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Old 06-16-2010, 04:21 PM   #1
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Default Need Suggestions for a new 55 gallon system

I have just acquired 4 55 gallon stainless drums. (previous life was maple syrup). I am planning on building a system that will allow me to do double batches to fill a 100 gallon fermentor. I plan to make this system electric.

Here are the questions I have for those with systems of this size:

1. What size fittings, valves and tubing would you suggest?

2. How many 5500w Elements for the boil kettles/ or another type element?

I will be fabricating everything myself. I will be building a PWM circuit to control the kettles and I am not sure how I am going to sparge yet but I will be purchasing two pumps based on what size tubing I will be using.

I have a good Idea what I need, I just want to hear from some people who have brewed on tanks this size what they suggest and what they may have done differently.

Thanks.



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Old 06-16-2010, 04:46 PM   #2
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I would venture a guess and say three if you want to take it to boil in a reasonable amount of time. I would say you would need 90 amps which includes a 20% safety factor. Just curious but what would you do with 100 gallons of beer?



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Old 06-16-2010, 04:57 PM   #3
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We have a similar setup. 100 gallon mash tun, 2 55 gallon drums for boil kettles.

Pump and fittings are mostly 1.5" TriClamps, 1" ID. We go down to 1/2"ID in our HLT and HERMS coil, we also have 1/2" ID for our chiller, which is the chillus convulutus.


1.5" Triclamp with 1" flow all around would probably be more than enough for your system you are building, you could get away with smaller too.

Ours is gas fired, one kettle has 3 turkey fryer burners on, the other has some massive burner on it we found at a local shop.

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Old 06-16-2010, 04:59 PM   #4
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My LHBS sells 3 piece airlocks for $1 each if you need one for this.

JUST KIDDING... I have no input but I'm excited to watch this come together. Good luck!!


Quote:
Originally Posted by Sawdustguy View Post
Just curious but what would you do with 100 gallons of beer?
20 times as much as you'd do with 5 gallons
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Old 06-16-2010, 05:02 PM   #5
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I am building the exact same thing for the most part. I plan on using 2-5500watt elements for my HLT and 3-5500w ULWD elements for the boil kettle with the intention of turning off 1 element once boil is reached. 3 elements in the BK should take less than 30mins to get a boil going. I plan on using a 100A circuit. My question is where do I mount the 3 elements? Do I mount them vertically say 6" apart, or mount them on 3 sides, L+R+Back? I am leaning towards 6"-10" off the bottom at L+R+Back.

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Old 06-16-2010, 05:13 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sawdustguy View Post
. Just curious but what would you do with 100 gallons of beer?
We are opening a taproom. This is going to be our proof of concept system. Our business plan has us doing this on the side and keeping our jobs. Brewing on weekends and serving after work.

The plan is to then get the money we need for a larger system after we can prove people like the beer and their is a market for it. We want to keep the taproom, locally distribute, and attach a homebrew store to it as well. With the hopes of us being able to quit our jobs at that point.

We are getting close. My partner is a lawyer. We have some initial investors to get started but we want to take it slow.
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Old 06-16-2010, 05:15 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ranger9913 View Post
I am building the exact same thing for the most part. I plan on using 2-5500watt elements for my HLT and 3-5500w ULWD elements for the boil kettle with the intention of turning off 1 element once boil is reached. 3 elements in the BK should take less than 30mins to get a boil going. I plan on using a 100A circuit. My question is where do I mount the 3 elements? Do I mount them vertically say 6" apart, or mount them on 3 sides, L+R+Back? I am leaning towards 6"-10" off the bottom at L+R+Back.
I have been thinking about that too. I like the idea of vertical spacing but I do not want to have problems stiring the boil when I add hops. I would rather have everything out of the way if I can.
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Old 06-16-2010, 05:15 PM   #8
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Again, that is our exact plan as well.

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Old 06-16-2010, 05:16 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ranger9913 View Post
I am building the exact same thing for the most part. I plan on using 2-5500watt elements for my HLT and 3-5500w ULWD elements for the boil kettle with the intention of turning off 1 element once boil is reached. 3 elements in the BK should take less than 30mins to get a boil going. I plan on using a 100A circuit. My question is where do I mount the 3 elements? Do I mount them vertically say 6" apart, or mount them on 3 sides, L+R+Back? I am leaning towards 6"-10" off the bottom at L+R+Back.
FWIW, I'm building an electric rig with keggles so much smaller scale. As for placement of elements etc, I kept the sides and back clear. I wanted to be able to set the vessels as close together as possible without interference and minimize the space required behind the rig.

So if the valve on the front is considered 6 o'clock, my site glass is like 4:00, element at 2:00, and temp probe at 10:00. I also kept the electric on the back side so as to minimize splashes and avoid tripping over cords.
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Old 06-16-2010, 05:21 PM   #10
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Right assuming 6 o'clock is the valve my BK would have them at 12:00, 2:00, and 10:00. The HLT would be at 11:00 and 1:00



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