Kegconnection Complete Starter Kit and More Giveaway!


Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing > Hot Water Tank - any ideas?

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 08-04-2008, 03:14 PM   #1
AN_TKE
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Kennebunk, ME
Posts: 92
Default Hot Water Tank - any ideas?

I have built and been using a rubbermaid cooler reterofitted with a hot water heater element and I can't seem to stop water from leaking out of the bottom - can't seal the element to the bottom of the tank. I have made SS plates, caulked the crap out of it and then covered it with a food-grade, high temp epoxy. I can't imagine how water is still getting through, but after using if a bunch of times a new leak has developed and i'm ready to try another water heating strategy.

Does anyone use electricity to heat their water instead of propane? It is definately more convenient and less costly, but the actual hot water heater may require more thought.

My next attempt may be an all SS tank with a coupling in the bottom to receive the element, but I can't figure out what size/type of coupling. Has anyone figured out what can be used for a coupling to thread a water heater into it? I'd like to avoid using the element mounting piece that can be purchased because it isn't SS and it also presents a further problem of sealing that piece to the tank.

Any other ideas?

Thanks!

__________________
AN_TKE is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-04-2008, 03:45 PM   #2
Vagrant
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Vagrant's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: A Marriott near you
Posts: 132
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts
Likes Given: 1

Default

What if you put water in your cooler close to the top, dyed it with red food coloring, and submersed it in 3 or 4 inches of water. Where you see the dye leak out, that's where your leak is.

__________________
Vagrant is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-04-2008, 03:50 PM   #3
GilaMinumBeer
In yo' garage, steelin' yo parts.
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
GilaMinumBeer's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Oblivion
Posts: 47,119
Liked 4638 Times on 4319 Posts
Likes Given: 57

Default

Google HERMS and RIMS. You could even try "Electric HLT" and get some good hits.

Lot's of people have converted Sankes to electric tuns with great success.

__________________
GilaMinumBeer is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-04-2008, 10:47 PM   #4
WBC
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
WBC's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: La Puente, CA, California
Posts: 2,175
Liked 8 Times on 8 Posts

Default

If you are not sealing entirely on the inside liner it will always leak badly. If you are sealing on the inner liner there must be something wrong with the seal.

__________________

Cheers,
WBC

Fermentor 1: Bill's House Ale II, Fermentor 2: German Helles, Fermentor 3: Bill's Schworzbier (Black Bier)
Tap 1: Bill's House Ale II, Tap 2: German Hefewizen, Tap 3: Nut Brown Ale
Future Brews: Stone IPA Clone, Blonde Ale, Budvar Clone, Newcastle Clone
New toy: Blichmann 27 gallon fermentor


“If you find yourself in a hole, the first thing to do is stop digging”

“Good judgment comes from experience, and a lotta that comes from bad judgment”

WBC is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-05-2008, 07:24 AM   #5
Kauai_Kahuna
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Hawaii
Posts: 2,280
Liked 7 Times on 7 Posts

Default

I would use dye to check where it leaking from, personally I like green dye, I blame it on my Irish blood.
I was freaking out over the same issue, then I realized that the leaks were coming from the outgoing pipe and wicking up to form the drips. Adding some plumbers tape on the inside seal and outside seal fixed it. Now the only leaks I get is when I forget to close the valve.
(Don't laugh, it happens a lot).

__________________

---
In Primary: Belgium Chimay clones.
In Secondary: Braggot, pale ale, end of the world white.
Conditioning: Mead, Cider, braggot, Belgium Wheat.
On Tap: Clones, Chimay Blue, Red, Porter, malted cider.
Bottles: Far, far, too many to list.

Kauai_Kahuna is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-05-2008, 02:16 PM   #6
MrNate
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Bridgewater, NJ
Posts: 822
Liked 15 Times on 8 Posts

Default

I have a stainless kettle that I converted to an HLT. I got a SS 1/2 coupling from McMaster and soldered it on, then made a SS box out of sheet to keep the connections dry. Not pretty but it works.

Going off of memory I think it was a 1" NPT, and it works like a charm, no leaks whatsoever.



Edit: I don't know if it makes a difference, but I used a 2000w 120v element I picked up at Home Depot.

__________________
MrNate is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-05-2008, 11:37 PM   #7
AN_TKE
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Kennebunk, ME
Posts: 92
Default

Thanks for the replies. I am damn sure the leak is coming through the hole in the bottom of the tank. The water finds a way and the heating/cooling exaserbates the problem. I elevate the tank on a couple of blocks during heating and can see water (and smoke) drip out the bottom. No die necessary - I just need a way to have positive shutoff.

Like MrNate did, i will probably end up with a ss vessel instead of the rubbermaid. Weld the ol' girl and use a correctly sized coupling to seal the pig off.

Kauai - is your tank ss or other?

Anyone else have some 1st hand experience to share? A design perhaps?

__________________
AN_TKE is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-06-2008, 01:46 AM   #8
Amiaji
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Denver, NC
Posts: 292
Liked 4 Times on 3 Posts

Default

Check out this link.

http://powersbrewery.com/

He has plans and instructions for an electric HLT.

__________________
A Keezer is Born

Beer is for drinking,
Homebrew is for sharing.
Amiaji is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-06-2008, 02:30 AM   #9
Bob_E
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Southern Michigan
Posts: 52
Default

you could try one of those heatsticks, but it sounds like you might need a new cooler.
http://hbd.org/pcalinsk/HeatStk3.htm
http://www.cedarcreeknetworks.com/heatstick.htm
never built or used one myself...

__________________

"Hey guys... I don't think sitting on a rooftop drinking ram's piss is the way to go."

Bob_E is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 08-06-2008, 03:44 PM   #10
MrNate
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Bridgewater, NJ
Posts: 822
Liked 15 Times on 8 Posts

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by AN_TKE View Post
Anyone else have some 1st hand experience to share? A design perhaps?
The one thing I did that I have really found useful is that I made a plug so that it was modular in a sense. I ran a waterproof power cord about 2' long from the box on the HLT to a 20a plug - the kind that's designed to mate with a waterproof recepticle so when they plug together the whole assembly is sealed off. I think they use these in marine docking applications.

Anyway, it's pricey, but it makes breakdown and cleaning a whole lot easier. Plus it then allows me to plug any other heating device that draws less than 20a into my HLT temp controller. Which is useful, for example, for plugging in a crock pot and maintaining a perfect sour mash. On the flip side, if the controller were to go bad I could always run an extension cord from the HLT to a switched 20a wall outlet and control the cycle manually.

You can kind of see what I mean in this shot of the controller - the power recepticle is at the end of the yellow power cord on the right: http://i230.photobucket.com/albums/ee226/nutkeis/Brewing/IMG_0949.jpg

Here's the 1/2 coupling poorly soldered on. You can see the crock pot I use for sour mashing in the background:
http://i230.photobucket.com/albums/ee226/nutkeis/Brewing/IMG_0962.jpg
__________________
MrNate is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Reply


Quick Reply
Message:
Options
Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
water heater hot water tank? Pimp Juice Equipment/Sanitation 10 10-23-2011 06:37 AM
water tank -> brew kettle dantose DIY Projects 15 08-24-2009 07:07 PM
Hot Water Tank burner assembly w/pilot & Temp Control. bmckee56 DIY Projects 7 08-24-2009 12:08 PM
hot water tank Mike G All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing 10 10-05-2007 05:37 AM
Hot water tank as a brew pot....? kenmc DIY Projects 4 03-31-2007 09:34 PM