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Old 05-19-2012, 11:30 PM   #1
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Default Advice on Setup

So I will be buying a house soon, the one we are considering the most and the way I am leaning towards configuring my brewery is having 30A service and a 15A service in the garage. So this is what I am thinking as a setup. Having everything controlled by Auber PIDs, a 5500w/4500w in the HLT , a RIMS tube to control the MLT w/1500w element, for my BK using a 4500w element. I am also going to build a weldless 1550 style stand.

Right now I have a HERMS setup with a HLT 1500w element controlled by a Johnson Controlls A419, it is amazingly slow and doesn't allow me to really step mash, and takes forever when I batch sparge to bring the mash up to 170 for mash out.

So for advice, I am on the fence about having the RIMS tube at all, and just keep my HERMS setup only upgrading the heating element to accommodate the new 30A service that I will have available. I will look into how much it will be to make that 60/50A, although I am pretty sure it will cost too much to get the house service upgraded to 200A from 150A. So should I just have a simple 2 PID selectable element for BK & HLT or do a 3 PID and control the mash with a RIMS tube? What would you do? Another wrench to throw in there is there is a natural gas line that I could tap into for the BK.

Thoughts? Sorry for the short novel.

Thanks,
-G

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Old 05-20-2012, 12:31 AM   #2
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Originally Posted by HDIr0n View Post
So I will be buying a house soon, the one we are considering the most and the way I am leaning towards configuring my brewery is having 30A service and a 15A service in the garage. So this is what I am thinking as a setup. Having everything controlled by Auber PIDs, a 5500w/4500w in the HLT , a RIMS tube to control the MLT w/1500w element, for my BK using a 4500w element. I am also going to build a weldless 1550 style stand.

Right now I have a HERMS setup with a HLT 1500w element controlled by a Johnson Controlls A419, it is amazingly slow and doesn't allow me to really step mash, and takes forever when I batch sparge to bring the mash up to 170 for mash out.

So for advice, I am on the fence about having the RIMS tube at all, and just keep my HERMS setup only upgrading the heating element to accommodate the new 30A service that I will have available. I will look into how much it will be to make that 60/50A, although I am pretty sure it will cost too much to get the house service upgraded to 200A from 150A. So should I just have a simple 2 PID selectable element for BK & HLT or do a 3 PID and control the mash with a RIMS tube? What would you do? Another wrench to throw in there is there is a natural gas line that I could tap into for the BK.

Thoughts? Sorry for the short novel.

Thanks,
-G
If you know how many watts gives you a good boil for the BK, you can eliminate the BK PID. 12-13 gallons in the BK generally boils perfectly with 4000W in a keggle. Has always seemed a bit superfluous to me, unless you are alternating 10 and 5 gallon batches.

I highly recommend the RIMS tube. Nothing is sweeter than watching that thing dial in my mash to 1/10 of a degree. Makes mash out and sparging a breeze, too.

Now, for the HLT, do you really need a PID? It's kind of nice, I guess, to set it and forget it, but since you can always add more heat or stir a bit, it's not absolutely necessary. I've never had one on the HLT and it's never really been much of an issue.

If you want to have digital temp readings in each keggle, you can go with some digital temp readers. They come on the slow boat from China, so you may need 3 weeks, but they're less than $20 shipped. Even better than PIDS in terms of size and ease of the readout. I can find a link to 'em if you need it. Here's what they look like.



Nothing wrong with having the PIDS, but you could simplify things a lot of you wanted to.
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Old 05-20-2012, 05:09 PM   #3
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Dgonza9,
Do you have any info on your RIMS tube? I am curious as to what size element you have in there. I mostly do 5g batches but the occasional 10g every once in a while.

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Old 05-21-2012, 12:23 AM   #4
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It's a 1500W ULD element. HERE'S A LINK

It's basically the one listed on the RIMS FOR DUMMIES thread.

HERE'S THE DIGITAL TEMP METER

There are more expensive meters and much cheaper. I went middle of the road.

RIMS FOR DUMMIES

Scroll down to the bottom of this page and it gives you the exact parts list I used. Murrayequipment.com was a great tip on cheap stainless. There's a wiring diagram on the first page, and then, well, enjoy 60+ pages of riveting RIMS Tube questions and answers.

Cheers!

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Old 05-21-2012, 11:42 AM   #5
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Thanks,
I have been digging through that thread, I still have like 30+ pages to go.

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Old 05-22-2012, 05:27 AM   #6
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So here is what I am thinking,
I will upgrade my E-HERMS HLT to a 4500w element, I will also have another 4500w element in my BK. I plan on having 2 pumps, and 2 timers, and 2 Auber PIDs as well. I need to get P-J to help me out here in designing a schematic so I can start getting parts together.

I think with the 4500w element it will speed up the lag times in heating the mash/water considerably which was the whole reason I was looking at RIMS before. For those with HERMS how quickly can you raise temps for step mashing/mashing out?

Thanks,
-G

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Last edited by HDIr0n; 05-24-2012 at 12:21 AM. Reason: Change of plans
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