Spike Solo Brewery Build

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Kyle7372

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After taking a year off from brewing I finally see the light at the end of the tunnel! Coming from using gas in my garage I moved into a house that has an awesome indoor shop in the basement. Obviously I just had to take the leap into going electric. Finally ran the 240v and getting excited. Still peicing things together and researching options for steam management and chilling (would love to hear recommendations!)

Brew Equipment:
- 20 Gallon Spike Solo NPT (Kettle+Basket Only). Outfitted with 3 piece SS Valves and QD fittings.
- Custom 5500W brew panel that runs on separate 240v (3 wire) and 120v sources.
- Northern Brewer SS Wort Pump
- Chiller (TBD)
- Kettle/ Chiller and Pump Stand (TBD)

Fermentation Equipment:
7 Gallon SS Brew Tech Brew Bucket.

I will say the quality of the Spike equipment is second to none! The craftsmanship and customer support from Spike has been awesome. My old 10 gallon SS Brew Tech kettle was nice but they just don't compare!

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mcd432

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I will say the quality of the Spike equipment is second to none! The craftsmanship and customer support from Spike has been awesome.
I couldn’t agree more. I recently purchased one of their 15 gallon solo systems which required having a bit of an issue being addressed. Ryan in customer support and the greater gang at Spike immediately went to work to address the issue and had me up and running in very short order. Just phenomenal customer support and, as you said, the quality of their products is off the charts!

Looks like you are well on your was to a very nice set-up.
 
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Kyle7372

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I'm glad to hear even more great feedback from Spike. I did have an issue as well. My first kettle had a small dent and they sent me a new one within a week. Excellent service! Ryan is awesome and helped me with my custom order.

Finally got the cables for my panel and had a successful test! PID is autotuned and temp input is dialed using a ThermoWorks Dot. Panel runs perfectly. Next step is build my brew stand/panel mount, solve the steam issue and do my first brew!
 

Wagon_6

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Awesome! You’ll love electric brewing. I highly recommend the Steam Slayer for steam management. It does require a water source, hopefully you have access to one in the basement area. One of the best things I installed in the brewery was commercial sink and sprayer. Makes cleaning and water supply very easy.

The Jaded Hydra chiller gets it done real fast for me. They also make an “electric chair” that sits over your element so the chiller can rest on it. Especially in the winter, this thing chills the batch down in minutes.

For your panel, you could use a standard mount to attach it to the wall.
 
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Kyle7372

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I like the steam lid from Spike but I know it used a bunch more water than the slayer (from what I've read). Only negative to the slayer is making a hole to mount it. Spikes lid would be nice and matchy matchy on the upside :) I do have a water supply so weighing the costs of either condensate hood or steam hat will likely drive the decision.

Ive done little research on chilling with counterflow, plate or immersion. Has anyone used the counterflow from Jaded?
 

Biggz1313

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I like the steam lid from Spike but I know it used a bunch more water than the slayer (from what I've read). Only negative to the slayer is making a hole to mount it. Spikes lid would be nice and matchy matchy on the upside :) I do have a water supply so weighing the costs of either condensate hood or steam hat will likely drive the decision.

Ive done little research on chilling with counterflow, plate or immersion. Has anyone used the counterflow from Jaded?
I'm rocking a full 15g Solo+ system but opted to not get the Spike chiller because it seemed overpriced (additional $450, though I know that's not just the chiller, but all the necessary triclamp fittings to make it work). I ended up buying the Exchillerator and DAMN is it nice. This is a wort cooling machine. Whether you want to cool and recirculate into a whirlpool, or chill straight into the fermentor, this thing brings 200*F wort to 75-80*F in no time. Cleanup is even easier, while you're circulating PBW through the rest of the system, just let it circulate through the chiller as well. Done and Done.

As far as Steam hat goes, I did do the Spike one, and let me tell you the extra port for the Clean In Place (CIP) ball is totally worth it. That thing does all the work I hate doing. I'd recommend them both.
 
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Kyle7372

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Panel finally mounted and steam condenser set up!
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Kyle7372

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Mainly due to wanting to try building it myself for fun. I could not use spikes panel because they require a 3 wire 240v input (hot hot neutral ground). My shop has an old school 2 wire 240v circuit ( hot hot ground). I built the panel to accommodate the 2 wire 240v input for the element and a separate 120v input for the control power. A 2 wire 240 will not allow you to pull 120 from it since there is no neutral.

my 240v feeder in my panel was upgraded to a GFCI breaker for protection.

I can share my schematic for anyone who needs a similar setup.
 
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