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Old 10-04-2011, 06:10 AM   #1
benbradford
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Default Have Brewery...Have Desktop...What next?

I just recieved a free desktop that has no use in the house... I have been thinking about automation some of my brewery, and the next step is to start investing in pids, ssr, heatsinks, box, etc.

Is there a use for this desktop to save me some money and automate using the computer and ssrs?

I am currently all electric, with 1 pump, 3 120v elements all on simple switches.

I would like the desktop to run what I have, and power switches, and receive temps, and be able to be programed to automate the mash, and that is about it. Maybe some fermentaion chamber controls would be nice to.

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Old 10-04-2011, 01:34 PM   #2
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I have the BCS-460,but now there is the 462 that has more outputs. I have used it in several incarnations of my brewery. You can use it to control SSRs that control your elements , pumps and if you are really fancy some solenoid valves. It can also double to control a fermentation chamber.

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Old 10-04-2011, 04:56 PM   #3
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What you need is some sort of computer to perfirial interface device.
BCS is one option (designed for brewing has software already)
Arduino is another good option (USB)
USB bit Wacker is another good option
otherwise you could use a parallel port (if you have one) and build custom hardware

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Old 10-05-2011, 03:16 AM   #4
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So the bcs looks way easier than the arduino...and didn't see anything on the usb wacker(only a quick search).

So from what I understand... $187 for the bcs-460, and then if I needed 6 ssr's, then I could add about $54. Also I would need three or more temp probes at about $19 each, which could be let's say $95 for 5. That brings the total to $336, plus the cost of some of the wiring parts, and a box, and I could get started. I would probably end up added some lights and switches to the box too, but we could begin the process I suppose



btw, what did I miss, or oversimplify?

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Old 10-05-2011, 04:26 AM   #5
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A cheap router or wireless bridge is nice to run with the BCS too, then you can be a little bit more mobile, you will probably want some sort of Ground fault protection too. If you are going to run 240V some contactor's would be a good Idea to.

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Old 10-05-2011, 05:06 AM   #6
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all 120v elements...

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