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-   -   Fully manual with BCS system? (http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f170/fully-manual-bcs-system-305360/)

summerofgeorge 02-18-2012 01:25 AM

Fully manual with BCS system?
I know a lot of people that have a BCS setup go with on/off/auto switches so manual is an option. Can you do a full brew session in manual mode? I know it's possible but what I mean is it feasible? How do you maintain temperatures in a manual mode besides constantly turning the elements on and off? Is it more pain than it's worth?

I'm asking because I'm leaning towards the BCS system but would like to option to brew without a computer if I want. Who knows, maybe the laptop dies the morning of brewing, maybe I'm brewing somewhere else and don't want to drag the computer along, maybe after sitting at a desk all week, I don't want to be on the computer even more...you get the idea.

P-J 02-18-2012 01:34 AM

It most certainly can be done. Think about it...

If you had a propane gas rig, how would you setup to achieve your strike water temp and then balance out to hit your mash temp?

Once your mash was finished. You are still in manual mode on propane. Now what?

Same deal with a BCS system in manual mode. No?

The manual mode is only there to help you out when the 'stuff' hits the fan - or - for steps and functions that you want to manually control (like the pumps).

summerofgeorge 02-18-2012 07:54 PM

With propane, even though it's manual you can at least adjust the flame to maintain your temperature. I thought you only had the off/on option for electric in manual mode. This would be much more of a pain than adjusting the flame until it's keeping temps. Can you use a PWM with the BCS in manual mode?

samc 02-18-2012 08:06 PM

If you think you want to have the manual option for brewing, skip the BCS. I have one and wired in manual switches but if the thing failed on me and it was electric element (I use natl gas) based I'd just pack up for the day and fix the BCS. I think you truly have to embrace the concept of computer based brewing instead of trying to keep a foot in both worlds. JMHO.

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