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Old 01-27-2010, 02:12 AM   #1
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Default Whats an appropriate wattage element for this RIMS vessel?

Is it a RIMS vessel, boiler, tube? anyway. So I have a few of these gems, there are SS filter housings I bought from a medical surplus store. I thought it would make a great RIMS, hopback etc. It measures 4" dia x 12" long. I figured I'd mount the element in the removable end and weld 1/2" FNPT fittings along one side (in typical RIMS fashion). There is a threaded port on the "closed" end that I think will work for the temp sensor. On major question I have is about the volume of this thing. It's much larger in diameter than the ones other HBT'ers have been making with pipe. So is this vessel better or less suited for a RIMS and do I choose a heating element based on my wants for the system or do I need to compensate for the larger volume?


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Old 01-27-2010, 01:48 PM   #2
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I think you could go with a normal low-density 2000 watt element and adjust for the volume increase by lowering your flow rate just a bit. I wouldn't be too concerned about even heating since the constricted outlets will cause a good deal of turbulence. Now the better question is "what 'medical fluids' were stored in that thing." Wash, rinse, repeat.

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Old 01-27-2010, 02:00 PM   #3
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That looks pretty dang nice man!

The volume of flow is going to affect heat transfer more than the static volume of the heat exchanger. I'm running 4500W in my HEX right now with out any issues. It was overheating and boiling the contents but that was my fault, the feedback probe was to0 far up stream and wouldn't catch the over shoot. With that said, I am VERY happy with 4500W, as I can do step mashes now just using the HEX.

I wouldn't use more than 4500W, not for scorching issues but because 4500W is plenty.

On the other end of the spectrum, 1200W is enough if you are well insulated and patient

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Old 01-27-2010, 02:01 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pickles View Post
On major question I have is about the volume of this thing. It's much larger in diameter than the ones other HBT'ers have been making with pipe. So is this vessel better or less suited for a RIMS
It's a cool piece of hardware, but I would think that it's much too big to be an efficient RIMS chamber. I think you'd have to run it really slowly to be effective.
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Old 01-27-2010, 02:02 PM   #5
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Just insulate it really well and slow down your flow rate. Patience = virture. This coming from the BiaB/no-chill guy. ADD sucks for brewing.

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Old 01-27-2010, 02:12 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lustreking View Post
It's a cool piece of hardware, but I would think that it's much too big to be an efficient RIMS chamber. I think you'd have to run it really slowly to be effective.
It's all about heat transfer over time. Just because it is in a bigger container doesn't mean that the element will put in less X watts of heat energy per second compared to a smaller chamber with the same element.

What will affect it is volume in and volume out. A large hex and small hex will have approx the same temp delta as long as wattage and flow rates are equal.
The one thing that will affect efficiency is the extra surface area of the larger unit. This can be addressed with insulation.


pickles, I'd say go 4500W if you can
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Old 01-27-2010, 03:00 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CodeRage View Post
It's all about heat transfer over time. Just because it is in a bigger container doesn't mean that the element will put in less X watts of heat energy per second compared to a smaller chamber with the same element.

What will affect it is volume in and volume out. A large hex and small hex will have approx the same temp delta as long as wattage and flow rates are equal.
The one thing that will affect efficiency is the extra surface area of the larger unit. This can be addressed with insulation.


pickles, I'd say go 4500W if you can
Would he need all that power if he is simply recirculating to maintain the MLT temperature?
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Old 01-27-2010, 03:05 PM   #8
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Thanks CodeRage!!! Thats all I wanted to hear. 4500W here I come. I need to find one of the chrome Camco heating elements that is about 11" long. Now you mentioned the sensor being too far away, if I put mine in that threaded port on the closed end will it be in an appropriate location? Remeber it's 12" end to end.

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Old 01-27-2010, 03:24 PM   #9
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Sawdustguy,
Nah, the duty cycle will bump way down to maintain temps.
To maintain temps you could switch one of the legs of the element to Neutral, making it a 1250W element. This will reduce the 20 amps draw on one leg and 10 amps on the other. You won't necessarily be conserving power but you will open up some amperage for the service if you wanted to start heating up the BK or HLT if your current budget is tight. It would require a second PID controller or some logic in a BCS/Brewtroller (don't know how flexible these devices are...).

Pickles,
It's hard to tell where you are going to locate everything.
I would locate the element at the base of the container. One reason is to eliminate extra potential leaks around the element. If it is in the cap you risk the threads leaking or the sanitary fitting leaking.
How do you plan to mount it, horizontal or vertical?

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Old 01-27-2010, 04:04 PM   #10
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I have a Brewtroller for control and a 50A GFCI supplying the rig. I don't know how the Brewtroller would control it, but I'm sure it can do it. Why do you think the risk of leaking would increase if its in the lid, just curious? If I mount it in the closed end I assume I'd put the sensor in the lid then? I can mount it either way, but thought horizontal would be better, eliminate the risk of element not being submerged?

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