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Old 09-10-2009, 12:25 AM   #1
davidisser
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Default immersion circulator

Has anyone tried using an immersion circulator to get a rolling boil going when you brew? Seems like it might be a great way to sustain a boil.

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Old 09-10-2009, 12:30 AM   #2
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If an immersion circulator is a fancy name for a propane burner, then it works really well.

Seriously, what is an immersion circulator?

-a.

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Old 09-10-2009, 12:52 AM   #3
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Yea, my immersion circulator/propane burner kicks butt. I get a rolling boil going within 15 minutes on 7-8 gallons of wort.

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Old 09-10-2009, 12:56 AM   #4
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An immersion circulator is basically an electric heating device with coils that you hang into a liquid. You can program a temperature in and it's able to maintain that temperature within a tenth of a degree.
They're originally used for science, but now are more often being used for cooking, but they're very expensive. New Culinary Technology From PolyScience: Thermal Circulators

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Old 09-10-2009, 01:37 AM   #5
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Fascinating.
I seriously doubt that 7.5a at 240V is going to get a good rolling boil on about 6g of wort, and 11a at 120v would be even worse.
Consider the English tea kettle. It draws about 13a at 240v, and is designed to boil about 1 qt water.

I really cannot see the point in controlling the temperature of a boiling liquid to within fractions of a degree. The laws if physics will do exactly the same. for zero cost.

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Old 09-10-2009, 02:08 AM   #6
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People on here are using 2 kw water heater coils to act as heatsticks...the immersion circulator would work on the same principle....just a few less watts....11 at 120 is 1.32 kW. 7.5 at 240 is 1.8 kW. 1.8 kW is pretty close to the 2 kW waterheater.

I think it would be awesome for precision control of HLT water. It would NOT be great for maintaining a boil, as a boil is done by pumping craptons of EXTRA energy into the water....(water at 212 does NOT boil....water at 212 with craptons of EXTRA energy going into it boils). Immersion heaters are meant to set the output water temp from the immersion coil at the setpoint. This means it takes a while to come UP to temp, but it will hold that temp to within fractions of a degree.

So, bad for boil, but if you used propane to get your strike/sparge/mashout whatever water close to temp, then immersion heater to hit that EXACT temp and keep it there, that would be pretty cool, I think.

Yeah, it goes up to 150C, or 300F, (which doesn't convert exactly, by the way), but it will NOT boil water. If you want to maintain a rolling boil, get or build a heatstick or a bigger burner. If you want PRECISE control over your HLT temps, use this.

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