A Guide to Tri-Clamp Spools

  • John Zabkowicz
  • April 30, 2021

Maybe you’re new to the homebrewing world and wonder where you can go from here, and you aren’t quite sure if you’ll need a permanent brew setup just yet. 

Perhaps you’re wanting to brew your own beer and distill your own whisky but haven’t got the room for two complete setups.

Or maybe you’re a renter or in the military, and while you’d love a more permanent homebrew or distilling setup, your frequent changes of address won’t allow for it. 

Let us be the first to tell you: you can grow your home brewery into a decent setup and have that perfect home-brewed beer without the need for on-site welded fittings or permanent fabrications.

Welcome to the World of Tri-Clamp Spools! 

Together with other tri-clamp fittings, clamps, and gaskets, they can help you build the homebrew setup of your dreams while still making it affordable and, best of all, easy to disassemble, move, and reassemble as needed. 

This guide should give you all the info you need to get started planning and building a solid, hard-working home brewery or distillery setup even though you may not have a permanent place for it to call “home.” 

Here’s what we’ll be covering today:

What Are Tri-Clamp Spools?

Why Are Tri-Clamp Spools Used?

How Can We Help With Your Tri-Clamp Spool Needs?

Pour yourself a glass, sit back, and get ready to learn all about tri-clamp spools and your ideal home brewing setup. 

What Are Tri-Clamp Spools?

Sanitary Polished Spool

Tri-Clamp spools are versatile fittings that can be used anywhere in your homebrew system in place of any other type of straight tubing. The use of other tri-clamp equipment with spools — such as clamps and gaskets — makes them very versatile and cost-effective.

You simply attach one tri-clamp to each end of where you need the spool to be, and you can then connect the spool to any other piece of equipment by simply placing the gasket and tightening the clamp around it. 

All of our tri-clamp spools are prefabricated lengths of 304 or 316L stainless steel tubing with tri-clamp fittings welded to both ends.

Why 316L or 304 stainless steel?

Creating your tri-clamp spool out of 316L or 304 stainless steel means that it is resistant to corrosion. Since the wort used in your brewing process can be highly corrosive, using 304 and 316L stainless steel makes the best sense. 

Both 304 and 316L stainless steel are also considered “sanitary” stainless steel as they can be cleaned and sanitized easily, either by disconnecting the fitting, tubing, clamp, or spool, or using a CIP (clean in place) method. 

Sanitary stainless steel is highly recommended and often required for the food, beverage, and pharmaceutical industries, as they require the utmost stringent cleanliness in producing their products. The highest sanitary rating a product can receive is 3A

Using tri-clamp sanitary stainless steel spools in your homebrew system will ensure that your beer, wine, or spirits are as safe and as “healthy” as a good drink should be.

Why Are Tri-Clamp Spools Used?

Tri-clamp spools are used for a variety of reasons.

They can take the place of any straight tubing your brew setup might need. They are, in effect, just simple stainless steel tubes with a tri-clamp fitting welded to both ends.

By using tri-clamp elbows, bends, Ts, crosses, manifolds, and other fittings, with clamps, gaskets, and your tri-clamp spools, you can create any setup you might need and have the whole setup portable, as it can easily be disassembled and reassembled. 

Some homebrewers only use the sanitary stainless steel spools in parts of their production line. Tri-clamp fittings, clamps, and spools make it quick and easy to switch from one tun to another, for example, while other connections can be made more permanent. 

The biggest reason to use tri-clamp spools, and other tri-clamp fittings, is to avoid the need for on-site welding and fabrication. You can create any sort of brewing or distilling setup necessary without the need for permanent welds. 

Tri-clamp sanitary spools also save you:

  • Time
  • Money
  • Clean-up hassles
  • Aggravation and stress

Time-Saving

Using tri-clamp sanitary spools in your brew setup saves time in several ways. 

You can get your entire system up and running in a matter of hours — no waiting for the welder or welding.

You can disassemble your setup, if need be, even faster. 

And lastly, you can upgrade your system without worrying about getting everything “just right.” Tri-clamp adapters, reducers, caps, and other gear allow for quick and easy adjustments and additions.

Money-Saving

Using tri-clamp sanitary spools saves money. On-site welding and fabrication carry a pretty hefty fee unless you can find a welder who takes payment in beer. 

Another way tri-clamp stainless steel sanitary spools save you money is in the quality of the product. They will last you for years, or should, with proper care and cleaning. A one-time purchase, and you’ll be set for many, many brew days to come. 

Clean-up Hassles

Each tri-clamp spool you use makes clean-up a breeze.

  1. Disconnect the spool from its two tri-clamps.
  2. Clean the spool with a good quality PBW (powdered brew wash).
  3. Let the spool dry.
  4. Reconnect the spool right back where it belongs.

What could be simpler and easier at the end of a brew day?

Stress-Reducing

Tri-clamp sanitary spools can save you a lot of stress and aggravation. The flexibility offered by a tri-clamp-based brew system means you can fit your setup into your space and not the other way round. 

You also get peace of mind in knowing that each spool, each connection, each fitting, is practically leakproof. Each time you attach a tri-clamp to a spool, you know that by tightening those clamps, your seal is tight and secure. 

… And then there’s the “little things” like a smoother, easier brew day and a faster setup time — knowing that your lifestyle and your desire to be a brewer don’t have to be at odds with one another. 

After all, what’s more stress-reducing than kicking back with your very own home-brewed beer?

How Can We Help With Your Tri-Clamp Spool Needs?

Here at Sanitary Fittings, we don’t just carry tri-clamp spools. 

We make them. 

That means that any tri-clamp spool your brew system might need from 1 ½ inches long and up, we can provide

Here’s a video we’ve put together on measuring your sanitary fittings, in case you need help determining just what to order:  

Sanitary Fittings Dimensions 

Our tri-clamp spools are made from both 3A certified 316L and 304 stainless steel, offering you the highest quality and industry-standard your money can buy. 

However, since we make your tri-clamp spools to custom order, you’ll have to give us a bit of time — 5–10 business days — to fulfill and ship your order. Though, one benefit we offer is free shipping on all orders over $100. 

Don’t just take our word for it, though. Here’s what one happy customer had to say:

“I could not ask for any better service. The fittings are top quality and the service is great. Keep up the good work!” ~ Gary W.

Get that glass of the perfect homebrew in your hands as soon as possible. Order your tri-clamp spools and other setup fittings from us today.