 1.5L. Still trying to get the whirpool and trub cone a little better though.

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argon

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I've been using the stainless immersion chiller and have the pump on running over the chiller. Get to pitching temps in about 20-30 mins. Have a plate chiller also but quite like the immersion as it's easier to keep clean. I could run both but it would go against my desire to simplify things.
 

Grok

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Just saw your post on this. That thermal fuse is an important part of making the equipment safe. It can be that you got a faulty one but to be on the safe side suggest it be replaced. Send me a PM and I will arrange to send a spare to you. Best we do the right thing. This is a backup to the bimetallic cutout switch in case that should ever fail to open when the kettle boils dry. Have seen a bit of this when people have dry mashes as the pump can easily suck the bottom dry. Best to throttle the pump back in this situation.
Thank you for your concern and offer, but I am electrically savy and understand what I have done. I have done a current draw test and see that it draws 11amps, a little over the specs of that fuse, probably why it failed. Best not to run the components at full capacity all the time, IMO it should have been a 15amp fuse, if you want to supply me with an upgraded fuse, happy to accept.
 

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CEO Keg King

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Thank you for your concern and offer, but I am electrically savy and understand what I have done. I have done a current draw test and see that it draws 11amps, a little over the specs of that fuse, probably why it failed. Best not to run the components at full capacity all the time, IMO it should have been a 15amp fuse, if you want to supply me with an upgraded fuse, happy to accept.
Let me look into this a bit more if you say it was a 10 amp fuse on I take it a 15 amp unit. Do you still have the item so we can take a look at it? Yes I will provide you with a replacement of course. Being an electronic engineer myself I find myself in agreement with what you suggest. Luckily its not difficult to replace.
 

Grok

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Let me look into this a bit more if you say it was a 10 amp fuse on I take it a 15 amp unit. Do you still have the item so we can take a look at it? Yes I will provide you with a replacement of course. Being an electronic engineer myself I find myself in agreement with what you suggest. Luckily its not difficult to replace.
Well, once again thanks for the offer, but this is not your responsibility as I didn't buy the item from you or anybody in Aus, I got it direct from the manufacturer some time ago before the Guten brand became available in Australia, that's why you don't see any brand name on it, and I have done modifications to the wiring and PCB etc, so it definitely isn't your responsibility.
For your info though, it came with a 10amp cord and the max power setting is 2500w, current draw is 11amps with all elements and pump on. IMO, some of the internal wirings were a bit on the lean side and Neutral distribution could have been better (see my previous posts), but overall a reasonably robust unit.
I will probably acquire a 15amp thermal fuse and install as per original arrangement anyway, but as this unit is never left alone when used, I don't see it as a high priority atm. You might want to check your units though to see what thermal fuses you have been supplied with for your own peace of mind.
 
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Minus the overflow pipe, and full volume mash for the last few brews has worked well, easy to stir every 15 mins, and keeping the non fermentables out of the mash until the last 20 mins leaves that bit of extra room until the grain absorbs the wort.
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Grok

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keeping the non fermentables out of the mash until the last 20 mins
I have a brewing friend who has been brewing 50 odd years and he reckons to put them in the kettle (hop spider or bag) about 20mins before flame out to impart a nice rich flavour. I have only just started doing it last few batches and they haven't come through for drinking yet so I can't really report about it, but it would be interesting to get some comments on that method!
 
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I have been doing it for a while now since I read Gordon Strong's book. Here is his explanation.
Traditional Mash
In this approach, the dark grains are milled and mashed along with the rest of the grains in the grist. This approach can lead to harsher, more astringent flavors in the finished beer, especially if the water being used is very alkaline, high in bicarbonates, or has a relatively high pH. Using dark grains in a traditional mash exposes the grains to the highest amount of heat for the longest amount of time, and so is most likely to produce a harsher, more astringent character in the finished beer.

Adding at Vorlauf
The vorlauf is the recirculated wort typically drawn at the start of the sparge — usually the first few quarts of runoff for a homebrewer. These first runnings are then recirculated back to the top of the grain bed. Using this approach, the dark grains are not added during the mash, but rather are added at mash-out. The advantage of this method is that it avoids the long hot steep of the mash, and the dark wort from the vorlauf is recirculated through the mash tun again further reducing astringency.

I have just made this Irish Foreign Extra Stout from Gordon Strong.

Irish Extra Stout
(5 gallons/19 L, all-grain)
OG = 1.059 FG = 1.014
IBU = 40 SRM = 50 ABV = 6%


This recipe is not necessarily a clone recipe of O’Hara’s Leann Folláin, however it is based on information I gleaned from Carlow Brewing Co.’s Head Brewer Conor Donoghue and is at least similar. Many Irish extra stouts use anywhere from 7–15% roasted grains, however this recipe skips using any roasted barley or black patent and instead uses a higher percentage of chocolate malt. I have found that the higher percentage really does give it a deep roasted character.

Ingredients

8 lbs. (3.6 kg) UK Golden Promise malt
2 lbs. (0.91 kg) flaked barley
8 oz. (227 g) torrified wheat
1.75 lbs. (0.79 kg) UK chocolate malt (425 °L)
8 oz. (227 g) UK brown malt
6 AAU UK Northdown hops (90 min.)
(0.75 oz./21 g at 8% alpha acids)
4.5 AAU UK Fuggle hops (30 min.)
(1 oz./28 g at 4.5% alpha acids)
0.5 oz. (14 g) UK Fuggle hops (5 min.)
Wyeast 1084 (Irish Ale) or White Labs WLP004 (Irish Ale) yeast
3⁄4 cup corn sugar (if priming)

Step by Step

Two or three days before brew day, make a 1-qt. (1-L) yeast starter, aerating the wort thoroughly (preferably with oxygen) before pitching the yeast.

On brew day, prepare your ingredients; mill the grain, measure your hops, and prepare your water. This recipe uses reverse osmosis (RO) water. Add 1⁄4 tsp. 10% phosphoric acid per 5 gallons (19 L) of brewing water, or until water measures pH 5.5 at room temperature. Add 1 tsp. calcium chloride (CaCl2) to the mash.

On brew day, mash in the Golden Promise, flaked barley, and torrified wheat at 147 °F (64 °C) in 15 qts. (14 L) of water, and hold this temperature for 60 minutes. Infuse with boiling water or direct heating to reach 155 °F (68 °C); hold this temperature for 30 minutes. Raise the temperature by infusion or direct heating to 168 °F (76 °C) to mashout. Add the chocolate and brown malts, and recirculate for 20 minutes. Fly sparge with 168 °F (76 °C) water until 7 gallons (26.5 L) of wort is collected.

Boil the wort for 120 minutes, adding the hops at times indicated in the recipe.

Chill to 66 °F (19 °C). Oxygenate, then pitch the yeast starter. Ferment at 68 °F (20 °C) until fermentation is complete. Rack the beer. Prime and bottle condition, or keg and force carbonate to 2.3 volumes.

Pretty sure if I remember right I think he said it is a German method of adding the darker grains towards the end of mash out.
 

Grok

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What I'm talking about is 20mins before end of boil for unfermentable materials, like a late hop addition.
 

goatchop41

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What I'm talking about is 20mins before end of boil for unfermentable materials, like a late hop addition.
What exactly are you grouping as non-fermentables? Are you talking just crystal malts and roasted malts? (that's the impression that I'm getting).

If so, I would think that boiling any malts that aren't dehusked will lead to a shit ton (yes, that's a real unit of measurement) of tannins in the finished wort, and therefore a horrendously astringent beer. Or am I incorrect in that assumption? (I am basing that on the fact that sparging too hot allegedly lead to tannin extraction from malts that aren't dehusked, so boiling would be even worse)
 

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