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Old 05-08-2013, 08:57 PM   #1
Goindh
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Default Built a Brutus 10 style rig, have some questions after a dismal first brew day.

First question is, what is the proper way to calibrate a RTD temp probe?

Backstory. I attempted to calibrate the RTDs by submerging the probes in ice water and setting the Mypin TA4 offsets to read 32F. I then brought the HLT up to strike temp while recirculating only to find the water temp was ~15 degrees low according to my two other thermometers I have been using to brew.

Second question is regarding the mypin ta4. Which setting determines the time and or degree to which the controller kicks on and off?

Backstory. Controller works perfect in autotune mode. Heats to half a degree over the set point, let's it fall to half a degree under then heats back up to half over. Then auto tune shuts off, which causes the controller to cycle the relay to my gas valve very erratically. Without using autotune all the time what can I do to help this issue?

Page 2 of instructions http://imgur.com/zsrngAU

page 1 http://imgur.com/0QBuTGz

Third question. What are you guys using to keep both pellet and whole hops out of the pump during whirlpool in the BK?

Backstory, pretty self explanatory I believe.

Moral of the story, despite missed mash temps, pump clogs and other fun things I still made wort that will make damn fine beer.

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Old 05-09-2013, 02:53 PM   #2
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Welcome to Brutus brewing. I love my rig (HAL is it's name) and recently changed to RTD temp probes from K type thermocouples. When I changed I had a couple miss steps by selecting the wrong RTD on the controller menu. It wasn't 15 degrees off, it was waaaay off or negative. I'm using a different PID controller, but it was spot on when I got it set right without an offset. What did yours read in ice water before you put in the offset? What does it read on boil? Probably not around 15 degrees off, that would be too easy.

My PID controller will cycle oddly particularly in the beginning when it's sensing the temp change. If you let it run for a few minutes it normally stabilizes until it approaches the set point. It cycles and eases up to the setpoint. What do you mean by erratic? Very quick cycle times? Does it ever get to the set point?

I use a stainless steel scrubbie over my pickup tube. I toss whole hops in and let them free range in the BK. Pellet hops tend to clog it so I try not to use them or put them in a hop bag if I don't have a choice. It takes about 3-5 brews to 'learn' your new system and iron out any issues. I've done 50+ batches on mine now. HAL and I are one with the brew. I can be in the other room, hear a different sound and know if something isn't right. You'll get there, good luck!

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Old 05-09-2013, 05:13 PM   #3
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I knew from the beginning that my first brewday would be one hell of a learning experience, and I did learn a lot about Stormy. (it was raining on my first brewday)

So the RTDs read about 8 and 11 degrees high in ice water. I never did take them up to a full boil, ill try that tonight.

You are correct, by erratic it was very quick cycles, seemed about every 5 seconds as it came within a few degrees of set temp. Once it passed temp by a half degree it shut off for about a min then started cycleing on off again. For fear of blowing out my pilots I turned the gas valves off and let it rest. I did some reading about what the P, I and D stand for and how they work on Wikipedia. I have a vague understanding but not enough at this point to start modifying the values in my controller.

Any preticular method of securing the scrubber to your dip tube?

Thanks for the help!

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Old 05-11-2013, 10:21 AM   #4
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From my understanding you can't/don't want to use gas valves in PID mode as it will cycle too fast unless you increase your cycle time a ton. I think you need to switch your controller to on/off mode

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Old 05-11-2013, 10:21 PM   #5
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Ahhh, maybe that is my problem. I will try to switch it over and run it tonight. Thanks!

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Old 06-05-2013, 10:13 PM   #6
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In my experience with temp control PIDs, you can set the D value to zero. It really only helps in systems with natural drift in measurements, particularly systems that have a lot of drift.

If I were you I would spend some time playing with it. The manual tuning directions on Wikipedia are adequate.

You may also want to confirm that your valves aren't at their limit of function during normal operations, but it sounds like you have a too-aggressive D setting, or I setting.

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Old 06-06-2013, 01:01 PM   #7
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I wish I could find the video, it's 4 steps to properly calibrate a thermometer, but a few simple changes you wouldn't think make a big deal do. Basicly add as much crushed ice as possible in the glass, fill with water but leave the last 1/2" of the glass empty, put the probe only 2-2 1/2" in the ice and the most important part is stir with the thermometer as it is submerged.

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Old 06-22-2013, 12:43 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrokenDog
I wish I could find the video, it's 4 steps to properly calibrate a thermometer, but a few simple changes you wouldn't think make a big deal do. Basicly add as much crushed ice as possible in the glass, fill with water but leave the last 1/2" of the glass empty, put the probe only 2-2 1/2" in the ice and the most important part is stir with the thermometer as it is submerged.
Why not just take a glass of water, whatever temp doesn't matter, put your sensor in. Then measure the same water with a reliable, quality thermometer like a thermapen, and then calibrate the sensor to that temp?
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Old 06-22-2013, 01:27 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bd2xu View Post
Why not just take a glass of water, whatever temp doesn't matter, put your sensor in. Then measure the same water with a reliable, quality thermometer like a thermapen, and then calibrate the sensor to that temp?
In pretty sure if he had a thermapen he wouldn't be asking how to calibrate a thermometer, the point is to be able to calibrate reliability without a secondary source.
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Old 06-22-2013, 02:36 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrokenDog

In pretty sure if he had a thermapen he wouldn't be asking how to calibrate a thermometer, the point is to be able to calibrate reliability without a secondary source.
Even a decent digital thermometer. Or a couple cheap analogs. Just think its easiest to calibrate against another thermometer.
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