Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > DIY Projects > Kettles, Mash Tuns, & Hot Liquor Tanks > Cheap weldless HLT setup?
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Old 04-23-2013, 02:40 AM   #1
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Default Cheap weldless HLT setup?

I have a 7 1/2 gal. aluminum kettle that I want to convert to a hot liquor tank. I don't want to spend $130 to install a ball valve and a temperature gauge and a sight gauge. Has anyone out there come up with a cheap way to install these fittings into a metal kettle? (Either for a mash tun or a HLT.)

I'd really like to hear about any inexpensive DIY ideas you may have come up with along with any pix you might have of your finished mash tun or HLT.

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Old 04-23-2013, 03:20 AM   #2
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Well I don't have a temp gauge or sight glass but for my drain I just got 2 SS washers, 1/2" ball valve. 1/2"NPT nipple, 1/2" union, (1) 1/2" nut, 2 high temp silicone gaskets, assembled in order of ball valve onto nipple nut screwed all the way on the other end, washer on against nut, silicone gasket, insert through hole in kettle, then silicone gasket on inside followed by washer then screwed union on to pull everything together watertight. Then I screwed my bazooka screen into other end if union. At work now so no pics. Can post when I get home if you still need help understanding my poor Grammar.

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Old 04-23-2013, 04:26 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GilSwillBasementBrews View Post
Well I don't have a temp gauge or sight glass but for my drain I just got 2 SS washers, 1/2" ball valve. 1/2"NPT nipple, 1/2" union, (1) 1/2" nut, 2 high temp silicone gaskets, assembled in order of ball valve onto nipple nut screwed all the way on the other end, washer on against nut, silicone gasket, insert through hole in kettle, then silicone gasket on inside followed by washer then screwed union on to pull everything together watertight. Then I screwed my bazooka screen into other end if union. At work now so no pics. Can post when I get home if you still need help understanding my poor Grammar.
Thanks! I made a sketch following your description and everything made sense except the union. I can't see how that fits. Could I use a 1/2" coupling instead?
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Old 04-23-2013, 05:22 AM   #4
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Couple/union same thing.

It's just female thread instead of male thread.

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Old 04-23-2013, 05:29 AM   #5
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Couple/union same thing.

It's just female thread instead of male thread.
Sorry, I didn't mean to sound like a jerk.

Where did you find the washers and silicone "o" rings?

Thanks!
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Old 04-23-2013, 05:47 AM   #6
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I didn't think you did.

I got the washers and gaskets from my LHBS. They were the only place near me that had stainless washers.

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Old 04-23-2013, 06:51 AM   #7
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If you want cheap weldless sight glass/thermometer kits, look at brewhardware.com. You can get them for under $40 I believe and weldless couplers for $12 (assuming you have a ball valve).

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Old 04-24-2013, 02:52 AM   #8
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If you want cheap weldless sight glass/thermometer kits, look at brewhardware.com. You can get them for under $40 I believe and weldless couplers for $12 (assuming you have a ball valve).
Great tip! Thanks!

Unfortunately their website says their shop is temporarily closed until 4/25/13. (Opening day of trout season?)

Will check them out when they get back on line.

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Old 04-24-2013, 03:26 AM   #9
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Also check http://www.bargainfittings.com/. I've ordered from them a couple times and always been VERY impressed. Really top quality stuff, not at all what you'd expect for the price.

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Old 04-24-2013, 03:30 AM   #10
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Wait, do u have the hardware already? Or lack the hardware and wanna keep it cheap?

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