BrewHardware.com

Weldless Bulkheads (various)

Model: Bulkhead - $12 +    

bulkheads_medA weldless bulkhead is used to provide a liquid-tight port into your brewing vessels. This is an alternative to having a coupling or spud welded or soldered in. For the majority of situations, this kit requires the addition of a ball valve to complete the installation so select your desired bulkhead options and then select between a 2 or 3 piece ball valve elsewhere on this site.

 

Our bulkheads use thick flat silicone washers instead of orings. They are more expensive but are much less likely to slip out from under the locknut.

 

These look like a typical assembly of parts that many shops sell as a weldless bulkhead but be assured that the design is unique and much less prone to leaks than what you're used to.

Select the more info link to learn about the different varieties and specific uses for each of these

Install Requirements:

  • Drill a clean 13/16" or 7/8" diameter hole in your pot taking care to avoid any wall contours that may prevent the silicone gasket from sitting flat on the inside wall of the vessel. Wrap several turns of teflon tape on the exposed threads, insert through the hole from the inside, slide the metal shimming washer(s) on, then thread a ball valve on. In many cases the metal shim washer will need to be left off to get the ball valve threads to seal onto the nipple unless a few extra layers of teflon tape takes care of it. In the end, you want the threads to tighten at the same time that some pressure is applied to the interior sealing washer. If this thru-port on your vessel does not require a ball valve, you may thread any female 1/2" NPT fitting on to the outside in its place (coupling, elbow, type A camlock, etc). However, this kit does not include any of those but may be selected elsewhere on this site.

Options:

  • Option 1. Standard weldless bulkhead shown on the top right. You get exactly what is pictured, no more no less. The interior of the vessel sees 1/2" NPT female threads due to the coupling. A picture of the interior of a cooler install is shown below. If you're planning to put this into a keg, we suggest you look at the bulkhead with integrated diptube first because a more elegent solution.
  • Option 2 is the same as option one but we replace the coupling with a 1/2" NPT elbow. This is a rather odd application but one use is to thread a 5/8" hose barb in and it can be used as a very inexpensive diptube in a converted keg boil kettle. When rotated downward and to the side, the opening sits just below the sidewall to dish transition.
  • Option 3 is the same as option one but we replace the inside coupling with a wide ID smooth ended elbow (model ELbarb) which is perfect for use in a flat bottom pot. The elbow acts as a diptube so that you won't have to tip the pot to get all the contents out. This can aso be used to turn the flow off to the side in a whirlpool recirculation port. In other words, the smooth interior of the male side of the elbow makes a reasonable nozzle for the whirlpool return without all the bulky and COSTLY compression fitting hardware that other vendors promote.

Notes: These bulkheads will fit converted kegs, stainless pots, and cheaper aluminum pots are typically 1/8" (3mm) thick or less. For cooler conversions , consider the VBx bulkhead here.

If your pot is a premium aluminum variety at 4mm thick or more, please contact us to request a slightly longer nipple.

 

When you are using options 2 or 3, with an elbow inside the pot, and you want the elbow to face in a spectific direction, it is HIGHLY recommended that you use a 3-piece ball valve on the outside of the pot. This is be because a 3pc valve can be taken apart and rotated in 90 degree increments ensuring that the valve sits upright when the elbow is in your desired orientation.

 

 

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Comments   

 
0 # Alex 2012-07-23 07:04
Would you recommend option #4 here if I'm going to attach this to a false bottom on a converted keggle which will act as my MLT and be recirculated through a pump?
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0 # JosR 2013-09-06 22:29
I got Option 3 as a dip tube, plus a three-piece value and a small diameter bulkhead for a digital thermo to convert my 32-qt pot into a HLT. Adding a sightglass shortly. All parts are high-quality and customer service is excellent. I had small problem with the Postal Service on my order and Bobby himself took care of it immediately.
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0 # Drew 2013-10-04 17:01
Hey Bobby, I have ordered option number 3 and was wondering what you would recommend for a filtering method when used in a boil kettle?
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0 # Bobby 2013-10-04 17:04
Quoting Drew:
Hey Bobby, I have ordered option number 3 and was wondering what you would recommend for a filtering method when used in a boil kettle?


I would recommend putting your hops in a hanging nylon mesh bag.
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0 # Pete 2013-11-11 19:22
Quick question, installation guide suggests to "avoid any wall contours". If I'm installing this in a round pot/kettle, how can I avoid this? Or do you mean anything other than the curvature of the pot itself, for example embossed letters?
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0 # Bobby 2013-11-11 19:42
Quoting Pete:
Quick question, installation guide suggests to "avoid any wall contours". If I'm installing this in a round pot/kettle, how can I avoid this? Or do you mean anything other than the curvature of the pot itself, for example embossed letters?


Right. I mostly mean to avoid the tight radius to the bottom of the pot or where the keg weld meets the bottom dish, etc...
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0 # Nathan 2014-01-18 22:25
Hey, i was wondering if i would use option 1 if i wanted to put a port in for a thermometer?
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0 # Bobby 2014-01-19 00:32
Quoting Nathan:
Hey, i was wondering if i would use option 1 if i wanted to put a port in for a thermometer?

We've got simpler, less expensive ways to put thermometers in weldlessly and you can find those on the dial thermometer details page.
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0 # Andrew 2014-01-29 14:49
I am looking at option 2 for my HERMS application. How long is the nipple on this fitting...could I get away with attaching it with a barb fitting instead of a ball valve? Curious how much thread I will have...going through a cooler wall.
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0 # Bobby 2014-01-29 15:05
Quoting Andrew:
I am looking at option 2 for my HERMS application. How long is the nipple on this fitting...could I get away with attaching it with a barb fitting instead of a ball valve? Curious how much thread I will have...going through a cooler wall.


Sure, any of these can be installed with any female fitting on the exterior to provide the gasket squeeze. In the case of using a hose barb, you'd need to drill the exterior wall (1-1/4") of the cooler and the insulation to have the barb meet the inside wall of the cooler.
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0 # Daniel 2014-04-21 20:13
Hi Bobby,

I have a home made hop stopper that secures itself on to a tube at the bottom of a kettle using a 5/8" silicone grommet. Will that fit around option #1? If not, is there female threading on the inside of the bulkhead?
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0 # Bobby 2014-04-21 20:18
Quoting Daniel:
Hi Bobby,

I have a home made hop stopper that secures itself on to a tube at the bottom of a kettle using a 5/8" silicone grommet. Will that fit around option #1? If not, is there female threading on the inside of the bulkhead?


The OD of the coupling on option 1 is 1" and yes, it does have internal 1/2" NPT threads. I can also make a bulkhead with a 5/8" OD hosebarb instead.
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