Need Help with a Wiring Diagram for 1 PID 3-5500w element controller...

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jcmcdowell

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Hi Guys,

NOTE- I have 3 phase power

I am building a variation of a single vessel brewery/braumeister with a 55 gal SS drum as the MT and BK. I want to use the Auberins PID SWA-24X1 PID/Timer controller and 3-regular 240v 5500w heating elements.

I will have one pump.

I'm trying to keep the controller as simple and cheap to build as I can.

I'm thinking I need-

ON/OFF illuminated button
PID/TIMER (wired 240v?)
Alarm light/buzzer
reset button for timer
Element on/off switch (one for all 3?) (illuminated)- can it be wired for one contactor?
Pump on/off switch (illuminated) (my pump is 240v)
enclosure (like the 8x10 pre cut one from Auberins)
3 SSR's (5500w at 208v is less than 30 amps max draw)
3 heat sinks (3-40amp or 1 big heat sink?)
1- temp sensor probe with 1.5" tri clover

I have 200amps 3 phase power. I was planning on using a triple 30amp breaker and 3-208v lines to the elements. All the elements would be on/off at the same time to balance the load. The 240v pump and PID another 20amp breaker?

I have on hand the pump, a bunch of 1.5" tri clover fittings and ferrules, the male and female 30amp sockets, connectors for sensors, valves, etc...

I just need to pull the trigger on the Auberins order.

I've seen diagrams for 2-5500w elements but not 3. I have the 3 phase but I'd like to essentially plan on using the 4 wire as separate 208v lines to standard 240v elements. I know I won't get the full 5500 watts this way, but three elements should be plenty.

References, help, or ideas?

Thanks

JC McDowell
current keggle system
 

P-J

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jcmcdowell,

Just a heads up for you. You can buy heating elements rated for 208V power in most all of the sizes used. Boston Heating Supply carries a lot of what you might be needing.

As soon as I have a litte more info (and time) I'd be glad to try and make a diagram for you.

Edit: It does take a bunch of knowledge regarding 3 phase power to come up with a plan for you. Fortunately I do have that stuffed away in my brain somewhere. LOL ...

P-J
 
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jcmcdowell

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I really appreciate the help P-J. I've been researching, reading, and lurking trying to come up with a solution and I was hoping to connect with you based on your knowledge of what we are trying to accomplish.

If I can get away with LESS parts, that's ok by me as well. My list is based on ignorance more than demand.

I have 4 SS 55 gal drums. If I can make one work, I want to scale up for a modular nano brewery with a capacity of 1.5 bbl up to 6 bbl.

Thanks for any help you can provide.

JC
 

P-J

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jcmcdowell

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Well...

What I'm planning is an 'outside the box' Braumeister concept. Instead of putting the grain in a vessel and then putting it INSIDE the bigger vessel and then having to lift it out and then dump it, I was thinking of putting the grain vessel NEXT TO THE LARGER VESSEL. I was thinking the larger vessel would have the 3 elements, a temp probe on a T on the side wall output to a pump which pumps the wort UP into the bottom of the smaller grain vessel.

The grain vessel would be a 35 gal stainless stock pot and have a 30x30 mesh false bottom and hot liquor/wort would recirculate UP through the grain bed (similar to the Braumeister). The grain vessel would have a 30x30 screen at the top locked in to prevents grain from recirculating into the larger vessel (probably reinforced with a bigger steel mesh screen) and above that a port that gravity feeds the wort back to the main vessel. Everything would be tri-clover fit.

When mash is complete, sparge UP via 3 way valve using the pump and then drain DOWN when hitting boil volume (either in a bucket to be dumped into boil or via valves to reverse pump direction back into the bottom of the larger vessel).

Clean grain vessel and use for hopping. Each vessel would probably need insulating to maintain temps.

IN THEORY- no need to vorlauf (constant recirculating) and no need to whirlpool for hops. Potentially I could use the grain vessel as a kind of hop back to catch hot break by changing the pump location into the grain vessel and removing the top screen. Or have a hop back that replaces the grain vessel during the boil.

I'm hoping I can hit 40 gal batches with the grain vessel. I have 4 SS drums which could be added to create a modular nano brewery from 1 bbl to 6 bbl depending on demand, gravity, and style.

I leaning towards a propane tankless hot water heater with a blending tank to serve as a HLT for all the vessels. If I stage it right, I could use one tankless/blending tank for all 4 brewing systems (30 minute break between brews?).

Each 'system' would need it's own control panel- hence the desire to keep it simple and cheap (because I might need to build 4 of them).

I have a 200 amp 3 phase panel in the building. There is no other power draw besides lights. The building is heated by wood stove. Other activities that draw temporary power would take place when not brewing (grinding grain, power tools, etc...)

I'm trying to prototype the build this winter before I commit to building 4 of them.

It could be as basic as unplugging a plug in between brews to insure a secure disconnect versus complex wiring. The panel would be maybe 15' away from all the systems. I could put power drops to keep the wiring off the floor. The systems could be on castors and moved around with their own cords and plugs to make things easier. I was envisioning a "V" shaped setup with the control panel on left, 55gal drum in center, and grain vessel on the right. A steel or stainless frame holding everything (maybe welded to the 55 gal drum).

I have 6 of the fancy brewers hardware tri clover heating element enclosures, 6 female 30amp 240v plugs, and 6 male plugs. I have plenty of ferrules to weld on to the drums, valves, 3-ways, and 3/4" ID high temp food grade tubing.

I am lacking the Auberins bit and pieces.

Too much information?
 

moclamd

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I really hope you document the build. This is an interesting idea and I would love to see how it turns out.
 

jeffmeh

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I really hope you document the build. This is an interesting idea and I would love to see how it turns out.
+1. Also, they also have some 208v/6000w LWD elements, but much more expensive. For an HLT it wouldn't matter, but it is certainly something you might want to consider for a BK. Or even step down to lower wattages if you are going to use multiple elements....
 
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jcmcdowell

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I read the thread. Interesting. I was hoping for some interactive control between the timer and PID that would start the mash out once temp was hit or alarm when boil was close...

I had thought about going the Arduino route- but I just don't have the time to learn Arduino C+ and play with new hardware (although it would be fun and I have 7 books on the subject for when I DO have time- good reading time in the grave I understand, about when I'll get a good night sleep too I suppose).

I'm just tight on room on the panel. I was going to just use a magnetic kitchen timer- which is still viable. Not as elegant solution but I am just working on the proof of concept. It doesn't have to be pretty this version.

As it is- what basic components I priced out is hitting under $300 (just barely). That's with one PID, 3 SSR's, heat sinks, enclosure, and a few buttons and switches. I have everything else (connectors mainly- still need elements and WIRE!).

ON a side note- it's funny that we spend SO MUCH MONEY on the shortest part of the process. Fermenting and Conditioning take so much longer than brewing and are equally if not more important. BUT- it isn't the same sexy, shiny, digital, burgundy LED, devil may care vicarious experience:)

I mean really, after brewing, we're waiting on yeast to burp, fart then roll over and go to sleep. What's so sexy about that? You guys that have been married a long time don't answer!

In conclusion, I may just go back to the basic Auberins PID. It saves the cost of a reset button. I was hoping for SO MUCH MORE!!!
 
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jcmcdowell

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+1. Also, they also have some 208v/6000w LWD elements, but much more expensive. For an HLT it wouldn't matter, but it is certainly something you might want to consider for a BK. Or even step down to lower wattages if you are going to use multiple elements....
CONCEPTUALLY- This is a single vessel project. The MT and BK are one and the same. WHy do you think LWD would be better for the Boil Kettle? I would have immersion throughout the process.

On the table is a NO SPARGE option if I can get the efficiency in the 80% range at that scale. That would eliminate the HLT. Otherwise, I'm planning on a Rinnai 180 deg commercial propane tankless hot water tank and some kind of blending tank (could be small) before it hits the MT/BK combo.

The idea is to have a "Malt Pipe" vessel (pot) as the Braumeisters call it attached NEXT TO the primary vessel to hold the grain. Liquor/Wort is constantly recirculated UP through the grain bed (no compression) for a better efficiency (in theory).

I just don't want to have to lift a 150lb POT or BAG out of a 55 gal drum with 170 deg wort in it. Hence a sidekick grain vessel.

OK, I digress.
 

P-J

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jcmcdowell,

Patience. Your plan require a lot of time to develop and draw.

If you are in a rush, tell me now.

Better yet ... Tell me if you want a plan from me. Think it through.
 
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jcmcdowell

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P-J, Honestly it appears you have EXACTLY the experience that I am willing to wait for. I have a keggle system and 5 batches of beer awaiting my time. 3 batches fermenting and lots of beer to drink since it's near zero outside. I patiently await your opinion and if not this 'year', maybe by May sounds good to me. We winter in Mexico Feb to May to escape the bitter cold of Montana and I'm brewing up a storm to bottle varieties not offered in cerveza-land.

If you're up for it, I'll build it.

EDIT: I was hoping for so much more from Auberins in being able to control the brewing process with the PID/timer. It still works for me as a plain old timer though. If you spec either PID or PID/Timer that's fine with me.
 

jeffmeh

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Regarding MWD vs. LWD during the boil: It may be absolutely fine, it may scorch under certain conditions. Hard to say for certain. I would expect no problems if you recirculate until you reach a vigorous boil, to keep particulates off the element.

Regarding the timer, I have come to the conclusion that a portable timer is more valuable than one fixed in the panel.
 
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jcmcdowell

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245v approx across 3 legs (high center) and 120-122 to neutral (approx).

so it's not 208v
 
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jcmcdowell

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OK, to educate myself more about 3 phase power and how much/many elements/breakers/SSR's I would need in my modular brewery concept, I have been doing some reading and calculations.

For those interested here is some of what I have compiled so far...this is the dumbed down version, so I might be missing something- Feel free to chime in.

1st: You can wire heating elements in a Delta configuration or a Wye configuration. My panel is Delta so I'm using the Delta formula. I don't know if this is a requirement. The formula to calculate Delta Line Current is:

Total Watts/(sq rt 3)(Line voltage)= Line Current (Amps)
Total Watts/(1.73)(Line Voltage) = Line Current (Amps)

To calculate Single Phase is easier;

Total Watts/Line Voltage- Line Current (amps)

Jumping ahead a little- The big reason for sizing the elements is to A) make sure you have enough room in the panel box; and B) have enough power to get the wort to a boil in a reasonable amount of time.

A formula for figuring how long to raise the temp of water is;

((4.2 x Volume in Liters x Temp in Celcsius)/3600)/Total KW = Time

In my case how long will it take to heat 190l (50gal approx) 30 deg C (160deg F to 210deg F)?

It takes 8,000 watts (8kw) approx 50 minutes to raise 50 gal of wort from 160 deg F to boiling temp (discounting Altitude) of 210 deg F.

It takes 12,000 watts (12kw) approx 33 minutes to raise 50 gal of wort from 160 deg F to 210 deg F.

It takes 16,500 watts (16.5kw) approx 24 minutes to raise 50 gal of wort from 160 deg F to 210 deg F.

It takes 18,000 watts (18 kw) approx 22 minutes to raise 50 gal of wort from 160 deg F to 210 deg F.

Now to compare power requirements. My line voltage is 240 3 phase. I have a 200 amp panel.

8,000 watts requires 18 amps 240v 3 ph; with a 120% margin the breaker (and SSR) would need to be 22 amps

12,000 watts requires 27 amps 240v 3 ph; with a 120% margin the breaker (and SSR) would need to be 33 amps

16,500 watts requires 38 amps 240v 3 ph; with a 120% margin the breaker (and SSR) would need to be 45 amps

18,000 watts requires 41 amps 240v 3 ph; with a 120% margin the breaker (and SSR) would need to be 49 amps

If I understand it correctly, a 3 phase Solid State Relay acts like 3 single phase relays with one contactor/switch. Common 3 phase SSR's are rated 10,25, and 50 amps.

P-J would know better but it seems like one 3 phase SSR would run three single phase heating elements.

It appears for the power draw, the sweet spot is around 12,000 watts or 3- 4,000 watt elements for 3 phase. Comparatively on a single phase setup with 240 volts the same 12,000 watts would require a 50 amp breaker and with a 120% margin the minimum breaker would be 60 amps.

This might work?

On another forum the numbers compared well with the experiences of a brewer with a 60 gal 8,000 watt- 2 elements 240v system. He said it took him about 45 minutes to get the wort to a boil from the sparge.

These numbers don't account for losses.

So potentially a brew day could look like:
Time to get to mash in: 30 minutes with tankless water heater at 140 deg F
Mash: 90 minutes
time to mash out: 15 minutes
sparge: 45 minutes
time to get to boil: 30 minutes
boil: 90 minutes
chill: 30 minutes

5 1/2 hours total. That's about what it takes me now with brewing a 5 gal batch on the keggle 3 vessel.
 
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jcmcdowell

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I found a P-J plan that is 2x what I'm looking for in my system. I could use just the BOIL side of the 50 amp 3 phase with 1 pump and exclude everything else. I could stick with the 5500w elements and drop the time to boil by 9 minutes (ehh,not that big a deal). Otherwise everything else looks the same.

Auberin-wiring1-a9-SYL-2352-3-phase-240V-delta-s.jpg
 
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jcmcdowell

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should be here thursday.

I ordered the HUBBELL 3 phase 50 amp male and female outlet plugs as well, should be here friday.

I ordered a 3 phase 40 amp SSR from Auberins, a 25 amp SSR and some other items as well. I'm still hunting the heat sink (prefer one big one).

My 35 gal grain vessel should be here wednesday.

Then I start a mock up of the vessel and pumps, start some welding, and hopefully by January a test run.

P-J; I'm going with 1/2 your 3 phase plan you developed for another person. I appreciate all the effort and contribution you have made in preparing these plans. You are a wealth of knowledge. Thank You.
 
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jcmcdowell

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Here's a picture of the 55 gal drum and the 35 gal grain vessel. They are very close to the same diameter. The 140qt stock pot is pretty thin but it will work for my needs.

I put my keggle in the picture so you can get a feel for the relative size.

There's a custom bicycle manufacturer down the street and I spoke with them today about welding the ferrules onto the kettles.

IMG_6533.jpg


IMG_6531.jpg


IMG_6532.jpg
 
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jcmcdowell

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Kettles at welder to get 1" tri clover ferrules welded on...hope to pick up monday.
 

ScubaSteve

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3 phase rocks...I use a rotary phase converter for my machine tools. Took me a while to figger out, but it has MANY benefits over household electricity.

The only difference between this and a single phase 240v build is that you are using 3 phase SSR's and breakers. Size your wires and breakers according to amperage (of course).The PID output signal should be no different...but you need to route it differently. IMHO, you should get a rotary switch that controls the ssr CONTROL signal from the PID....that way the PID would switch either one, two, three, or none of the SSR's. Use contactors to control the actual power-handling circuits.
 
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