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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > DIY Projects > Kettles, Mash Tuns, & Hot Liquor Tanks > Easily removable element?
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Old 02-20-2013, 03:18 PM   #1
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Default Easily removable element?

I just bought a 5500W ULW ripple element.

I do BIAB and break down and store my brewing stuff every time I brew. I don't have a stand or semi-permanent place to brew. For this reason I'm seriously looking into mounting my element in a heat-stick. However, they look ghetto to me, with too much potential to leak (see what I did there).

If I just install the element permanently, then there has to be a 30 foot big cord hanging off my keggle all the time. I don't think I would like this for cleaning and since I break down my brewery and stash it in the shed every time I brew.

I could:

1) Install the element permanently with a short pigtail, or use a box with a receptacle, which means I have to buy 2 extra plugs. Also, I still have to deal with at least a pigtail or an outlet box hanging hanging off my keggle, which I would worry about getting when when I hose my stuff down.

2) Solder on a locknut, and manually screw the element into the keggle every time I brew. I imagine I will have to pre-twist the cord up so that when I screw the element in, the cord will be untwisted. Then when I'm done brewing, I can just screw it back out for cleaning. My question is, how hard is it to work these ripple elements out through the 1" fitting? And how many turns does it take to tighten one in? Is this something that is easy enough to do every time or am I creating more headaches?

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Old 02-20-2013, 03:45 PM   #2
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This is what I did: http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f51/all-...design-379729/

Robert

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Old 02-20-2013, 04:59 PM   #3
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I think most people go with the external box made of a splashproof receptacle. The deluxe option would be a StillDragon triclamp element adapter. The ripple element will go through a 1" locknut but it takes a bit of wiggling, I wouldn't want to take it out every brew.

To me, heat sticks look inherently hazardous.

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Old 02-20-2013, 05:35 PM   #4
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The box with receptacle looks ok. Then I guess you just try not to spray the box with the hose or spill wort directly on it; it's supposed to be water-resistant. But that easily adds $40 to the project cost, between the box, receptacle, and plug.

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Old 02-20-2013, 06:00 PM   #5
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Splashproof is one protection, the other is grounding the box.

To me the "electric brewery" type box is overbuilt. Search around, maybe you can find a different design that you like. Switchcraft plugs & sockets are small and cheap. Plastic boxes are cheap but you can't ground them so they need to be waterproof.

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Old 02-20-2013, 06:17 PM   #6
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Since i have a keggle i figured i would just drill the skirt and use a toggle bolt to hook up the ground wire separately.

What switchcraft plugs are you talking about? Proper NEMA plugs and receptacles are like $15. A cheaper connector would change the equation significantly.

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Old 02-20-2013, 09:20 PM   #7
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http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f170/swi...option-369044/
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Old 02-21-2013, 02:48 AM   #8
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My elements are hard wired into my control panel, so when I occasionally need to tear down my rig to move it, i just remove the elements from the kettle and hlt. Have taken them in and out probably 30 times and have no leak issues or anything. Just remove to locknut on the inside, takes like 5 seconds.

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Old 02-21-2013, 04:23 AM   #9
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So you don't have a welded locknut at all? Just the element installed in a hole, with a locknut and some kind of seal? The seal that came with the element or some other silicone oring?

I thought I would have to weld a 1" stainless lock nut to be my kettle, and then screw the element into that so that the included seal bottoms on the nut. If all I have to do is drill a 1 1/4" hole, that's a lot easier.

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Old 02-21-2013, 08:29 AM   #10
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You're probably going to need at least one 1.5" ID stainless shim as well. To help compress the seal.

http://www.theelectricbrewery.com/heating-elements

http://www.ebay.com/itm/150998508305...84.m1555.l2649

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