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Old 01-10-2010, 03:57 PM   #1
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Default HERMS Build Advice

I am Building a HERMS with a 3500W 240V element. My vessel is a 2 gal igloo cooler. I went to HD today to buy the copper tubing for the HEX and wasn't sure what to get. I was looking to get Type L tubing. They have 1/2 OD which takes a 3/8 copper plumbing fitting or they have 5/8 OD which takes the regular 1/2 copper plumbing fitting.

I would like to use the 5/8 OD tubing but maybe the size is overkill. My concern would be flow rate but not having used a HERMS system before I don't know if the difference between the 1/2 and 5/8 really means anything.

Also my cooler is 8" diameter at the top but it has these ribs on the inside. The best I could measure is that the diameter at the bottom is about 6.75" between the ribs. Would the 5/8 tubing be able to bend in that tight of radius? Below is picture of my cooler.

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Old 01-10-2010, 05:47 PM   #2
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In heat exchangers, surface area matters. So go for the biggest OD you can (manage to bend).

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Old 01-10-2010, 06:57 PM   #3
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uhg, surface are is not all that matters.

It is the surface area to volume ratio. Let me illustrate, a piece of tubing with a 2 inch diameter 6" long will not cool the liquid as well as a 3/8" pipe 6" long. To put it simply, the heat does not have enough time to penetrate into the fluid in the center of the pipe and therefor is not cooled.

I use a RIMS but, I would use 3/8" tubing. If you need more flow make 2 or more circuits and plumb them in parallel. You will be very happy with the results and it will be cheaper.

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Old 01-10-2010, 07:10 PM   #4
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FWIW...

My old HERMS used 25' of 1/2" OD copper coil...

IT WAS PLENTY

Look, you arent trying to win a race when you recirculate, your flow isnt THAT fast. You have plenty of length and surface area with the coil specified above to meet your requirements. Trust me.

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Old 01-10-2010, 07:13 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Pol View Post
FWIW...

My old HERMS used 25' of 1/2" OD copper coil...

IT WAS PLENTY
Meh, real men use RIMS.......
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Old 01-10-2010, 08:13 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CodeRage View Post
Meh, real men use RIMS.......
Which is why the new rig will be
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Old 01-12-2010, 03:53 AM   #7
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Thanks for the advice guys. I installed the heater element last night. I put a bead of silicone on the bottom and let sit overnight. I leak tested when I got home today and no looks so I'm stoked about that.

I went with 20' 3/8 because I didn't think I could get the 1/2 inch bent in tight enough radius to fit in the cooler. I got a 5.5" vent pipe at Lowes to bend the tubing around and it worked out to be perfect. My coils just fit inside the ribs inside my cooler. I got most of the fittings sweated on now I am just waiting for my thermowells before I sweat the last few fittings. I just need to cut some holes in the lid or make wood lid out of some scrap plywood I got laying around.

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Old 01-12-2010, 01:04 PM   #8
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Looks nice! The real leak test will be at operating temp, that is when the inner liner starts to expand... a lot, and can create leaks.

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Old 01-12-2010, 10:43 PM   #9
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Glad to see someone else is going with a seperate Herms Hex! I am in the middle of building my stand/rig. I have the basic rig built and used it last weekend, will try to get some pics up of it later this week. I am planning the same thing with a hex. I currently have a 5 gallon cooler, now im wondering if its too big, but i think it should be ok. I am pretty much following This build as a guilde. But i plan to build the controller onto the cooler as i believe The Pol did. At least i think it was him, i have looked at so many dam rigs lately. I am also planning on incorporating a stirring motor to prevent stratification of the water.

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Old 01-12-2010, 11:44 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Proetus View Post
Glad to see someone else is going with a seperate Herms Hex! I am in the middle of building my stand/rig. I have the basic rig built and used it last weekend, will try to get some pics up of it later this week. I am planning the same thing with a hex. I currently have a 5 gallon cooler, now im wondering if its too big, but i think it should be ok. I am pretty much following This build as a guilde. But i plan to build the controller onto the cooler as i believe The Pol did. At least i think it was him, i have looked at so many dam rigs lately. I am also planning on incorporating a stirring motor to prevent stratification of the water.
Yeah I had the A419 mounted to the HLT HERMS HEX... now Yooper has it
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