If anything, a thinner grainbed would help. 3-4" is fine.[/quote]
I ran into the same issue as Matt: dammed-up liquid on the opposite side of the cooler from the braid. It went away when I switched from a coffin-style cooler to the round one.
The problem wasn’t the braid or the crush, per se–the braid was doing a good job sucking wort from the area immediately around it, but as the cooler drained, the thin grainbed was allowing air to enter the braid. I’d get an air bubble in the hose that would slow the sparge to a trickle. With the round cooler, there’s just a much higher column of wort and the braid stays submerged.
I know it’s a $50 fix, which may not be appealing. I’m not sure a slow sparge would justify going this path on its own. I switched because my original cooler wasn’t well-insulated and I was having trouble holding mash temps. However, that change cut my sparging time roughly in half.[/quote]
Did you try just tilting the rectangular cooler?