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maltbarleyhops 09-24-2012 06:23 PM

basic analog e brewing
 
i want to build a simple, effective electric power controller for a 4500w/240v element to be installed in my brew kettle.

ill use dial thermometers to monitor temp.

looking for something very basic.

power to controller, on/off selection, possibly a dial to decrease-increase power to the element, and power to element.


budget and limited electrical know how dictates this.

thanks for any and all input.

Zeppman 09-25-2012 12:43 AM

Not sure if its what you want but search for "heat stick"

grandequeso 09-25-2012 01:19 AM

I'm building something for a friend of mine exactly like what you're talking about. I'll throw up a couple photos in a couple days when I'm done. I'm using a $10. 240volt 30amp contactor. The infamous variable ssr kit (ebay search "1pc KYOTTO AC Solid State Relay SSR KR2040AX 280VAC 40A") and a switch I yanked out of a old pc power supply. The switch will control the contactor on & off and the dial will control the boil rate. I have a little aluminum project box that I'm looking to place everything into so that I can mount the element through the box so everything will be self contained against the kettle. I have all the parts I need I just need the time to drill holes and screw it all together.

OMJ 09-25-2012 01:59 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by grandequeso
I'm building something for a friend of mine exactly like what you're talking about. I'll throw up a couple photos in a couple days when I'm done. I'm using a $10. 240volt 30amp contactor. The infamous variable ssr kit (ebay search "1pc KYOTTO AC Solid State Relay SSR KR2040AX 280VAC 40A") and a switch I yanked out of a old pc power supply. The switch will control the contactor on & off and the dial will control the boil rate. I have a little aluminum project box that I'm looking to place everything into so that I can mount the element through the box so everything will be self contained against the kettle. I have all the parts I need I just need the time to drill holes and screw it all together.

Very interested in how that Kyotto SSR turns out. Great cheap solution for boiling if it works well.

FisherBrewer 09-25-2012 02:51 AM

I have a very simple setup. I use a 240V 5500 W element in my HLT to get to mash temp. Once there, I plug it into a 120V outlet through a ETC controller to keep temp. Use that for my HERMS for maintaining mash temp. For the BK, I have a 240V 3500W element. It runs a little hot; I have about a 25%/hr boil-off. But that's OK as I compensate for it with my lautering (typically at 8 gal pre-boil; 6 gal post boil to get 5.5 gal into the fermentor post losses). Simple ..... no SSRs, no PIDs. Just the ETC controller, which I also use for my fermenting fridge.

maltbarleyhops 09-25-2012 06:35 PM

ETC controller? what is it and where do i get one?

maltbarleyhops 09-25-2012 06:36 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by grandequeso (Post 4441699)
I'm building something for a friend of mine exactly like what you're talking about. I'll throw up a couple photos in a couple days when I'm done. I'm using a $10. 240volt 30amp contactor. The infamous variable ssr kit (ebay search "1pc KYOTTO AC Solid State Relay SSR KR2040AX 280VAC 40A") and a switch I yanked out of a old pc power supply. The switch will control the contactor on & off and the dial will control the boil rate. I have a little aluminum project box that I'm looking to place everything into so that I can mount the element through the box so everything will be self contained against the kettle. I have all the parts I need I just need the time to drill holes and screw it all together.

would also like to here and see more about this

maltbarleyhops 09-25-2012 06:44 PM

okay. which ETC controller are you using? this looks like what id want if i decide to purchase rather than DIY(M)

signmastr 09-25-2012 06:45 PM

This should work for you.
http://www.theobtuseangle.com/PictureViewer/PictureViewer.aspx?pictureSetId=7

FisherBrewer 09-25-2012 08:13 PM

It's the Ranco 120v controller. I don't have model # handy, but its the popular one most homebrewers have been using. I connect the heating element to it when I want to control temps. A 5500w element is actually about 1400 w at 120v which is approx 12a, well within the ranco 16a limit. So, plug element directly to 240 v to get to temp and then disconnect and reconnect to 120v thru the Ranco to maintain temp. It's rediculously easy and inexpensive if you need the ranco anyway for a fermenting fridge


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