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Old 01-11-2012, 06:40 PM   #21
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Yes, I'd like to make parts of it electric, such as the boil and the hlt. But, we're trying to get our fed paperwork sent in the next week or so, and they require you to list all of you energy usage (3 x 200K BTU burners, etc). If we can file an amendment after we get the license, then I might do that.

We're going to buy a few Stout brand conicals. Probably a few 55gals, and one or two 80 gal.

Can you give me a few more of your systems specs such as element wattage, how many elements, heating times and temps.

Thanks.
We run two 5000 watt elements
It takes about 50 min to heat 40 gallons from 100 f to 180 f
The routine is fairly standard
Heat water for the mash for 50-60 min while getting grain organized
Mash in and then heat sparge water in 50 min and pump to HLT
Sparge and pump to BK when kettle gets about 20 gallons turn on the BK and
By the time the sparge is over the kettle has been boiling for a few minutes.
BTW we start with 100 f water because we run a household wood fired domestic water system which is plumbed into the brewery. You can see the build at

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f51/squam-lakes-brewery-pictures-144764/

I will post some new pictures of the new rig. One comment about the new system is the tilting MT is very good but the real winner is to be able to tilt the BK for cleaning ( this is very important when you have an electric setup )
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Old 01-11-2012, 06:56 PM   #22
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Conicals

We run 42 gallon conicals and have resisted going bigger because we feel that the heat of fermentation would get difficult to control without adding a control system of some kind. 50 gallons ….OK… but for 80 gallons I think you need something to cool things down at least during the first 1-3 days depending upon the yeast and what your brewing.
By sticking with all the same conical size (6 currently) you have a better chance to have a repeatable brew. When you’re selling your beer you are held to a much higher level than when home brewing where a little variance might even be appreciated.

Fed paper work ….. can take months so get it right the first time.
We made one change to the permit after we were up and running (expanded the size) and it took 8 months.

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Old 01-12-2012, 12:27 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by Boar Beer

We run two 5000 watt elements
It takes about 50 min to heat 40 gallons from 100 f to 180 f
The routine is fairly standard
Heat water for the mash for 50-60 min while getting grain organized
Mash in and then heat sparge water in 50 min and pump to HLT
Sparge and pump to BK when kettle gets about 20 gallons turn on the BK and
By the time the sparge is over the kettle has been boiling for a few minutes.
BTW we start with 100 f water because we run a household wood fired domestic water system which is plumbed into the brewery. You can see the build at

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f51/squam-lakes-brewery-pictures-144764/

I will post some new pictures of the new rig. One comment about the new system is the tilting MT is very good but the real winner is to be able to tilt the BK for cleaning ( this is very important when you have an electric setup )
Those are pretty good times for electric in that size. I think I'd have to use 3 elements in the liquor tank to get comparable Times, as we'd be heating 60 or so gal. ever heard of an element higher than 5500w that's still single phase capable?
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Old 01-12-2012, 12:46 PM   #24
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Conicals

We run 42 gallon conicals and have resisted going bigger because we feel that the heat of fermentation would get difficult to control without adding a control system of some kind. 50 gallons ….OK… but for 80 gallons I think you need something to cool things down at least during the first 1-3 days depending upon the yeast and what your brewing.
By sticking with all the same conical size (6 currently) you have a better chance to have a repeatable brew. When you’re selling your beer you are held to a much higher level than when home brewing where a little variance might even be appreciated.

Fed paper work ….. can take months so get it right the first time.
We made one change to the permit after we were up and running (expanded the size) and it took 8 months.
We'll be making fermentation chambers for the larger ones to try and solve the extra heat problem. Hopefully they work ok.

You kept brewing while waiting to get the paperwork back, right?
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Old 01-12-2012, 01:03 PM   #25
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Yes, we keep running as normal while we waited for the new paper work

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Old 01-16-2012, 04:25 PM   #26
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I built a 1BBL system almost exactly as you described. I use 200K BTU jet burners with Honeywell electronic ignition and Auber Instruments PID's. The control panel is a gas modification of the panel featured at The Electric Brewery. I have 35 gal Blichmann Boilermaker's for the MLT and HLT with a 55 gal for the Boil Kettle. To heat water faster I just plumbed a hot water supply line from my home hot water heater. It only takes around 30 minutes to heat the 125 degree hot water to 155-170 degrees. To "soften" the direct fired MLT, I raised the MLT off of the frame 3 inches to reduce the heat. I have had no scorching problems after 4 batches. In addition I can heat the 150-165 wort to boil in my kettle in around 40-50 minutes, but I ignite the burner early in the sparge cycle to expedite the process. Finally, I fuel the system with tandem 40lb LP tanks plumbed in series. After 4 batches the tanks are only about half to 2/3 empty. As far as electric is concerned, you would have issues as well as it would likely take 50 plus amps to feed the multiple 5-6K watt elements required to heat such volumes. I calculated the feasibility of going electric, and the heating times were very similar with common residential elements. I cant remember the specific amp requirements, but it was large. You would need industrial elements, and 230-440 service to really shorten the time. I have attached pictures of my build for your review.
1st - Beautiful looking system.

Q./ Did you weld in a whirlpool port into the 55gal boil kettle? I'm about to order a 55gal Blichman but really want to be able to whirlpool via pump.

I too supplement the HLT with hot water from the home tank. Saves a lot of propane. My plan was to use a 55gal HLT and a 55gal BK . Today I'm using keggles and 26gal MT with a 4in (non-jet) burner. The mash holds plenty of heat so the burners rarely turn on. The pilot flame seems to almost be enough.
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Old 01-16-2012, 06:05 PM   #27
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Those are pretty good times for electric in that size. I think I'd have to use 3 elements in the liquor tank to get comparable Times, as we'd be heating 60 or so gal. ever heard of an element higher than 5500w that's still single phase capable?
We had Brewmation size and design the controls. Not sure about bigger heating elements. I have see on this site guys with three elements in one kettle. I think it was a 1.5 bbl rig
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Old 01-16-2012, 06:06 PM   #28
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GT Brewer and Landshark67

Why do you whirlpool? If your doing 30-40 gallon batches then I would think you are using conicals. Why not go strait to the conical and avoid running your cooling wort round and round giving it a chance to get infected. You save time and after filling the conical you can drain off the unwanted stuff.

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Old 01-17-2012, 01:38 PM   #29
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GT Brewer and Landshark67

Why do you whirlpool? If your doing 30-40 gallon batches then I would think you are using conicals. Why not go strait to the conical and avoid running your cooling wort round and round giving it a chance to get infected. You save time and after filling the conical you can drain off the unwanted stuff.
I plan on using a whirlpool. I'd say one advantage is that if you use a heat exchanger to cool the wort, you can whirlpool before sending it through, therefore reducing the amount of time to clean the heat exchanger. They're tough to clean if you send all that trub through. Also, there's debate over whether or not trub in the fermenter imparts harsh flavors to the beer. I'm thinking it probably affects the finished beer much less, since there'd be less surface area of trub in contact with the beer and the fact that you can dump it just like you mentioned.
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Old 01-17-2012, 01:40 PM   #30
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Originally Posted by Landshark67 View Post
1st - Beautiful looking system.

Q./ Did you weld in a whirlpool port into the 55gal boil kettle? I'm about to order a 55gal Blichman but really want to be able to whirlpool via pump.

I too supplement the HLT with hot water from the home tank. Saves a lot of propane. My plan was to use a 55gal HLT and a 55gal BK . Today I'm using keggles and 26gal MT with a 4in (non-jet) burner. The mash holds plenty of heat so the burners rarely turn on. The pilot flame seems to almost be enough.
Do you constantly recirculate the mash?
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