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Thread: Wort Chiller Preheater

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2017
    Location
    Westford, VT
    Posts
    27

    Default Wort Chiller Preheater

    I'm considering adding a wort chiller type preheater to my barrel evaporator. It would consist of a new support rack for a 3 gallon SS stock pot filled with water adjacent the stack (for heat) and a wort chiller (50' coil of 3/8" SS tubing). I figure the water in the pot, heated by the stack, would transfer heat to the cold sap flowing through the coil submerged in the pot of water. When I run out of sap, the water will prevent the remaining sap in the coil from burning. The coil end would discharge directly into the pan.

    It seems that the preheater pan, located adjacent the stack is a very common preheater type and I've seen the coil around the stack idea (and read of it's disadvantages), but have not seen or read of this wort chiller approach. I've searched the forum for wort chiller without finding much.

    Any comments regarding this would be appreciated.
    2014-2017 - 3 taps - open fire boil
    2018 - 33 taps on 3/16 20" Hg, 3 buckets, barrel evaporator, RO Bucket
    2019 - 41 taps on 3/16" 20" Hg, 4 buckets, barrel evaporator, RO-Bucket Kit (3x400 gpd)

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    South East Pennsylvania
    Posts
    34

    Default

    I've actually been thinking if doing something similar. I have been toying around with the idea of doing a coil around the stack that just circulates into the stock pot and then a second coil in the stock pot that the sap flows through. That was there is never a risk of scorching the sap in the line.
    Adam

    2016: 6 Taps and a propane turkey fryer
    2019: 51 Taps on 3/16 gravity tubing
    Homemade Oil Tank Evaporator
    Badgerland by Smokey Lake 2x4 divided pan

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    Quaker Hill, CT
    Posts
    204

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    I have 3/8" copper tubing wrapped around my stack it works pretty well. I wrapped the tubing in ceramic insulation and taped it all up in foil tape. My sap is heated to near boiling at a flow rate that keeps up with my evaporator, about 1quart a min.

    I use one of the cheap surflo knock off pumps you can get on Amazon for 20 bucks to pump sap thru the heater. Using a pump keeps the coil under a little bit of pressure which eliminates the chance of your preheater getting vapor locked from steam. The pump pretty much eliminates the risk of sap scorching in the tube.

    The pump also makes it very easy to purge the heater of sap at the end of the day and rinse it with clean water. That keeps everything clean for the next time you start up.
    2017 25 taps on buckets got me hooked 1 gallon of sweet
    2018 51 taps on 3/16 tubing/ DIY oil tank evaporator 8.5gallons finished
    2019 tapped 1/26 aiming to beat last year

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2015
    Location
    Peoria, IL
    Posts
    524

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    I don't think that you would get enough heat transferred from the stack to the stock pot to make much of a difference. Even if the pot was touching the stack there would be so little direct transfer area that your water might only be barely warm at the end of a long boil.
    2019 - 150 taps 3/16 shurflo, Deer Run 125 dolly RO - 73 gallons
    2018 - 120 taps 3/16 hybrid (shurflo), 2x6 raised flue w/hood, homemade arch w/ AUF & AOF - 34.5 gallons
    2017 - 60 taps 3/16 gravity, oil tank arck w/ steam pans - 12.5 gallons

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jan 2017
    Location
    Quaker Hill, CT
    Posts
    204

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by mol1jb View Post
    I don't think that you would get enough heat transferred from the stack to the stock pot to make much of a difference. Even if the pot was touching the stack there would be so little direct transfer area that your water might only be barely warm at the end of a long boil.
    I agree with this you really need to wrap tightly around the stack to get enough heat transfer to make it worth the effort.
    Attached Images Attached Images
    2017 25 taps on buckets got me hooked 1 gallon of sweet
    2018 51 taps on 3/16 tubing/ DIY oil tank evaporator 8.5gallons finished
    2019 tapped 1/26 aiming to beat last year

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Location
    New Hampshire
    Posts
    1

    Default Wort Chiller

    I use my stainless steel wort chiller to heat the sap before it enters the pre-heater pan. It fits perfectly around 8" flue pipe and does warm the sap up quite a bit. At least I'm not introducing cold sap directly into my pre-heat pan. Not sure if this would work with 6" or 7' flue pipe as the wort chiller needs to be very close to the pipe to pick up sufficient heat. When I start to run out of sap I add 5 gallons of water to my mini head tank (beer bucket with spigot) and divert the wort chiller outlet flow away from the pre-heater pan into a spare bucket while the flue pipe is still hot. This gives me some warm water for cleanup. My sugar house is up in the woods too far from water and power so a lot of lugging.
    Attached Images Attached Images

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2014
    Location
    southern maine
    Posts
    49

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    I made my own with copper I bought from the orange home improvement store. You can see how I made mine a couple of years ago. https://youtu.be/jV5CUXEv6HA. Since then I have added to it to make it longer. Also, leave a little space in between the coils there is more surface area to heat up and it seams to work better with out the isolation.

    On that same channel, I have some videos from this year that show my new setup.
    2014- 27 taps

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