I was actually seriously looking into one of those systems. I saw that you are working with someone to manufacture them and ship them. How has that been going? The only thing holding me back from ordering everything today is the complicated assembly. Is there any way to purchase a pre built and functional set up yet?A popular setup for 1bbl is to use my control panel design with 4 heating elements and 55 gallon Blichmann kettles or similar. Assembled products are hand built, tested, and calibrated in the USA.
Some examples of 1bbl+ setups:
Hawcreek Brewing Company, Hope IN:
Bad Wolf Brewing Company, Manassas VA:
Crooked Run Brewing, Lessburg VA:
Border Brewery, Salem NH:
Wingman brewers, Tacoma WA:
Ship Bottom Brewery, Wallingford PA:
Kretschmann Brewing Company, Webster MA:
There are many other larger breweries, brew pubs, restaurants, and brew on premise shops using the setup as a pilot system too.
Well actually, you're thinking of Crankers Brewery in Big Rapids. We brew out of the Blue Cow Cafe and only sell in-house and at fetivals!You might check psycho brew in belding I know they make bigger systems but electric not sure my brother made kettles for them when he worked at digital fabrication. By the way your professor ipa is excellent I live just down the road in Howard city
Which is fine with us. We want the complicated pieces to be made in US so we can easily get support. For example, if we have issues with the elements or control panel, an American company is going to be more inclined to replace or help repair a piece. The European companies like to tell you it's your fault instead of helping!To quote John Blichmann from a few years ago:
"The pots are about 60-70% US content."
That may have changed however.
This is precisely why I have been looking to purchase through you! Turns out, someone recently bought a 55gal setup using your equipment and he is looking to sell (he needs a bigger system than expected). I may be purchasing their system since it's mostly set up alreadyFWIW, one of the reasons I wanted to design/built my own panel from the ground up was to make sure it use standard off the shelf parts to ensure long term serviceability. There's no special/proprietary parts.
The parts (relays, PIDs, switches, etc.) I chose are all extremely common parts. They've existed for dozens of years and they will continue to exist because of the tens of thousands of (non-brewery related) industrial installations around the world running today that rely on them. I'm not married to one particular part or manufacturer. So if (say) a PID dies in 20 years, I can buy a similar one from any manufacturer and drop it in as the functionality will be the same. There are hundreds of choices. It does not necessarily have to the same manufacturer at all. The hole sizes are all standard understood manufacturing sizes (1/16 DIN for PIDs, 23mm for switches/lights, etc.) because the industry that uses these parts demands easy and quick serviceability. Pull the old one out, put the new one in.
Some setups use patent pending parts and programming to control the entire brewing process that by law nobody else is allowed to reproduce. I didn't want that for my setup. What happens if 20 years down the road the "patented part" that holds the programming brains of the unit fails and the manufacturer is no longer in business? The expensive system is now useless.
5-10 years or even 20 years is long time, but I'm more interested in the craft/art of brewing than tinkering with equipment. I wanted something I could build once and then use for the rest of my life. I didn't want to have to redo everything in X years if something failed.
(My 2 cents)
You are more than welcome to! I'm sure once I get that new system I'll want to show it off to anyone that will look at it haha!I apologize for that error. Honestly I worked in ur establishment when u first opened the blue cow and am excited your brewery is doing well. Maybe someday I will tour your facility and the new 1 bbl system