A few urn questions

Post #1 made 5 years ago
Hi all,
I have been considering moving to a crown urn but have one question which the search feature couldnt help me with.
I am curious how you deal with the hot break? In my current 50 litre keg the hot break come right to the top but can controlled with the gas controller but im concerned there is not enough head space.

Is there a 50litre urn?

Brendan

Post #3 made 5 years ago
Thanks Joshua, i have updated my profile.

Has anyone used these urns? are they a concealed element?

Also one other question the information advises to turn the urn off during the mash? my intent was to use an STC controller to control the mash temp, can anyone shed light on this. ( i was going to stir when he element kicked in )

Brendan

Post #4 made 5 years ago
Brenden, Many of us have used an Urn, most Large urns have concealed/covered elements to help cleaning.

Depending on your ambient temperature, Insulation, and wind/air speed where you mash, you will need to heat the mash 1-5 times.

Your STC Controller will help with the Mash Temperature pretty well, But, if the bag is sitting on the element, It may burn.

So a shaped metal device(Cookie Cutter) will keep the bag from burning.

I have a Lite bulb attached to my PID to tell me when the heat is on, so I stir during the Mash also!!
Honest Officer, I swear to Drunk, I am Not God.
    • SVA Brewer With Over 100 Brews From United States of America

Post #6 made 5 years ago
Hi Brendandrage,

I have a 40l crown urn, concealed element. I have only done 23l batches and have had no trouble at all with the hot break. I have insulated the urn and turn off to mash, that way it's just set and forget with no need to stir etc, I only lose about 1deg in the hour

Post #7 made 5 years ago
Hi

i have recently aquired a old 20L 'Baby Burco' electric urn. Ive yet to use it - but it has a removeable element cover, and is SHINY :D
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Ive tested it, and it DOES boil (a lot of new 'urns' cut out at 96 degrees)

But im afraid thats all i have to report at the moment - watch this space! ;)
Last edited by Zymeck on 19 Jun 2013, 20:46, edited 2 times in total.

Post #8 made 5 years ago
Zymeck wrote:Hi

i have recently aquired a old 20L 'Baby Burco' electric urn. Ive yet to use it - but it has a removeable element cover, and is SHINY :D
Hi Zymeck, I don't know if you have brewed yet with the Burco. If not I would remove the element cover before doing so.

I picked up a Burco wash boiler like yours, and for my first brew I left the cover in place. While it achieved a good rolling boil with water, when boiling the wort it didn't achieve a rolling boil, but surged as the wort under the cover boiled (probably leaving a vapour space under the cover), then as the element cut out, drawing wort/trub/hops in under the cover to boil and burn on to the element when it came back on.

Long story short, I produced a burned wort (not nice like smoked malts), and had a mammoth job cleaning off the element. Kudos to the Burco though, the element cutout prevented burn out of the element, and I have had many successful brews since, using it without the cover in place!

Cheers
Steve
Last edited by Stevea on 24 Jun 2013, 18:41, edited 2 times in total.
    • SVA Brewer With Over 20 Brews From Great Britain

Post #9 made 5 years ago
Stevea wrote:
Zymeck wrote:Hi

i have recently aquired a old 20L 'Baby Burco' electric urn. Ive yet to use it - but it has a removeable element cover, and is SHINY :D
Hi Zymeck, I don't know if you have brewed yet with the Burco. If not I would remove the element cover before doing so.

I picked up a Burco wash boiler like yours, and for my first brew I left the cover in place. While it achieved a good rolling boil with water, when boiling the wort it didn't achieve a rolling boil, but surged as the wort under the cover boiled (probably leaving a vapour space under the cover), then as the element cut out, drawing wort/trub/hops in under the cover to boil and burn on to the element when it came back on.

Long story short, I produced a burned wort (not nice like smoked malts), and had a mammoth job cleaning off the element. Kudos to the Burco though, the element cutout prevented burn out of the element, and I have had many successful brews since, using it without the cover in place!

Cheers
Steve
Hi Steve,

I have tried the boiler, and it was a great success - BUT, thanks ever so much for the 'heads up' - its great advice, and just because I got away with it this time doesn't mean I will next!

One of the things that worries me about not using the cover though, and thats is burning the bag on the elementif I need to raise the temperature during mashing. Have you found this ago be a problem ? Any tips?

Thanks
Last edited by Zymeck on 26 Jun 2013, 05:48, edited 2 times in total.

Post #10 made 4 years ago
Zymeck wrote: One of the things that worries me about not using the cover though, and thats is burning the bag on the elementif I need to raise the temperature during mashing. Have you found this ago be a problem ? Any tips?

Thanks
Hi Zymeck,

Sorry for the delay in replying, things have got the way for a bit! :dunno:

When I put my bag in the urn, I adjust it so that it is only just sitting on the element. Then if I need to heat the mash liquor during mashing, I pull the bag up an inch or so on one side and peg the bag to the lip of the urn; then pull the opposite side of the bag over to pin it on the same side of the urn. This pulls the bag together and up away from the element. It also allows room to get a mash paddle in to the vessel to stir whilst heating (I can normally get the paddle underneath the bag as well, which allows me to confirm that the bag is clear of the element.

I have done several Weizens using stepped mashes in this way. It sounds a bit of a faff, but is actually pretty easy and doesn't add much time to the mash at all.

Cheers
Steve
Last edited by Stevea on 16 Sep 2013, 17:27, edited 2 times in total.
    • SVA Brewer With Over 20 Brews From Great Britain

Post #12 made 4 years ago
If anyone has questions about using an urn, you might like to have a look at the "sticky" at the top of the Electric Biab page that I wrote about 3 years ago now (a little out of date, I should re write it but still mostly current).

I am currently using a 40L exposed element Crown urn - as Pat and I agreed at a meeting several years ago, wouldn't it be great if they did a 50L, but such a model may come up in the future. For now I get perfectly good results, and most of my brews are up around the 6% ABV mark. No problems with hot break as long as you cover the urn and let it all settle for about 20 minutes, and use a good floccer such as BrewBright.

To avoid burning the bag, I use a curved roasting rack http://www.productreview.com.au/p/davis ... -rack.html from a kitchen store that keeps the bag off the element and no, it isn't necessary to keep turning the urn on during mashing, so long as you insulate it well using methods such as a sleeping bag, quilt or metallized rubber foam wrapped around as a jacket.

I prefer exposed elements as they give a better boil and are dead easy to look after using a green Scotch Brite kitchen scrubber.

Edit: loved those Burco boilers when I lived in the UK in the 1950s and 1960s. Years ago before washing machines were affordable a lot of households would have a Burco for boiling babies nappies or Dad's pit overalls. At 16, Gang and I spent a couple of weeks in a holiday cottage in Scotland owned by one guy's uncle. Dad was a home brewer and I knew what I was doing so we got tins of malt extract, sugar and some hops from a chemist and boiled it up in the Burco then fermented it in situ :argh: using bakers yeast. Vile stuff but we stayed drunk for days just scooping it out of the Burco and spitting out the hops :party: :party:
Last edited by Beachbum on 09 Oct 2013, 20:21, edited 2 times in total.
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