After a week of staring at it, I finally got the nerve to filter my new IPA with the new 40×40 plate filter. Well, since I never used a plate filter, I did a considerable amount of thinking and tweaking the week before.
Upon giving it a critical eye, I realized why I got such a good deal on it – it was totally homemade. But that’s ok. The main parts that needed to be sound were the plates – which they were – all but one of the endplates.
First, I didn’t need to filter with all 25 plates, so I needed to modify it down to about 3-4 as I was only doing a half barrel. Second, one of the endplates was rigged – it wasn’t appropriately sealed. I was warned this was a source of leakage. I attempted to seal it up with silicon. There was also a spigot on the drain end that leaked.
It DID end up filtering FAST. We did lose about 2 gallons via leakage but now that I know what I’m dealing with, I’m confident that I can fix them.
I do have to thank my wife. Without her, I never would have filtered. I kept upping the pressure on the fermentor and nothing would come out of the filter…then she asks, “Why is that valve closed?” #$^#%&. I opened it and it came out fast. As it should. All-in-all, it was a success. It filtered ‘mostly clear’ though I knew the Pall pads that came with it were a little coarse. I just wanted a reference point.