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Old 02-24-2011, 04:00 PM   #1
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Default Baby Steps: Using brewtroller as simple PID?

I really want a big blingy electric setup for my brewery; however, my CFO is less than sympathetic to my cause and holds the purse strings tightly. I just received my RIMS tube parts from Murray's and now I'm ready for a controller. The easiest would be the usual Auber's PID to use my RIMS Tube with my existing MLT. Yet, I would like to eventually expand so that the whole deal is electronically controlled.

So, should I use a Brewtroller as a PID to control only the RIMS tube to my MLT and eventually expand from there?

I'm thinking I could start with a toolbox type RIMS and eventually integrate my BK which is already electric, and add pump control, etc.

Your opinions are much appreciated.

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Old 02-24-2011, 04:05 PM   #2
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Personal opinion, get the BCS

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Old 02-24-2011, 04:08 PM   #3
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I dunno, I am seriously thinking about developing my own control system because I cannot find a commercial one that I am happy with.

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Old 02-24-2011, 05:37 PM   #4
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I'm kind of in the same boat. I want to build an all electric system, with a controller for the HLT & BK. I am a software developer, and already have an arduino & some experience with it. I'd like to start with basic PID control of the heating elements in each, but would possibly want to venture into more automation later. I'm starting to get the feeling I should just go with the brewtroller, and my aversion to that is simple "not invented here" syndrome that developers sometimes get.

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Old 02-24-2011, 05:40 PM   #5
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I don't have that but there are some parts of both the BrewTroller and BCS that I'd like to do differently. That BCS setup GUI is just awful, for example. I suppose with the BrewTroller one can just rewrite those parts...

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Old 02-25-2011, 04:21 PM   #6
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I thought about the BCS but since it might be some time before I "finish" the brewery that I want, I don't want to have to hook up the network just to control the RIMS tube. I think the BrewTroller would work fine as a single control PID in a tool box setup until I expand the rest of the brewery. I guess I'll wait until they get more BT 4.0 boards in since they're OOS.

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Old 02-25-2011, 05:27 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by weirdboy View Post
I don't have that but there are some parts of both the BrewTroller and BCS that I'd like to do differently. That BCS setup GUI is just awful, for example. I suppose with the BrewTroller one can just rewrite those parts...
You can re-write those parts with BCS as well, the gui is just html get/post - you can create your own pages. I'm waiting for JonW to post his technique, but he's got a visual system that he put onto his BCS that's freakin sick.

http://www.embeddedcontrolconcepts.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=4&t=372&sid=c00a94d8124c99ca86dd0c b0c933e664

I'm a computer engineer, planning to get an Arduino and play around with that eventually - but for now I'm going with the BCS.
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Old 02-25-2011, 05:29 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brewing Clamper View Post
I thought about the BCS but since it might be some time before I "finish" the brewery that I want, I don't want to have to hook up the network just to control the RIMS tube. I think the BrewTroller would work fine as a single control PID in a tool box setup until I expand the rest of the brewery. I guess I'll wait until they get more BT 4.0 boards in since they're OOS.
If you have a laptop, a simple patch cable to the ethernet port is all you need to control you system via BCS. I haven't got my system off the ground, but I tested out the control and direct connect was simple. I'm waiting on a few more supplies for my control panel, but initially I'm just going to wire up the power on/e-stop/contactor + the outlets and SSRs and should be able to get the system working using BCS. After that, I'll wire up all the auto/manual switches on the control panel.
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Old 02-25-2011, 07:40 PM   #9
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That screenshot is badass!

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Old 02-25-2011, 07:49 PM   #10
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Quote:
You can re-write those parts with BCS as well, the gui is just html get/post - you can create your own pages. I'm waiting for JonW to post his technique, but he's got a visual system that he put onto his BCS that's freakin sick.
This is true in terms of making it prettier, but fundamentally the way the setup is designed cannot be changed so far as I can tell.
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