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Flushing out gear for a direct fire system

Hey beer geeks,

I was just in the process of amassing some gear for a direct fire all grain recirculating system and reached a couple stumbling blocks. Wondering what your opinions may be.

  1. Quite simply. Is a false bottom the only real option? I see some other stuff online but lots of it looks scary. Braided lines twisted all over the bottom of a kettle like too many snakes in a pit, plastic tubing manually drilled etc. http://shop.beerbelly.com.au/hopscreen- … -tube.html is something I see that i like. But seems like most use false bottoms. It’s an s-bend ss tube with a compression fitting on one end and a small capped ss perf tube on the other.

  2. A question about burners. I saw some good, solid $40 stand alone burners. However, I kind of want to either invest in burners OR parts that can be built into a frame eventually. Burners come in so many different styles and btu’s. Are there some you guys really like and stand behind? And furthermore if theres a source to just get burners, valves, line, regulators etc at good prices I would make my own stand and build the parts in.

I am a welder. Just trying to save a few bucks if I can.
Thanks!

As far as the burners go, I had really good luck integrating these burners into my setup:

They were a bit inefficient, but a welded in some scrap metal to keep the heat under the kettles. Here is a photo of them placed in my rig. I will try to get you some more detailed photos of the burners if that would help you.

I hope this helps.

Thanks,
Joe

[quote=“westcoastbrewer”]As far as the burners go, I had really good luck integrating these burners into my setup:

They were a bit inefficient, but a welded in some scrap metal to keep the heat under the kettles. Here is a photo of them placed in my rig. I will try to get you some more detailed photos of the burners if that would help you.

I hope this helps.

Thanks,
Joe[/quote]

Nice Joe!

That’s what I’m talking about. Good quality stuff and compartmentalized. Just cart it all out and away you go. I’d probably do my frame out of aluminum. I guess your burners work fine now since your added shrouds you wrapped around them? Looks like that’s what you did anyway. Not sure which burners I will pick up but those look like they incorporated nicely. If you don’t mind me asking how many btu’s should a burner be? I ask because I typically see them range from 50-200000k. That is quite a range.

As for filtration I am leaning towards a false bottom for my MT and a bazooka for my BK. Can’t decide yet. Have friends coming over for BBQ.

Thanks,
Parry

I think the BTU is going to depend on your batch size and how quickly you want to get the job done. I do almost entirely 10 gallon batches. I started out using a 55,000 BTU burner; it worked great. It was very fuel efficient but I wanted to save time so about 6 months ago I swapped them out and upgraded to the high pressure Banjo burners that I linked earlier. It is rated at 210,000 but I never have it cranked up to full. When I first installed them, I certainly was heating my HLT water quick and reaching a boil much quicker but I was blowing through propane and my propane tank would literally freeze to the ground. So I installed the shrouding and it made a world of difference.

I use a Blichmann false bottom in my MT and it works like a charm. I have a Blichmann HopBlocker in the BK, conduct a brief whirlpool before a start moving it through the chiller and I have never had any clogging issues. One downside of the HopBlocker is that they do not advice you use whole hops with it, or else they will need to be boiled in a bag if you do.

Best of luck to you on your project Parry!

Joe

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