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SSBrewtech Booch tank mod to eKettle

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David Coy

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Can't look at this without thinking it would make a great electric kettle. I'd love the bottom drain and it would be trivial to set up a tangental whirlpool fitting and side drain with the triclover accessories ports.

 

matt_m

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Configuration wise hell yeah. In practice it probably has some things to think about. The ports look like the ones on the conicals which are more like 1" TCs--smaller pipe with the 1.5" size flange. Might be limiting for dip tubes and definitely problematic for elements. Though at a second look the side one might be bigger and maybe could be your element port. You could use a Blichmann Boil Coil as well. I suspect the walls are also thinner, more like a Chronical than typical kettle wall thickness. And last, looks like you'd need a different lid, might not be able to use a standard kettle lid looking at specs on the half barrel Booch tank vs a 15 gallon kettle. Those clips would work to hold a loose-fitting Spike steam hat in place but the half barrel is 15.7" diameter while Spike lists the minimum diameter as 15.7 so it could be a tight or oh-so-close-to-working fit depending on tolerances.
 

Bobby_M

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The pictures really lack the kind of detail that I'd need to make a full assessment. I can't tell if the bottom drain is centered or offset to the edge. If it's not centered in the cone, it's not idea for CIP since you'll have to muscle-dump it. If it is centered, I'd still end up putting some kind of racking arm in one of the side ports to dial in the post whirlpool clean wort drain. There's no problem with the lid. I'd probably install my steam slayer in a newly added upper TC port or put it into the lid with an elbow. As mentioned, you'd want to vet that at least one of those side TC ports is full 1-3/8" bore for an element.

The long story shorter, you can get a very functional TC ported half barrel kettle for less money almost anywhere else unless the bottom drain is the killer app for you and it is as functional as you think it is.

Edit: found this:

The drain is centered enough to fully drain for CIP so you'd definitely need another racking port. I don't know if the hole in the lid is a standard TC size but if it is, you'd need a cap to make it steam slayer friendly.

The right side TC port is large enough for an element. The two front ones are not but they can still support a diptube/racking arm.

The half barrel is actually a 20 gallon capacity.

The one major design flaw is that the bottom drain tube should have dropped lower to make more room for the butterfly valve handle. You can see in the video how you have to jam your knuckles to grab the handle and it doesn't appear that rotation would fix that because the handle will hit the tank or table in the closed position. Unfortunately I have to say this is typical SSbrewtech. It's like it all gets drawn in CAD somewhere in a carpeted office and no one actually brews on the stuff to see if there's a better way.
 
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