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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Electric Brewing > Brewmation Electric system?
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Old 12-27-2010, 08:30 PM   #1
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Default Brewmation Electric system?

Does anyone have any experience with a system Brewmation is offering?
I found it by searching for electric brewing systems. Brewmation.com
I am looking to go to an electric system, but a bit intimidated about trying to build one myself. This is a bit more than the wife has given me permission to spend, and it's capabilites are more than I think I would ever use...
Thanks!

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Old 12-27-2010, 11:14 PM   #2
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read this thread http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f11/brew...risons-163149/

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Old 12-28-2010, 01:07 PM   #3
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Yes, I was hoping the thread would rest for a little while so I can finish tricking out my brewmation. It was getting a little antagonistic since I hadn't posted pictures and such (and that I am wordy)... but eventually once I get everything worked out I am going to do a full followup review with vids and such. This is the first brew system I've owned, so I was building everything at the same time- 2 ferm chambers, kegerator, brewstand, wort chilling, plumbing, etc... rather than having some things already done like almost anyone else who would want one of these. And starting a new job...

After ironing some kinks out, I'll say using the system is fantastic. All of the in house made stuff (the electronics, etc.) has been pretty flawless. There were a few things I wanted changed and that was programmed in. I did have issues with the peristaltic pumps which you'll see in the review, but since they were replaced (bad batch from the manufacturer...) they work great now.

There is certainly a lot of overpriced stuff out there from the major suppliers and I would not consider the brewmation one of them. I don't know how to program myself out of a box, so... The semi-automated brewmation is as 'automated' as anything else out there (like a brew-magic or B3) that has any automation. It's a very good deal too comparatively. The full auto goes a step further than any other automated system on the market I've seen. It's worth the extra $$ IMO. Kevin has been great to work with and has gone above and beyond to 'personalize' my brewmation and fix issues and program some custom processes for me. That's all you need to know about a vendor, right...

No, you don't neeeed a system like this to make great beer, but ALL of my beers so far have been AMAZING coming out of this system (not just my opinion)... from brew 1. They are not my recipes, I've been brewing Yooper, Tasty McDole, and BCS recipes to start so far. I have flawless fermentation temp control and what not. Almost everything is sound process wise and because of that my beers are coming out great. I'm sure that will change once I start making my own recipes. My last process change is ditching my immersion chiller and mounting a plate chiller atop the HLT.

If you have any more questions, feel free to post here and I will answer them as best I can.

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Old 12-28-2010, 01:25 PM   #4
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Thanks, I have been reading through your origional post and wondering if you pulled the trigger and bought the system and which you decided to go with. I now see you stepped up and bought the full automation version. Cool!
I am just starting my research, I am a bit concerned about the sparge design as I like to fly sparge and not sure how this system allows for chilling of the wort. I would like to utilize a plate chiller of some sort in line... how are you doing this? Thanks for the great posts, you do have a way with words... ha ha...

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Old 12-28-2010, 01:46 PM   #5
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I type fast

There are 2 parts of the system that are BYO: Water In (and filtering) and Wort Chiller. The chill water is fed by the HLT recirc pump and is triggered by the automated process. I started with a Stainless 3/8" 50' immersion coil. Never worked right (1 hr +, even as a Jamil-o-chill). I then bought a Little Giant 2-MD-HC and a (still in the mail) dudadiesel 40 plate small chiller that will give me 8 mins to pitch, on my calculations. I'll share more about my chilling once I try it. The one thing I will say is that you will have to get creative with bazooka screens or what not if you are thinking about recirculating (like I am, recirculating plate chill). The bottom drain system is not really meant for that. The stock system is really made for gravity draining, so you could still do that with a plate, but I'm not doing it that way.

The sparge design is definitely interesting. I don't see anything wrong with it, except that mine doesn't really float so much cause I put heavier fittings on it. So, Kevin is going to put another float on it for me.... and I may need to recalibrate my strike water flow meter cause the mash ratio doesn't look right to him. One of the guys actually made a manifold under the plastic lid to 'better' distribute the sparge water and after doing it decided that the stock method actually worked better. All I know is that I'm getting good gravity readings (if not too high) so I can say that it does work well. I haven't calculated my efficiencies yet, though. In any case, if you want to custom something on the brewmation, Kevin will do it for you.

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Old 12-28-2010, 02:35 PM   #6
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Thanks again, I will reach out to Kevin and visit as I am only in PA...
I would think you could put a Weldless Ball valve in the front of the sink (Under the false Bottom) to allow you to pump the wort to a chill plate... just a thought. I was also thinking that a lid of some sort that lifts the sparge arm above the mash would allow for a sprinkle or fly sparge. But then again, if I have to redesign his, perhaps I should just build my own... decisions, decsions...

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Old 12-28-2010, 05:19 PM   #7
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I'm not understanding. I guess I didn't read your previous post right. The sparge system is a fly sparge. It just has a 'cover' that is supposed to sit atop the grainbed. It is basically a slow fly sparge that is operated by the peristaltic pumps. The sparge water in volume relatively equals the draining to kettle volume since they operate in tandem. The fly sparge takes about 45 mins or so... maybe an hr.

Here's my still in testing solution for the boil kettle. My theory is the added height will help. And I made it at 45* angles just to it's easier to put in. A work in progress.

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Old 01-27-2011, 06:10 PM   #8
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Default Fermentation temp control

Do Brewmation systems come with fermentation temperature control? Are they jacketed with PID control? Will you share a picture of your fermenter set up?

Don't worry about being wordy. Pics are always good though!

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Old 01-27-2011, 06:34 PM   #9
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No. No. And yes but later.

Read the review. Brewmation is just a brewhouse. BYO fermentation.

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Old 01-28-2011, 04:47 AM   #10
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Default Here ya go!

2 ferm chambers. 1 kegerator. All Magic Chef 7.2 cu fts controlled by LOVE TSS2s. Put on casters so I can roll the whole chamber over to the kettle to fill so I don't have to lift any full kegs.

1 ferm chamber (the one pictured) is a lagering chamber or second primary, depending, using a 15 gallon corny. The other has a converted sanke by synergymetalworking.com which has corny posts for I/O, a thermowell, and a bottom dump. I use an attached corny as a blow-off device and top and bottom cropping yeast collector. The color paint on the wall... not my choice.

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