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Old 01-16-2014, 04:00 AM   #21
jgalati
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Lopsy:
Cleaning will probably involve this process:
1) Assuming that grain and hops have been removed and it's the end of the brew day.
2) Add PBW to the kettle, and click the CIP button. The kettle will heat the PBW to around 170, and then begin transferring the solution throughout all the sections of tubing, including turning ball valves on and off so as to clean as thoroughly as possible. Once done, the system will drain as much of the PBW solution as you've mechanically allowed it to do: (read: how far down did you place your dip tube?). Once this is done, Water, which has been heating in the HLT at this time, will be pumped through all hosing to dissolve most of the remaining PBW. Literally flush all the tubing and valves out.

Can anyone shed light on potential problems with this CIP method? Obviously you have to lift the MLT to remove grain, and remove hops from the kettle by hand... but any other ideas would be swell.

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Old 01-16-2014, 05:23 PM   #22
jCOSbrew
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If you are trying to keep costs reasonable, try to keep the number of pumps, valves, and sensors to a minimum.

A mechanical (or optical) float switch is not as flashy but is cheap and effective. I have seen a couple people use load cells to measure weight and thus volume of the vessels.

I haven't seen it used for brewing but some type of simple check valve might allow you to turn the pump on/off to control flow and prevent a siphon without additional valves.

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Old 01-16-2014, 05:32 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jCOSbrew View Post
If you are trying to keep costs reasonable, try to keep the number of pumps, valves, and sensors to a minimum.

A mechanical (or optical) float switch is not as flashy but is cheap and effective. I have seen a couple people use load cells to measure weight and thus volume of the vessels.

I haven't seen it used for brewing but some type of simple check valve might allow you to turn the pump on/off to control flow and prevent a siphon without additional valves.
load cells work great if nothing is moving
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Old 01-16-2014, 05:33 PM   #24
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This is probably one of the better ideas I've ever heard for a Senior Design. And congrats, is this your last semester?

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Old 01-16-2014, 05:43 PM   #25
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Purdue -- Huh. I'll give you a break as long as you didn't go to Depauw! Caveat Lector: any ideas that you garner here could be construed as "prior art" in any patent challenge.

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Given a BeerXML file, uploaded via dropbox, the mobile app will parse the XML file, transfer it to the beaglebone
Third party app upon which you'll need to depend. A simple http server is trivial to implement, will be under your full control, and have less impediment to adoption.

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and the user will only have to put grain into the mill hopper, add hop additions during the boil (which the app will remind you to do), and add yeast at the end.
What about a "hop manifold" where you load up your hops and at specified intervals small solenoid valves open the corresponding hop hopper and into the boil? That'd be high on the cool factor.

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3) All valves will be edit: electric ball valve controlled (either 120V AC or 12V DC) I haven't decided.
+1 on ball rather than solenoid.

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4) Tubing will be 3/8" Silicon with 5/8" outside Diameter.
You'll want 1/2" ID / 5/8" OD. Frankly, I'd prefer hard plumbed to simplify cleaning. Not much more expensive that silicone. OK that's not accurate but it's easier to clean.

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6) Pumps will be DC.
That wouldn't be my choice but your mind seems to be made up.

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8) Sensors I plan on using include: 5 digital thermometers for: 1 in HLT, 2 in Mash Tun (averaged out), 1 in Kettle, and 1 in output of wort chiller. Flow sensors throughout to measure speed of fluid transfer. Volume sensors in Kettle and HLT. (I may add a PH monitor to the kettle, but my water is so good in Oregon that it's just not worth it to me.)
What T sensors are you using? RTD are optimal but can be difficult to deal with. DS1820s are trivial but lack the resolution, timing, and range I like (I use them regardless).


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9) Wort Chiller will NOT be a plate chiller (trying to be economical so everyone can implement this project). I'll be using 25' copper tubing, and a silicon hose to cover the tubing creating a counterflow chiller. (This is also easier to clean than plate chillers).
Ugh. PCs are just so efficient and space conscience. And since your hop hopper will be dumping into a 400 micron spider clogging isnt and issue. AND it's just so simple to "T" in a temp sensor. I'd prefer a WC but it's your project.

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10) There will be a clean in place (CIP) function on the remote
Really? Not with DC pumps there wont be. Most CIP balls require like a bazillion GPM flow rate and accompanying pressure. What are your plans for that and were are you putting the CIP balls? Recircing PBW then StarSan works pretty well.


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11) Full integration between Brewtroller (arduino based), Beaglebone (linux based), and a webapp (java/html based). Realtime feedback on all temperature sensors, etc.
Nice

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12) Ability to be mashing one beer while another beer is boiling in Kettle! I estimate this could save upwards of 2 hours per batch if timed correctly.
That's not really ground breaking. 60 amps will get you there (I like it notwithstanding).

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13) Oxygen aeration: I'd appreciate any ideas on this. I'd prefer NOT using an O2 cylinder, mainly because it's expensive and I want to keep this cheap for everyone.
O2 is cheap as chips in those red cylinders from your local big box store. Hell I think they may have them at wally world. Not like you need a lot of it. Granted, you need a regulator and other bits & bobs.


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14) Ability to use Natural Gas / Propane / Electric for heating. Ability to use a combination for heating. Pulse Width Modulation via SS Relays to maintain HLT temperature instead of valve control on a propane / natural gas burner. This means: Use gas to achieve desired temperature, then maintain temperature / boil via Electric. Another option is to have a regulator in front of the Kettle to maintain boil with gas, because it's definitely a cheaper heat source.
Wow, biting off a lot here. I'd settle on electricity as everyone has it. Greatest common denominator and all that.

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15) Control over mill by using a motor I stripped out of my old washing machine.
You'll need a few sheaves.

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16) I will not be using a hard panel monitor to display the current status of the system. Instead, I will be displaying the current status on a custom GUI outputted onto a crappy old computer monitor via beaglebone.
As in a CRT monitor?? Seems to be penny wise pound foolish when you can get a 20" monitor for what, $20?

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17) Easy Easy Easy network connection between mobile app, beaglebone, and router.
What is the network connection you're recommending??


As for measuring volume, the bubbler solution is fairly well accepted. Weight is something else although not sure how you'd pull it off. I'd like to see a valve at the plate chiller so once the exit temp of the chiller is at pitching temps the wort is diverted to the fermenter.
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Old 01-16-2014, 05:51 PM   #26
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It is. This is my second senior design. Last semesters was a different project but we were only allowed to use analog components, like nand/ nor gates, lm555 timers, resistors, caps, and a 1980s analog camera to spot small metal objects on a 12x12 black felt and then moving a crane attached with an electromagnet. Stepper motors controlled the crane.

TL;DR last semesters project sucked compared to this one!!

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Old 01-16-2014, 06:19 PM   #27
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Very cool. Good luck.
BTW, I'm a TIer. So put our money to some good use

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Old 01-16-2014, 06:21 PM   #28
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Subscribed...very interested in this. Side note I'm not far from W. Lafayette, NW corner of Indianapolis.

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Old 01-16-2014, 06:59 PM   #29
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I've been avoiding pressure related level sensing. All of them require an open tube in wort which screams sanitary issues to me. Considering soldering a chain of reed switches together to make something like a multilevel float switch.

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Old 01-16-2014, 07:16 PM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jCOSbrew View Post
FYI, you can push 1/2" ID tubing over 1/2" NPT threads (about 3/4") and get a similar tight seal without clamps.

I would use whatever kind of chiller is easier to automate use/cleaning/etc. At $2-3 per foot for silicon tubing a DIY CFC is not necessarily cheaper than a plate chiller which is <$100. If you use a garden hose for the CFC you might be able to save a few bucks.
I was thinking of using silicon, because I could reclaim some heat and then transfer that water to the HLT where I could use it to either clean the pipes, or use it for the next mash. This is what they do on the commercial scale, but I haven't looked at whether or not it makes financial sense for the homebrewer.

Anyone done the math on this yet?
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