The TrübTrapper is a beer homebrewing boil kettle filtration system designed to capture the trub in your boil kettle, and keep this unwanted material out of your fermenter, and your beer. It’s incredibly easy to use, just place it in the bottom of your boil kettle and include a post-boil whirlpool step. That’s it!
“Genius simple solution to the trub pile.”
Trub formed during the boil can adversely affect fermentation and produce undesirable qualities in your finished beer. You worked to remove these unwanted by-products during the boil, why put them back into your beer? Professional brewers do all they can to make sure trub stays out of their fermenters, now you can too!
Elegant in its Simplicity
Whirlpooling post-boil creates a cone of trub inside the TrübTrapper. When you drain your wort this cone of trub slowly subsides inside the filter ring, displacing valuable wort out through the micronic stainless steel filter material. The trub stays in while your wort drains out. Just that simple.
200 grams pelletized hops in a 10 gallon kettle shown, drain nearly complete.
United States and International Patents Pending
All other boil kettle filter systems attempt to keep trub out, the TrübTrapper is the only system that captures trub and keeps it IN. We use the inherent filter clogging characteristics of trub to your advantage.
The TrübTrapper is a patent pending system worldwide.
Effects of Trub
A small percentage of the overall trub will settle outside the filter ring during the whirlpool process, and some of it will flow to the fermenter. This small amount of trub in the fermenter is desired, and beneficial to yeast health and your beer, but excessive trub is detrimental.
Excessive trub can coat yeast membranes impeding transport in and out of the cells which encourages metabolic by-products. It can lead to haze formation, head retention and aroma issues, poor flavor stability, flavor issues including sulfur compounds and soapy notes, as well as fusel alcohol creation and unplanned/uncontrolled harsh bitterness in the beer. With so many uncontrollable variables caused by excessive trub, consistency and repeatability in recipes is much more difficult, or impossible.
In addition to flavor issues from excessive trub, there are also cleanliness and sanitation issues. If you let it, trub is very good at finding its way into every part of your downstream system, from your chiller to your fermenter, and every fitting in-between.
Excessive trub also affects your ability to harvest and re-use yeast. High trub levels make it more difficult to collect and clean the yeast, and poor yeast health caused by excessive trub eliminates the ability for you to maintain consistency and repeatability in your yeast generation to generation, and so too your beers.
Easy to Use
Just place the TrübTrapper in the bottom of your kettle so your dip tube is outside the ring before you fill your boil kettle and then whirlpool post-boil. That’s it. The high temperature soft silicone gasket and overall weight of the TrübTrapper keep it in place. No need to reposition, actuate, or try and unclog, anything. Place it, boil, whirlpool, drain. Easy.
If you’re currently using a dip tube which is too long, the Big Dipper is an excellent dip tube designed to work with the TrübTrapper.
Hassle Free Effectiveness
With the TrübTrapper there are no extra steps involved and no risk of losing the siphon through your diptube. Some boil kettle filters attached to your dip tube do almost nothing to keep trub out of your fermenter. Either they are so porous they let all the trub flow through, or if not, they plug almost immediately. Others attempt to prevent plugging in a variety of ways, including problematic filter mechanisms, with limited success. The TrübTrapper is designed to plug, in a prescribed manner, this keeps the trub inside of it and out of your beer.
Better Wort Recovery
The TrübTrapper allows for more complete wort recovery from your kettle by better separating the trub and letting wort flow to your dip tube. Used properly, it will drain as much wort from your kettle as the dip tube brand you’re using allows.
Care and Use Discussion
The TrübTrapper is constructed of micronic and perforated stainless steel, with the micron rating of the inner mesh sized to filter trub from the boil, but allow wort to flow through. The heavy gauge outer ring providing structure for the filter. This stainless assembly is first passivated and then silicone gaskets are applied. The gaskets are formed from a very soft silicone (FDA and EU compliant for food contact) so the TrübTrapper forms a tight seal with the bottom of the boil kettle and no wort/trub escapes under the filter. The silicone is durable but normal care should be taken not to damage the gaskets.
Using the TrübTrapper
Clean the TrübTrapper prior to use.
Place the TrübTrapper in the bottom center of your boil kettle before you fill it so the silicone gasket is in full contact with the kettle bottom and your dip tube is outside the ring. Trub is retained inside the ring, wort is collected from outside the ring. If your dip tube is too long the Big Dipper is an excellent dip tube designed to work with the TrübTrapper. There is no ‘top’ or ‘bottom’, so the TrübTrapper can be placed in either orientation with equal effectiveness.
Fill your kettle as usual and boil. No further interaction with the TrübTrapper is necessary until clean-up. Note that the TrübTrapper has been developed for boil rates typical for brewing; excessively wild boil rates can cause some movement of the filter from the exact center of the kettle, but won’t affect it’s function.
At the end of the boil, whirlpool the wort to create a trub cone. You can use a variety of methods to create the whirlpool including a paddle, long handled spoon, or a dedicated whirlpool pump. Please ensure you’ve fully sanitized the tool you are using to whirlpool with, before it comes in contact with your wort.
Whirlpool for approximately 10 minutes, then rest for 15 minutes to allow for further settling. Experiment and use the procedure that works best for you, your system, and your brews.
Drain the wort per your normal process. When the wort level reaches the top of the TrübTrapper simply adjust your drain rate to match the flow rate through the TrübTrapper to maximize wort recovery. A small amount of wort may remain inside the TrübTrapper after you’re finished draining, depending on your process.
A small percentage of the overall trub material will settle outside the filter ring. This small amount which flows to the fermenter is beneficial to yeast health and your beer, but it too can be virtually eliminated if you desire, by reducing your drain rate significantly at the very end of the process.
Clean the TrübTrapper immediately after use by back flushing generously with hot water, then follow your normal cleaning process. All commonly used cleaning products and methods are acceptable for use including PBW, Easy Clean, boiling, etc… As with other stainless equipment, do not use cleaners with chlorine.
A general tip for cleaning tough areas on boil kettles is to use Bar Keeper’s Friend or another stainless steel safe scouring powder with a stainless steel safe scouring pad. The oxalic acid in Bar Keeper’s Friend has the added benefit of helping to passivate your kettle as well.
Using Whole Leaf Hops
Whole leaf hops should be contained in a hop bag or spider when boiling, then removed from the kettle before whirlpooling when using the TrübTrapper.
Whirlpooling Methods and Techniques
There are many different ways to create an effective whirlpool post-boil. A review of the discussions on the topic on HomeBrewTalk or other sites is an excellent place to start. The American Homebrewers Association also has an introductory article on the topic (and while you’re there you can join if you aren’t already a member…). A pump, spoon, paddle, or cordless drill attachment are all methods commonly used to generate the whirlpool.
Regardless of the tool used to create the whirlpool, effectiveness is governed by moving a sufficient volume of wort at a sufficient velocity; the key word is “sufficient”. It isn’t necessary, or desirable, to create a whirlpool that is so violent it moves hot wort dangerously up the sides of your kettle!
A high output pump such as the March 815-PL with 1/2″ plumbing is effective, as are the various drill paddle attachments operated at a reasonably slow speed. A long handled paddle or spoon with large surface area also works well. Many believe some form of a paddle is superior to using a pump and will result in a more cohesive trub cone, as this method doesn’t break up the trub as a pump can. Regardless of the method you choose, the right combination of volume and velocity matters; a lower volume at higher velocity is typically not as effective.
Placement of the paddle or pump output fitting within the height of the wort column will also impact whirlpool effectiveness. You’ll find different results as you move the whirlpool generator up and down within the wort column, but this is typically kept near(er) the surface of your wort. Keep in mind you shouldn’t bump the TrübTrapper sitting on the bottom of the kettle when you are stirring with a paddle or spoon. A good starting point to optimize your whirlpooling process is to place the whirlpool generator 1/3 of the way down from the top of the wort column, and adjust from there.
The amount of time required for whirlpooling and resting will also be dependent on your process, system, and opinion. As you whirlpool observe the amount of solids still visible in your wort; these will decrease as the whirlpool deposits them in the trub cone in the bottom of your kettle and give you clues to how long the process you’re using will take. Opinions range from 5 to 15 minutes typically for active whirlpooling. The rest phase to allow further solids to settle can be anywhere from 5 to over 30 minutes, but keep in mind you’ll quickly reach the point of diminishing returns as time progresses with the rest phase. Using a 10 minute whirlpool and a 15 minute rest is a good starting point for refining the process for your system.
When using the TrübTrapper you can drain your boil kettle as normal until the level of the wort reaches the top of the TrübTrapper. When this point is reached, reduce the output to match the flow rate through the micronic mesh of the TrübTrapper. The reduction in flow required will vary from brew to brew and depend on the level of solids in the batch. This final flow rate will also determine if you leave a few ounces of wort within the TrübTrapper or not. At the end of the drain some amount of trub that settled outside the filter ring will be picked up by your dip tube and drained into your fermenter. In our opinion this is not a problem and is actually beneficial, but if you’d like to eliminate this small amount of trub as well, you can reduce your drain rate further and even this will not be siphoned out of the boil kettle.
The key is to experiment with your system and process to find out what works best for you.
TT1 – 10 to 15 gallon kettles
Larger sizes available soon.
– Sized for 10 and 15 gallon kettles
– Dimensions – 9” DIA x 2.7” HGT
– Passivated stainless steel body
– Food grade silicone gaskets capable of temps to 600F
– FDA / BfR (EC) compliant materials and construction