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Thread: cylindroconical fermenters vs. dish bottoms

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    Athens, NY
    Posts
    423

    cylindroconical fermenters vs. dish bottoms

    Hi all,
    I was wondering if any brewers out there are using both cylindroconicals and dish bottom fermenters for primary fermentation in the same brewery? I currently have three 7bbl cylindroconicals, but have an opportunity to add some dish bottom fermenters for a reasonable price. There are a couple of issues that I can think of with using both...

    1) I imagine yeast harvesting will be a pain using dish bottoms
    2) Will I see increased fermentation times in the dish bottoms (due to decreased beer movement inside the fermenter)?
    3) Will I see a decrease in ester production in the dish bottoms?

    I'm trying to envision a way to make this work as this opportunity may be my last/best chance to talk my owner into investing in some more fermenters. I should say I'm producing mostly ales (occasionally a lager) and that the dish bottom tanks are 10bbl as opposed to my 7bbl unitanks.

    I suppose I could use them as secondary/maturation tanks by brewing into my 7bbl unitank and then racking into the 10 bbl dish bottoms, but I'm worried about an increase in beer loss. I've also thought about brewing certain beers into the unitanks and others into the dish bottoms, but that seems like a big headache waiting to happen...

    Any body have any thoughts on this? Is anyone in a similar situation or operating a setup with differently shaped tanks in the same brewery?

    thanks.
    Hutch Kugeman
    Head Beer Guy
    Crossroads Brewing
    Athens, NY

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    Mukilteo, WA
    Posts
    304
    Hey, Hutch.........do a search on past discussions and there's been a few on this exact item. I know I responded to one of them, I believe.

    Regards,

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    Athens, NY
    Posts
    423
    Thanks Brian,
    I had read that previous post, but I guess I was hoping for some reassurance that there were breweries out there who had made it work with both types of tanks side by side.
    Hutch Kugeman
    Head Beer Guy
    Crossroads Brewing
    Athens, NY

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Helena, Montana
    Posts
    292
    Hutch,

    Here's your reassurance. We do use one 14 bbl dish bottom fermenter in addition to our cylindroconical ones. It is possible to harvest yeast via the racking arm, however, it is not always a guarantee. Attempting to harvest from the bottom port is even less reliable. We normally use this tank for batches that we dry hop at the end of fermentation anyway, so the reduced ability to harvest yeast doesn't make much difference, as we don't harvest from a beer that has been dry hopped. The tank is definitely still an asset, we just have to be aware how we are using it when planning production and yeast management.

    I have not noticed any differences in fermentation because of the differences in tank geometry. I hope this helps!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    Location
    Sacramento, California
    Posts
    3
    At our brewery we have 10 and 20 BBL CCV tanks as well as one 20 BBL dish bottom tank. Yeast harvesting will be difficult and beer losses can be high unless you have racking arms. Even then losses will be higher than in a CCV. On small size tanks the movement will be similar. Our fermentation times were similar in both types of vessles. Flavors and aroma seemed to match well also.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2004
    Location
    Colchester, Vermont
    Posts
    12

    dish v. cone

    We also use one dish bottom fv. I plan accordingly to brew batches that I don't plan to harvest from, and I rack the beer 4 days after crashing the temp to a secondary conicle vessel to finish the conditioning. The dish fv is a larger vessel which is handy to brew special batches into. If I had my choice, I would stick with conicles, but take what you can get and learn to uitilize it. All tanks have their value.
    Steve

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