Ive been documenting my build over on the forums at Kal's electric brewery site but I figured that I should post it over here. Like so many others, I browse HBT because it is such a great resource. I figure I should post pics of my setup for others to look at as well.
Going into this i knew very liittle about electricity, in fact i still dont. Because of that i really tried to focus on copying Kal's writeup as much as possible. Since there are so many people cloning Kal's panel I will skip that portion and just focus on the kettles, plumbing and brew stand.
Instead of building the wood stand that Kal built I went with this stand from Home Depot - http://www.homedepot.com/buy/storage...ht-145323.html. The main reason was just look. We wanted a metal stand with some wood, but not all wood.
It's capacity seemed right for a single tier system, and the price was good. The downside to this stand out of the box was that it had metal shelves and we wanted wood.
Here is a picture of the stand with a piece of plywood in place of the metal shelves that came with it (you can see the metal shelves in the background leaning up against the kegerator).
For the brew kettles I went with the 26 gallon heavy duty kettles from More Beer. The Blichmanns seem awesome and they probably would have been just as good in the long run, but I really wanted to get welded connections for all of our fittings instead of the wellness kits. I figured if I was going to spend this much money on a brewing system, I should get what I want.
The connections that More Beer uses for their welded connections are fantastic. The male NPT on the outside of the kettle is great.
I also really wanted to be able to have a whirlpool with this kettle. I grabbed a couple of whirlpool connections from Bargain Fittings and set it up.
The inlet for the whirlpool is just under the 5 gallon mark. I wasn't sure exactly where to put this, and since I was ordering over the phone with More Beer I had to guess. I filled the kettle up with 5 gallons of water and it whirlpools great. I then filled it up with 20 gallons and it whirlpools very well, thought not as fast as the 5 gallon did.
Here is a picture of the boil kettle's connections, along with the reason I switched to electric in the background.
And here is the Boil Kettle (left) and Mash Tun sitting on the stand to show the size.
Another shot of the stand. This time it's a close up of the casters.
This is the original config. This ended up not working because the pre drilled hole in the base of the stand was off centered and ended up bending a bit. We drilled new holes and reinforced them, so it's pretty darn sturdy now. This gave us mobility. The stand is still relatively light because it is metal.
Since we wanted to have this system be a bit more mobile we needed to find a way to attach the panel to the stand. We decided on bolting a piece of wood to the side and attaching the panel via a tv mount with an articulating arm. Here is the front shot
Another front shot
And a shot from behind.
We then undermounted the therminator that we already had, and we built a caddy like box for the pumps. This being a Herms single tier we needed two pumps.
Close up of the pump caddy before we stained it.
And here is a close up of the chiller once I updated the plumbing. We added a RTD probe to the outlet so that when we are chilling we can just pull one of the probes from the Mash Tun and see the temperature of the wort on output. Obviously when we are whirlpooling we probably won't need this, but there are some beers that I plan on not utilizing the chiller during whirlpool, so I wanted to have the flexibility.
In Kal's design he uses cork mats to insulate his stand from heat. I looked around and couldn't find them within a price that I thought was reasonable, so I built ours out of corks. I called around t friends and family and have them save for a while.
Here is a 6 gallon bucket full of corks.
I used a piece of wood underneath four canvas frame pieces to create the frame. We stained it to match the other stains on the stand and attached the corks with silicon.
Here are the trivets on the stand
Next up was plumbing. I am really tired of disconnecting the hose multiple times during the brew day. I decided to build a manifold for incoming water that would have three "ins" (water to the filter, water directly to the HLT for cleaning, and water to the plate chiller). The output manifold would have two outputs. The first is for water out of the chiller and the second is for dirty water out. Here is a shot of the input manifold after I put it together.
And attached to the stand.
I put together hose adapter to 1/2npt and placed a cam lock on the end of it, so I can connect the hose directly to the manifold. It's mostly leak proof, I may end up changing this around to be a copper manifold that is soldered together. We will see how it goes.
Here is a shot of the water input manifold all plumbed up.
And where the filter is mounted underneath.
An attempt at a wider shot to show the whole length.
Here is where the water that goes through the filter or directly to the HLT come out from the stand.
We boiled up some water this past weekend after some issues, I'm out of town this weekend so the first brew on it should be on the 11th. After all of this work, all the time and money spent, I can't friggin wait to use this thing.
Wow, that's one hell of a setup! I'm jealous.
That is one killer set up thanks for sharing...making me want to get mine finished all the more so!!!
Is that a manakin (sp?) or a blowup doll?
1) Very cool idea using the flat panel mount for your control panel
2) Second the mannequin question--please explain the purple and pink polka dotted panties. If that is your woman, she has a HELL of a wax technician! Or was that your original design for holding the control panel?
Here are the trivets on the stand
Very cool idea, if you don't mind I think I may steal this one :mug:
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