My Weldless Build Using Strut

Homebrew Talk - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Forum

Help Support Homebrew Talk:

gifty74

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 2, 2009
Messages
374
Reaction score
49
Location
Lancaster, PA
Started my stand build tonight. I like the weldless concept, but didn't like the thin (relative to Strut material) wall section of the angle stock I was seeing at Lowes/HD. I looked into this material after seeing a few others use it, and designed my custom 2 station stand (1 pump, will keep BK on floor until sparge then raise up to replace HLT on the stand). On top of being much heavier duty, it's cheaper (@ $13 per 10' stick) and you can buy any fitting or connector piece available. I got the corner brackets seen in the pic and it makes for one heck of a sturdy stand. The beauty are the nuts that are specially designed to bite into the channel when tightened down. I was going to put vertical risers in mid way across the main beams but it's so sturdy I'll just add one in the front to mount my March pump. They also sell pipe holders in all sizes that latch into the channel. I'll get some for my 1/2" NG manifold and one 4" one for my March pump and then I can mount and adjust it however I need. I'm really happy with how easy it was to assemble, how sturdy it is, and how cheap it was in total. I can include a parts list if anyone is interested. All you need is a chop saw or I used a metal cutoff blade from Harbor Freight ($2.50) and one blade made all 18 cuts. Even the bolts were cheap from the online strut fitting supplier at $8 for 50, free shipping. I'll update with some pics when the pump, Honeywell valve, and controller get mounted. Can wait to brew on this thing!!

image-647378731.jpg


image-3900516934.jpg


image-1538176860.jpg


image-2993888406.jpg


image-1365846763.jpg


image-660728913.jpg
 

dbrewski

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 10, 2011
Messages
1,006
Reaction score
54
Location
Indeterminate
I've done two weldless stands with the standard stuff from mcmaster. This looks heavy-duty! Where'd the stock come from?
 
OP
G

gifty74

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 2, 2009
Messages
374
Reaction score
49
Location
Lancaster, PA
You can find it at most electrical supply houses. There are several close to me that carry it. It's main use is to support plumbing and conduit running in buildings or warehouses. Its shape makes it very strong. Across a 36" section (the width of my stand) one piece is safety rated at 1,130 lbs. It is heavy duty. Not quite what 2" square welded stainless is like, but well in excess of what is required for a stand holding kegs full of liquid.
 

vwdan

Member
Joined
Mar 31, 2009
Messages
23
Reaction score
0
Very cool! I can't wait to see it finished!
 
OP
G

gifty74

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 2, 2009
Messages
374
Reaction score
49
Location
Lancaster, PA
Excel sheet with live links would not attach so had to do a screen shot. Full parts list to build what you see above. Total for my build so far is $142. Bummer is it makes sense to buy the 100-pack of strut nuts even though you only need like 40. Bolts are super cheap for that size and qty. The beauty is you can make the main beams and/or the height anything you want. And if it's not what you like, just buy another stick of strut for $14 and cut some new length. Unbolt the old and bolt in the new.

strut_build_part_list.jpg
 

LuiInIdaho

Well-Known Member
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Feb 12, 2011
Messages
434
Reaction score
30
Location
Ponderay
Looking good! I am awaiting to see your finished product. I also have been thinking about going this route given that the unistrut is less than the galvanized steel angle iron.

Mark
 

limulus

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 22, 2009
Messages
1,526
Reaction score
122
Location
ATL Burbs
Nice to see another build with this stuff. It looks great! I'm going to build a small stand for mine also. Just an FYI for those who don't know: you can also buy this stuff at HD/Lowes. They even have two sizes in 10ft lengths and it's somewhere in the $12-$16/10ft range. I have a HD just 1.5mi from me and for me it's all about convenience and time. It just isn't worth the drive to save $2/section.
 

FTG-05

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 15, 2012
Messages
191
Reaction score
17
Location
Lincoln County
Does Lowes/HD have the nuts (springless) and corner fittings also? I've never seen them - 'course I've never looked for them either. But now I"m interested.

Thanks,
 

limulus

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 22, 2009
Messages
1,526
Reaction score
122
Location
ATL Burbs
Does Lowes/HD have the nuts (springless) and corner fittings also? I've never seen them - 'course I've never looked for them either. But now I"m interested.

Thanks,
My local HD has connectors right next to the strut. They don't have every type, but I have seen the basics.
 

Rbeckett

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 23, 2011
Messages
993
Reaction score
71
Location
Bronson
I like it!!! I built a three tier out of the 14 Ga preslotted and ended up having to alter the design to strengthen the top tier and improve safety. Since I am in a wheelchair I cannot get out of the way if I dump something, so safety is super important and I just wasn't comfortable with an unsupported top tier. So I had to add 2 more uprights and change the over all look of my rig completely. If I do it again, I will use the strut for my next projest, and transfer my controller and plumbing to it from the three tier I have now.
Wheelchair Bob
 

LuiInIdaho

Well-Known Member
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Feb 12, 2011
Messages
434
Reaction score
30
Location
Ponderay
Thanks for posting your bill of materials. This made it really easy to find the items needed and to place an order for them. I placed the order tonight.

Thanks for your help.

Mark
 
OP
G

gifty74

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 2, 2009
Messages
374
Reaction score
49
Location
Lancaster, PA
Thanks for posting your bill of materials. This made it really easy to find the items needed and to place an order for them. I placed the order tonight.

Thanks for your help.

Mark
No problem. You're going to love how sturdy the thing is when you're done. I started mounting my gas rail last night. They make a nice hose clamp that locks into the strut. You can then slide it to wherever you need it, and it clamps down super tight. I should have the burners mounted and plumbed after tonight. Then I'll just put a branch of strut off the side, mount the controller, wire up the pump, and should be good for the initial trial brew session.

Another helpful tidbit, the March 809 pump is about 3.3" in diameter. I got the 3" pipe clamp and it is just a bit too big to really clamp down and secure the pump in a vertical position. I'm going to swap it out for the 2.5" clamp and try that tonight.
 

fork

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 17, 2008
Messages
120
Reaction score
8
Looks excellent I'd like to see a picture of the pump mounted with the pipe clamp once you do that.
 
OP
G

gifty74

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 2, 2009
Messages
374
Reaction score
49
Location
Lancaster, PA
Got the gas manifold plumbed up. I know, it doesn't look very well secured but the two 1/2" hose clamps that clamp down the iron pipe hold is surprisingly tight. I still want to get some vertical support on those burners, but for now it'll work. Also, not sure I like the 3" hose clamp to hold the March pump. That'll also work for now, but will probably look for a more fixed mount here soon. Seems pretty naked still. Will need to get some guarding and my controller mounted.

image-932962980.jpg


image-3110854013.jpg


image-3442929199.jpg


image-780309214.jpg
 

FTG-05

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 15, 2012
Messages
191
Reaction score
17
Location
Lincoln County
Got the gas manifold plumbed up. I know, it doesn't look very well secured but the two 1/2" hose clamps that clamp down the iron pipe hold is surprisingly tight. I still want to get some vertical support on those burners, but for now it'll work. Also, not sure I like the 3" hose clamp to hold the March pump. That'll also work for now, but will probably look for a more fixed mount here soon. Seems pretty naked still. Will need to get some guarding and my controller mounted.
That looks solid as heck! Why are the burners so low though? Shouldn't they just below the keggle level?

Thanks,
 
OP
G

gifty74

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 2, 2009
Messages
374
Reaction score
49
Location
Lancaster, PA
I did a good bit of asking around about that and it sounds like 4-5" is the right height for these burners. One is lower because for now I need to use it as my dirct fired MT burner and it's hard to throttle down. So I moved it down to try and lower the heat. I'm going to experiment with this height, but for now that's what I'm starting with.
 
OP
G

gifty74

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 2, 2009
Messages
374
Reaction score
49
Location
Lancaster, PA
naiek said:
Picked up the struts today and ordered the hardware from GP
Awesome! You're going to love it. So easy and flexible for future changes, and super sturdy. I'm really happy with it so far.
 
OP
G

gifty74

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 2, 2009
Messages
374
Reaction score
49
Location
Lancaster, PA
Well, other than the fact that it does burn off, no. Had a inaugural brew session on it last night. Pretty fun stuff. Got the wiring done up just in time. Not perfect, but did the job. Also first time on house NG! Those burners are amazing. My buddy and I were in awe at how fast they headed up the mash water, boil, etc. 4" below the pot seems about perfect. They just crank out the heat. All in all it went well last night.
 
OP
G

gifty74

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 2, 2009
Messages
374
Reaction score
49
Location
Lancaster, PA
Here are some pics from the opening brew night on the rig. Real happy with the direct fired mash. With these burners I was worried they would create too much heat even on the lowest setting. Not so. When the temp hit 150 I would kick on the burners as low as I could keep it, and with a good recirc flow, it would take about 5 mins for it to get up to 154. Nice even temp rise. Otherwise, pretty uneventful. Next up is the Honeywell 8200 gas valve with standing pilot so I can actually use the output from my Auber controller.

image-44791478.jpg


image-779327825.jpg


image-149727796.jpg
 

limulus

Well-Known Member
Joined
Oct 22, 2009
Messages
1,526
Reaction score
122
Location
ATL Burbs
Looks good. Now strap that stuff down! You know what's coming from the ocean tomorrow.
 

bennettna04

New Member
Joined
Dec 29, 2011
Messages
4
Reaction score
0
Location
Omaha
What kind of burners are you using? I've been considering this for awhile and after seeing yours I am definitely going to try this out.
 

lschiavo

This space for rent.
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Sep 2, 2009
Messages
5,240
Reaction score
1,457
Location
Upper Peninsula
Looks great! Strut is awesome stuff. I have built many projects with it including my brewstand. I made a tippy dump mlt with a few strut angles and nuts and bolts. https://www.homebrewtalk.com/f51/sanke-tippy-dump-mlt-309713/

Strut is solid as a rock and easy to modify if you decide to change anything on your stand.

Look at an electrical supply as suggested or a Fastenal if you have one local.
 
OP
G

gifty74

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 2, 2009
Messages
374
Reaction score
49
Location
Lancaster, PA
Agreed, the strut is better than I thought for building something like this. Overkill as far as strength goes.

I'm using the 10 tip 6" natural gas wok/jet burners. They are found at several online restaurant supply houses, as well as at Bayou Classic. Hope that helps you out. I had a turkey fryer burner running off a propane bottle and I always felt that did a pretty good job heating up wort/water. These jet burners take it to a whole new level. Big improvement, and time savings actually.
 

FTG-05

Well-Known Member
Joined
Apr 15, 2012
Messages
191
Reaction score
17
Location
Lincoln County
Hey gifty and lsch, dumb question for the week:

On the open side of the strut, can you slide the strut nuts and bolts up and down the strut? For example, mount a motor to a baseplate, mount the baseplate to the strut using strut nuts and bolts, then move it as needed to tighten a pulley belt.

Thanks!
 
OP
G

gifty74

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 2, 2009
Messages
374
Reaction score
49
Location
Lancaster, PA
Hey gifty and lsch, dumb question for the week:

On the open side of the strut, can you slide the strut nuts and bolts up and down the strut? For example, mount a motor to a baseplate, mount the baseplate to the strut using strut nuts and bolts, then move it as needed to tighten a pulley belt.

Thanks!
Yes. That is the beauty of it. The other cool thing is that you don't have to hold the nut either. It is designed so that when you turn to tighten it bites into the side wall of the strut on the inside of the channel. Then you just use your socket wrench to tighten down. Once the nut bites into the strut it is not going anywhere. But yes, they slide in the channel and are fully adjustable into any position
 
OP
G

gifty74

Well-Known Member
Joined
Mar 2, 2009
Messages
374
Reaction score
49
Location
Lancaster, PA
They had it at my local electrical supply store. Just called them and it's $92 for SS and $14 for galvanized. Pretty big diff, but they do have both.
 

Thomsen1287

Active Member
Joined
May 8, 2012
Messages
26
Reaction score
2
Can you paint high temp paint over the galvanized steel? Or do you have to take the galvanization off first?
 
Top