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Old 08-27-2012, 02:25 PM   #1
Mrakis
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Default Blichmann Boilermaker Thermometer -Any fix?

So i just purchased the 10 gallon boilermaker and did my first all grain batch yesterday. I made my purchase knowing that the thermometer sits a little to high. Basically it rests at about the 4 gallon mark. When i was heating up my strike water the thermometer was basically pointless, because i was heating just a little over 4 gallons of water. Therefore, the thermometer was barely submerged and not giving me accurate readings.

These boards have helped me greatly with work arounds in all other areas of homebrewing. I was wondering if anyone had a creative way to work around this short coming. It would be nice if there was some way to make an extension for the thermometer so that you could angle it down towards the water.

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Old 08-27-2012, 02:45 PM   #2
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Default Two Solutions:

As I see it, there are two easy solutions.
The easiest is to buy a hand held thermometer that you can use to check your temperatures. You could go more or less expensive with this option.
The second solution is to buy a plug, remove your thermometer, and remount it at a lower elevation.
Personally, I would buy a hand held thermometer that I could use to check the temps.
Mark

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Old 08-27-2012, 03:20 PM   #3
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I have a few glass 1/2 gallon jugs. Let say I need X gallons of water, but need X+2 gallons to cover the thermometer probe at a comfortable depth. I fill up the jugs with water, suspend them inside the pot (caps off) until I finish mashing.
I do not boil with them in the pot. I place them in (after sanitizing them by letting them sit submerged in a bucket of Starsan) when chilling.

I dont boil with them in the pot. For small batches I think you wont be able to us the Thermometer.

Either a hand held thermometer or a probe, such as:
http://www.amazon.com/Taylor-1470-Digital-Cooking-Thermometer/dp/B00004XSC5/ref=wl_it_dp_o_pC_nS_nC?ie=UTF8&colid=L0M1J3H2TCY5 &coliid=I2FBI1WISGTB6A

Just make sure the wire stays out of the wort. There is a thread here about making a water proof sheath to protect it, using silicone tubing from an aquarium, some O rings, and some kind of lubricant.

I wish the thermometer was mounted lower, but it would have to be offset to the right, a sit would interfere with the drain spigot. Left handed people would find that annoying.

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Old 08-28-2012, 12:40 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ArcLight View Post
I have a few glass 1/2 gallon jugs. Let say I need X gallons of water, but need X+2 gallons to cover the thermometer probe at a comfortable depth. I fill up the jugs with water, suspend them inside the pot (caps off) until I finish mashing.
I do not boil with them in the pot. I place them in (after sanitizing them by letting them sit submerged in a bucket of Starsan) when chilling.
FYI - You don't even need to sanitize the jars if you would go this route. The jars are placed in the HLT for the mash. Sanitation is not an issue at this point in time, because the wort will become sanitized during the boil. I would make sure that they jars were clean, however.

Mark
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Old 08-28-2012, 01:53 AM   #5
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The solution is to make bigger batches. I have the 10g Boilermaker and use it for 5.5 gallon BIAB batches. Only the largest grain bills cause any problems with capacity.

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Old 08-28-2012, 02:54 AM   #6
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You can drill a new hole and mount the thermometer lower and get the Blichmann hole plug kit ($6) to fill the original hole. It's easy to drill a hole with a step bit, it took me 5 minutes.

Cheapest and easiest solution: You can also heat more water than 4 gallons even if you don't need it.

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Old 08-28-2012, 12:06 PM   #7
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>>FYI - You don't even need to sanitize the jars if you would go this route. The jars are placed in the HLT for the mash. Sanitation is not an issue at this point in time, because the wort will become sanitized during the boil. I would make sure that they jars were clean, however.

Mark, you are correct, except that if you also want to use the thermometer when chilling with an immersion chiller you will need to sanitize the jars.


>>You can drill a new hole and mount the thermometer lower and get the Blichmann hole plug kit ($6) to fill the original hole. It's easy to drill a hole with a step bit, it took me 5 minutes.

Probably the best solution. At what water level would you suggest placing it?
While I may want to experiment with small batches from time to time, I think you want the probe not too low, so as to have it farther from the flame, even with the heat shield. Or is that not a problem?

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Old 09-02-2012, 09:42 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ArcLight

>>You can drill a new hole and mount the thermometer lower and get the Blichmann hole plug kit ($6) to fill the original hole. It's easy to drill a hole with a step bit, it took me 5 minutes.

Probably the best solution. At what water level would you suggest placing it?
While I may want to experiment with small batches from time to time, I think you want the probe not too low, so as to have it farther from the flame, even with the heat shield. Or is that not a problem?
I put mine at 4 gallons and that works fine for me and it seems accurate. 3 gallons might be better to place it in the middle when boiling 6 gallons but that seemed too low to me. I use the heat shield and the thermometer never gets very hot even when using the Blichmann burner on full blast. I too was worried about that and kept checking it with an infrared thermometer gun and it gets to about 125°F – I think Blichmann suggests keeping it below 150°F.
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Old 09-04-2012, 03:15 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LuiInIdaho View Post
A
The second solution is to buy a plug, remove your thermometer, and remount it at a lower elevation.

Mark
I did this with my 15 gallon Blichmann.
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Old 09-05-2012, 08:29 PM   #10
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The simplest thing to do-- I'd just put more water in. Sure, it might increase the time to boil, but not by that much.

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