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Old 09-01-2011, 04:46 AM   #1
IndyRob
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Default My Electric Brew Pot

Here are a few pics of my electric brewing setup.

The HLT/BK:


It is an aluminum turkey fryer fitted with a 3800 Watt, 240VAC heating element. I use it to both heat the mash water and boil wort. It takes about twenty minutes to raise 6.5 gallons of 72-degree water to 164-degrees and about another 20 minutes to raise 6.5 gallons of 164-degree wort to boiling.

The Connections:


A three-wire cord is connected to the element and ground.

The thermocouple connection:


Using a compression fitting and a J-type thermocouple.

Looking down into the pot:


I mounted the thermocouple slightly below the element. I believe this was a mistake on my part. In order to get temp readings real-time I have to stir the pot for the controller to read properly (it's usually about ten degrees off until near-boil temps due to the circulation of water). However, when I set my temp on the controller and drain the water into the mash tun all is well.

The pot boiling:


The insides of the control box:


You may notice something missing - the recommended SSR.

I am using a 30 Amp relay and the system draws about 18 Amps. So, I can deal with the clunking sound. After about a dozen uses the relay is still in great shape.

The controller is a REXC-100 which was given to me by my father after extracting it from one of the rubber molding presses from his company.

I am very happy with the system so far. It is great because I can place the pot on a counter-top with just a towel underneath to keep from scorching the counter surface. In addition, it has reduced wait times for liquids to heat up, propane tank refill costs, carrying hot liquids around (in the winter) and has just overall made brewing so much more relaxing.

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Last edited by IndyRob; 09-01-2011 at 04:58 AM. Reason: I guess I need to learn how to post pics...
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Old 09-01-2011, 09:37 AM   #2
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All pics are broken.

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Old 09-02-2011, 01:10 PM   #3
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Fixed those for ya! Looks good, but I would recommend using an SSR. That relay will fail eventually...

Quote:
Originally Posted by IndyRob View Post
Here are a few pics of my electric brewing setup.

The HLT/BK:


It is an aluminum turkey fryer fitted with a 3800 Watt, 240VAC heating element. I use it to both heat the mash water and boil wort. It takes about twenty minutes to raise 6.5 gallons of 72-degree water to 164-degrees and about another 20 minutes to raise 6.5 gallons of 164-degree wort to boiling.

The Connections:


A three-wire cord is connected to the element and ground.

The thermocouple connection:


Using a compression fitting and a J-type thermocouple.

Looking down into the pot:


I mounted the thermocouple slightly below the element. I believe this was a mistake on my part. In order to get temp readings real-time I have to stir the pot for the controller to read properly (it's usually about ten degrees off until near-boil temps due to the circulation of water). However, when I set my temp on the controller and drain the water into the mash tun all is well.

The pot boiling:


The insides of the control box:


You may notice something missing - the recommended SSR.

I am using a 30 Amp relay and the system draws about 18 Amps. So, I can deal with the clunking sound. After about a dozen uses the relay is still in great shape.

The controller is a REXC-100 which was given to me by my father after extracting it from one of the rubber molding presses from his company.

I am very happy with the system so far. It is great because I can place the pot on a counter-top with just a towel underneath to keep from scorching the counter surface. In addition, it has reduced wait times for liquids to heat up, propane tank refill costs, carrying hot liquids around (in the winter) and has just overall made brewing so much more relaxing.
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Old 10-04-2011, 02:29 AM   #4
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Thanks!

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Old 10-04-2011, 02:41 AM   #5
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Nice looking rig! Love the controller.

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Old 10-06-2011, 06:54 PM   #6
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I like it a lot.

I need your help though. I have my control panel constructed and will be ordering element parts soon. I am stuck on how I want to mount the element. I would be interested in knowing more about that.

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Old 10-06-2011, 07:19 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rollinred View Post
I like it a lot.

I need your help though. I have my control panel constructed and will be ordering element parts soon. I am stuck on how I want to mount the element. I would be interested in knowing more about that.
I haven't built an electric system yet, but I think most people copy Kal at the Electric Brewery. I think he has a good method for mounting elements.

http://theelectricbrewery.com/heating-elements
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Old 10-06-2011, 07:37 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigljd View Post
I haven't built an electric system yet, but I think most people copy Kal at the Electric Brewery. I think he has a good method for mounting elements.

http://theelectricbrewery.com/heating-elements
I have many times contemplated Kal's setup but it looks like Indy did something different because the back of the box is not cut out. Kal uses JB weld and bolts to hold a cover on the back of the box. I don't like the drilled, jb welded, and bolted on cover where there shouldn't be a cover. I like how this one just uses a box but I figured the box plus the sidewall would be too thick for the element.
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Old 10-07-2011, 12:09 PM   #9
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Where did you source the components and enclosure for the control box?

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Old 01-24-2012, 03:06 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rollinred View Post
I have many times contemplated Kal's setup but it looks like Indy did something different because the back of the box is not cut out. Kal uses JB weld and bolts to hold a cover on the back of the box. I don't like the drilled, jb welded, and bolted on cover where there shouldn't be a cover. I like how this one just uses a box but I figured the box plus the sidewall would be too thick for the element.
I am sooo sorry for the long delay in replying.

First, I drilled a hole large enough in the junction box using the existing 3/4" hole and tapped it for the element thread. Next, I milled down the buildup of material around the original hole (on the inside of the junction box) so my element would go all the way through the junction box and the pot with a few turns of element thread available inside the pot. Next, on the edge of the junction box that mates to the pot I machined a groove around the hole that was was half the thickness of a high-temp o-ring I found at ace hardware. I 'screwed' the element into the junction box, installed the o-ring into it's groove and then put the element nut on from inside the pot. I added a little high temp food-grade rtv to the threads to be safe.

This thing works extraordinarily well.

ETA: I posted pics
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