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Old 03-24-2010, 01:48 PM   #11
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Yeah, it's a bit pricey. I made mine for around $30-35, but that was ages ago. I assume it would be closer to $50 or $75 nowadays

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Old 03-24-2010, 02:01 PM   #12
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Made mine about a month ago - followed directions here on HBT - was very fearful of the electric death - just move slow and ask questions if you need to:

http://www.cedarcreeknetworks.com/heatstick.htm

I had nothing to start with - single most expensive item was 12GA electric cord (highly reccomended!) at $20

Total cost = $59 from Home Depot

Totsiens

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Old 03-24-2010, 02:47 PM   #13
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Thanks for all the great info. I'm worried about electrocuting myself but I'm also worried about doing damage to the electrical system in my house. It was built in the 1950s so I don't know how great the wiring is.

I don't know if I have a 20 amp circuit. Is this what most houses have?

I'm at work but I can check when I get home. It should say it on the circuit breaker right?

I probably only need a 1500w or a 2000w one. Is this too much for a normal house to handle?

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Old 03-24-2010, 03:06 PM   #14
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I would assume a 15 amp circuit, and even then you might trip your breaker if you run anywhere near 15 because you likely have plenty of other devices on that circuit (refrigerator for example). You could use a 240v 4000watt element and run it at 120v for 1000watts and 8.4amps. It should be enough to supplement your flame.

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Old 03-24-2010, 03:10 PM   #15
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The worries I'd have in a home over 40 years old, would be that the wiring in the walls might not handle the capacity of the fuse or breaker in the basement. Discarding that though, you can go into your fusebox and look at the Amp rating of the circuits where you brew.

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Old 03-24-2010, 03:17 PM   #16
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That's a good point. If it's an old fuse panel, people may have oversized the fuses to overload the circuit without blowing the fuse.

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Old 03-24-2010, 04:21 PM   #17
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The description says it heats to 100˚ in one place and then 150˚ + in another place. My guess is it has a thermostat and the boil is shutting it off. You might be able to defeat the thermostat but then you are getting into DIY territory, and the reat of the heater may not be able to take the heat, although you say you are using it in a boil currently.
Reading the reviews it looks like people use it to approach boil faster, which would be different from maintaining a boil. If you can figure out a way to use it beyond that, you will have found an inexpensive heat stick without using jb weld and drain pipe.

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Old 03-24-2010, 05:12 PM   #18
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Has anyone ever tried one of these: 3500w Heatstick

The price is right but I think it might be overkill for my needs. Again, I'm worried about what my electrical system can handle.

Could I swap out the 3500w heating element for a 1000w one?

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Old 03-24-2010, 05:15 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by larrynoz View Post
Has anyone ever tried one of these: 3500w Heatstick

The price is right but I think it might be overkill for my needs. Again, I'm worried about what my electrical system can handle.

Could I swap out the 3500w heating element for a 1000w one?
No, probably not, but you could swap out the 240v end for a 120v end and run it at a lower wattage... about 1000 watts
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Old 03-24-2010, 05:16 PM   #20
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http://www.northernbrewer.com/brewing/electric-brew-heater-11.html

or

http://www.northernbrewer.com/brewing/electric-brew-heater-15.html
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