The Great Bottle Opener Giveaway

Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Electric Brewing > Heatstick problem...

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 01-22-2011, 11:18 PM   #1
FenderSteve
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Tulsa
Posts: 10
Default Heatstick problem...

Hey guys,

I've got an issue with my heatstick and was wondering if anyone might have an idea what's happening.

I built a 1500 Watt heatstick with the instructions from this website: http://www.3d0g.net/brewing/heatstick

I brewed with it wonderfully for about a total of 6-8 hours before it popped my GFCI outlet. I discovered that some water had gotten inside and I dried it out over the next several days. I sealed it even more.

Now, when I try to use it this happens: It works for about 15 minutes then pops the GFCI outlet. I reset the outlet, plug in the heatstick, and it works for about 1-2 minutes before popping again. After resetting, it works for 1-2 minutes again.

If you need more info, I'd more than happy to share it.

__________________
FenderSteve is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-22-2011, 11:27 PM   #2
wyzazz
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: Atwater, OH
Posts: 4,263
Liked 39 Times on 39 Posts
Likes Given: 48

Default

Water is slowly leaking in, trust me.

__________________
Quote:
Originally Posted by Revvy View Post
And I'd like to see my 1.080 beers ready from grain to glass in a week, and served to me by red-headed twin penthouse pets wearing garter belts and fishnet stockings, with Irish accents, calling me "master luv gun," but we can't always get what we want can we? :)
wyzazz is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-23-2011, 01:43 AM   #3
Gritsak
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: IN
Posts: 593
Liked 12 Times on 11 Posts

Default

I agree that it's probably a leak. I've found that most of the online instructions for building heatsticks are mediocre at best. This is especially true for ones that instruct you to rely on gravity to drip jbweld down to the element to seal off the wires.

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f51/heat...wesome-142803/

On pg. 28 i posted my method for getting a good seal. It worked 100% on my heatstick and ones i've built for friends. I've modified it a bit from that but it's essentially the same principal: ensure a good seal before you completely assemble the heatstick. Use DAP 08641 (i think) to seal everything up when you put it together...jb weld doesn't like to adhere to the chrome drainpipe very well.

__________________

I brew lots of beer.

Gritsak is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-23-2011, 02:29 AM   #4
FenderSteve
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Tulsa
Posts: 10
Default

I had no idea there was so much debate on how to do this!

I'm glad I posted this before I assembled my second heatstick. I was about to start JB Welding a 2000W heatstick that has a 90 deg bend at the top and bottom. I will now rethink the way I'm going to assemble it.

For my existing 1500W element should I try to add more waterproofing to the outside? It's pretty solidly put together so trying to take it apart may end up being a demolition.

Any hints about either heatstick would be very much appreciated!

Thanks guys!

__________________
FenderSteve is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-23-2011, 02:54 AM   #5
Gritsak
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: IN
Posts: 593
Liked 12 Times on 11 Posts

Default

For the 90 degree, there's really no other option (IMO) other than to seal the element prior to assembly. I think the method i posted is a good option. It may take a little extra work, but it ensures a good seal. On my heatstick there is no jb weld or sealant visible on the outside. I don't think there's really any way to ban-aid these things. It needs to done correctly from the beginning. Unfortunately i learned the hard way and had to tear down my first heatstick completely.

If you have any questions on "my" method, feel free to PM me. Not saying it's the best, but it has worked well for me.

__________________

I brew lots of beer.

Gritsak is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-23-2011, 12:14 PM   #6
djt17
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
djt17's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Central MN
Posts: 668
Liked 34 Times on 32 Posts
Likes Given: 345

Default

Agree, I tried the drip down the pipe method with thinned J-B Weld. It soon tripped the GFCI. I then found your description of potting the element first. Good so far on 4 batches.

__________________
djt17 is online now
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-23-2011, 01:00 PM   #7
Dgonza9
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Evanston, Illinois
Posts: 1,183
Liked 9 Times on 9 Posts

Default

I made two. Both by dripping jb weld down the pipe. The one with the j bend popped after about 6-7 months. The other one is still working.

I also used the tape around the element end and pour jb weld in method. This allowed water in the pipe so redid it with the pour into pipe method.

I'm curious about the DAP 08641 sealant. It says it's "safe" for "incidental" food contact. Makes me think an hour long submersed boil isn't so "incidental."

Or am I just being paranoid?

I need to find the thread, but one method I'd like to try is to make an all copper version. This way it will be sealed. Use some silicone tape at the top so it's not overly hot. I'm mounting an element in my keggle for now. But when my heat stick goes I might be moving to an all copper heat stick.

HERE'S THE THREAD on the copper heat stick.

__________________
On Tap: Belgian Barrel Aged Barleywine, Da Yooper's Oatmeal Stout, Breakfast Stout, Hop Your Face Off IIPA, Catcher in the Rye Saison, "Wino-head" Nelsin Sauvin Gumballhead.

Bourbon Barrel Duchesse De Bourgnone
Kegged:

Fermenting English Mild

on Deck: Lager?
Dgonza9 is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 01-23-2011, 02:44 PM   #8
Gritsak
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: IN
Posts: 593
Liked 12 Times on 11 Posts

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dgonza9 View Post
I made two. Both by dripping jb weld down the pipe. The one with the j bend popped after about 6-7 months. The other one is still working.

I also used the tape around the element end and pour jb weld in method. This allowed water in the pipe so redid it with the pour into pipe method.

I'm curious about the DAP 08641 sealant. It says it's "safe" for "incidental" food contact. Makes me think an hour long submersed boil isn't so "incidental."

Or am I just being paranoid?

I need to find the thread, but one method I'd like to try is to make an all copper version. This way it will be sealed. Use some silicone tape at the top so it's not overly hot. I'm mounting an element in my keggle for now. But when my heat stick goes I might be moving to an all copper heat stick.

HERE'S THE THREAD on the copper heat stick.
The copper design looks nice.

As far as the DAP sealant, people go WAY overboard on applying this stuff. Piling silicone on the outside of the heatstick does very little as far as sealing off the element. On mine there is no JB weld or silicone visible on the outside of the heatstick.

Just using tape around the base of the element isn't a good option IMO. It seals of the wiring, but doesn't seal off the element to the pipe (hence why you had water coming in the pipe). A 1" pvc coupling provides not only a place to pour the JB weld into, but it fits VERY tightly into the end of the drainpipe. I smear some of the silicone in the end up of drainpipe first, then shove the element/pvc coupler in. Then follow that up with a chrome reducer nut and the high temp rubber o-ring that comes with the heating element.

You have to trim off a section of the pvc coupling after the JB weld cures using a dremel because the flare at the end of the drain pipe only goes about 2" before it necks down. This part is a little hard to explain but i can take pictures since i'm building another heatstick now.
__________________

I brew lots of beer.

Gritsak is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Reply


Quick Reply
Message:
Options
Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Heatstick of doom! Start with wiring Qs. nostalgia Electric Brewing 40 01-16-2012 11:49 PM
Need inside nut for heatstick in kettle beeguy Electric Brewing 10 05-20-2011 11:34 PM
Heatstick melted! Gritsak Electric Brewing 8 01-22-2011 06:22 PM
OK I did something really wrong with this heatstick ReverseApacheMaster Electric Brewing 46 01-06-2011 05:22 AM
Show me your waterproof heatstick connections CoalCracker Electric Brewing 3 10-27-2010 08:42 PM