Basic easy controller for 240v 30A element

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SanPancho

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need to boil around 75 gals. have two 7200w elements. one element will be always "on", the other we want to be able to control. i planned on just buying the 240v blichmann power controller, but apparently they wont have more until september. WTF.

so does anybody else know of something pretty much off the shelf that will work? everything im seeing is too small (not enough amps) or more industrial /commercial and like hundreds of dollars. or i'd have to rig up my own controller with a pid, relay, box, etc. etc. i'd rather get something ready to go. dont even really care about temp control per se, i'd be happy with a reostat type set up where we can simply dial the power from 1 to 10.

advice appreciated
 

Bobby_M

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FIrst, are you sure you need to have a controller? It seems like 14,400 watts is about right for boiling 75 gallons. If you know you need to dial back,
Two ways to go:

This kit: 40A Solid State Voltage Regulator, High power SCR, SSVR [SSVR40A] - $26.50 : Auber Instruments, Inc., Temperature control solutions for home and industry
Mounted to this heat sink: External-Mount Heat Sink for 25A SSR [HS25ET] - $12.99 : Auber Instruments, Inc., Temperature control solutions for home and industry
Both installed into this box: Carlon 4 in. x 4 in. x 2 in. PVC Junction Box - Gray-E989NNJ-CAR - The Home Depot

Super easy to wire up, similar function to the Blichmann.

An upgraded option would be to use a power controller module firing two solid state relays which would allow you to run BOTH elements through the same controller so that 80% power would be each element running 40%. Lower watt density, less scorching.

ONE Controller: Digital SSR Power Regulator for Wort Boiling Control [DSPR1] - $35.95 : Auber Instruments, Inc., Temperature control solutions for home and industry
TWO SSRS: 40A AC SSR [SRDA40] - $16.45 : Auber Instruments, Inc., Temperature control solutions for home and industry
TWO Heatsinks: External-Mount Heat Sink for 25A SSR [HS25ET] - $12.99 : Auber Instruments, Inc., Temperature control solutions for home and industry

Slightly larger box:Carlon 8 in. x 4 in. PVC Junction Box-E989N-CAR - The Home Depot

Honestly, the second option would be cheaper than the Blichmann and way more functional.
 
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SanPancho

SanPancho

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208V so only 10.5ish kbtus. honestly not even sure its absolutely needed given the btus, but would rather have it on hand than not. our supplier is super easy with returns. no question asked.
 
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SanPancho

SanPancho

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that's kind of what i was thinking, but again, better to have it when (if) you need it instead of boiling over 75gals constantly, or having to constantly unplug, plug, unplug the 2nd element to control the boil over. (assuming we can get a boil over) thats why i thought if it was in fact needed, it'd be enough to just control one element. the other can be 100%.

i guess maybe the second controller is cheap enough to try it out, to control one element.
 

doug293cz

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that's kind of what i was thinking, but again, better to have it when (if) you need it instead of boiling over 75gals constantly, or having to constantly unplug, plug, unplug the 2nd element to control the boil over. (assuming we can get a boil over) thats why i thought if it was in fact needed, it'd be enough to just control one element. the other can be 100%.

i guess maybe the second controller is cheap enough to try it out, to control one element.
You really shouldn't be plugging/unplugging a live 208/240V 10's of amps load. The arcing at the receptacle will be severe, and the receptacles/plugs are not designed to withstand that kind of arcing. You really need a contactor or SSR rated to switch the volts/amps that you will be running.

Brew on :mug:
 
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SanPancho

SanPancho

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You really shouldn't be plugging/unplugging a live 208/240V 10's of amps load. The arcing at the receptacle will be severe, and the receptacles/plugs are not designed to withstand that kind of arcing. You really need a contactor or SSR rated to switch the volts/amps that you will be running.

Brew on :mug:
plug/unplug is a figure of speech. literally it would be throwing the service disconnect ON and OFF.

brew off.
 
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