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Old 02-16-2011, 07:42 PM   #11
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Again, I don't know the answer to that either.
220v outlets are "weird" looking. A standard outlet in your house is 110V. 220V could look different depending on exactly what kind of receptacle it is, but look at where your dryer or stove (if electric) is plugged in. Those are 220v outlets.
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Old 02-18-2011, 07:03 PM   #12
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I would only be using this to heat water in the HLT, NOT for boil. I just want a way that I can be more exact on my temps, and save some propane too.


OK this is the best advice you are going to get today. What ever you end up doing PLAN on using this new set up for your brew kettle. Maybe you have to invest a couple extra bucks to do that but its well worth it.

We brew with just one brew kettle and use buckets for the mash and HLT. To get your sparge water just right you can over shoot the temp and poor in cold water to get the exact temp you want.

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Old 02-18-2011, 09:02 PM   #13
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This Might help with PIDs :

http://www.theelectricbrewery.com/control-panel-part-1?page=12

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Old 02-23-2011, 10:25 PM   #14
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For what it's worth, I use a 3000W heater. Not enough for your boil,.....
How much are you boiling? I use a 1500w for the HLT/HEX and 2000w for the BK for 5gal batches (6.25g pre-boil). It rocks and the best part, no 240V to deal with..... Although, I probably will upgrade to 220 soon
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Old 02-23-2011, 11:43 PM   #15
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How much are you boiling? I use a 1500w for the HLT/HEX and 2000w for the BK for 5gal batches (6.25g pre-boil). It rocks and the best part, no 240V to deal with..... Although, I probably will upgrade to 220 soon
With decent insulation, 2000W should boil a 5 gallon batch, but it takes a while to heat stuff up (upwards of 20 minutes to get mash runnings up to a boil.)

Lots of guys with the heatsticks use two 2000W sticks to get the boil started and then maintain with a single 2000W stick.
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Old 02-24-2011, 01:41 AM   #16
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How much are you boiling . . .
Yeah, you're right. Could boil in there, but I only use it as an HLT. It's a 15 gallon uninsulated stainless pot. Been doing 8 gallon batches, so I start with 12 or more gallons in there, just to be safe.
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Old 02-24-2011, 02:10 AM   #17
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Another thing to consider is a Brutus 20 style system. In this case, you have one kettle and one mash tun. My mash tun is a cooler. You heat the strike water in your Kettle to get it near strike temp a bit, then recirculate thru your RIMS tube and cooler. A PID and SSR control the temps. Once you dough in, you keep recirculating so the RIMS keeps mash temp very precise.

This way you get precise control of your mash, not just control of your HLT.

The other thing to do is to read the electrical primer (if you haven't already). It's a sticky on this section and can help explain 120v vs 220, etc.

I brew 10 gallon batches. I started with three 2000 watt heat sticks. Now I will be using one element mounted on the kettle and a heat stick. Both just use switched gfci outlets. 4000watts is enough power to boil 12.5 gallons nicely and does well heating strike water, though I've never timed it. Before my third heat stick died I would sometimes use it to quicken the process of heating strike water.

If you're just heating strike water, maybe consider RIMS tube with a 2000 watt element.

I'll save you some time by telling you why I didn't go 220v. I couldn't find any 220v gfci outlets. So unless you already have one or plan to install a new double pole gfci breaker in your electrical panel, you can't get it done that way.

Correct me if I'm wrong, honestly, I never went to an electrical supply store.

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Old 02-24-2011, 02:27 AM   #18
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If you're just heating strike water, maybe consider RIMS tube with a 2000 watt element.
That's an awefully expensive solution to this problem. This guy just wants to heat water to a set temp, and you've got him building a big metal tube and pumping liquid through it now.

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I'll save you some time by telling you why I didn't go 220v. I couldn't find any 220v gfci outlets. So unless you already have one or plan to install a new double pole gfci breaker in your electrical panel, you can't get it done that way.

Correct me if I'm wrong, honestly, I never went to an electrical supply store.
You can't get 240v outlets with GFI, but you can get 240v power cords that have GFI built into them.
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Old 02-25-2011, 07:39 PM   #19
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What's the difference between a "heat stick" and an "element"?

Dgonza9, yeah I don't want to put all the money and time into building some complex brewing system. I just want to be able to heat up my strike and sparge water more accurately. I don't want to have to build some Star Trekky control board. If possible, I just want to buy another 2-stage temp controller and adapt one of my keggles for an element or heat stick (whichever is best) so can can heat up some water to the perfect temp and drain into my cooler MLT. Well, truth be told I eventually would like to graduate to a SS MLT. I'm still not completely sold on the safety of 150*F-180*F water in a plastic cooler.

thanks for the suggestions though. This is all how we learn.

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Old 02-25-2011, 08:31 PM   #20
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What's the difference between a "heat stick" and an "element"?
A heat stick is a sealed up piece of pipe with a heater element mounted to it. You stick it down into the kettle rather than mounting an element directly in the kettle.

Dgonza9 just started a thread a couple days ago for feedback on the sticks vs the direct mounting, if you want to read over it.


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I'm still not completely sold on the safety of 150*F-180*F water in a plastic cooler.
If you are not sold on the safety of the hot water in a plastic cooler, then I doubt you will be sold on the safety of a heatstick.
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