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Thread: racking arm placement

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Apr 2009
    Albuquerque, NM

    racking arm placement

    Hello all,
    And please pardon my ignorance, but I am in the process of ordering FVs and the manufacturer is asking whether I'd like the racking arm on the cylinder, off-set from the door, or whether I'd like it on the cone. I have, on occasion seen them placed on the cylinder, but in the breweries I have worked in (only a few) they have always been on the cone.
    Does anyone out here know of an advantage to either, and would you be so kind as to share.
    Many Thanks,
    Jeff Erway
    La Cumbre Brewing Co.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    I don't know if one location is any better than another. As long as it will swing on a teflon gasket to reach the parts of the fermenter you want it to, all should be good. Perhaps you'll locate this racking arm for another reason: I like to put a sample valve on the cone at 10% of the fermenter's capacity. This gives me handy reference volume when I propagate in a fermenter. Fill the fermenter till the sample valve spits beer, and I know I have the volume I want for propagation. I have racking arms in my fermenters and I filter, but don't use them. Spending time each day (or twice each day as the situation demands) dumping yeast clarifies my beer well. And I don't have problems filtering. So, place the racking arm where you will. Just make sure it doesn't get in the way of anything else. Cheers!
    Phillip Kelm--Palau Brewing Company Manager--

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    White CIty, OR, USA

    Racking Arms and Gaskets.

    I have my racking arms on the cone, about 40 percent of the way up from the bottom. In my next fermenters, I am going to put them on the cylinder. It gives me a way to pull clearer samples for testing earlier in the fermentation process. Also, I have had bad luck with the teflon gaskets. I have had more than one occasion where I loosened the clamp, rotated the arm, and then could not get a good seal because the gaskets have no "spring back" like a BUNA or EPDM. I ended up taking a nice beer shower trying to get the arm back in place and sealed up without an assistant. I suggest purchasing the teflon gaskets that are a "sandwich" with a BUNA center, or just using a BUNA/EPDM gasket. It works. I have not had to use a food grade lube to get the arm to rotate, but that is an option if you find the connection is too sticky.
    James Romano
    Owner, and everything else . . .
    Fire Cirkl, White City, OR

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Bainbridge Island, WA
    If you put it in the cone I'd also make sure a nice long ferrule be welded in, so you have plenty of room to tri-clamp the racking arm on. If it's too short you run into fun adjusting the clamps so they don't get stuck against the side of the cone when you're swiveling the arm.
    Russell Everett
    Co-Founder / Head Brewer
    Bainbridge Island Brewing
    Bainbridge Island, WA

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