A 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.
Our new line of "True Bulkheads" were completely redesigned from scratch. The entire homebrew industry is flooded with makeshift bulkhead designs that are only a small step up from the DIY parts you'd find at a hardware store. While we were confident in the performance of our previous bulkheads made from off the shelf parts, the new True Bulkheads solve several shortcomings and look sharp in the process.
All varieties of True Bulkheads:
The theme here is that these bulkheads are in a different league and we think the pricing is unbelievably reasonable for what you get.
- Use a huge hex size with a machined O-Ring containment groove (gland). When used with an oring, you can tighten the bulkhead with gorilla strength for stability and the gasket will not budge or get damaged.
- May also use large OD silicone flat washers for holes drilled over 7/8".
- Are machined from a single piece of hex bar stock for less places for crud to hide.
- Rely on an exterior locknut to make the gasket squeeze. No more trial and error with various shim washer thicknesses and playing teflon tape Olympics.
- Accommodate vessel wall thicknesses up to 3/8" or 8mm thick while still leaving enough male thread for a ball valve or any other female threaded fitting.
- 1/2" NPT threads on the outside of the kettle.
This particular truebulkhead has a 3/8" tube compression fitting on it. It is also of a "bore thru" (bored through) design meaning that it allows the 3/8" OD tubing to pass completely through the fitting if you wish it to. This fitting is primarily used for installing a HERMS coil into the side of your hot liquor tank, but use your imagination. We also have this fitting in 1/2" and 5/8" tube compression elsewhere.
We offer a choice between stainless and nylon compression rings/sleeves.
- Stainless Ferrule: This is a set of rings/sleeves/ferrules that slip over the tubing, but behind the compression nut that get squeezed onto the tubing when you lock the nut down TIGHT for the first time. This process permanently crimps the rings to the tubing though you can still remove the compresison nut and tubing (though the nut is now captured). This option is more difficult to use and requires a lot of torque to set, however it is the better mechanical option where a lot of stress is put on the connection.
- Nylon (AKA Delrin) Sleeve: This option replaces the pair of stainless rings with a one-piece wedge ferrule made of a tough, high temp, food grade plastic. It seals well with minimal tightening on the nut (hand tight plus a quarter turn), never attaches itself to the tubing permanently. Although it is plastic, it does allow for many disconnection cycles without wearing out. The only down side is that it doesn't offer the same mechanical strength as the SS version in cases where a LOT of stress is put on the connection. We recommend this for anything except for mounting HERMS coils where the full weight of the coil is supported by the compression fittings (however we have gotten reports that nylon works OK so give it a try if you want to).
- Drill a clean 13/16" diameter hole in your pot taking care
to avoid any wall contours that may prevent the interior hex from
sitting flat on the inside wall of the vessel. It is also important to remove any sharp edges or "burrs" from the inside edge of the hole, otherwise the oring can get torn. Insert the threaded portion of the unit through the hole from the inside of your pot or keg with only the oring in place. On the outside, install the metal washer and locknut and snug everything up with a pair of wrenches. Hint, it's best to hold the interior hex so that one of its points is facing up. It's better to hold the interior fitting still and tighten the exterior nut to protect the gasket/oring.