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Old 09-21-2012, 08:33 PM   #1
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Default can I use my existing Ranco to control a 5.5 kW CAMCO element?

I am planning a simple two-vessel build. Trying to save money and reuse some of the equipment I already have
http://www.etcsupply.com/ranco-etc11...ller-p-86.html

The heating element will be used to heat mash and sparge water, and boil the wort (at separate times, of course)

Will the Ranco give me the control I need, or should I get an SSR and controller for the element, and use the Ranco for the March pump?

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Old 09-21-2012, 08:52 PM   #2
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The ranco is rated for 16 amps I believe. So it cant directly control a 5500kw element. It would work through an SSR but you would be much better off using a PID that has much more precise control and a manual mode for boiling.

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Old 09-21-2012, 09:40 PM   #3
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OK, I will use the Ranco to control the March pump instead. Any recommendation for a PID and SSR combo for the element?

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Old 09-25-2012, 12:23 PM   #4
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Why don't you use a simple switch to control the March pump? Pumps don't need temperature control.

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Old 09-25-2012, 01:32 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChuckO View Post
Why don't you use a simple switch to control the March pump? Pumps don't need temperature control.
well, my system will be setup as a HERMS, with the wort circulating through an immersion chiller in the HLT. So the idea is to run the pump when the mash temp needs to be adjusted. That's why I would use the Ranco to control the pump.
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Old 09-25-2012, 11:41 PM   #6
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That makes good sense for a HERMS system.

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Old 09-27-2012, 07:46 PM   #7
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its bad design practice to put a pump on temperature control. leave the pump on for the entire mash, and turn the heater on when you need to add heat.

what happens when the thermostat turns the pump off, it looses prime, and then when the pump and heater go back on you fry your RIMS element because there is no flow?

or what happens to the residual heat in your RIMS tube when you all of a sudden kill the flow? it overheats your wort and denatures the protiens, possibly scorches what is in the tube. then when the pump goes back on, it pumps scorched wort into the main mash and dillutes the active enzymes...

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Old 09-28-2012, 04:08 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by audger View Post
its bad design practice to put a pump on temperature control. leave the pump on for the entire mash, and turn the heater on when you need to add heat.

what happens when the thermostat turns the pump off, it looses prime, and then when the pump and heater go back on you fry your RIMS element because there is no flow?

or what happens to the residual heat in your RIMS tube when you all of a sudden kill the flow? it overheats your wort and denatures the protiens, possibly scorches what is in the tube. then when the pump goes back on, it pumps scorched wort into the main mash and dillutes the active enzymes...
sorry I should have described my system better. Vessel #1 is HLT/BK, with an immersion chiller submerged in hot water. Vessel #2 is an igloo cooler mash tun. The pump connects the two vessels and will be below the waterline so priming shouldn't be a problem. Heating element is in the HLT/BK; no heat is applied directly to the mash. Temperature probe controlling the pump will be inserted in the mash tun, and recirculate the mash through the heated coil when necessary.
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Old 09-28-2012, 12:18 PM   #9
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I think the comment was, why not continuously circulate with the pump always on, and then just control the heat in the BK/HLT to exactly what you want your mash to be.

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Old 09-28-2012, 12:42 PM   #10
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Where will you monitor the temperature if you are controlling the pump? You will need continuous wort flow past the probe to get a useable reading. At the same time, how will you limit the heat input to the HLT/BK so as to not get a violent boil in the HLT while mashing?


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I think the comment was, why not continuously circulate with the pump always on, and then just control the heat in the BK/HLT to exactly what you want your mash to be.
This sounds like a much better idea. At least using this approach you can properly monitor and control the temperature of the HLT.
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