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Old 03-31-2009, 03:19 PM   #1
paledragon
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Aug 2008
Bridgewater, MA
Posts: 113
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based on the copious amounts of information here, as well as the permission of SWMBO, i've started to build an electric HERMS system so that i can ditch propane.

i started out building a control box with all the stuff on the "front" of the box. but having borderline OCD when it comes to cable and wire management (as well as being sure all the wiring was secure and attached after closing it), i decided to start over and install everything on the side panels.

it's pretty much the standard stuff others use:
- auber PID and RTD
- omega 25 amp SSR with integral heatsink
- 1500w 120V heater element
- 100 rpm AC gearmotor, coupler, and impeller from mcmaster
- 3 pole distribution block
- 12 or 14 gauge THHN internal wiring
- 20 amp SPST switches for the element, march pump, and mixer

working on the MLT manifold right now. kinda pissed that one of the lights came out off center on the box, but that's what you get for working late into the night in the middle of the week.






 
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Old 03-31-2009, 04:57 PM   #2
jcdillin
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Mar 2008
Miami, FL
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Looks like a great start, you get that gearmotor from mcmaster?
__________________
Current Rig
4.5KW E-HLT
5.5KW E-Kettle
MasterFlex Peristaltic Primary Pump
March Secondary Pump
Therminator for Chilling

Planned
Automated Grain Drop
Automated Hop Dropper


System controlled via BrewTroller

 
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Old 03-31-2009, 05:01 PM   #3
The Pol
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Feb 2007
Posts: 11,454
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Where did you get the CRAZY idea of creating an electric HERMS? Wow... that will never work. People have always used propane, that is the ONLY way, electricity will kill you man!

Looks nice.

 
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Old 03-31-2009, 05:25 PM   #4
paledragon
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Aug 2008
Bridgewater, MA
Posts: 113
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jcdillin View Post
Looks like a great start, you get that gearmotor from mcmaster?
yeah. those things are a fantastic find for the price. i plan on adding one to the HLT (obviously), but also another one with a turbine impeller for cooling down the wort after a boil. i'm planning on plumbing the outlet of the immersion chiller into the septic tank drain where the washing machine is. at least for me, chilling the wort is the biggest PITA part of a brew day. this'll make it much easier.

p.d.

 
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Old 04-06-2009, 02:14 AM   #5
paledragon
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Aug 2008
Bridgewater, MA
Posts: 113
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another weekend, more progress. next step will be to build some kind of frame to mount everything on so i can free up my ping pong table again.

had to replace the SS braid with a manifold:





leak testing:



i was able to get 15-17' feet of 1/2" copper tubing into the 2 gallon cooler. i have the RTD probe on a tee on the outlet. all i could find was a 1/4" NPT in 1/2" pipe fitting, so i used copper bond to epoxy the fitting on. seems to have worked pretty well:



i'll probably try and add a bulkhead and valve to the heat exchange sometime soon to facilitate draining it.

p.d.

 
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Old 04-06-2009, 02:25 AM   #6
The Pol
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Feb 2007
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Looks nice! Keep it up!

 
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Old 05-24-2009, 03:29 PM   #7
paledragon
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Aug 2008
Bridgewater, MA
Posts: 113
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can't believe i started this in march. thought for sure i'd be done already. built the brew stand. piped and mounted everything. had the electrician install 20 amp 120 V and 30 amp 240 volt GFI outlets. i still need to build the HLT control box, install the heater element in it, and put a sight glass on it. gotta work out the HEX return through the cooler lid as well. after that, i'll tackle an electric boil kettle project.

i installed a low point drain for completely draining the system (except for whatever gets trapped in the HEX coil), and also because i plan on batch sparging.

i had planned on gravity feeding from an elevated HLT to the mash tun, but decided to build an inlet manifold instead so i can use one pump for everything.

all the tubing is secured with cable ties, and tightened with one of these:

McMaster-Carr cable tie gun

we use them in the lab to secure tubing on hose barbs. as long as you use the right size cable tie, i've never had a leak.

from left to right: HLT, mash tun, 1.5 gallon 1500 watt heat exchanger






 
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Old 05-24-2009, 05:09 PM   #8
bruin_ale
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May 2009
Campbell, CA
Posts: 1,436
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Very nice.. So this is actually a RIMS right? You're using the 2 gallon cooler as the HEX and the gott cooler is the HLT, with the rectangular being the MLT, right?

Okay, just answered my own question, saw your description just above the picture.

 
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Old 05-24-2009, 05:11 PM   #9
bruin_ale
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May 2009
Campbell, CA
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You have a part number on the motor?

 
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Old 05-24-2009, 05:27 PM   #10
The Pol
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Feb 2007
Posts: 11,454
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Nice HERMS man... the motor is probably the 100 or 150 RPM AC Gear Motor from McMaster. YOU CAN pick up those motors for HALF the McMaster price as some other online stores, according to a buddy of mine.

 
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