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Old 06-14-2011, 03:54 AM   #11
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Originally Posted by GRHunter View Post
I get a very distinct on-off rhythm. Ferocious bubbling boil ... then calm and quiet. I would love to get it somewhere in the middle. I have a 5500 watt high density coil with 5 gallon batches.
Definitely try adjusting the period/cycle time as Quaffer and Shushi point out.
My boil is like Yooper's, I can't tell when the element is on or off.. 5500W ULWD.
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Old 06-14-2011, 03:57 PM   #12
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Thanks for the responses. Curiosity satisfied.

"Creepy sounding". That's a good one.

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Old 06-14-2011, 10:09 PM   #13
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Have you measured the cycle time? I had my PID set to t=2, yet the cycle time was over four seconds. Someone here on HBT showed me that the P setting impacts the minimum cycle time. Once I reduced P to 1 I had a two second cycle time.
I should give credit where credit is due. This helpful post by bbognerks is what showed me the way.
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Old 06-15-2011, 12:03 AM   #14
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Thanks for the props Quaffer. But really, my info simply points to The Pol's resolution to the problem, heh.

Just thinking out loud here. No scientific backing what-so-ever. In regards to the pulsing, I'm thinking really it's all visual. I don't really see how going from a vigorous boil to a lull really makes much difference. We all boil at different temperatures anyways. I suppose if the lull was long enough, say 10 seconds lull and 5 seconds boiling, then you might have a dms problem. But who knows?

As for the increase in maillard reaction. Is it possible for it to significantly change with 1 degree temp swings? The lulls I would think at most would decrease your temp from boiling to boiling -1. I read up about the maillard reacion briefly on Wikipedia. Basically I got that it was what makes bread brown in the oven and causes similar reactions in other food types when heated.

My thinking is that since we are boiling, we can't go over a set temperature and we can't "overcook" the wort really because it's a liquid. If we were reducing wort down to really concentrate the sugars, such as in making a sugary sauce reduction, then I could see the pulsing being a problem and causing too much of a Maillard reaction if you didn't know how to control it or judge it. But even in conventional cooking, you don't get a Maillard reaction in sauce until it is significantly reduced down by boiling off liquid and highly concentrating the solids. I would love to read more about it as it relates to brewing if you have some resources. I hadn't heard of it until today.

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Old 06-15-2011, 01:01 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by Quaffer

Have you measured the cycle time? I had my PID set to t=2, yet the cycle time was over four seconds. Someone here on HBT showed me that the P setting impacts the minimum cycle time. Once I reduced P to 1 I had a two second cycle time.

The reason I want a constant rolling boil is that I can then control how hard it is boiling. I think a hard boil increases the maillard reaction, for example, which I would like to keep to a minimum in a pale beer. If the boil pulses then it is unavoidable to have a harder boil then intended for part of the time.
THAT DID IT!!!!! I changed "P" from the default 500 to 1 and now my boil is almost identical to a propane boil. Thanks Quaffer.
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Old 06-15-2011, 04:54 PM   #16
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Thanks for the props Quaffer. But really, my info simply points to The Pol's resolution to the problem, heh.

Just thinking out loud here. No scientific backing what-so-ever. In regards to the pulsing, I'm thinking really it's all visual. I don't really see how going from a vigorous boil to a lull really makes much difference. We all boil at different temperatures anyways. I suppose if the lull was long enough, say 10 seconds lull and 5 seconds boiling, then you might have a dms problem. But who knows?

As for the increase in maillard reaction. Is it possible for it to significantly change with 1 degree temp swings? The lulls I would think at most would decrease your temp from boiling to boiling -1. I read up about the maillard reacion briefly on Wikipedia. Basically I got that it was what makes bread brown in the oven and causes similar reactions in other food types when heated.

My thinking is that since we are boiling, we can't go over a set temperature and we can't "overcook" the wort really because it's a liquid. If we were reducing wort down to really concentrate the sugars, such as in making a sugary sauce reduction, then I could see the pulsing being a problem and causing too much of a Maillard reaction if you didn't know how to control it or judge it. But even in conventional cooking, you don't get a Maillard reaction in sauce until it is significantly reduced down by boiling off liquid and highly concentrating the solids. I would love to read more about it as it relates to brewing if you have some resources. I hadn't heard of it until today.
I have no hard evidence that shows that the maillard reaction is picking up with a stronger boil. It does however increase with higher temperature since it is the browning that we are familiar with from baking and cooking. Here's my thinking about this. As the wort goes from the liquid state to gas state, the temperature at the surface of the heater can go beyond 212°F for a short moment. Then as liquid again touches the hot spot it is violently pushed into the gaseous state and the pressure increases locally. I believe this is what we can hear and feel as vibrations during the boil. As the pressure increases the temperature can go beyond 212°F in that local spot and singe the wort. A stronger boil will exacerbate the singing. It's a theory anyway.

Then again, DMS is perhaps a more likely problem if the boil is pulsating, not giving the precursor to DMS enough time to boil off.
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