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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > DIY Projects > Kettles, Mash Tuns, & Hot Liquor Tanks > Sight Glass ?s
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Old 02-02-2010, 02:37 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by KiltedCorpse View Post
I just ordered some of these polypropylene o-ring compression elbows from US Plastics and some polycarbonate tube from mcmaster.

We'll see how they work. Way better price than swagelocks.


http://www.usplastic.com/catalog/item.aspx?itemid=23261
No doubt the price is right, but you'll need to be extremely careful with overheating. Most people have quite a bit of heat coming up the sides of the vessel and many of my past customers have had issues with boiling liquid inside the fitting and tube. Heat shields should be part of your design from day one.


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Old 02-03-2010, 12:50 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by Bobby_M View Post
No doubt the price is right, but you'll need to be extremely careful with overheating. Most people have quite a bit of heat coming up the sides of the vessel and many of my past customers have had issues with boiling liquid inside the fitting and tube. Heat shields should be part of your design from day one.
That would be true with these or swageloks. Though the swageloks wouldn't melt, buy the time you hit the melting point of the polypropylene, you'd already have boiling going on in your tube no matter what fitting you were using. A heat shield would be needed no matter what fitting you use if you are going propane. I'm going electric, so I won't have the heat issue.


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Old 02-03-2010, 02:30 AM   #13
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I'm not saying that boiling the liquid in the fitting is the bad part, it's the overheating. You can get away with having the stainless fitting hit 250F (which is the limit on the polycarbonate). You'd hope that the boil in there would pull enough heat to keep from going over 212F, but it's not enough volume to do that.

I think it's a great, inexpensive solution for electrically fired vessels for sure. Maybe not so much for direct fired, unless you're careful.
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Old 02-03-2010, 10:37 PM   #14
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are you pluging the top of the sight glass wth anything or do you leave it open to alow the air to escape?
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Old 02-03-2010, 10:44 PM   #15
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You need to leave it open so the liquid travels up the tube. Think of a straw with your finger on it. Dunk it in liquid and that air is still trapped in the straw until you release your finger.
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Old 02-03-2010, 10:49 PM   #16
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I almost ordered up a sight glass this week for my boil kettle, but after thinking about it for a bit, I decided I didn't want to take the chance of the high heat screwing with it.
Instead, I'm going to put markings on my 42" SS mash paddle and just use it as a dip stick. I'm still using a sight glass on the MLT, just not the boil kettle.
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Old 02-04-2010, 03:27 AM   #17
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Default sight guage

I am starting my keggle and for my sight glass I am wondering.

Should I weld a half inch T to my keggle, or should I weld in a coupling and then use a half inch nipple and then T.

The problem is I would like to have the coupling so I am not stuck with the T if I decide it doesn't work, but then I am worried with the coupling setup that my sight glass will far off the keg.

I am using the T for a thermocouple setup.
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Old 02-04-2010, 03:31 AM   #18
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I agree that coupling, nipple, tee, thermo would be far off the keg. You're better off with two couplings.
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Old 02-10-2010, 08:32 PM   #19
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I found an art glass shop in my town. Went down on my lunch break. Came away with 6 18" Pyrex tubes, which they cut to 18" for me, and torched the ends for $19.50. I was only going to get the 3 I need, but since it was so inexpensive I got 3 spares. They are 9.5mm OD tubes, with a really thick wall... probably 1/8". They fit the 3/8" Swagelok elbows I found on eBay perfectly.

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Old 01-31-2011, 04:00 AM   #20
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is there much of a danger of sightglass tubing breaking, especially due to propane burner heat running up the sides of a keggle? i'm debating on if i want to install them in my kegs i'm currently cutting up, but haven't decided on it yet


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