New Giveaway - Wort Monster Conical Fermeneter!

Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Equipment/Sanitation > Electric Brewing




Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 12-18-2007, 05:47 AM   #1
jacobdaughtry
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Jacksonville, Fl
Posts: 32
Default Electric Brewing

Considering using electric in all 3 kettles (HLT, MLT, and boiling kettle). I would add a mixer to the MLT and boiling kettle to prevent scorching. The element in the MLT would only be needed to maintain the temperature. I thinking of this setup instead of doing the RIMS or HERMS. Has anyone seen this setup or have any suggestions, comments, or criticisms. Information on specs(elements, PID controller, solid state relays) would be greatly appreciated. I have 3 - 15.5 gallon kegs and have cut off the tops. Just need to finish the conversion.



__________________
jacobdaughtry is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-18-2007, 05:03 PM   #2
keiths
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
keiths's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Coldwater, Michigan
Posts: 348
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

Default

I use all electric, I have 3 -4500watt 240 volt Water heater elements.1 in each keg. I have a mixer made up for the MLT keg only, U dont need one for the Boil.
I have never had any problems with scorching w/ this set up.I use 3 Pids to control the heat in ea. keg. Plus a March pump for transfering the wort around and use a CFC to cool it all down. I would NEVER go back to LP gas. Electric is so much nicer and cleaner. At least it works for me.



__________________
keiths is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-18-2007, 06:04 PM   #3
AiredAle
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 475
Liked 17 Times on 13 Posts

Default

JD:

I'm in the planning and gathering stages of an all electric 2 keggle system myself. Up front, three safety practices to consider: GFCI circuit breakers for all power to the system, excessive grounding of everything, and positive isolation of 240 V heater elements if that's what you plan to use. Controlling one leg of a 240 circuit will open the circuit but still leave the other leg energized.

I will use an igloo cooler for my mash tun. I bought most of my control devices off eBay.

For my HLT I will use a Love PID controller with a relay contactor and a thermocouple to control a 240V/4000W hot tub heater. I plan to put a motorized stirrer in it to eliminate temperature stratification. Can't post pics or plans, don't have them yet. Oh, I will also have a dpst 30A switch to positively shut off the current to the heating element. Thinking about having some sort of level switch in the system so I don't dry fire the heater element, but not clear on which one, or how.

For my boil kettle, I plan on using a 240V/4500W ultralow watt density water heater element, controlled by a PWM dc motor controller to fire a solid state contactor and not a PID controller since I want 100% power to get to boiling then want a simple way to dial it back to less than 100% for a steady boil. Will also use a 30A dpst switch to isolate the element in a positive fashion.

There is a lot of good expertise and advice on this and other brew forums, do a search on any of them, and google for things like "electric hlt" or electric bk", etc. Most of what I have summarized here I have learned from others who have done this first, although I might be first to use spa heaters, don't really know, haven't seen any mention of them yet.

Good luck, keep us posted on your progress.

__________________
AiredAle is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-19-2007, 11:28 PM   #4
germanskyy
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 12
Default

I'm very interested in hearing more on this thread. I too have a 15.5 sanke with the top cut off and about to have my couplings welded on shortly. I'm not interested in using a PID controller just yet though, just the 240V heating element and a 30A rated switch for now. I believe 240V GFCIs are expensive, much more so than 120V. Also I live in an apt. so modifying outlets is not an option. I think I'm just going to ground it good and like Aired Ale said, I'm gonna use a switch that turns off both the hot and cold legs (double pole single throw). Welcome any advise out there please

__________________
germanskyy is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-19-2007, 11:36 PM   #5
stevehaun
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: hudson, wi
Posts: 556
Liked 11 Times on 11 Posts
Likes Given: 17

Default

Most PIDs have a manual mode that you can use to dial in % power. I start out with mine at 100% power until the boil starts and then dial back to 65-70% power depending on ambient temperature. This is very simple and only requires one controller for both HLT and BK.
You can safely control only one limb of a 240 vac circuit but you must be able to turn off both limbs with a double pole switch. I have a 30 amp double pole switch upstream from the SSR.

__________________
stevehaun is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-20-2007, 01:22 AM   #6
somecallmetim
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Location: Loudonville, OH.
Posts: 233
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by germanskyy
I'm very interested in hearing more on this thread. I too have a 15.5 sanke with the top cut off and about to have my couplings welded on shortly. I'm not interested in using a PID controller just yet though, just the 240V heating element and a 30A rated switch for now. I believe 240V GFCIs are expensive, much more so than 120V. Also I live in an apt. so modifying outlets is not an option. I think I'm just going to ground it good and like Aired Ale said, I'm gonna use a switch that turns off both the hot and cold legs (double pole single throw). Welcome any advise out there please

Both legs are hot for 220, I don't want to be a jerk here, but if you don't know that I would recomend finding someone local to look over your system before you throw the switch. I'll step off my soapbox now.

Since you live in an apt. do you have acess to the breaker panel? Or are you planning to plug your setup into the stove or dryer outlet? I seem to remeber seeing an extention cord with a built in GFI that someone had here... If you are using it just for your HLT a swtch is doable, If you want to use it for the boil kettle you will need a controler of some sort to control your boil, 4500w into 10 gal of wort will make it boil like mad...
__________________

On Tap - Haus Ale, Baltic Porter.
Fermenting- SNPA Clone, Half Wit

somecallmetim is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-20-2007, 03:21 PM   #7
jacobdaughtry
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Jacksonville, Fl
Posts: 32
Default

When I go looking for a PID controller I don't know which model to choose. I think I want to go with the 240 volt 4500 watt heating element. Can anyone advise me with which PID controller(s) to pick? Prices vary and I don't know how to sort through the various models. Also, for the thermocouple I was looking on Ebay and found one with a 3 & a 6 inch probe, would this suffice or does it need to go to the center of the barrel for both the boiling kettle and the MLT? What is the difference between a Type-J and Type-K thermocouple? Any advise would be greatly appreciated.

__________________
jacobdaughtry is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-20-2007, 03:37 PM   #8
keiths
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
keiths's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Coldwater, Michigan
Posts: 348
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

Default

This is the palce I bought mine from....http://auberins.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=1&products_ id=14
I use the K-type probe I bought from them, you just drill a hole in the side of the keg and the probe which is just a small nub has a nut that srews on from the inside, all SS of course. I also got the 25a SSR's from them.Just call them they are real helpful and know what you will need, they told me that they sell to a lot of homebrewers.
Hope this helps

__________________
keiths is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-20-2007, 04:00 PM   #9
jacobdaughtry
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Jacksonville, Fl
Posts: 32
Default more questions

Thanks Keiths for your input!
Why did you decide to got with the 1/32 vs the 1/16 PID? Do you find the two displays not necessary?
For the mixer I was considering just using an old 1/2" drill. I don't think it would burn out the motor. Has anyone thought about doing this? What type of motors are you guys using?
Thanks Guys!

__________________
jacobdaughtry is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-20-2007, 04:07 PM   #10
keiths
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
keiths's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Coldwater, Michigan
Posts: 348
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

Default

Well the reason I went with the 1/32 was I tought that is all that I needed, But If I had to do it over I would go with the 1/16. I use a used wiper motor from a car attached to one of the old tops I cut from the kegs. Its 12v so I use a old computer Power Supply to run it, I made a stir paddle out of a coup[le of the dip tubes and welded them together to form a ( T ). Works like a charm..



__________________
keiths is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Reply


Quick Reply
Message:
Options
Thread Tools
Display Modes


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
brewing on an electric stove? Ky-Ale Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 10 09-17-2009 10:05 AM
The joy of electric brewing Gussymo DIY Projects 5 03-20-2009 03:21 PM
electric brewing question stevehaun Equipment/Sanitation 4 12-27-2008 08:54 PM
electric brewing kappclark Equipment/Sanitation 9 04-16-2008 08:50 PM
Electric Brewing ian General Techniques 16 03-24-2006 03:34 AM