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Brewing and Tasting Monthly
22836 Ventura Blvd.
Woodland Hills, CA

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Stop by the next Club Meeting or Shop Brew to taste some great beer. New Beer Testers Always Welcome!
Falcons' Pilot Brewery Mk 2 (2005-)

    Welcome to the home of the Maltose Falcons' Pilot Brewery Mk. II. In fermentation for over two years and inspired by the work of Richard Webster (an example system), Kent Fletcher and the club designed and built this new brew deck around three 40 gallon stainless steel pool filters. It is a completely operational HERMs system, featuring Automatic Temperature Controlled HLT and all Natural Gas burners.

    Thanks to Fletch's amazing construction skills and a nose for a deal, the whole system cost the club less than $500. With everything we now have on the club's project brewery, that's a steal!

The new shop system debuted in March 2005 brewing Fletch's "Elkwood Wheat" recipe.

Brewery in Action
2005 March Shop Brew Elkwood Wheat
2005 April Shop Brew Pliny the Unplanned
Hot Liquor Tank

    Behind the Shop and next to the Falcons' Clubhouse, sits the new Falcons Brewery Mk. II. This, the HLT, is the heart of the HERMS system. Inside this 40 gallon stainless steel pool filter sits a 28 foot coil of 5/8" OD tubing. Behind the green support post and control panel are the connections for the HERMS coil and the HLT output valve for dispensing sparge water.

    The HLT has an programmable electronic temperature control (on the panel to the right) which controls the HLT burner to maintain water temp. A second ETC controls the pump, circulating wort through the HERMS coil to add heat to the mash. The burner and intermittent pilot are hidden behind the heat shield, very important to prevent brewers from being crisped.

    Mounted on the HLT lid is a motor for an HLT stir paddle. For a HERMS HLT its critical for heat efficency to circulate the HLT water. Circulation prevents a thermal "jacket" from forming around the copper coil.

    This is the control module for the automatic gas valve and intermittent pilot serving the HLT burner. The valve is visible behing the module

Mash/Lauter Tun

    The Mashtun is the same type of large stainless steel pool filter.

    For HERMs operation and vorlauf, the mashtun output is hooked up to the pump and the wort is pumped through the coil in the HLT. The wort is returned to the mashtun through a return manifold suspended inside the tun lid. This manifold is attached to the stainless steel tube in the center picture above. The height of the manifold is adjusted via a compression fitting. During the sparge, the HLT output is hooked up to the same return manifold to control delivery.

    Cleanup of the mashtun is a breeze. It is set on pillow block bearings that allow the tun to pivot for cleaning. This is a thousand times easier than the overhead lift of the mashtun required on the Mk I Brewery.

    This kettle has a copper ring manifold in the bottom for separating the wort from the grain.

Boil Kettle

    While Jonny tries to tame the demon of a boil with a paddle and a burger, you can see 34 gallons of wort at the start of a hearty boil. The kettle is easily de-mounted for cleaning


    After the boil is complete, the pump is hooked up to the boil kettle and fitted to the club's Blichmann Therminator chiller. After chilling, the beer is oxygenated and pitched with the yeast.

We've come a long way. See the Original Club System here

Want to see systems of the club members? Check out the Member's Systems Page

Want to make your own beer at home? Get started on the right foot. Check out the Falcon's sponsoring shop, The Home Beer, Wine, Cheesemaking Shop. John Daume, proprietor, has been serving the home brewing and winemaking needs of Angelenos since 1972, over 30 years! (Falcon Members receive a 10% discount on supplies)
Looking for older Falcons' information?, The Westval Maltose Falcons Webpage (Locally cached) (The Original Falcon's Roost, prior to 1999)
Looking for a home wine making club in the Los Angeles area? Check out our sister club, The Cellarmasters, over 30 and still stomping grapes.