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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > DIY Projects > Kettles, Mash Tuns, & Hot Liquor Tanks > Dirt cheap RIMS heater
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Old 01-16-2014, 07:30 AM   #1
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Default Dirt cheap RIMS heater

Ok, first off, I'm swedish *bork bork bork*, so excuse me if my wording is a bit strange. Also I don't really know standard pipe sizes in the US, but I think at least you'll know what I'm getting at and could adapt.
Ok, so I'm doing 6-7 gallon (that is 23-27 liters approx) batches, I fly sparge as most all grainers do here (except biab brewers). During mashing I recirculate for half an hour or so, using a solarprojects pump (you know the cheap, small, but foodgrade 12v kind). I set the flow using a LED dimmer to pretty much as little a possible to avoid compacting the grainbed.
However, during recirculation, temperature drops typically 10F (5C). So, I was thinking about building a RIMS heater. I've seen the stuff put up here, and although very cool, way überkill for my budget and needs. But I've taken one thing away from these threads. Cleanability.
So, I want a cheap, easily cleaned, lower power heater, and this is what I came up with.

I bought a cheap stainless steel cartridge heater off ebay, 300mm length, 10mm dia and 600 w power. I used a 22mm copper pipe, cut to be just a bit longer than the heater. Drilled holes for hose connections, and soldered in 10mm pipes. The silicone hose from the pump can be attached with mild force.
The heater is held in place and sealed using silicone bungs (inteded for airlocks).
Here's a pic of it all assembled.

So far I have only tested with water, but it works. And yeah, I know about electrical safety, it will be grounded and ground fault protected.
Cheers!
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Old 01-16-2014, 10:02 PM   #2
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I like it!


Bork, bork, bork........
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Old 01-16-2014, 11:40 PM   #3
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Very cool idea!! I may utilize it if I get tired of my herms setup. this way I can control my mash while I heat up the sparge water to 170.

edit... I just impulse purchased a 1000w version from a supplier in the states for $13!.... I can easily make a rims element holder from 3/4" copper piping
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Old 01-17-2014, 10:04 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by augiedoggy View Post
Very cool idea!! I may utilize it if I get tired of my herms setup. this way I can control my mash while I heat up the sparge water to 170.

edit... I just impulse purchased a 1000w version from a supplier in the states for $13!.... I can easily make a rims element holder from 3/4" copper piping
Sweet! Hope it works out well for you!
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Old 01-17-2014, 08:55 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by augiedoggy View Post
Very cool idea!! I may utilize it if I get tired of my herms setup. this way I can control my mash while I heat up the sparge water to 170.

edit... I just impulse purchased a 1000w version from a supplier in the states for $13!.... I can easily make a rims element holder from 3/4" copper piping
Can you tell me where you found that? I'm considering a RIMS build, but the piping cost is too much for the moment. 3/4" copper or stainless would be a lot cheaper than 1.5" or 2".
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Old 01-18-2014, 02:13 AM   #6
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Can you tell me where you found that? I'm considering a RIMS build, but the piping cost is too much for the moment. 3/4" copper or stainless would be a lot cheaper than 1.5" or 2".
just search "stainless cartridge heater" on amazon or ebay.... I bought mine on ebay.
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Old 01-18-2014, 07:26 PM   #7
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just search "stainless cartridge heater" on amazon or ebay.... I bought mine on ebay.
Ah, OK. I did do this quickly before I asked, but it's only showing up 240VAC 1000W elements - I'm stuck with 110V, so it looks like the maximum power I can get is 600W. Might not be worth doing at such a low power, as I'd like to get some kind of mash out temperature step assistance. I'll have to price up the traditional option vs this one.
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Old 01-19-2014, 01:19 PM   #8
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While not Dirt Cheap like the thread title, Brew Hardware has a new RIMS system that deserves a look. http://brewhardware.com/rimsherms-parts-93/169-newrims
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Old 01-19-2014, 04:08 PM   #9
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Ah, OK. I did do this quickly before I asked, but it's only showing up 240VAC 1000W elements - I'm stuck with 110V, so it looks like the maximum power I can get is 600W. Might not be worth doing at such a low power, as I'd like to get some kind of mash out temperature step assistance. I'll have to price up the traditional option vs this one.
The original starter of this thread used a 600w element and said it works fine
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Old 01-19-2014, 07:11 PM   #10
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Yeah... Well...
I use pretty low flow rates also, and will actually lower the power with PWM and an SSR to avoid denaturing precious enzymes during mashing. I don't really expect to be able to do any step mashing, only maintain and just maybe raise a few degrees towards the end.
This is highly theoretical at this point as I have so far only tested with water.
I hope I can give you more info in a week, as I'll be brewing on saturday :-)
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