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Old 05-02-2012, 04:34 PM   #11
mpcluever
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Based solely off what our cost is at the store, we're estimating somewhere around $500 - $550. I'm assuming that's just for the control box like what we've got right now. It IS expensive, but for someone who's just looking for a very easy way to automate a burner/pump, anyone can install this and have it running in a matter of a few minutes.

 
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Old 05-02-2012, 10:12 PM   #12
eastoak
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mpcluever View Post
Based solely off what our cost is at the store, we're estimating somewhere around $500 - $550. I'm assuming that's just for the control box like what we've got right now. It IS expensive, but for someone who's just looking for a very easy way to automate a burner/pump, anyone can install this and have it running in a matter of a few minutes.
that sounds cheap to me considering that i don't have the time or the skills needed to build something like this on my own.

 
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Old 05-03-2012, 01:11 AM   #13
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Can you post some pics of the valve and igniter assembly?

 
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Old 05-03-2012, 01:13 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eastoak View Post
that sounds cheap to me considering that i don't have the time or the skills needed to build something like this on my own.
Someone will be along shortly to call that overpriced

 
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Old 05-03-2012, 05:19 PM   #15
mpcluever
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I'll see if I can post some more pics. The manual has some pics on page 11 and 12.

Tower of Power Manual

The valve and sparker were VERY easy to install as the valve just goes inline right before it goes into the burner and the sparker was just 2 holes (one for the whole probe to go through the shield around the burner and another for the screw to secure it)

 
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Old 05-03-2012, 05:24 PM   #16
mpcluever
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I guess I wouldn't call it overpriced per se... It's more than I would pay, but I'm pretty good with building DIY stuff. Again, this would be GREAT for someone who just wants a turn-key automation system without having to source parts and build a system. It appears to be very well built and is super easy to install and use. That alone is worth quite a bit. Also, the parts they're using are not cheap as I'm looking at what it would take to build a similar system.

 
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Old 05-04-2012, 05:08 PM   #17
chemman14
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Ah hope we get more information soon.

 
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Old 05-05-2012, 03:33 AM   #18
kladue
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That is a creative way to package a 120V direct spark ignition module and a pid controller, hope it has a UL 508 sticker inside, or it is not a product that can be sold in some states which require a UL or other recognized testing company documentation. The BOM for that could range between a low as $150, up to $250 depending on ignition module used and enclosure fabrication price.

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Old 05-18-2012, 02:42 PM   #19
mpcluever
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So I FINALLY had a chance to work with this last night. Overall it worked very well. We did a direct fire mash with the temp sensor mounted on the return hose as we continually recirculated. It was able to ramp the temperature very effectively and didn't overshoot too much. It wasn't my batch and I was brewing myself so I didn't really see how far it would overshoot as it first hit the target temp, but as it progressed, it was pretty accurate.

There were a few issues. Not sure why, but at one point we saw the temp had jumped about 20 degrees in less than a minute and we panicked for a sec, but then realized it was a malfunction and it corrected itself right away. Also, since it gives out a LOUD long beep before it lights every time, I had visions of smashing it just so I didn't have to hear it anymore. It gets really annoying when it's maintaining temperature and lighting every minute or so. You could probably void your warranty and break into it and disconnect the speaker. I know I would... It's just frustrating because it's solely driven by liability because someone would burn themselves monkeying with it while it's running so now I have to listen to BEEEEP BEEEEP.

One thing we weren't able to test was using the data port on the back to log data. We'll do some tests on that without the pressures of trying to brew.

Overall my opinion of it remains that for someone who isn't much of a DIY person, this is a very easy solution to automate heating your brewery. I'm curious what the retail pricing will be on it.

 
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Old 05-18-2012, 08:33 PM   #20
bumstigedy
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Look forward to hearing about more about how your future batches go.

 
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