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-   -   BCS-460, is it worth it? (http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f51/bcs-460-worth-170667/)

jbell71464 03-29-2010 02:58 AM

BCS-460, is it worth it?
 
I am looking to build my first brew system that has automation. It seems like this would work exceptionally well. Anyone have any thoughts? Good or bad?
http://www.embeddedcontrolconcepts.com/index.html
Thanks

samc 03-29-2010 03:16 AM

excellent device, very easy to use and love the on screen display.

passedpawn 03-29-2010 03:20 AM

I've looked at it lustfully many times. But I just can't picture me controlling my gear with a computer. I am a techy nerd type, but this is one place I don't want the PC. I brew outside, too, so it is not a good fit for me.

I reserve the right to change my mind someday (like tomorrow).

diatonic 03-29-2010 03:58 AM

I'm with passedpawn on this one. I've considered a dedicated computer for my rig - industrial type... but don't like the thought of needing an IP stack where I brew. I'm leaning more toward the brewtroller. Occasionally I brew away from home and don't want to deal with setting up the network for the BCS-460.

I also reserve the right to change my mind :mug:

It does look really cool.

willynilly 03-29-2010 04:21 AM

I love it...

Is it worth it? If you are OK with controlling your brew rig with your computer and have an internet connection available... YES. You cannot get the BCS functionality anwhere else, for less...

Here is my control box, this is all there is to the control side of my rig.
http://i837.photobucket.com/albums/z...6/P1030937.jpg

It allows for a very clean interface... you see nothing.
http://i837.photobucket.com/albums/z...w/P1030940.jpg

No control panel, no switches, no PIDs, nothing... just a 12" x 12" box

passedpawn 03-29-2010 11:24 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by willynilly (Post 1973415)
I love it...

Is it worth it? If you are OK with controlling your brew rig with your computer and have an internet connection available... YES. You cannot get the BCS functionality anwhere else, for less...

Here is my control box, this is all there is to the control side of my rig.

It allows for a very clean interface... you see nothing.

No control panel, no switches, no PIDs, nothing... just a 12" x 12" box

That is clean. There's even wireless power to your electric pot and wireless motors. :)

That's a fine rig willy. Really.

Ohio-Ed 03-29-2010 01:07 PM

I am in the process of building a BCS controlled all electric rig.
My BCS is configured to run wirelessly, but unlike Willy, I also have a control panel.
I have manual override switches for each element and pump. I also have an E-stop (big red button) on the panel.

My thought progression has been; I started with a regular glass thermometer then wanted something easer to read... Went to digital thermometers, then wanted to be able to react to the temps... Went to PID's, then wanted them to interact and be able to log data. I was back and forth between the BCS and the Brewtroller. My plan was to purchase each and learn to use them before building one into my rig. At the time, I had problems locating all the components needed to put the Brewtroller together, so never got one ordered.

The BCS is less challenging to implement technically, but probably a little less flexible than the Brewtroller.

So is it worth it... depends on what you are comparing it to and what features you need. It has 4 build in PIDs, which alone is probably worth the $187 price. But if you only ever see yourself needing one PID, then it may be overkill for your application.

Ed

p4ck37p1mp 03-29-2010 01:29 PM

I love my BCS, opens Asco valves, turns pumps on and off, runs the RIMS heat exchanger, its almost limitless what you can do in terms of adding expansion modules, custom interface work, etc.

cyberbackpacker 03-29-2010 03:57 PM

:ban::ban::ban:

It is a great tool; for electric brewing I think it makes the most sense economically. Additionally, I use it to control my two ferm chambers and my kegerator, and each ferm chamber can heat and cool.

The thing that is nice about it is that you can use it in a very simple control part of your brew, or you can use it to get to a fully automated brew.

Oh, and an internet connection is not needed, but a computer is. You can connect using cat-5 ethernet cable between the BCS-460 and your computer (although having the capability to use it on your network or set up wirelessly is very nice).

I try and have as much of my equipment be multi-use, so my dollar goes farther. The BCS-460 is one such piece of equipment.

Cliff897 03-29-2010 05:04 PM

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