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> Therminator Heat Exchange Chiller, from Blichmann Engineering
Overall rating of the Therminator
Overall rating of the Therminator
10 Excellent [ 9 ] ** [42.86%]
9 [ 5 ] ** [23.81%]
8 [ 1 ] ** [4.76%]
7 [ 1 ] ** [4.76%]
6 [ 1 ] ** [4.76%]
5 [ 1 ] ** [4.76%]
4 [ 1 ] ** [4.76%]
3 [ 0 ] ** [0.00%]
2 [ 0 ] ** [0.00%]
1 Awful [ 2 ] ** [9.52%]
Total Votes: 73
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cj in j
post Jan 7 2005, 02:59 AM
Post #1


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The Therminator from Blichmann Engineering is a stainless steel heat exchange wort chiller (see photo below). Similar to what professional breweries use, it uses parallel plates which alternately carry hot wort and cold water. According to the website, the Therminator allows you to "Chill 10 gal in 5 min to 68F using 58F cooling water at 5 gpm." The water fittings are standard threaded hose barbs, and the wort fittings are standard 1/2" MPT.

I first tried the Therminator without using quick disconnects, and it was not a pleasant experience. Since I got my hoses, pump and chiller set up with quick disconnects (you'll need a coupling on each side), though, is a breeze to set up. After flame out, I can be chilling within 10 minutes going at a leisurely pace, and five gallons of wort is chiller to under 70F in 5 minutes or so. My water flow is fairly low, so I cannot run my pump at full -- slowing it down to about half the flow rate, however, work fine. In the winter, no prechiller is necessary. In total, it takes about 15 gallons of water to chill the 5 gallons. With a prechiller (old immersion chiller in a bucket of ice water), I have been able to chill a lager wort to around 60F in less than 10 minutes. Before when I used the immersion chiller, it took 45-60 minutes to chill under 70F, even in the winter using a prechiller. Besides the time savings, the water savings are enormous!

One thing I'm worried about with the Therminator is cleaning. Since it can't be disassembled, the only cleaning that you can do is to backflush with hot tap water followed by pumping cleaner through the chiller. I do this by setting up a loop between my hopback, through the pump and chiller, and back to the hopback. I pump the cleaner through for about 30 minutes while I'm cleaning up other things. Then after I rinse with hot tap water, I repeat with sanitizer (Saniclean, the non-foaming version of Star San is my current sanitizer of choice) while I finish cleanup. All in all, it's not much trouble to clean, but it does take time.

All in all, the Therminator is a great tool for the geeky homebrewer or for large-batch homebrewers. For people like me, brewing 5-gallons at a time, the benefit is less obvious, but it is still worth it in my opinion.

The Therminator
(IMG:http://www.blichmannengineering.com/Therminator/Therminator%20with%2012oz%20bottle.JPG)
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Posts in this topic
cj in j   Therminator Heat Exchange Chiller   Jan 7 2005, 02:59 AM
Beershasta   I have used my Therminator for two batches. The co...   Feb 20 2005, 11:27 AM
FrostyTheBeerMan   Hello, I read this a few times and don't reall...   Feb 23 2005, 11:51 AM
cj in j   No, the cooling water was easy -- like you said, j...   Feb 23 2005, 02:27 PM
Browndog   Beer Shasta, Nice set up with the Thermenator and...   Mar 3 2005, 03:39 PM
Triple Freak   I don't know if this will help or not, but if ...   Mar 3 2005, 05:43 PM
FrostyTheBeerMan   I figured that one real quick Triple Freak... almo...   Mar 3 2005, 05:46 PM
cj in j   I got the same advice/warning when I bought my Mar...   Mar 3 2005, 07:07 PM
Beershasta   The ball valve dosen't have to be just prior t...   Apr 13 2005, 07:16 AM
FrostyTheBeerMan   Hi BeerShasta, how do you make absolutely sure th...   Apr 13 2005, 07:38 AM
Beershasta   I have had no problems so far. I do several things...   Apr 13 2005, 07:47 AM
Beershasta   Oh, and since I am pumping through it, I have quit...   Apr 13 2005, 07:49 AM
FrostyTheBeerMan   Hi BeerShasta ! you've made me feel bette...   Apr 13 2005, 07:54 AM
Beershasta   Same vessel from three different views. It's a...   Apr 13 2005, 07:59 AM
FrostyTheBeerMan   Very nice I guess I won't be ordering one ...   Apr 13 2005, 08:22 AM
bolle   Hey guys...I like my therminator/thrumometer too, ...   Apr 19 2005, 01:32 PM
Danno6102   Just got my Therminator last night. I thought spen...   Aug 12 2005, 07:24 AM
cj in j   QUOTE(Danno6102 @ Aug 12 2005, 09:25 PM)The o...   Aug 12 2005, 08:53 AM
Danno6102   QUOTE(cj in j @ Aug 12 2005, 08:54 AM)Sounds ...   Aug 15 2005, 08:52 AM
Browndog   Another Excellent product from Blichmann Engineeri...   Nov 15 2005, 04:32 PM
lumpymilk   I couldn't give it a full 10. Sorry, but there...   Sep 5 2007, 01:39 AM
just-cj   QUOTE(lumpymilk @ Sep 5 2007, 03:39 PM) #...   Sep 5 2007, 07:00 AM


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