My Mega Masher Fermenter

Any hardware used for mashing, fermenting or aging.

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MichiganCornhusker
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My Mega Masher Fermenter

Post by MichiganCornhusker » Thu Mar 23, 2017 2:55 pm

So here's my new masher/fermenter!
100 gallon stainless conical insulated beauty found at the scrap yard moments before destruction!
Front view
Front view
Top view
Top view
Cone bottom
Cone bottom
There are 4 lines coming in from the back of the unit, up into the insulated sides of the cone. I'm guessing these might be heating or cooling lines?
Four lines
Four lines
Also two fittings on each side of the unit, again maybe for some circulating temp control fluid?
Side fittings
Side fittings
Side close
Side close
Then there is a nub sticking out near the bottom. I can't seem to get it to go in or out or turn. No idea what it is.
Nub
Nub
Finally there are two porthole type openings with threads for some kind of sight glass flange I'm thinking. No idea yet where to find parts to seal up the holes yet.
Porthole
Porthole
This beast is going to get me to completely rethink my mashing procedure.
I like the idea of using the drains for different takeoff levels that SCD has already suggested.
Also expecting I'll need to get setup for steam heating the mash.
Any info or suggestions is welcome!
Shouting and shooting, I can't let them catch me...

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Re: My Mega Masher Fermenter

Post by DSM Loki » Thu Mar 23, 2017 3:07 pm

She's a beaut

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Re: My Mega Masher Fermenter

Post by shadylane » Thu Mar 23, 2017 3:08 pm

MCH, Quit teasing us and post the dadburn story :lol:

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Re: My Mega Masher Fermenter

Post by HDNB » Thu Mar 23, 2017 4:07 pm

the lines are prolly heat/cool and one for air, for pumping in O2 to propagate yeast.
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Re: My Mega Masher Fermenter

Post by MichiganCornhusker » Thu Mar 23, 2017 4:11 pm

shadylane wrote:MCH, Quit teasing us and post the dadburn story :lol:
I originally posted in the Good Deals thread:

I went back into my scrap metal place to see if they had come across any 4" copper pipe yet. They hadn't.
They did have some pieces of 3" DWV with a few fittings and as I was contemplating that possibility I looked across the shop and saw this thing in the corner.

I asked if he would sell it as-is and he said he would for $150. I said I would go get a truck.

Not sure what it was used for but it is spotless. I will need to find some caps for the two portholes, they are threaded?
I'll also need to run some water through the fittings to see how the thing might be plumbed. And then of course some kind of lid.
Shouting and shooting, I can't let them catch me...

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Re: My Mega Masher Fermenter

Post by MichiganCornhusker » Thu Mar 23, 2017 4:15 pm

HDNB wrote:the lines are prolly heat/cool and one for air, for pumping in O2 to propagate yeast.
None of the lines open into the inside.
Except for the three sanitary drain fittings near the bottom and the 2 portholes, the inside surface is closed and polished.
When I get some time I'm going to pump some water into the fittings to see how much fluid the hold and how they might be connected.
Shouting and shooting, I can't let them catch me...

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Re: My Mega Masher Fermenter

Post by HDNB » Thu Mar 23, 2017 4:19 pm

i toured a fuel ethanol plant a while back. they had a "yeast propagation vessel" (their words, not mine), they created their own yeast. It looked just like your unit, just 3x as big. it had an internal heat coil, and external cool coil and sight glasses, process plumbing in and out, and differnt valved take offs on the cone. The air line, the guy said they pumped air in for 4 hours to start the breeding frenzy.
I never saw the sticky-outy thing like your has tho.
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Re: My Mega Masher Fermenter

Post by cob » Thu Mar 23, 2017 4:24 pm

MCH start your testing with air so you don't trap water someplace you don't want it.

you have said nothing about a possible maker, so I assume it has no ID markings.
be water my friend

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Re: My Mega Masher Fermenter

Post by MichiganCornhusker » Thu Mar 23, 2017 4:38 pm

cob wrote:MCH start your testing with air so you don't trap water someplace you don't want it.
you have said nothing about a possible maker, so I assume it has no ID markings.
Great idea with the air, now I know what's plumbed to what. Thanks for the suggestion.

Each one of the 4 lines at the bottom of the unit is connected to one of the 4 fittings welded into the side of the tank wall above.
Apparently 4 circuits. Maybe next I will try running some hot water through them one my one to see if I can feel anything inside the tank.

No markings on the unit that give any indication who made it or what it was used for. No make or model numbers or anything like that. Seems fairly custom that way.
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Re: My Mega Masher Fermenter

Post by Truckinbutch » Thu Mar 23, 2017 4:39 pm

WOW ! Just WOW ! I'd figure out how to make something out of that . :clap:
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Re: My Mega Masher Fermenter

Post by DFitz » Thu Mar 23, 2017 4:50 pm

Nice score! Soon enough you'll have it figured out.

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Re: My Mega Masher Fermenter

Post by MichiganCornhusker » Thu Mar 23, 2017 4:53 pm

Truckinbutch wrote:WOW ! Just WOW !
I feel the same way, TB, can't believe that I just walked right into this deal without even looking for it. I was only there to look in the copper bin to see if there was any 4" pipe.
The hour it took me to get a truck and get back to the salvage place was a very long hour! I kept worrying that someone else would see this beauty or that the boss would change his mind.
I guess to them it's just scrap SS so there was no rush, but I still can't believe my good fortune to run into this.

Interesting side note, I asked if they ever got in any kegs and he told me they are not allowed to accept them.
Folks not knowing what to do once they can't sell them will sometimes just leave them there in the parking lot and drive off.
He immediately cuts them in half, not for sale. :cry:
Shouting and shooting, I can't let them catch me...

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Re: My Mega Masher Fermenter

Post by Hank Reardon » Thu Mar 23, 2017 5:49 pm

MCH, if there is a SN and manufacturer on that tank, you will be able to get the drawings to be sure what everything is.

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Re: My Mega Masher Fermenter

Post by Truckinbutch » Thu Mar 23, 2017 5:50 pm

MichiganCornhusker wrote:
Truckinbutch wrote:WOW ! Just WOW !
I feel the same way, TB, can't believe that I just walked right into this deal without even looking for it. I was only there to look in the copper bin to see if there was any 4" pipe.
The hour it took me to get a truck and get back to the salvage place was a very long hour! I kept worrying that someone else would see this beauty or that the boss would change his mind.
I guess to them it's just scrap SS so there was no rush, but I still can't believe my good fortune to run into this.

Interesting side note, I asked if they ever got in any kegs and he told me they are not allowed to accept them.
Folks not knowing what to do once they can't sell them will sometimes just leave them there in the parking lot and drive off.
He immediately cuts them in half, not for sale. :cry:
Not to jack your thread , but a local scrapper got visited by Anheuser-Busch reps and a county sheriff's deputy . They sorted his keg pile and confiscated every keg with an A-B stamp . He is no longer taking kegs as salvage .
If you ain't the lead dog in the team , the scenery never changes . Ga Flatwoods made my avatar and I want to thank him for that .
Don't drink water , fish fornicate in it .

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Re: My Mega Masher Fermenter

Post by bilgriss » Fri Mar 24, 2017 3:18 am

Awesome find!

As I've stated in the past, I need a bigger shed.....

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Re: My Mega Masher Fermenter

Post by shadylane » Fri Mar 24, 2017 7:05 am

Is it insulated or is that a water jacket :?:

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Re: My Mega Masher Fermenter

Post by MichiganCornhusker » Fri Mar 24, 2017 7:49 am

shadylane wrote:Is it insulated or is that a water jacket :?:
Good question. I have discovered that 4 separate lines lead into and out of the space between the walls but I don't know yet if the lead to cavities or if they are some kind of coils.

Knocking on it, it doesn't sound hollow. The scrap guy said he had cut one up like it before and he used the word insulation.
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Re: My Mega Masher Fermenter

Post by Shine0n » Fri Mar 31, 2017 2:01 am

I'm sure that things going to be a blast.

I'm looking forward to your findings about the 4 lines, what's the size of them?

I'm headed to the scrap yard this afternoon, I have no hopes of finding something like that but ya never know what you'll find right!!!

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Re: My Mega Masher Fermenter

Post by Pikey » Fri Mar 31, 2017 2:43 am

MAybe you could poke a length of fence wire into the holes ? that would give you a feeling of whether they were coils and how long they are. If just cavities, the wire won't come out of the other hole.

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Re: My Mega Masher Fermenter

Post by Expat » Fri Mar 31, 2017 12:16 pm

You could also fill them with water then drain and record the volume, that would give you some sense of the structure. A straight pipe line would be calculable and much smaller than a coil volume.
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Re: My Mega Masher Fermenter

Post by Pikey » Fri Mar 31, 2017 4:20 pm

Yes but on th eother hand, if some of those were pressure relief for the insulation, you'd end up with soggy blankets inside the build. - I'd be happier poking wires down the tubes - If you should for some strange reason want to calculate volume, give us a length and a sectional area - near enough :)
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Re: My Mega Masher Fermenter

Post by bitter » Fri Mar 31, 2017 4:30 pm

darn thats sexy!

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MichiganCornhusker
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Re: My Mega Masher Fermenter

Post by MichiganCornhusker » Fri Mar 31, 2017 4:50 pm

Thanks for the ideas, guys!
I tried the wire trick and it feels like coils of tubing.
Next I might try running water through it, measuring what I put in and what I get out.
Shouting and shooting, I can't let them catch me...

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Re: My Mega Masher Fermenter

Post by DSM Loki » Fri Mar 31, 2017 7:05 pm

I'm just up the road if you ever need somebody to crack wise while you're doing important things haha. Going stir crazy not running all winter

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Re: My Mega Masher Fermenter

Post by Hank Reardon » Fri Mar 31, 2017 10:55 pm

As a person who has walked by a tank, it makes me a tank expert these days. Yes, that is sarcasm for all germans on the board.

I'll take a whack at the fittings as I see them:

1. sight glass of the fermenter (first pic)
2. The cone bottom nub is either a PRV or a vacuum break for when you hit a sealed tank with cold water
3. The 4 nipples from the back are inlet/outet lines for 2 independendent jackets. I'm thinking more for temp control than pressure.
4. The top bottom fittings are for either a "sight glass hose" type thing, or for air agitation.

My best whack. Did you ever figure the manufacturer? If so, and it is one of several, we can get the drawings.

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Re: My Mega Masher Fermenter

Post by UrToopid » Sat Apr 01, 2017 1:09 pm

That is almost certainly a Steam Jacket, that's used to heat the vessel. Two lines (inlet and outlet) would be for Steam, and the other two for cooling.


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Re: My Mega Masher Fermenter

Post by bilgriss » Sun Apr 02, 2017 4:09 am

That was my thought on the four ports too - 2 for cooling, two for heating. Should be easy to pair them by running some water through a couple.

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