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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Electric Brewing > turning on/off heatsticks
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Old 01-14-2012, 12:56 AM   #1
Homer
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Default turning on/off heatsticks

I want to build a small box (with a cord going to an outlet) with some gfi protection that I can plug my 2000W heatstick into and maybe another heatstick or a pump. I basically want to be able to switch these on (one at a time) without having to plug or unplug anything. I was just going to get a box, put in a 20A gfi outlet in it and a basic light switch, but I am kind of thinking now that I should use some relays and switches that I'm seeing people use in thier big brewing panels. Can someone help me figure out what I need to buy, locally if possible, or any other Ideas for me?

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Old 01-14-2012, 01:05 AM   #2
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The purpose of a relay is to let your system be controlled by a microcontroller. If you just want to turn the lines on and off manually, there's no real reason to go the relay route.

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Old 01-14-2012, 02:23 AM   #3
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You can probably just use something like these 20amp switches available at Home Depot for $5.

I just picked up a pair myself for my brew kettle.

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Old 01-15-2012, 03:04 PM   #4
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Google "the electric brewery" if you need to see some pid controlled relays..

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Old 01-15-2012, 06:12 PM   #5
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20 amp switches from the big box store are just fine for what you are doing.

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Old 01-15-2012, 06:38 PM   #6
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Here are a few options for ya: First, just plug your heat sticks into a box with a switched outlet, like this:


Or, if you want something more like a panel without a whole panel, you can do something like this. Mine basically controls a RIMS Tube, a pump, and a fan. Be warned, if you're like me, all of the switches and mini rims panel will prove a temporary step towards building a big panel.

Then again, I had to build these smaller items to learn enough to try and tackle something larger.



Bought illuminated switches from The best way to buy industrial controls--low prices, fast shipping and superior service., as well as the litte black control box, which had a built in cutout for the PID.

Cheers!

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Old 01-16-2012, 04:43 AM   #7
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Dgonza9,
I guess I can just do the switches like you did, but I would like to have some sort of indicator light showing that the heatstick is on. On the other hand, I do eventually want to get more automated, so I would like to get some practice by building a mini panel, sort of like you did.

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Old 01-16-2012, 04:59 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Homer View Post
Dgonza9,
I guess I can just do the switches like you did, but I would like to have some sort of indicator light showing that the heatstick is on.
why does it need to be a light? does a switch in the "on" position not indicate that the heatstick is on? although its still pretty simple to wire up an indicator light...
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Old 01-16-2012, 05:11 PM   #9
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I guess it really doesn't need to be a light, but for one thing, its cooler, and the other, the switch will probably be about 5 feet from me, so a nice red light telling me its on might be helpful. Is there any local stores that I can get indicator from, or does it have to be online?

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Old 01-16-2012, 05:18 PM   #10
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There are switches that have an indicator light built in...

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