57L HERMS Manifold Options
The HERMS Trio as sold requires a few hose changes during the brew process. This simple step simplifies the system immensely, requiring far fewer parts, and allowing the free positioning of your brew kettles on the brew stand. Cost is optimized, cleaning is easier, heat loss is minimized by using silicone tubing instead of stainless steel components, and frictional resistance is reduced by having fewer bends and reducing the overall length in the external circulation loops.
I highly recommend brewing with the standard system a few times to see where you would like to make changes, if at all. For most people the standard design is more than adequate, and if you agree that simple is better, then you will probably not want to make any changes.
If you are still interested in upgrading your system for fewer hose changes and don't mind the additional cost and cleaning requirements, this article will show you a few design ideas and provide the parts lists required to implement these changes.
Intake Manifold Design Considerations
One pump in the three kettle HERMS system is used for the hot liquor tank (HLT) to recirculate hot water within the HLT and transfer hot water to the MLT during the sparge process. The second pump is used for both the mash-lauter tun (MLT) and the boil kettle (BK). Because the second pump is used for two kettles, a hose change is required on the pump intake side between the mashing and whirlpooling steps. This hose change can be avoided with a pump intake manifold between the MLT and the BK.
Output Manifold Design Considerations
With the output side of the pumps it gets more complicated. Here are the flow requirements:
- HLT pump back to HLT
- HLT pump to MLT
- MLT/BK pump back to MLT
- MLT/BK pump back to BK
The manifold on the pump output side will need to connect both pump outputs to the HLT whirlpool port, the MLT return port, and the BK whirlpool port. In other words, two in and three out, with valves on each side of the manifold outputs to control the flow. The design examples will clarify things.
Intake Manifold Option
The pump intake manifold is simple and is composed of the following parts:
You will need 1 each of the spool, tee, and elbow, and 3 each of the clamps and gaskets. Please check your pump configuration to determine how best to connect from the manifold to your pump. You may need an additional hose barb or elbow.
Output Manifold Option 1
The two ports on the bottom are to connect to your pump output. On the top left, the elbow connects to the BK whirlpool port. On the top right, the tee connects to the HERMS coil in, while also providing space for other accessories (remove the end cap and install a hose to fill your fermenter, or add an optional sample valve for wort sampling, or a valve for filling the system, or an additional thermowell). On the very right side, from the right side of the tee, you will connect to the HLT whirlpool port.
Notice the use of the two Tri-Clamp mounting clamps located at the whirlpool valve and HERMS valve connections. These are to help support the weight of the manifold and are required!
Here is the parts list for the output manifold:
You will need: 2 valves, 1 spool, 4 tees, 2 mounting clamps, one elbow, 8 clamps, 1 end cap, and 10 gaskets.
The connection to the HLT whirlpool port can be made with existing hose barbs and tubing from the HERMS Trio set. The two pump input connections hardware will depend on which pumps you are using and how you want to connect them. In the gallery below you will find further information and connection examples:
Output manifold, left side. Notice the use of the tri-clamp mounting clamp at the elbow to valve connection
The right side of the output manifold. Notice the tri-clamp mounting clamp between the tee and the HERMS coil valve
Output and input manifolds installed together - they are compatible with each other!
Riptide pumps mounted on the bottom of the brew stand. Here a sight glass is mounted at the bottom left side of manifold
Riptide pumps installed on equipment mounts
MP-15 pumps installed on equipment mounts. Note the fermenter filling tube installed on the top right of the manifold
Riptide pumps hard plumbed with drain ports
Output Manifold Option 2
The port on the bottom left connects to the MLT/BK pump. The port on the bottom right connects to the HLT pump. In the bottom middle there is an additional tee which provides an accessory attachment point, here you can connect a drain tube, a fermenter filling tube, a thermowell, or a filling valve. On the top left, the elbow connects to the BK whirlpool port. On the top right, the elbow connects to the HERMS coil in. On the very right side, from the right side of the tee, you will connect to the HLT whirlpool port.
Here is the parts list for the output manifold:
You will need: 2 valves, 4 tees, 2 elbows, 10 clamps, 1 end cap, and 10 gaskets. Optionally, you may want to include two Tri-Clamp mounting clamps located at the whirlpool valve and HERMS valve connections. These are to help support the weight of the manifold and help provide stability.
The connection to the HLT whirlpool port can be made with existing hose barbs and tubing from the HERMS Trio set. The two pump input connections hardware will depend on which pumps you are using and how you want to connect them.
If you want to add a sight glass, the best placement is between the MLT/BK pump out and the manifold.