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Old 03-30-2011, 06:46 PM   #1
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Default OK Im completely bat-crap confused. Help with an E-Herms setup

Ive been on the verge of going with an all electric setup for a few months now. Ive been reading and reading and reading and reading. Ive read Kals PDF through 3 times now but I still have some questions about how I should approach my particular setup. Here is what I have in my arsenal currently:

3 - 10gal Blichmann's
1 - Top Tier Setup
1 - 220v 30amp line run to my garage

I would absolutely love to build Kals setup but that control panel just looks a bit mind blowing for me to even attempt to tackle. Im thinking of getting the largest Brewmation control panel since it comes with all the probes and heating elements:

http://www.brewmation.com/Panels.html - Its the $1499 one.

My questions is this. If I go to an E-Herms setup how does mashing work. Ok so I get the HLT up to the desired temp and fill the MLT. I have a temp probe in the MLT and the HLT now. I turn on the pump and let it circulate through the HERMS coil and back in to the MLT. My question is which probe controls the heat element in the HLT, the one in the MLT or the one in the HLT? If I want a mash temp of say 157, if the MLT probe sense it dropping to 155 will it trigger the heating element in the HLT or do I need to manually turn on the HLT and raise the temp? Has anyone had any experience with the Brewmation panel and if it will work that way?

Thanks so much for helping this very confused individual! Oh and for the record I blame Kal for this!!! J/K

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Old 03-30-2011, 06:56 PM   #2
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I have a herms system. I just use a dial thermometer to track the mlt. All the temp control is done in the hlt. I set it to strike temps, mash in, refill with sparge water, set hlt to mash temps and recirculate. To mash out, I set the hlt to 168 and circulate until the mash gets there. Then sparge.

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Old 03-30-2011, 07:09 PM   #3
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My question is which probe controls the heat element in the HLT, the one in the MLT or the one in the HLT? If I want a mash temp of say 157, if the MLT probe sense it dropping to 155 will it trigger the heating element in the HLT or do I need to manually turn on the HLT and raise the temp? Has anyone had any experience with the Brewmation panel and if it will work that way?

Thanks so much for helping this very confused individual! Oh and for the record I blame Kal for this!!! J/K
You want the probe in the hlt to control the element in the hlt. Then the probe in the mt should control a pump. When the mash temp drops below your preset, it will turn the pump on and circulate your wort through the herms coil in the hlt and maintain the temp.

That's how my setup works, i'm sure the brewmation will do the same thing.
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Old 03-30-2011, 07:14 PM   #4
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Do you ever have to worry about the pump priming?

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Old 03-30-2011, 07:27 PM   #5
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Do you ever have to worry about the pump priming?
You will have to prime the pump before the pump is triggered by the system, or you will have problems. I recirculate my hlt water so the temps stay even throughout the vessel.

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Old 03-30-2011, 08:43 PM   #6
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You want the probe in the hlt to control the element in the hlt. Then the probe in the mt should control a pump. When the mash temp drops below your preset, it will turn the pump on and circulate your wort through the herms coil in the hlt and maintain the temp.

That's how my setup works, i'm sure the brewmation will do the same thing.
Why control the pump at all? If the hlt is set to mash temp you can circulate continuously. Then just bump the temp for mashout. Continuous circulation gives me nice clear wort.
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Old 03-30-2011, 10:22 PM   #7
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K cool thats what I was thinking as well and just keep an eye on the MLT temp

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Old 03-30-2011, 11:32 PM   #8
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Why control the pump at all? If the hlt is set to mash temp you can circulate continuously. Then just bump the temp for mashout. Continuous circulation gives me nice clear wort.
That's how my setup works. If you keep the hlt set 2-3 degrees warmer than the mt, it circulates for a good 40 minutes of the mash, which is more than enough. Setting it at the exact same temp never seems to work well for me.

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Old 03-30-2011, 11:44 PM   #9
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My probe is mounted on the output of the coil to monitor wort as it comes back to the MLT. I don't care what temp the HLT is, as long as my mash is right.

So, the PID monitors the returning wort, and heats the HLT if necessary to get that wort where I want it.

My pump constantly runs.

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Old 03-30-2011, 11:51 PM   #10
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wasteful people.


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