In this DIY we will go over step-by-step how to create your very own Counterflow Chiller. They are much easier to make than they look just follow these steps.
Here is the parts list of things you will need to assemble your Counterflow Chiller.
20 ft. 3/8 OD copper coil
20 ft. 1/2 ID Heater hose
(2) 1/2 inch copper T’s
(2) 1/2 inch to 3/8 inch copper reducers
2 feet of 1/2 inch copper tube
plastic wire ties
fittings to hook up water lines (i.e garden hose fittings, quick disconnects, etc)
The fittings will depend how you’d like to hook up your water source.
You want to start off by unrolling the copper tubing and making it as straight as possible. Don’t worry if it’s not 100% straight the rubber hose has some give, so it should go through fairly easily. If you feel any strong resistance, just go to the end of the copper inside the hose, move it around a bit until the tubing frees up and continue.
Once you’ve finished cut off about 6 inches of hose on each end so it looks like this.
Now you can start your bending, just take your time and be sure to do small sections at a time. I used a CO2 tank as a bending device, you can use a corny keg or anything you like so long as it has some rigidity.
Once you’ve finished you should have something that looks like this. Now you can go on to making the copper adapter.
Start off with one of your copper T’s and cut off a 3 inch section from the 2 foot copper pipe. Make sure to scuff up the end coat it in flux then insert it into the T. Heat the T with a torch and slowly drip solder into the crevice until it is sealed. Then allow it to cool.
Do the same for the other two sides.
One more step and you’ll be finished with the T.
Make sure you check that the reducer fits easily onto the copper tubing, if not drill it out a little until it fits snugly over the copper tubing. Now you want to use the same process you used on the 3 inch sections to solder the reducer onto the end of the adapter. Once finished, make a second adapter for the other end of your counterflow chiller.
Once you’ve completed both copper adapters, feed them over the 3/8 tubing and squeeze the adapter into the heater hose. Use your hose clamp to secure it into place and solder the end of the reducer to the 3/8 tubing. Your counterflow chiller is now 99% complete, you just have to pick out whichever fittings you’d like to use for cold water supply.
I chose to use 1/2 inch barbed fittings so i could hook it up to my kitchen sink. Here it is in action. Counterflow chillers are a great way to chill your wort from boiling to yeast pitching temperatures very quickly. As you can see anyone with a little bit of handyman in them can make a counterflow chiller, so get rid of your immersion chiller and make one today!