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Old 10-01-2011, 03:04 PM   #1
antiteam
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Default RIMS Tube Size

Thanks to my lovely wife buying me a March pump for my birthday, I'm looking to build a RIMS tube. I'm targeting a SS 304 setup similar to the "RIMS for Dummies" design. I've been pricing out parts in various sizes and a 1" setup is (obviously) the cheapest that will house the element.

My question is this - is 1" too small? Does anyone have experience with a 1" tube? What are the major shortcomings?

I've read about the preference for more wort volume to be in contact with the element to hedge against scorching, but have also read that as long as the flow keeps flowing, this shouldn't be an issue.

I'd love to save the money, build a 1" tube, and invest elsewhere in my system, but don't want to run into major problems if I do.

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Old 10-01-2011, 03:10 PM   #2
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I'll be making my inaugural brew on a 1" setup this afternoon, i'll report back when I'm done.

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Old 10-01-2011, 03:12 PM   #3
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Good luck! Looking forward to hearing how it goes.

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Old 10-01-2011, 03:28 PM   #4
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problem with a 1" tube is finding an element that will fit inside it. im sure its doable, but when I build mine I am going to use the following parts.


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from the looks of it I can use these parts

1-1/2" Tee x 2
1-1/2x1/2 bushing x 3
1/2x1/4 bushing x 1
1-1/2x1 bushing x1
1-1/2x6 nipple x 1

2K watt Rheems element $21.29
1/4" thermocouple $21.95
Auber PID $45.50
25a SSR $15

looks like its about $150ish plus or minus with other misc items I'd be needing

-=Jason=-
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Old 10-03-2011, 11:28 AM   #5
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problem with a 1" tube is finding an element that will fit inside it. im sure its doable, but when I build mine I am going to use the following parts.
I hadn't thought about that aspect. I'm not sure I'd worry as much about it fitting inside (it's gotta all fit through the 1" hole in the end, right?) but any sort of flexing might lead to it touching the outside of the tube.

If the element touches the outside of the tube, is that an instant short (assuming a conductive tube, of course)? I don't have much experience with these elements. I'd think the answer would be yes if they're not electrically insulated in some manner.
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Old 10-03-2011, 02:53 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by antiteam View Post
I hadn't thought about that aspect. I'm not sure I'd worry as much about it fitting inside (it's gotta all fit through the 1" hole in the end, right?) but any sort of flexing might lead to it touching the outside of the tube.

If the element touches the outside of the tube, is that an instant short (assuming a conductive tube, of course)? I don't have much experience with these elements. I'd think the answer would be yes if they're not electrically insulated in some manner.
The threaded hole for a 1" pipe thread is about 1.141" at minimum, so the element has to be less than 1 1/8" in diameter. The OD of 1" pipe is 1.315", and the wall thickness is .133 for standard pipe, so the ID is actually 1.049".

From experience I know that a low watt density element will contact the side of a 1" pipe (tried it in the hardware store with an element and a 1" pipe).

The outside of an undamaged element is isolated from the current carrying wire, so touching the pipe will not cause any electrical problem, however it might cause a hot spot on the element leading to a burn thru. Also, any significant bending of an element to get it directly in line with the center line of the threads might weaken the element wall and crack the insulating material surrounding the element.
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Old 10-03-2011, 03:10 PM   #7
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The threaded hole for a 1" pipe thread is about 1.141" at minimum, so the element has to be less than 1 1/8" in diameter. The OD of 1" pipe is 1.315", and the wall thickness is .133 for standard pipe, so the ID is actually 1.049".

From experience I know that a low watt density element will contact the side of a 1" pipe (tried it in the hardware store with an element and a 1" pipe).

The outside of an undamaged element is isolated from the current carrying wire, so touching the pipe will not cause any electrical problem, however it might cause a hot spot on the element leading to a burn thru. Also, any significant bending of an element to get it directly in line with the center line of the threads might weaken the element wall and crack the insulating material surrounding the element.
Great point! Well, I'm convinced that 1.5" or 2" would be a better direction for me to go.
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Old 10-04-2011, 02:39 PM   #8
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I built one using 2" SS pipe and was very happy with it.
I think a big advantage of the larger tube is the increased volume. The extra volume gives the PID a bit of buffer when you change the flow rate or have a stuck mash.
If you don't have enough volume, I think you can sort of "flash boil" and potentially scorch the wort in the tube before the PID can respond.
Also, I don't think the larger size is a problem from a heating perspective because you are still applying the same BTU's to the mash overall.

Ed

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