- HLT: converted keg with 55,000 btu propane burner
- Boiler: converted keg with 55,000 btu propane burner
- Mash Tun : Igloo 10 gal with SS false bottom
- Iwaki pump
- 15 plates heat exchanger
- a bunch of valves, copper tubing and so on...
The burners are ref H205 and the false bottom is AG405 12" from morebeer.
My setup is quite basic, lots of manual checks for temperatures, everything is done by hand.
It's working flawlessly, but I must put stay hours to stir, check temps and so on ( basic brewing)
My brewery is almost in parts due to moving across the ocean next month. That why I want to change the setup.
My dream setup:
- MT steam heating
- MT automated temerature control
- MT electric stirrer
- HLT automated temerature control
- solenoid valves instead of mechanical valves
- what more ?
I still don't know how I will build the steam generator.
Will I use a keg... may be to big to start with.
It will surely be electrical heating, gas heating will be a pain for almost no gain here.
I saw 2 gals steam generators for wallpaper removing, all stainless steel and with all safety thingies fitted, like low water level, 45 psi relief pressure...
I should be able to get an used one for 50$.
Too bad, a few months ago I thrown to the bin an old steam generator for professional iron my wife was using.
Even if it was about 1 + 1/2 quart, it shoud have been sufficient for first tries.
It has every safety fitted, but the pressure switch was leaking one more time and she decided to upgrade to a bigger one.
After reading a lot, there and there , this is a draft of what I'd like to setup.
I think I'll use a Pic Micro 18F2550 or 4550 for controlling all the stuff.
It's easy to burn through usb, so it has USB and RS232 connectivity, plenty of ram, and enough eprom to store a few parameters.
It has also enough ports to hook up switches and buttons, temp sensors lm34/lm35 or pt100, and a LCD screen.
I'd like to implement a modular concept on the controller.
I mean, the brewing process would not have to be frozen and could be suited to do anything with any setup.
This means each task will be a sub routine and can be ordered in any way.
The brewing process could be sent to the controller by usb/rs232 and then no need for a computer in the brewery.
I already did a thing like this for another project that used a memory kinda like an usb stick that was used to transfer data between a computer and a controller.
Or the computer could still be plugged with the controller to monitor the brewing process or modify it on the fly.
At any time, it should be able to be switched to manual.
What I have tought so far to be programmed:
- tasks for HLT water heating: water in control, (level sense), temp sense, heating control, out valve control
- tasks for MT: stirring control, temp sense, heating control, level sense for sparging, recirculating pump control, valve in control, valve out control, water in volume sense
- tasks for boiler: heating control, valve in control, ...
Am I crazy ? maybe ;o)
Any comment or idea will be appreciated.
I'm not planing to sell this kind of thing.
It's just for fun and will be shared under artistic licence.
As always, the things that will be easier to use and versatile, will be awfully complicated to program, but without headaches, no joy
Some might tell this is just a dream, but who knows ?
I'll try to update as I'm going further into planing.
PS: sorry for mistakes and/or mispelling, my mother tongue is not english