500L BM operators thread

Because the 200 L and 500 L units are a different league, we'll grant them their own sub-forum.

500L BM operators thread

Unread postby philip500 » Tue Nov 29, 2016 2:03 am

Hello

I hope we can gather some of the operators of 500L BM systems in this thread to share experiences and tips for successful small commercial operations.

Our brewpub recently got the 500BM delivered together with unitanks from Speidel. We are still working out some of the operational issues around brewing on this system.

To start this thread I'll throw out the issue of wort chilling on the 500BM. Our 500BM was delivered with an additional large external cooling coil which I was not aware would be included. Have Speidel listened to users about the inadequate wort chilling system and now also included this in the 500BM package? Not sure but I am still hesitant about the wort chilling capacity that we have now since we do many beers with late hop additions (whirlpool) and these hops will sit in the wort for longer than expected due to the slow wort chilling.
Would be fantastic if the 500BM users on this forum would share what system they use for wort cooling at the moment?

Cheers and beers!
philip500
 
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Re: 500L BM operators thread

Unread postby Southern Highlands Brew » Fri Dec 02, 2016 2:20 am

Hey Phillip,
Keen for a dedicated 500 & 200 users thread. We have both, but are selling the 200L shortly.
Our groundwater is pretty cool in summer and very cold in winter. Tried to use the immersion coil once. Fitting blew off. Never used it again, because frankly, we don't need it. Using the jacket we get down to 84 quite quickly, (about 5-10mins, season dependant) then start the whirlpool. Another 20mins and we are at 70.
Run through a sondex heat exchanger and hit the unis at 20°C
If you're worried about whirlpool additions adding IBU's just chuck them in for less time. Besides, even above isomerisation temp ours only add 2-4IBU, so I doubt anyone could pick it up. Adjust recipe to suit.
Are you cranking up your whirlpool speed to 8 or so? Removing the jackets as well?
Southern Highlands Brew
 
Posts: 42
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Model: 500 litres

Re: 500L BM operators thread

Unread postby Southern Highlands Brew » Fri Dec 02, 2016 2:22 am

I'd also like to know if anyone has developed a successful way of replacing the top filter cloth. Its a pain in the arse IMO.
I'd like some kind of SS fine mesh like the bottom fine filter that 'mould into' the underneath of the top filter plate.
Open to suggestions.
Southern Highlands Brew.
Southern Highlands Brew
 
Posts: 42
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Model: 500 litres

Re: 500L BM operators thread

Unread postby philip500 » Sat Dec 03, 2016 7:23 am

Hey Southern Highlands! Thanks for joining the thread!

Yeah our tap water is very cold as well so that is positive. We have not purchased a heat exchanger yet but will have to eventually.

How do you aerate your wort on the 500?
philip500
 
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Re: 500L BM operators thread

Unread postby Southern Highlands Brew » Tue Dec 06, 2016 11:32 pm

Not needed. Besides the usual splashing into the unis, (we pump into the racking arm with it inverted) we don't aerate or oxygenate. We have the ability to oxygenate and have in the past when used liquids. We did this through the carb stone as we have uni-tanks.
Now we pitch rehydrated dry yeast @ 1g/L. Its a popular debate, but we are in the camp that dry yeast doesn't need o2. We always hit predicted FG, the ferment is vigerous, takes off quickly and is finished in 3-4 days, beer dependant, nice and clean, so that will do us.
Southern Highlands Brew
 
Posts: 42
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Model: 500 litres

Re: 500L BM operators thread

Unread postby SaipanBrewing » Wed Dec 14, 2016 6:46 am

Hello, wanted to join this thread. We are a nano using 500L BM. Typically we are producing 600-700L batches.

On the issue of chilling, we also don't use the supplied immersion chiller and believe it's too small to be effective. Instead, we use the jacket to get to 84, start whirlpool pushing through the heat exchanger, and then continue down to 70. Finally push through our heat exchange using prechilled water (our tapwater isn't cool enough) to get to pitching temp. We have also used no-chill successfully on occasion.

We have typically oxygenated through co2 stone at 1.5l/minute for 5 minutes, but are going to try without.

Cheers!
SaipanBrewing
 

Re: 500L BM operators thread

Unread postby Southern Highlands Brew » Wed Dec 14, 2016 9:53 pm

Nice one SaipanBrewing.
How was the no-chill? How did you do it? We're getting a bit worried about water wastage in the summer months and no-chill was suggested.
Southern Highlands Brew
 
Posts: 42
Joined: Thu Dec 31, 2015 3:26 am
Model: 500 litres

Re: 500L BM operators thread

Unread postby SaipanBrewing » Thu Jan 05, 2017 4:26 am

@southernhighlands,

our no chill brew has gone fine when we stick to a single brew. It typically takes 2 days to chill down to under 100F where we can use our glycol chiller to bring it down to pitching. We don't have any DMS or other side effects from this method.

we have tried to brew two no-chill batches back to back and the entire batch went sour. not sure why and likely not due to combining the worts at different temps, but we didn't do it again after that as we had no need to.
SaipanBrewing
 

Re: 500L BM operators thread

Unread postby philip500 » Sat Jan 07, 2017 2:01 am

Thanks a lot for joining the thread and exchanging ideas for the big BMs!

Anyone would like to share your equipment profiles for the 500L? I saw that Southern Highlands shared some numbers a while back after the first brew or so? Do you have anything updated?

Cheers
philip500
 
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Re: 500L BM operators thread

Unread postby Southern Highlands Brew » Sun Jan 08, 2017 4:10 am

philip500 wrote:Thanks a lot for joining the thread and exchanging ideas for the big BMs!

Anyone would like to share your equipment profiles for the 500L? I saw that Southern Highlands shared some numbers a while back after the first brew or so? Do you have anything updated?

Cheers


This is my original 'from memory' numbers after the first brewday.
Loss to trub and chiller ~30L
Evap ~50L
Absorption 0.75L/kg - crush dependant of course
Ramp times were 0.5°C / minute

This is what we've settled on after many brews.
50L boil off in 75mins
38L trub and chiller loss
30L fermenter loss
24L cooling loss
68% overall efficiency.
Southern Highlands Brew
 
Posts: 42
Joined: Thu Dec 31, 2015 3:26 am
Model: 500 litres

Re: 500L BM operators thread

Unread postby MickeEklund » Tue Jan 17, 2017 7:19 pm

Hi guys!

Could anyone help me here? I've just ordered a BM500 and I'm about to shop some hoses and fittings. I would like to change the "output-valve" to a TriClamp fitting and then a butterfly valve.

Butterfly valve
https://www.aliexpress.com/store/product/Sanitary-1-5-TC-Bufferfly-Valve-Pull-Trigger-Homebrew-Tri-Clover-Fitting-Beer-Hardware/1017341_32313119502.html?spm=2114.12010608.0.0.zELLJy

What dimension is the hole in the BM? Would this work?

3/4" Male NPT
https://www.aliexpress.com/store/product/1-5-TC-x-3-4-Male-NPT-SS304-3A-Standard-Homebrew-Clover-Fitting-Brewer-Hardware/1017341_32298114537.html?spm=2114.12010608.0.0.RGPBB0

Thanks!
Mike, Sweden
MickeEklund
 

Re: 500L BM operators thread

Unread postby philip500 » Wed Jan 18, 2017 1:08 am

Hej Micke

Outlet of BM is male 1" so you would need another connection to fit the parts you showed in your links. You would need a pipe sleeve, rörmuff in Swedish to connect your TC fittings on this outlet. You can find a range at Maltmagnus and probably at other VVS equipment shops.

I went with Speidels tanks and hoses which easily hooks up to the Braumeister but not much other brewing equipment uses these 1" ET Male/Female connections so I have had to get adapters made.
philip500
 
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Re: 500L BM operators thread

Unread postby Strokkie » Sun Feb 05, 2017 8:25 pm

Newbie to the 500 ltr BM. Have been using the 20 ltr before. We're three brews underway. Lots to learn still. Joining this thread to learn tips and tricks!

So far we've had three main issues:
1. Efficiency is rubbish compared to my experience with the 20 ltr. Not hitting sg's at all.
Not sure what we are doing wrong. Working in exactly the same manner as with the 20 ltr. Still 15 points under desired sg
2. Top cloth is a pain in the ar##...
Looking for alternatives.
3. Cooling takes forever-and-a-day. Not sure yet what is the best way to go about this.

Any tips morr than welcome!
Strokkie
 

Re: 500L BM operators thread

Unread postby zackbrew » Fri Feb 24, 2017 5:56 am

Strokkie,

I'm still waiting to order my BM 500L but I've brewed with it with experienced operators. Two key tips:
1) it needs to be level, very level. Make sure you the recirculating flow is coming up over the rim of the malt pipe evenly all around. Get a couple of carjacks to allow you to adjust the level each brew
2) what is your recirc pump pressure at? The higher it is the better the efficiency BUT do not go above 0.2MPA! aim for 0.17 or 0.18 MPA otherwise you can bend the bottom mesh.
3) you aren't trying to cool with the BM cooling jacket are you? Apparently its a waste of time. You can use the cooling jacket to bring it down to 85C or 80C but after that point you need to switch to a plate heat exchanger.
zackbrew
 

Re: 500L BM operators thread

Unread postby SaipanBrewing » Thu Mar 16, 2017 11:56 am

strokkie,

1) we don't use BS or another program except as a base. we've learned our recipes and results through trial runs. give us some numbers about what you are doing and expecting though, so we can see how that compares.
On that note, great idea for car jacks to level it out. we keep ours level but certainly not perfect. going to look into that.
Also, another interesting note to increase recirc pressure to .18 for improved efficiency. haven't done it but will try.
2) What's your issues with the top cloth? applying it? we fold over all 4 sides and apply that way. it's easy and take 15 seconds.
3) the jacket is only useful for cooling down to where the pump will activate (84). here's what we do. we use ground water first and take the water coming out of the jacket and redirect it thru our HX to pasteurize it. when the temp gets to 84, we start circulating 84 degree wort through our HX and back into kettle for whirlpool for 10 minutes to pasteurize hoses and valves. after 10 minutes of this, we hook up our CLT to the HX and switch wort to the fermenter. we then push at 68 to the fermenter. knock out still takes a while. we use 1 inch hoses for this process.
SaipanBrewing
 

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