Spike Brewing 12.5 Conical Fermenter Giveaway - Enter Now!

Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > DIY Projects > electric brewing question

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 03-08-2010, 05:09 PM   #1
chainsawbrewing
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
chainsawbrewing's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Indianapolis,IN
Posts: 1,290
Liked 38 Times on 31 Posts
Likes Given: 8

Default electric brewing question

i've been reading a crap ton on electric brewing over the last week. lot's of information!

i've seen people build a box, control center if you will, that holds the pid, and the ssr, usually a couple switches to be able to completely cut the power to the elements if needed. also looks like a 120v lead goes from an outlet somewhere else, into this control center/box with two or four gfci plugs, to power up the pid and ssr, and/or a mixing paddle, etc.

also most of the set ups i've seen have a female 220v plug in in the wall somewhere, then from that they have a dryer plug plugged into it, and then the end of that plug also runs into this control center/build box, and they will have another female 220v dryer plug in the side of the box, for plugging in your element. i'm "assuming" that this is just done as a sort of extension, so that you don't have to have a really long wire from your elements to reach over to the wall, and also i would assume it's done so you can have a switch wired to kill the power to the element if needed?

what i can't figure out is, i haven't seen one of these controller boxes with two female 240v outlets on them, however i've seen them set up with a dual element set up, one for the BK and one for the HLT.

are people just plugging in the HLT element, and then when they're ready to boil, turn off the HLT element, unplug it, then plug in the BK element to the same female 240v plug in, turn it on, and boil?

does anyone have a set up with two seperate plug ins, where you can have your HLT element, and BK element both on at the same time, or at least not have to unplug one to plug in the other?

i would assume if someone does have a set up like this, you would have to have two seperate 240v 30a power sources, one for each element, right?

__________________
Quote:
Originally Posted by shecky View Post
I love you. No, seriously, I think I have a man-crush on you. Smooches. :p

my bar build

Last edited by chainsawbrewing; 03-08-2010 at 05:13 PM.
chainsawbrewing is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 03-08-2010, 06:25 PM   #2
passedpawn
Waste Allocation Load Lifter - Earth Class
HBT_MODERATOR.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
passedpawn's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: ☼ Clearwater, FL ☼
Posts: 18,589
Liked 3184 Times on 1990 Posts
Likes Given: 2713

Default WARNING: Ghetto Build Follows...

[edit] I re-designed and repackaged my controller: see this thread: http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f170/240vac-toolbox-control-panel-pics-184296/

2 240VAC 30A outlets on right side of box.

This should work. It is almost what I have now, except I was stupid and bought thermocouples instead of thermistors. The thermocouples get all screwed up through the switch. I think the thermistors will work fine, though. I can only run 1 element at a time due to my 30A limit, so this is why I used the single PID and switch to select.

Click on pics for bigger version.



__________________
What Would Vermeer Paint?
passedpawn is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 03-08-2010, 06:26 PM   #3
Bobby_M
Vendor and Brewer
HBT_SPONSOR.png
Vendor Ads 
Feedback Score: 2 reviews
 
Bobby_M's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Whitehouse Station, NJ
Posts: 21,917
Liked 945 Times on 631 Posts
Likes Given: 28

Default

The reason you'd have a plug/outlet connection between the element and control panel is if you want to move your vessel out to the driveway to hose it out etc, without having to disconnect hard wiring.

__________________
BrewHardware.com
Sightglass, Refractometer, Ball Valve, Weldless bulkhead, Thermometer, Decals, Stainless Steel Fittings, Compression Fittings, Camlock Quick Disconnects, Scale, RIMS tube, Plate Chiller, Chugger Pump, Super Clear Silicone Tubing, and more!

New Stuff?
Bobby_M is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 03-08-2010, 06:43 PM   #4
chainsawbrewing
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
chainsawbrewing's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Indianapolis,IN
Posts: 1,290
Liked 38 Times on 31 Posts
Likes Given: 8

Default

passedpawn, thanks a lot. you helped clear up my questions. what's the white female receptical in the bottom of your panel for?

do you have any photos of the inside of your panel also?

your set up looks like what i'd like to emulate, and i'm sure i'll be able to eventually. still doing a lot of reading, and learning right now, but i like the set up of one pid, being able to switch which element is on without having to unplug/plug in cords.


i assume the switch on the left that just says "on/off" kills power completely to the entire box? or does it just kill power to the elements? and also i assume you're using the same 220v lead into the box to also power your pump and pid, ssr, etc? i assume that because i don't see any other leads into the box other than the grey dryer wire coming in from the bottom. i figured you'd need another 120v lead to power the pid, ssr, pump, etc. didn't know one 220v lead would power a 5500w element, and the pump, pid, ssr, etc. all at once.

__________________
Quote:
Originally Posted by shecky View Post
I love you. No, seriously, I think I have a man-crush on you. Smooches. :p

my bar build
chainsawbrewing is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 03-08-2010, 08:13 PM   #5
Walker
I use secondaries. :p
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Walker's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Cary, NC
Posts: 11,235
Liked 85 Times on 77 Posts
Likes Given: 11

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by chainsawbrewing View Post
passedpawn, thanks a lot. you helped clear up my questions. what's the white female receptical in the bottom of your panel for?

do you have any photos of the inside of your panel also?

your set up looks like what i'd like to emulate, and i'm sure i'll be able to eventually. still doing a lot of reading, and learning right now, but i like the set up of one pid, being able to switch which element is on without having to unplug/plug in cords.


i assume the switch on the left that just says "on/off" kills power completely to the entire box? or does it just kill power to the elements? and also i assume you're using the same 220v lead into the box to also power your pump and pid, ssr, etc? i assume that because i don't see any other leads into the box other than the grey dryer wire coming in from the bottom. i figured you'd need another 120v lead to power the pid, ssr, pump, etc. didn't know one 220v lead would power a 5500w element, and the pump, pid, ssr, etc. all at once.
That 120V receptacle on the bottom would be for his wort pump.

You don't need to feed in separate 120V source if you already have 240V going into the box.

240V service has two 120V hot lines at opposite polarity (giving a total of 240V between them), and it also has a neutral line.

if you tap a connection between one of the hots and the neutral, you get a 120V source.

edit: it's not about how many things you are powering from that main feed, it's about the total amps being drawn. The PID, SSR, and pump draw very little amps (miliamps for the PID and SSR, and maybe 1.5 or 2 amps for the pump.) The only thing really sucking down the juice is the heater element.
__________________
Ground Fault Brewing Co.
Walker is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 03-08-2010, 08:30 PM   #6
illin8
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: South County, RI
Posts: 454
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

Default

The other thing to consider also is that two receptacles running an HLT and BK at the same time require two of everything (PIDs, SSRs, Heatsinks, etc.)...with that comes the added power demand, two (2) 5,500 kw elements running at the same time will pull ~46 amps...with the 80% rule, the circuit should be at least 60amps...with a large 60 amp circuit comes more expensive wiring & everything.

For the limited benefit of running both elements at once, it's easier and manageable to just run one at a time. Plug-in whichever element you want to run and go...

__________________
South County Brewing Co.
Primaries 1 & 2: Apfelwein
Primary 3: EdWort's Haus Pale Ale
Bottle Conditioning: AHS Oktoberfest, Biermuncher's Centennial Blonde

On deck: Nothing (recently moved/working on the laundry list)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Laughing_Gnome_Invisible View Post
Love is not a pink heart on a Hallmark card. It is a curse on mankind in which the male of the species must continually struggle to gain his own happiness by means of satiating the batcrap crazy stupid whims of the lady with the snaky hair.
illin8 is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 03-08-2010, 08:33 PM   #7
Walker
I use secondaries. :p
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Walker's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Cary, NC
Posts: 11,235
Liked 85 Times on 77 Posts
Likes Given: 11

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by illin8 View Post
The other thing to consider also is that two receptacles running an HLT and BK at the same time require two of everything (PIDs, SSRs, Heatsinks, etc.)...
You don't *really* need a PID to control the BK, but yeah.... you end up needing to double a lot of equipment (and get a bigger encolsure... those puppies aren't cheap!)
__________________
Ground Fault Brewing Co.
Walker is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 03-08-2010, 08:33 PM   #8
chainsawbrewing
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
chainsawbrewing's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Indianapolis,IN
Posts: 1,290
Liked 38 Times on 31 Posts
Likes Given: 8

Default

cool. thanks to you too walker.

i would imagine then the main 220v line coming into the project box thingie (forgive my termonology) just goes into a distribution block thing, and then you feed off of that to the two seperate 220v female recepticals, and the 110v female receptical for the pump, with switches in between all of them, and then "hardwire" your pid and ssr to the same distibution block?

distribution block may not be the right term, i'm talking about a thing that has a bunch of screws on it, like you feed it with your main power source, and then have leads off of it to your other "stuff".

__________________
Quote:
Originally Posted by shecky View Post
I love you. No, seriously, I think I have a man-crush on you. Smooches. :p

my bar build
chainsawbrewing is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 03-08-2010, 08:35 PM   #9
Walker
I use secondaries. :p
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Walker's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Cary, NC
Posts: 11,235
Liked 85 Times on 77 Posts
Likes Given: 11

Default

"Distribution block" is the right term, and yeah... you have the right understanding.

edit: SSRs just sit in between distribution block and 240V receptacles.

__________________
Ground Fault Brewing Co.
Walker is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 03-08-2010, 08:36 PM   #10
chainsawbrewing
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
chainsawbrewing's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Indianapolis,IN
Posts: 1,290
Liked 38 Times on 31 Posts
Likes Given: 8

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by illin8 View Post
The other thing to consider also is that two receptacles running an HLT and BK at the same time require two of everything (PIDs, SSRs, Heatsinks, etc.)...with that comes the added power demand, two (2) 5,500 kw elements running at the same time will pull ~46 amps...with the 80% rule, the circuit should be at least 60amps...with a large 60 amp circuit comes more expensive wiring & everything.

For the limited benefit of running both elements at once, it's easier and manageable to just run one at a time. Plug-in whichever element you want to run and go...
thanks, i understand that, i wouldn't see a need to actually run them both at the same time, but still, having two female dryer plug ins, with a switch to power one or the other, but NOT both, you could do away with having to unplug you hlt element, then plug in your BK element, right? you just power the hlt one when you are using it, then when you flip the switch you kill the power to the hlt, then power the element to the BK.
__________________
Quote:
Originally Posted by shecky View Post
I love you. No, seriously, I think I have a man-crush on you. Smooches. :p

my bar build
chainsawbrewing 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
Brewing in a basement question. LP or electric bniesen DIY Projects 7 12-15-2009 05:50 PM
The joy of electric brewing Gussymo DIY Projects 5 03-20-2009 03:21 PM
electric brewing question stevehaun Equipment/Sanitation 4 12-27-2008 08:54 PM
electric brewing kappclark Equipment/Sanitation 9 04-16-2008 08:50 PM
Electric Brewing jacobdaughtry Equipment/Sanitation 41 01-11-2008 08:15 PM