Electric BIAB setup - complete!
At long last I've gotten to do a full session on my new single vessel BIAB electric setup, such a nice experience! So much less hauling stuff up and down the stairs, no having the take my pot outside to immersion chill by the outside hose, no banging my hands on my range hood when pulling the bag. Fantastic!
I'll edit this with a proper parts list once I compile it. I had some parts purchased that I never used, some parts that were defective, and a lot of help from fellow brewers here (PJ and Bobby_M, specifically), really appreciate your help guys!
The setup is a 4500watt low density element, 11 inches long, fit into a 44qt pot I picked up at Rona. I'm using an Auber 2362 PID, the 40amp SSR, a 30amp 240v coil, double pole normally open Auber contactor, and a 1/4NPT 2 inch Auber liquid tight RTD.
Here's a few pics:
My brewing area, laundry room style, using the 30amp dryer plug:
The toolbox o' electricity:
Inside the belly of the beast!
Autotuned the PID the other day and that got it so it only overshoots by a couple degrees. I can hold 7 gallons at a vigorous boil with the element at 75% or so. My ventilation could use some work now, using a fan propped on top of some of my spare buckets, a foot in front of the pot. That blows out the window and kept the humidity in the room below 65%. Good enough for now, might revisit that in the fall, though our house could use some extra humidity in the winter anyhow!
Today's brew, my 10th in total, was (what I'm calling) a Canadian Cream Ale, because it's Canada Day, eh! Was going for a Sleeman's Cream Ale clone but sort of strayed a bit, intentionally.
Wound up getting 80% efficiency, using my pasta roller grain crusher. Really happy with it all! Only hiccup I had today was I dropped one side of the bag when pulling it and wound up dropping a pile of organic puffed corn (couldn't find flaked) in the wort. Ack! Skimmed it all out, hurray for floating!
Thanks go out to PJ for the wiring diagrams and general electric questions! And to Bobby_M for hooking me up with my element locknut, 1/4NPT nut for the RTD and a stainless steel 1/2 inch ball valve with a copper dip tube. This stuff would have been near impossible to find here.
I'll leave this message for now with the recipe I did today, no sparge just pull and drain (squeeze a bit), mashout at 168 for 10mins:
Recipe: Canada Day Cream Ale
Style: Cream Ale
TYPE: All Grain
Batch Size: 6.30 gal
Boil Size: 7.85 gal
Estimated OG: 1.044 SG
Estimated Color: 5.9 SRM
Estimated IBU: 14.0 IBU
Brewhouse Efficiency: 80.00 %
Boil Time: 60 Minutes
Amount Item Type % or IBU
5.50 lb Pale Malt (2 Row) US (2.0 SRM) Grain 57.89 %
2.00 lb Pilsner (2 Row) Ger (2.0 SRM) Grain 21.05 %
0.75 lb Corn, Flaked (1.3 SRM) Grain 7.89 %
0.50 lb Cara-Pils/Dextrine (2.0 SRM) Grain 5.26 %
0.50 lb Caramel/Crystal Malt - 20L (20.0 SRM) Grain 5.26 %
0.25 lb Caramel/Crystal Malt - 80L (80.0 SRM) Grain 2.63 %
0.75 oz Hallertauer [4.80 %] (60 min) Hops 11.0 IBU
0.50 oz Saaz [4.00 %] (15 min) Hops 3.0 IBU
1.00 items Whirlfloc Tablet (Boil 15.0 min) Misc
1 Pkgs SafBrew American Ale (DCL Yeast #S-05) Yeast-Ale
Nice! Congrats. That's a great setup. Nice laundry room btw. Wait til you see mine. It's ....well, rustic. I'm also looking forward to not having to run all around and up and down stairs. Can't wait!
Hehe, thanks, when we bought the house we were like "Oooo laundry room with a window facing the back lawn, yeah baby!".
It was pretty pleasant, and one thing that doesn't get mentioned much is the amount of heat a stove puts out, particularly when straddling two burners. Electric setup is SO much less waste heat...once I insulate the kettle: good times!
Very well done. Gives me hope I can build mine as well. :-)
After searching and reading these forums for months, I think I finally found what I was looking for. Simplicity.
How does your brew day go? I assume you use your control panel to heat your water to temp and then mash in. Do you use the element to maintain your mash temp or do you turn it off and insulate?
Have you caught your grain bag on anything that's in the kettle (e.g. temp probe, dip tube, element, etc.)?
Do you have a GFCI in-line or part of the service panel? It looks like you did your element like Kal's and I think that's the way I'm headed too.
Also I'd be very interested to see your parts list when you get a chance to post.
Thanks for any help!
Please post the parts list when you have time. I have just started BIAB and I love it. I am now sooooooooooo ready to move to electric and say goodbye to propane forever!
Also, the wiring diagram would be nice if you have that available. I intend to mimic your exact build. :)
BTW...how about a pic of the inside of the kettle?
Thanks for the info!
Sure thing, I'll see what I can do about those pics and lists tonight :) I got lazy after building it and forgot to do all that stuff...
Brew day goes smooth, and leak free by the way. I brewed last night and from the very start to fully cleaned up and put away it was 4 hours 15 minutes.
I add all my water to the kettle, fire up the element once I confirm my water level is where I want it, then starting grinding my grain on my NEW BARLEY CRUSHER! hehe, first time using it last night, so awesome...but I digress.
So, water comes up to strike temp, my PID still overshoots a bit but whatever, knock it to manual mode once it's at temp, down to 0% use. Add my bag, add grain, stir stir stir until I'm at mash temp and stable, cover. I generally stir every 15-20 minutes now and re-check temps. I leave the element off (contactor off, just in case) all the mash, but if I'm getting low on temp I'll either just fire up the element at 70-100% for a minute or so, stirring all the while, or will raise the bag a bit (binder clamps on side to hold it higher) and fire the element up, stir stir stir until my temps are good again.
I tend to lose about 3-4 degrees per hour with this kettle when it's not 100% full, with a single layer of reflectix on the outside and a towel on the lid. So I generally will fire the element at least a minute or so in the middle of the batch.
I've never caught the grain bag on anything, no, it pulls smoothly. I'm using a single panel voile curtain, un hemmed and un sewn, just right from the package. The 2 inch RTD in the side of the kettle, the dip tube on the front and the element sticking out are no issue at all.
I'm using one of those in-line GFCI Xerox printer cords that Kal recommended, was able to score one for $70 Canadian, 30amp GFCI and 17 feet of cable. I plug into my dryer plug (swapping with the dryer).
Yeah I'll get some pics of the inside of the kettle today and get a rough parts list for this, the wiring diagram I used can be found in another thread though I never did add the e-stop circuit:
Post 4 from PJ, of course :) Though technically I'm using a contactor instead of the final switch...so it's a bit different now.
The build has been amazing and I'm SO glad I did it, even if I wound up spending more on shipping items to Canada than on some of the key parts ;)
Much appreciated for the information. I doubt I'll ever be brewing more than 60-80 gallons a year and I'm unlikely to brew any real heavy brews - nothing heavier than an IPA. So currently my plan is to have a single vessel capable of 5-10 gallon batches with the drier outlet ( I think a 15 gallon should work). I have a utility sink and cold water supply in approximately the same location as the dryer outlet. Unfortunately the dryer outlet is a three-prong. I'm assuming that I can do the spa-panel instead of the in-line GFI extension cord without having to rewire the dryer outlet (I'm not an electrician or an EE, but I have access to one). Eventually, I think I'm going to add a single pump to the set-up to recirculate during mash and pump through a counterflow or plate chiller.
Yeah I would kill for a utility sink by my brewstand...or at least maim.
Definitely concur, a 15gallon pot would be good, I really can't do full boil 10 gallon batches even though mine claims to be a 13.5gallon pot...it's the small gallon, not the commonly used in brewing gallon, so really it's just an 11 gallon pot. Sigh.
Others have done the 3 prong outlet thing for electric brewing so there should be some resources here for just what you're suggesting, Fly_Rodder, yep!
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