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canyonbrewer said:
I have the same plugs...

Wonder if there is a way we can "shave out" a bigger hole for the wire in the grips.
I was thinking about attaching the two haves then drilling it out a little smaller then the diameter of the cable.

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Nothing major but just installed the GFCI breaker in the box and we're hot to the four prong outlet.

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rsklhm10

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I was thinking about attaching the two haves then drilling it out a little smaller then the diameter of the cable.

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Are those plugs from the big box store? They look identical to the ones I have on my system. The cord grip worked just fine on mine. I admit that they were tight, but remember they are a "cord grip" and are meant to me. When you tighten the grip down the wires will separate better and lay flat in the grip. Good luck with the build!
 
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rsklhm10 said:
Are those plugs from the big box store? They look identical to the ones I have on my system. The cord grip worked just fine on mine. I admit that they were tight, but remember they are a "cord grip" and are meant to me. When you tighten the grip down the wires will separate better and lay flat in the grip. Good luck with the build!
I ordered them from Granger. I just feel they pinch too much in one small area. If the radius was a little larger it would spread the force out more around the cable.

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Ordered the voltage regulators last night for a whopping $13.80. They have a longer lead time so I figured better order them now and have them on hand.

On another note I am not too keen on the idea of adding a timer for $160 so I started looking for other options and ran accross this PID with a timer built in.

1/16 DIN PID Temperature Controller w/ Timer [SWA-24X1] - $57.50 : auberins.com, Temperature control solutions for home and industry

I am thinking I could use it as the HLT controller as I would not need the temperature control once I started the boil.
 
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Received a gift card from the Mrs. (love that woman) to Amazon for some of the items I need for this.

Purchased:
2 PID temperature controllers
2 SSR's
2 Receptacles for the pump

total $153.83
 

canyonbrewer

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I ordered them from Granger. I just feel they pinch too much in one small area. If the radius was a little larger it would spread the force out more around the cable.

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I drilled out the plug grips. Much better
 
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So today I added my drain to my ejector pit. I want this to be portable so I used these clamps. Cost me $51 for it all and includes the fitting for the sink.

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I drilled out the plug grips. Much better
I just did the same usin a 1/2 bit and my new drill press. Cord grips still give a good squeeze but don't crush the cable.

My next purchase will be the panel so I can start installing some of the components I have.
 
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Since I was lucky and received a 10 gallon Blichman for Christmas I decided I could move forward and use my old boil kettle and add the element I built earlier. This will eventually become my HLT. Also scored an enclosure from work they were throwing out. It's not large enough for the full build and I want to hold off on installing the second element in the blichman until everything else is ready. I still plan on brewing either on the stove if it's cold out or outside if it's nice. So i'll use this enclosure to house the controller for one element so I can brew in the basement using electric.

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WAORGANY

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Begin2Brew said:
Ordered the voltage regulators last night for a whopping $13.80. They have a longer lead time so I figured better order them now and have them on hand.

On another note I am not too keen on the idea of adding a timer for $160 so I started looking for other options and ran accross this PID with a timer built in.

1/16 DIN PID Temperature Controller w/ Timer [SWA-24X1] - $57.50 : auberins.com, Temperature control solutions for home and industry

I am thinking I could use it as the HLT controller as I would not need the temperature control once I started the boil.
I also decided to go with a Auberins PID with timer as well to use for additions as well.
 
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Installed one of the heat sinks with an SSR in my pilfered enclosure. I bought the ones from Auberins.

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Well received my enclosure this week and purchased the cable and plugs to build my power cable. So I built the cable and began cutting the holes in the control panel.

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Received my element receptacles last night so just need to drill the bottom holes in the panel and I can wire up one PID and run a test. If all goes well I can get of the stove and brew in the basement with limited functionality. I made a power cord that is long enough to run out to my deck if I feel the need to brew outside this summer. Next order will be the switches, lights and relays.
 
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Got a good start on the brew bench tonight. Mine will need to be movable so I added casters to it. I also plan to add a hood above using some 3/8 plywood and 2x4 for support. Not sure how well that will work but I am going to give it a try. I also plan on using a few bathroom vents to use to exhaust the steam. Stay tuned to see if was a success of failure. One other thing I noticed I have to do is to change the side the cable comes out on my HLT. I have to move it to come out the back not the front.

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Did a little work on the panel last night and moved the cable to the back on the box on my HLT. Tonight I hope to do a water test and see how it works. If all goes well the Blichman will get its element and I can then go full electric.
 
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Did some finishing on the temp probe so I can hook that up. Once that was done did some testing. Boiling water has never been so exciting. I started in PID mode and ramped up from 60 to 100 then 150 and finally to 200. Then switched over to manual and went for the boil. Set the PID to 95% and brought it up to 200 then brought it down to 65% and maintained a nice boil.

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Popped the hole and installed the element in the Blichman tonight and did a boil test on it. No leaks at all so tomorrow it looks good for a first brew using electric.
 
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Mash went great! I love the fact with the PID you can set your strike water temp, walk away and come back with it holding at the correct temp.
 
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Yup, been busy. I have everything ordered or I have it now. Need to continue to work on getting it wired up and test it. I plan on brewing tomorrow so it won't be a fully functional system yet. I figure another week of wiring and tidying up. I'll need to work on the HLT and MLT to get those all plumbed up.

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BeerguyNC61

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Awesome post Bill! System looks great!
How did the drilling of the Bling-mann go? I want to go the electric route but the thought of drilling into those pots having never don't that before freaks me out a little....
 

iijakii

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Drilling into the pots is pretty easy. Honestly the control panels are like 100x harder to drill.
 

BeerguyNC61

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It's just scary thinking I will have paid a lot of money for those pots and could ruin them.....
 

iijakii

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Look into greenlee punches. They're expensive but if you're scared to use a step-bit they're the way to go. Pretty much impossible to screw up.
 
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I did most of the holes in the blichman and the panel with the greenlee punches. They make a nice hole. I did mount a temp probe that I had to used a step bit in the blichman. You need to be very careful as the step bit will catch and rip the blichman.
 
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Wired up all I could and did an electric test and all is well. Did find out I had a bad push button for the reset on the timer. Pioneer breaker said they would ship a replacement so hopefully they do.

Most of my time tonight was spent on the MLT adding the inlet side. I wanted to use my existing MLT and be able to close the lid. I knew I would have to go through the side. So after some self deliberating I decided to pop a hole towards the back.

I drilled a smaller hole on the inside and a larger one on the outside. This was to accommodate the 3/4 inch peice of copper tubing to act as a bushing to keep a tight seal without crushing the side of the cooler in.



ForumRunner_20120404_201857.jpg

I did leave the washer out on the ride side of this picture.

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Hole large enough for the copper tube but only big enough on the inside for the 1/2 nipple.



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Bushing inserted.

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Here you can see the bushing just covers the shoulder on the valve.



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Finished product.
 

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I was able to finish off what was needed to make my system a fully functional battle station..... I mean brewery....last night and run it through testing.

Had one small leak in the HLT on the top side of the coil but not enough to worry about. Learning the PID's was not as bad as I thought. The HLT would shoot up on the high side but the temperature loss through the hoses kept my mash at the 155F I was shooting for. I did an Oktoberfest, one I have done at least half a dozen times so far in my brewing career. Most of the time I hit around 83% on my old system but this time on the HERMS I had 90%. Looks to be a nice Oktoberfest. I had full conversion at 35 minutes on this, my shortest mash has been 40 minutes.

Everything I know states consistancy. For those satistical guys, it always easier to move the mean the to shrink the variability. This system will shrink the variability.
 
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Just an update, I have used this system for the last year an a half and it has been nothing but spectacular! It is consistent and repeatable. I have yet to see any leaks or any other issues. It's pretty much a plug and play system once it's up and running.
 

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Just an update, I have used this system for the last year an a half and it has been nothing but spectacular! It is consistent and repeatable. I have yet to see any leaks or any other issues. It's pretty much a plug and play system once it's up and running.
awesome to hear! I have been using mine for just over a month now and so far am in the same boat as you...I'm also amazed at the efficiency... I barely need to sparge and im consistently getting 83-85% with only about 3 gallons of sparge water on a 5.5 batches that were actually 5 gallon kits.
I hit 1.075 og instead og the 1.066 the oktoberfest recipe kit stated on saturday... Next time less sparging I guess.
The herms coil and constant recirculation seems to make a huge difference in efficiency.
I bought components to make a "dirt cheap rims coil" and I'm curious if that will effect anything although I doubt it.
I dont know the OP's final cost
But mine was about $700.00 with everything including new pots/cooler,pumps hoses, connectors ,plate chiller and grain mill......Just the electrical control panel and elements cost me $280.00 for a three pid two element system with timer. So budget builds are certainly possible.
 

Matthewjscott

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Thanks for the response. I have actually weighed the options and this thread has pushed me over the edge to go electric

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I'm about to start down this same road. The setup you showed at the beginning is exactly what I started with except I just got ahold of an old keg someone had laying around and cut the top off of it. I have a large order about to go in at brewhardware.com for just about everything I need for the build minus the electrical and control parts.

I was going to do the solder on triclover ports for the heating elements so they could be removed for cleaning or capped off in case for some reason I needed to use my old propane burner.

Do you think you could get away with a cheaper heating element in your HLT since scortching is less likely to be an issue there? I've considered just using the wavy 5500W camco element on the kettle and using something I can get at the hardware store on the HLT.

After having ran with this system for a few years now, is there anything you would have added or changed at the beginning to make things easier or better?
 

wbarber69

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I'm about to start down this same road. The setup you showed at the beginning is exactly what I started with except I just got ahold of an old keg someone had laying around and cut the top off of it. I have a large order about to go in at brewhardware.com for just about everything I need for the build minus the electrical and control parts.

I was going to do the solder on triclover ports for the heating elements so they could be removed for cleaning or capped off in case for some reason I needed to use my old propane burner.

Do you think you could get away with a cheaper heating element in your HLT since scortching is less likely to be an issue there? I've considered just using the wavy 5500W camco element on the kettle and using something I can get at the hardware store on the HLT.

After having ran with this system for a few years now, is there anything you would have added or changed at the beginning to make things easier or better?
The solder on triclover element kits from brewhardware cannot be beat. I'm currently in the last stages of building my electric HERMS system and use the 5500w camco element in my boil pot. I intend to use a 4500w element for the HLT when it's finished. Since I can get these at my local hardware store as opposed to waiting for amazon to deliver the limelife. As I was running the numbers I couldn't find any reason to go with the larger element in my HLT since the temps in there will never get over 175. The only trade off is the speed of heating things up.
 

fidler2475

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ImageUploadedByHome Brew1397434097.828114.jpg

Just built this! A combination of Kal and High Gravity. First brew this weekend! Electric is awesome! Test run was spot on.

Cheers


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