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Old 12-09-2010, 04:32 AM   #1
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Default enough power for a 10 gallon boil?

Im thinking of getting a 15 gallon brewpot and installing two heater elements in it. Going to use it for mostly 5 gallon batches with the ability to do 10s if I want. One heater is going to be on all the time to keep the boil and the other is going to be on just to help bring to a boil. My options are a 2.5kw and 2kw heater, or a 3kw and a 1.5kw heater. My question is will the 2.5kw setup be enough to keep 10 gallons boiling, or would the 3k be better. I'd rather do the 2.5k and 2k if i can (cant find a 1.5k stainless element and I'd rather use stainless)

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Old 12-09-2010, 02:33 PM   #2
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I use 2 x 2k elements at 120v. Works great. Might want to let us know what voltage you are going to be using. 120 or 240

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Old 12-09-2010, 03:28 PM   #3
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I'm using 240v.

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Old 06-11-2011, 04:34 AM   #4
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I use 2 x 2k elements at 120v. Works great. Might want to let us know what voltage you are going to be using. 120 or 240
Are you boiling 10gal with that?
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Old 06-11-2011, 01:10 PM   #5
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Are you boiling 10gal with that?
I can boil 10 gal. easily w/ 2 elements at 2000w each (4000w total). I throttle one element with one of these to adjust the boil

http://www.rockler.com/product.cfm?page=10760
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Old 06-11-2011, 02:14 PM   #6
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I can boil 10 gal. easily w/ 2 elements at 2000w each (4000w total). I throttle one element with one of these to adjust the boil

http://www.rockler.com/product.cfm?page=10760
That's a very interesting idea! How much do you need to throttle back for 10gal? I use 2kW to boil 5gal batches straight power. I was thinking 2x 2kW straight power would boil 10gal but it sounds like that is too much. I wonder if one 2kW and 1 1.5kW would boil 10gal nice? I am trying to size elements rather than put controls in.
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Old 06-11-2011, 03:26 PM   #7
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I use the router control mostly when I use my 11 gal kettle and it is filled just shy of the top. When I use my 15 gallon kettle both 2000w elements can run full for a nice boil. I bought the router control on ebay because 2000w was a little timid, and 4000w would splash out of the kettle a bit when boiling near the rim. If you have the headspace, I think 4000w would be reasonable for 10 gallons. I have no idea how much "throttle back" is required, but I would guess its considerable....maybe the 2nd element is at 30%???

EDIT...Yea 3500 will do ten gallons as well, but will be a little slower heating sparge and strike water as well as coming up to boil. You will get a more rapid boil w/ 4kw but just sparge a greater volume and let it boil down. One thin I have done that is handy is to boil down to a certain colume rather than a spwcific time boil. I will boil my 1st hop addition for as long as it takes to reduce kettle volume and then work towards the end. I have done som brews quickly at a rapid boil...say 60 minutes. Yet other times when I want to do other things I will just maintain a more relaxed boil with just the 2 kw for say 120+ minutes...sort of a set it and forget style...and that seems to work well as well.

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Old 06-11-2011, 04:38 PM   #8
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I was thinking 2x 2kW straight power would boil 10gal but it sounds like that is too much. I wonder if one 2kW and 1 1.5kW would boil 10gal nice? I am trying to size elements rather than put controls in.
Way to much. I have to throttle back on a 13.5 gallon boil with 4500 watts.


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Old 06-12-2011, 02:39 AM   #9
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I use 2kW to boil 5gal batches straight power.
Refreshing to hear that someone is doing this...I think that this is a great, simple and easy way for someone to get started w/ electric brewing. If you read most of the threads here, there is a general notion that you NEED more wattage and a controller to brew electric...when IMHO it doesn't need to be that complicated, unless of course you WANT it to be.
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Old 06-12-2011, 01:46 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by wilserbrewer View Post
Refreshing to hear that someone is doing this...I think that this is a great, simple and easy way for someone to get started w/ electric brewing. If you read most of the threads here, there is a general notion that you NEED more wattage and a controller to brew electric...when IMHO it doesn't need to be that complicated, unless of course you WANT it to be.
Thanks, I have a very simple 5gal system. MT and a BK. The BK acts as a RIMS as I recirculate throuh the MT, into the BK, then back to MT. I use an old temp controller with a built in relay that I took off of a dead vapor degreaser. Boils great with 2kW, no sparge, no chill and makes great beer.

I'm with you; some of these rigs are sexy as hell, but they are just not for me.
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