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Old 01-28-2011, 04:32 PM   #1
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Default Simplest electric brewery possible!

Ok, so I want to get into electric brewing so I can brew in the winter.
I dont want to do anything too involved, just really need to set up my brew kettle to heat my water and boil my wort. Brewing 5 gallon batches in a 10 gallon kettle. Can I just install a heating element and be done with it? For my size batches - do I really need a 240V element or can I get away with a 120V element? Thanks for help in advance..!

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Old 01-28-2011, 04:34 PM   #2
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For a 5G batch, you'll 6-7 gallons to start. You're going to need either a 240 element, or 2 120 elements on different circuits.

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Old 01-28-2011, 04:36 PM   #3
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What about this guy?

http://www.homebrewing.org/15-Electr...r-_p_1723.html

It's only 1800W but buy it and plug it in is about as simple as it gets.

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Old 01-28-2011, 04:50 PM   #4
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If you have a stove you can use to help along the boil you can easily use a 120v element. I use a 2000W 120v element along with my dinky apartment size stove and get a vigorous rolling boil with 8g+.

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Old 01-28-2011, 04:57 PM   #5
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Old 01-28-2011, 04:59 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gritsak View Post
If you have a stove you can use to help along the boil you can easily use a 120v element. I use a 2000W 120v element along with my dinky apartment size stove and get a vigorous rolling boil with 8g+.
This is also my winter brewing approach. The heatstick cost less than $25 to make.
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Old 01-28-2011, 05:10 PM   #7
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SO - its kinda ghetto, but what about the combination of the heatstick and a hot plate? Want to brew in the basement. Although the weight of 7 gallons of liquid might crush a hotplate! Cant use the kitchen stove, its ceramic top...

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Old 01-28-2011, 06:28 PM   #8
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I use two 2000 watt heatsticks, each plugged into separate, 20 amp circuits. Each circuit has a 20 amp GFCI.

I'm able to do 12.5 gallon boils (10 gallon batches) pretty easily.

If you are looking at mounting the elements in your kettle, BargainFittings has the SS nut that fits the element threads.

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Old 01-28-2011, 06:33 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffb666 View Post
SO - its kinda ghetto, but what about the combination of the heatstick and a hot plate? Want to brew in the basement. Although the weight of 7 gallons of liquid might crush a hotplate! Cant use the kitchen stove, its ceramic top...

Power considerations aside, have you thought about ventilation in your basement? Boiling gallons of liquid for extended periods is going to result in rapid mold growth unless you have good ventilation down there.
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Old 01-28-2011, 07:40 PM   #10
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Quote:
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Power considerations aside, have you thought about ventilation in your basement? Boiling gallons of liquid for extended periods is going to result in rapid mold growth unless you have good ventilation down there.
As alluded to I guess this depends on your specific setup in the basement. I would think most people could turn on a fan to circulate are from the upstairs/down or down/up and this would solve the problem. Unless you are brewing very often or have a very small room I don't see this to be a large problem especially in the dry winter months.
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