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Old 03-18-2012, 09:06 PM   #11
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This weeks status update. I am on my third beer so I think I need to be done doing electrical/mechanical work for the day!

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This week’s goals:

• Receiving my camlocks early this week (maybe today!), and get those installed and leak tested on my rig and brew a batch this weekend using my old process (gravity fed) to get a feel for how they connect/run.
I did install all the camlocks, and leak tested. But I didnt get a change to brew a test batch. I dont think I am going to brew until I get the entire setup up and running
• Run the 6/4 aluminum wiring to the subpanel, install a new 50 amp breaker, and install the outlet box and connection in the garage ceiling above the brewery. Have at least my dad (who wired his entire house, including multiple 220 outlets in his garage/workshop) and possibly an electrician friend come take a look at my work before plugging in.
Got the wiring ran and the outlet connected and mounted (see first pic below). But I did not have a chance to pick up a new breaker and tie-in at the subpanel.
• Get the SPA Panel wired up with plug and outlet, so that maybe I can brew a batch with the elements manually (At least to be able to heat strike water with 4500 watts, that would be nice!).
Got the spa panel wired and ready (see second pic below), but did not pot and install the elements yet. It would have been tough to run a brew manually without the control panel setup because the plugs are different (4 wire from the spa panel to control panel, 3 wire from control to elements).


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Old 03-18-2012, 09:14 PM   #12
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I may be away for work all week, so I wont have any time for progress. But I am getting really antsy to be able to brew my first batch on the system! Im hoping that by my birthday (Mar 28) I will be up and running. Fingers crossed!

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Old 03-23-2012, 04:04 PM   #13
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Just picked up a 30 amp breaker for the subpanel, plan to get that wired up this weekend. Additional weekend plans include potting and installing element boxes, and possibly beginning to wire up some of the control panel. I still need to pick up switches, indicators, etc. so I am not sure how much I can do, but I will at least fanangle around with it and figure out what I need and where everything goes.

Waiting for the chugger march madness sale to purchase my pump. If it is an awesome deal than I am just going to bite the bullet and pick up two!

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Old 03-24-2012, 11:35 PM   #14
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Progress made today:

Mounted the elements in both HLT and BK. I went for 5500 watt camco elements because I dont want to be waiting around heating water. My control panel is going to be set up to only fire one element at a time so I might as well go big.

These are the elements: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...00_i00_details



For whatever reason I decided to try two different methods of wiring the elements.

The HLT I used a simple end cap with wire strain relief, potted the electrical connections with liquid electrical tape. Cap is sealed to the outside of the element with JB Weld.



For the BK I decided to go with something a bit more structural, since it will be moved around quite often for cleaning and such. Used a plastic waterproof utility box, and JB Welded the box to the outside of the element. I will wire it up tomorrow when the JB Weld cures.



Got the spa panel mounted to the wall, and main outlet finished:





Also got some of the controller features mounted (both element outlets, PID with switch/LED, fuse holders, etc.





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Old 03-24-2012, 11:53 PM   #15
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Looks nice. I am following your build cause I am about to bet going on mine... Pretty much everything is ordered, just waiting on deliveries.

What are you using for wiring between the elements and the control panel? I went with the same elements. Can't wait to hear how quick they heat.

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Old 03-25-2012, 12:02 AM   #16
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Looking good. How are you grounding the keggle?

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Old 03-25-2012, 03:30 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IrishBrewer74
Looks nice. I am following your build cause I am about to bet going on mine... Pretty much everything is ordered, just waiting on deliveries.

What are you using for wiring between the elements and the control panel? I went with the same elements. Can't wait to hear how quick they heat.
30 amp Dryer cords from home depot. I can't wait either!
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Old 03-25-2012, 03:31 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wubears71
Looking good. How are you grounding the keggle?
Thanks! Gonna drill a hole with grounding screw in the keg skirt.
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Old 04-01-2012, 12:48 PM   #19
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Not much to update this week yet, been super busy with work/life. Got the breaker hooked up at least. I did pick up my bulk grain, so I guess I can add another line item on the to-do list: Build/Buy shelving for storage, also sort out into individual buckets/containers.




Hopefully today I can spare an hour or two to get down into the brewery. I've been having a really hard time trying to drill a hole in the keg skirt of my BK. I guess the steel has been hardened from all the propane firing heat? I havent tried the HLT yet, but I suspect it will be easier since it hasnt seen flames yet (or ever). Im going to try some better self tapping screws.

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Old 04-01-2012, 11:47 PM   #20
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KPR121,
I ran into the same issue with drilling the holes for the ground. The steel does get hard from using a propane burner. Self tapping screws on that hard and thick material will give you problems. I decided to tap the hole and secure with a 8-32 SS screw. You could go this route or just drill the hole, put a screw, lockwasher and nut. What ever works to make a secure and reliable connection.

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