New Giveaway - Wort Monster Conical Fermenter!

Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Equipment/Sanitation > planning single stage AG setup, need help!




Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 12-16-2007, 04:12 PM   #1
trent
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: San Diego
Posts: 358
Liked 23 Times on 14 Posts

Default planning single stage AG setup, need help!

I am planning a single tier AG setup. After 5 extract batches I need to step up.

I am lazy, and want to automate as much as I can, I have looked at many various setups on the Internet.

It seems the easiest setup is to run an electric HTL, with Ranco controls for temp of the tank, and one to pump into the mash tun. This also seems like a very cost effective setup.

For the brewers with all propane setups, how the hell can you automate the firing and warming of the HTL? Having no experience with propane, it seems like a PITA.

Also, with a kettle how does one keep the water temp consistant? Just use a controller to spit water from the HTL into the mash tun when it gets too cold? Seems that it might add too much water?

I have yet to decide how to sparge (and which option is best). I am crafty and have fabrication and eletrical skills so I am willing to do what I have to do to build a nice and easy setup.

Thank you,

TTT



__________________
trent is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-16-2007, 04:19 PM   #2
Jo3sh
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 92
Default

Look at the BRUTUS 10 system here: http://www.alenuts.com/brutus.htm
Build is here: http://www.alenuts.com/brutusbuild.htm

In true "The Man Who Was Too Lazy to Fail" style, it looks like there's a whole bunch of work in that rig, but it makes actual brewing very simple.



__________________
Jo3sh is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-16-2007, 04:27 PM   #3
trent
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: San Diego
Posts: 358
Liked 23 Times on 14 Posts

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jo3sh
Look at the BRUTUS 10 system here: http://www.alenuts.com/brutus.htm
Build is here: http://www.alenuts.com/brutusbuild.htm

In true "The Man Who Was Too Lazy to Fail" style, it looks like there's a whole bunch of work in that rig, but it makes actual brewing very simple.
I looked extensively at that setup, and the eletronic controller for the propane aspect seemed much more complicated than a Ranco setup.
__________________
trent is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-16-2007, 04:31 PM   #4
trent
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: San Diego
Posts: 358
Liked 23 Times on 14 Posts

Default

Looks like I need to read more, doesn't seem too terrible.

__________________
trent is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-16-2007, 04:37 PM   #5
Jo3sh
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 92
Default

I think it's really about the same - he has a thermocouple which tests the temperature of his wort and feeds that information to a controller of undertermined type. That controller drives a propane valve at the burner. There has to be a pilot light or piezo sparker to provide ignition, bUt that seems trivial.

The whole thing is essentially the same control system as a water heater, a problem which has been solved thoroughly. As soon as I have budget, I'm going to do something similar, I think, although I don't have the mad welding and fabrication skills that guy does.

__________________
Jo3sh is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-16-2007, 04:40 PM   #6
trent
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: San Diego
Posts: 358
Liked 23 Times on 14 Posts

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jo3sh
I think it's really about the same - he has a thermocouple which tests the temperature of his wort and feeds that information to a controller of undertermined type. That controller drives a propane valve at the burner. There has to be a pilot light or piezo sparker to provide ignition, bUt that seems trivial.

The whole thing is essentially the same control system as a water heater, a problem which has been solved thoroughly. As soon as I have budget, I'm going to do something similar, I think, although I don't have the mad welding and fabrication skills that guy does.
I have all those skills, are you close to San Diego? We build two together.

I like the idea of electric, but then as I am reading, I do like the idea of the all propane setup. I need to learn more about the controllers used to fire the valve at the burner.
__________________
trent is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-16-2007, 04:41 PM   #7
Bobby_M
Vendor and Brewer
HBT_SPONSOR.png
Vendor Ads 
Feedback Score: 1 reviews
 
Bobby_M's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Piscataway, NJ
Posts: 21,734
Liked 853 Times on 572 Posts
Likes Given: 26

Default

There's not much difference in "trouble" in my opinion but you might drop a lot of money on actuated gas valves if you can't find a deal on Ebay. It's a bit more dangerous too if your pilot light goes out. It would be cool to design a spark ignition system or use the thermocouple protection that is built into the gas valve of modern heating systems. Now that I think of it, if you just grab three gas valve and pilot setups out of trashed water heaters, you'd be there for free if you use natural gas.

The mash temp automation usually uses a pump to push mash liquid through a coil in the HLT. Remember, the HLT is already at a controlled temp. Search for HERMS.

__________________
BrewHardware.com
Sightglass, Refractometer, Ball Valve, Weldless bulkhead, Thermometer, Decals, Stainless Steel Fittings, Compression Fittings, Camlock Quick Disconnects, Scale, RIMS tube, Plate Chiller, Chugger Pump, Super Clear Silicone Tubing, and more!
Bobby_M is online now
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-16-2007, 04:49 PM   #8
Jo3sh
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Posts: 92
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by trent
I have all those skills, are you close to San Diego? We build two together.

I like the idea of electric, but then as I am reading, I do like the idea of the all propane setup. I need to learn more about the controllers used to fire the valve at the burner.
I've several hours from SD, just north (west, actually) of LA county. But hell, I'll help out if I can.

http://www.johnsherman.com/control/LoveTS.html <--- that looks like the "LOVE temperature switch referred to on the alenuts page.
http://www.dwyer-inst.com/htdocs/temperature/SeriesTCSPrice.cfm
Seems like they're not terribly expensive.

http://www.valvestore.com/products.asp?dept=1269
The valves might be a little more costly though - and I'm not quite sure if those are appropriate for propane.
__________________
Jo3sh is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 12-16-2007, 04:55 PM   #9
trent
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: San Diego
Posts: 358
Liked 23 Times on 14 Posts

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jo3sh
I've several hours from SD, just north (west, actually) of LA county. But hell, I'll help out if I can.

http://www.johnsherman.com/control/LoveTS.html <--- that looks like the "LOVE temperature switch referred to on the alenuts page.
http://www.dwyer-inst.com/htdocs/temperature/SeriesTCSPrice.cfm
Seems like they're not terribly expensive.

http://www.valvestore.com/products.asp?dept=1269
The valves might be a little more costly though - and I'm not quite sure if those are appropriate for propane.
Damn, I was just looking at those pages. Those valves are a little pricy.

Bobby, you are right on the dangerous aspect, I am not that comfortable working with or using NG/Propane. I will look up the info on HERMS. I believe I remember reading about it.


__________________
trent 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
Two-stage temp control with a single-stage controller stoutaholic General Techniques 4 07-21-2009 07:07 PM
Single stage fermentation only jordanpace Equipment/Sanitation 12 10-30-2007 09:21 PM
2 stage ferment vs. single stage sudsmonkey General Techniques 4 07-21-2005 02:28 AM
Single or Two stage? Majikcook Equipment/Sanitation 9 01-19-2005 01:53 PM