Filtering beer

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PhilB
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Re: Filtering beer

Post by PhilB » Sun Aug 13, 2017 11:07 am

Hi Chris
Jim wrote:
Sun Aug 13, 2017 9:41 am
PhilB - That graph is very interesting. If I'm understanding correctly, the highest amount of cold break is formed at < 10C. So I could use a plate chiller to cool close to 0C, then warm up after a while?
... I'm sure if you were to have the sort of fancy immersion or counter flow chilling equipment to be able to chill your wort to whatever temp you were ultimately going to get it down to, that would be the best of all worlds :? ... but what Hough says is that any benefits from chilling quickly can be outweighed by chilling cooler :? ... and on a home-brewing scale and budget, that may be achieved "better" by no-chilling (and I mean better in terms of cold break production there) ... but that also means you need to avoid the pitfalls of no-chilling that Orlando alludes to above ... because people mean all sorts of different things when they use the phrase "no-chill", from leaving the wort in the boiler overnight, to using a no-chill cube "properly" ... and by "properly" I mean separating the still hot wort from the hot break material and hop matter, as fast as possible, getting the wort into a sterilised food safe (to wort temps) container (cube), leaving as little headspace as possible, and getting the cube sealed up while the wort is still up at pasteurisation temps, and then turning the cube over to get the wort to pasteurise the inside of the container ... once the wort is in that state, you can take your time getting it as cold as you can to maximise the amount of cold break matter that you can get out of it :?

Cheers, PhilB

Later Edit: it was actually chris2012 who asked the question but I seem to have quoted Jim quoting Chris instead :oops:
Last edited by PhilB on Sun Aug 13, 2017 11:11 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Filtering beer

Post by orlando » Sun Aug 13, 2017 11:09 am

More than one way to skin a cat eh Phil?
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Re: Filtering beer

Post by PhilB » Sun Aug 13, 2017 11:16 am

orlando wrote:
Sun Aug 13, 2017 11:09 am
More than one way to skin a cat eh Phil?
... absolutely, definitely not saying no-chilling is always better ... just pointing out that there is scientific evidence explaining why some brewers experience improved clarity when using that approach, especially in the middle of a cold winter :wink:

Cheers, PhilB

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Re: Filtering beer

Post by HTH1975 » Sun Aug 13, 2017 2:47 pm

I find that leaving the wort to settle for an hour, then slowly running off through the ball valve (via a bazooka filter) gives me very clear wort. This is of course in addition to the other processes I've already detailed in my previous post.

I suppose you could leave the wort to settle out in a fridge, then syphon off again to your eventual FV. I personally have not found that necessary.

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Re: Filtering beer

Post by Eric » Sun Aug 13, 2017 8:47 pm

PhilB, I thank you for the information on the influence of temperature on cold break. I'm not familiar with that work by Hough, mostly that he did earlier on contiuous fermentation. I was recently informed there is still one brewery, in New Zealand, that still uses the process. The work I quoted was not solely about cold break or even clarity, although it was found to have a significant influence on it, but for the best overall benefit.

This, like many threads, has broadened, as they often do and frequently for the better, but I fear has narrowed to cold break to justify a practise many consider risky.

Eric wrote:
Sat Aug 12, 2017 1:29 pm
The importance of chilling after boiling has long been known. Testings took place in labs of brewers more than a hundred years since to determine optimum chilling rates. The findings depended upon beer style but basically between 7 and 9 second to drop wort from 80C to pitching temperature gave most benefits, not just based on clarity, leading to the introduction and widespread use of counterflow chillers.

.............
So, narrowing the subject quote Hough after inoculating wort with a pure yeast, a pure bacterial culture and a mixture of those two cultures. No chill cubes might in some circumstances be an equivalent of the second.

That with pure yeast experienced a 12.5 fold increase in population in 48 hours which then fell by sedimentation.
That with bacteria experienced a population increase of 510 fold in 72 hours which then decreased due to autolysis and sedimentation.
The mixed culture resulted initially in a faster growth in yeast population though viability later declined quite rapidly, while the bacterial component reached maximum population after 24 hours and none were viable at the end of fermentation.

Of course many other products were produced in those culturing bacteria, DMS was 418 times the flavour threshold and vastly more in that with just bacteria.

Obviously, narrowing the subject to a single point only clouds the issues and needs to be broadened and looking at from the other side of the coin, like asking if the cloudyness in the no chill cube is break, or might some be some of the products of a bacterial party time?
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Re: Filtering beer

Post by PhilB » Mon Aug 14, 2017 2:05 pm

Hi Eric
Eric wrote:
Sat Aug 12, 2017 1:29 pm
The internet is wonderful, but its information travels at a rate regardless of merit, when methods long since disregarded can suddenly reappear with new claimed benefits. Sadly no chill is one.

...
Eric wrote:
Sun Aug 13, 2017 8:47 pm
Hough after inoculating wort with a pure yeast, a pure bacterial culture and a mixture of those two cultures. No chill cubes might in some circumstances be an equivalent of the second.
... Oh Eric, that is rich! Trying to claim the "moral high-ground" with your comments about the spreading of myth and mis-information on the internet, and then indulging in a bit of it yourself [-X … I suppose I could lower myself down there too with comments like … yeah, but the Devil instructs all of his demons to take all their $hits in the nooks and crannies of counter flow chillers, and Witches have placed curses on EVERY immersion chiller ever made to infect every seventh brew that they’re used in :twisted: :twisted: … but let’s just be rational, like grown-ups, shall we :?

Used “properly”, using a no-chill cube to cool your wort in is about as dangerous as opening a tin of salmon to make a sandwich for your tea, later this afternoon … putting your wort in the cube uses the same techniques to inhibit bacterial infection as the people who put food in cans and jars, after all, and those of us who regularly consume foodstuffs from cans and jars have already accepted those risks (on a daily basis) … yes, if used “improperly” cooling your wort in a no-chill cube might lead to bacterial infection … but then if used “improperly” all of the methods used to cool/chill your wort might lead to bacterial infection (see my myths and fables above), that part of the process is a dangerous stage … but someone not having learned how to do something “properly”, isn’t justification that it can’t be done “properly” and that that technique has to be assigned to the rubbish bin :roll:

Back when Horace Brown and his chums were investigating the “best” way to make beer, before the First World War, the brewing world was a different place, there were only large scale commercial brewers and only techniques that would be appropriate for those brewers to use were considered … and for those brewers, as Jim suggested earlier in the thread, time costs money (unlike for us home brewers for whom time is free, after all brewing is our hobby, it’s what we do in our free time) … so the assessment of whether it would be “better” to allow wort to cool slowly, in a sealed sanitary container, was never included in the scope of the experimentation … and so your attempts to apply the findings of those experiments to the use of no-chill cubes is, at best, extrapolation based supposition :?

Home brewers make all sorts of decisions in terms of what style of brewing (kits/extract/AG) they do and what brewing equipment they procure, based on combinations of their budgets and lifestyles (e.g. the amount of time they can allocate to their hobby, and how much of that time they can allocate in large, contiguous chunks) … and the great thing about forums like this is that whatever approach they choose and whatever constraints they have, there’s someone out there who can help them make the best beer they’re able to make with that approach and within those constraints. Most of this thread was about the members of this forum trying to help Chris (chris2012) do that, and resolve his beer clarity problems, and it only took off at a tangent when you and Orlando decided that you didn’t like people using no-chill cubes, and I’ll admit to my part in helping that by trying to point out that you were working on false assumptions :oops: … it turns out that Chris also has a counter flow chiller available to him that he’s never used, so perhaps it would be best if we just wait for Chris to decide what method and equipment he is planning on using for his next/future brews and then we can all help him to get the most out of taking that approach, whichever approach he decides on :wink:

Cheers, PhilB

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Re: Filtering beer

Post by Eric » Mon Aug 14, 2017 6:28 pm

Sorry Phil if you think I want to take the moral highground, it is not my intent so this shall be my last posting on this thread and apologise to those who also find my efforts to pass on what I have found and learned has dragged it beyond the pale.

Phil, you quoted a work by Hough wrt temperature without timings on cold break, one material accepted to have just minimal influence on clarity. I also quoted Hough in another respect and now, after reflecting on his evidence and reading about your salmon sandwich wondered if I would eat it after a week or so sitting in a sealed plastic cube no matter how sanitised. Maybe someone might do us a test and display before and after pictures, including consumption.

No more words of advice on clear beer to give here.

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Re: Filtering beer

Post by orlando » Mon Aug 14, 2017 10:19 pm

PhilB wrote:
Mon Aug 14, 2017 2:05 pm
it only took off at a tangent when you and Orlando decided that you didn’t like people using no-chill cubes

Take a look at what I wrote again, including my post acknowledging there is more than one way to skin a cat. My preferences are for good reasons too, ones that suit my pursuit of excellence and best practice. Just trying to help Chris in choosing what is ultimately best for him, just like you. :wink:
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Re: Filtering beer

Post by Jocky » Wed Aug 16, 2017 9:24 am

Jocky wrote:
Wed Aug 09, 2017 2:49 pm
Cold break forms when the wort gets cold. Leave your cold wort to sit until it is still and when you come back you'll be able to see proteins coagulating under sparklingly clear wort. Leave it all for a while longer and the proteins will drop, allowing you to siphon crystal clear wort from the top.
Going back a few pages to my process of not filtering from the boiler, I thought I'd post a few pictures of the clear wort.

Once chilling is done I remove the immersion chiller, pop the (sanitised) lid on the kettle and walk away for 20-30 minutes. When I come back, the break and hop material (about 70g of hop pellet in 19 litres of wort) are all dropping to the bottom, and you can see crystal clear wort on the top.

This photo is with the kettle 50% drained. You can see the temperature dial probe at the bottom of the picture quite clearly through the wort. The kettle element at the top of the picture has some break material sitting on top of it:
1.jpg
I siphon the wort off from the top without any filter, getting wort that looks like this:
Untitled.jpg
4.jpg
As you can see, there's some very fine material in there, but it's very small.


Avoiding being too greedy I leave about 2 litres of wort that is thick with break and hops in the kettle. As others have said, don't be too greedy, it's a false economy:
2.jpg
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Re: Filtering beer

Post by Sadfield » Wed Aug 16, 2017 9:44 am

So if you immersion chill, being too greedy is a false economy. Yet, if you counterflow chill taking the cold break into the fv has little impact?

I do wonder how much hot break gets taken too, with most cfc setups. How efficient a whirlpool is created (if at all) and how much people bother skimming.

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Re: Filtering beer

Post by TheSumOfAllBeers » Wed Aug 16, 2017 10:25 am

In professional breweries, the cold break goes into the FV.

But I concur with Jocky:
If you leave your wort stand for 20 minutes, all break material will have settled and you can rack clear wort away.

I was looking at all kinds of complicated filters until I tried kettle finings, a 60s mash paddle whirlpool and a 20 minute stand.

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Re: Filtering beer

Post by Sadfield » Wed Aug 16, 2017 11:03 am

My question though, is a mash paddle whirlpool going to replicate the speed and duration of a brewery whirlpool in separating fine hot break particles? I suspect in many setups there is little practical difference between cfc, no boil cube and only a benefit when not being greedy in a immersion chiller setup. Yet good results are reported on all systems. So, is the best practice before chilling that really makes the difference?

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Re: Filtering beer

Post by chris2012 » Wed Aug 16, 2017 2:02 pm

Jocky - Thanks a lot for posting that. I'm amazed at how clear it is at that stage.

My wort tends to look extremely cloudy post boil into the fermenter!

I will definitely be trying what you do.

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Re: Filtering beer

Post by McMullan » Wed Aug 16, 2017 3:19 pm

In my experience, chris2012, a 1 micron filter is pointless unless bright (filterable) beer is being pushed through it. Anything other than bright beer clogs the filter which then risks stripping flavour. The brewing process can be simplified (mentally) into a series of steps associated with a 'filtering' procedure of some kind. There is some sound advice in this thread. Aim for what Jocky has produced and select a good Brewer's yeast strain. Then you'll probably decide a filter isn't necessary. Big breweries filter mainly to 'sterilise' and stabilise their beers, which end up on supermarket shelves for months at the wrong storage temperature. Some big commercials do exploit the technique to achieve a quick turnover, but their beers are crap.
Last edited by McMullan on Wed Aug 16, 2017 4:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Filtering beer

Post by McMullan » Wed Aug 16, 2017 3:19 pm

Please delete :mrgreen:

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