First Tests of Electric Brewery

Discussion in 'General Brewing Discussions' started by Nosybear, Mar 30, 2019.

  1. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2012
    Messages:
    9,745
    Likes Received:
    7,087
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Aurora, CO, USA
    Got the kettle built out tonight.... Kettle.jpg
    I decided on two ports. The outlet (right) has a dip tube, the inlet (left) has a dip tube at right angles to the bottom of the pot to create a whirlpool when running. I ran it with water, boiling, tonight and everything is watertight. Two more major pieces parts to go, the plate chiller (mounting it to the bottom shelf) and mounting the RIMS tube to the leg of the table.

    Step bits and cutting oil if you want to do this. And patience.
     
  2. Craigerrr

    Craigerrr Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2018
    Messages:
    5,161
    Likes Received:
    7,673
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Very cool Nosy!
    Me likes!
     
  3. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2012
    Messages:
    9,745
    Likes Received:
    7,087
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Aurora, CO, USA
    I put it through its paces today with a simple wort of 11.5 pounds Pale 2-row, 0.5 pounds Carafoam. I ran a long mash due to the controller's auto-tune cycle but that was the purpose of the brew - to tune with malt in the tun. I was able to whirlpool the wort for 20 minutes at 180 degrees F with an ounce of Azacca for flavor and it made a nice little trub pile in the center of my kettle. The plate chiller worked amazingly well, too. The only thing I couldn't do was inline oxygenation - the hose on my stone is too small for the barb on the in-line stone. Cleanup - I ran PBW baciward through the system, then water forward. Pretty easy, all in all. All that's left is to get the right size hose for the inline oxygenator and to clamp the RIMS tube to the table leg so it's vertical rather than horizontal.

    The reason I did such a simple brew was to see how the new system affects flavor, particularly if there are any detectable off-flavors I'm not used to having.

    Edit: Now that I can really whirlpool, I may become a hophead. That Azacca sure tasted good in the wort!
     
  4. Ozarks Mountain Brew

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Nov 20, 2012
    Messages:
    7,794
    Likes Received:
    4,024
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    IT Managment
    Location:
    The Ozark Mountains of Missouri
  5. 56 Firedome

    56 Firedome Active Member

    Joined:
    May 14, 2019
    Messages:
    208
    Likes Received:
    181
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Retired
    Nosybear --
    I've been lusting after your set up pictured above. I have been planning something very similar but I use gas for the boil. I have looked at RIMS using 120V because I brew outside & I have a GFI circuit.
    I have been simulating RIMS with a pump & my Kettle. I heat/vorloff to my next Mash Step Temp plus about 5 Degrees. Obviously it's hard to accurately reach & hold the target temp. Balancing the flow into & out of the Mash tun is a challenge.
    I've found 120V RIMS at 2 sites so far.
    BrewerHardware.com & Brewhardware.com
    Yeah I know, almost the same. Tri Clover Clamps & end plates with Hose Barb outlets, same element & PID Controller & Sensor with Manual Pump switch. It was about $300. That was at Brewhardware.com.
    Brewerhardware.com has a very similar package.
    You've had yours working for a couple of months, How's it working, so far?
     
  6. thunderwagn

    thunderwagn Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2015
    Messages:
    3,917
    Likes Received:
    7,733
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Loveland, CO
    I don't know why, but I'm actually surprised that you went plate chiller. It just doesn't seem like @Nosybear style to me for some reason. Hope that doesn't sound bad and it's not my intent.
     
  7. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2012
    Messages:
    9,745
    Likes Received:
    7,087
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Aurora, CO, USA
    No umbrage taken and I may phase the plate chiller out of the design. One of the folks that directed me toward my career in engineering, Commander Montgomery Scott, said it best: The more they overrate the plumbing, the easier it is to stop up the drain.

    Now to 56 Firedome: I've done two brews on it so far and not everything is dialed in. Yesterday I got my clamps to attach the RIMS tube vertically to the table leg, I'll post pictures tomorrow. The RIMS is 120 volt, a 1600 watt unit (overkill!), I have a PID controller powering it and a single pump. I got mine from Brewer's Hardware. I'm guessing, table, controller, RIMS tube and various accessories, I have about $1000 in it. I had the induction unit already, I'm looking for a nicely priced 8-10 gallon induction-ready stainless pot for a HLT. It serves the purpose I designed it for: Consistent mash temperatures and recirculation. I'll be brewing on it tomorrow, as mentioned, the second brew since my real "shakedown" blonde ale. Will let you know how things worked. The first brew, I had a lot of peppers and they tended to stop up the pickup tube in the kettle, so I had to abandon recirculation.

    One thing I've learned is, even with recirculation, contain the hops; otherwise they're going into the plate chiller and will eventually stop it up (back to Thunderwagn's notion and Scotty's quote). I have a hop spider, the hops and in the future, especially the peppers, are going in there.

    Ironically, I traded the kettle I now need for the plate chiller.
     
    thunderwagn likes this.
  8. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2012
    Messages:
    9,745
    Likes Received:
    7,087
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Aurora, CO, USA
    My brackets finally came in and I got the RIMS tube mounted:

    RIMS Tube Mounted.jpg

    So there we have it: RIMS tube mounted, inline oxygen, plate chiller, quick-connects. About the only problem I have going at this time is getting the controller (not shown) dialed in - it tends to overheat and drift - and somehow my pump is picking up air, possibly leading to some oxidation of my mash. I'm suspecting a leak in the mash tun bulkhead gaskets. But overall, I'm happy with it. I'm still looking for a second kettle for use as a HLT.
     
    Trialben likes this.
  9. 56 Firedome

    56 Firedome Active Member

    Joined:
    May 14, 2019
    Messages:
    208
    Likes Received:
    181
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Retired
    Nosybear, Wow looks great. I'm planning something very similar. I'm shopping for the missing piece, the RIMS Tube. I'm still using Hose clamps & jockeying them about with a nut driver. Lusting for those Quick Connects & Silicone Hoses. I'll be stealing the Tee on the Pump Suction idea. Currently using a cut down plastic bowl as a Grant.
    I see you are in A-Town, where do you get your supplies? I'm a 1/2 mile from Brew hut. I've streaked in there in the middle of a brew when I broke a Hydrometer or some other Brew Day Catastrophe.
    I see your RIMS has FIP Conn'x, have been looking at Tri-Clover caps & Clamps with Hose Barbs.
    The Package at BrewHardware is $299 & includes:
    1. Main Tube Body, 12" length, Camlock I/O ports standard (others optional), mounting hardware.
    2. 1650 watt ULWD foldback element (120volt) with integrated TC flange installed into RIMS.
    3. 48" power cable with plug to go between RIMS and controller
    4. Inkbird IBP-16 plug and play PID power controller with temperature sensor mounted in TC thermowell for the RIMS end. The controller is also modified with an additional manual switch to turn the pump on and off.
    I have all the rest of the system.
     
  10. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2012
    Messages:
    9,745
    Likes Received:
    7,087
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Aurora, CO, USA
    The Brew Hut is my primary supplier for ingredients. Looks like you're looking at a similar RIMS tube - mine, the main body is longer, the element doesn't fold back, the connections are 1/2" NPT and I had to buy a separate power cable. I also get a lot of my "small" components, particularly the quick connects, there. If Jeff or Mark can get it for you, they will. No grant currently used on mine and I am having a bit of trouble with the pump drawing air in from somewhere, just little bubbles, annoying and enough to make me think of oxidation. Here's the controller I bought:

    https://www.amazon.com/Electric-Recirculating-Infusion-Controller-Control/dp/B00KLWH2EY

    The RIMS Tube:

    https://www.norcalbrewingsolutions.com/store/Jaybird-Thrifty-RIMS-110-Volt-Kit.html

    The fittings and such were a combination of Amazon buys and trips to the Brew Hut, as well as a few Ace Hardware junkets for fasteners and such - they have a great selection of stainless fasteners. Finally the RIMS tube mount was a combination of stainless all-thread rod and these clamps:

    https://www.brewershardware.com/Mounting-Bracket-for-1_5-RIMS-Tube.html

    I needed 1.5" clamps for the table and 2" for the tube. Beauty of these is both are threaded the same. The last thing I want is a flow sight glass. This is the one I'd like to buy but it's been out of stock forever:

    https://www.brewhardware.com/product_p/flowsightfpt.htm

    So I'm buying this one:

    https://www.amazon.com/Sorekarain-Female-SS304-Stainless-Dipoter/dp/B07DCPYTKM

    If you want to reach out via private message, wife and I would be happy to meet for a beer. We've likely seen each other a time or two....
     
  11. 56 Firedome

    56 Firedome Active Member

    Joined:
    May 14, 2019
    Messages:
    208
    Likes Received:
    181
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Retired
    Sounds great. How do we swap PM addresses?
     
  12. 56 Firedome

    56 Firedome Active Member

    Joined:
    May 14, 2019
    Messages:
    208
    Likes Received:
    181
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Retired
  13. 56 Firedome

    56 Firedome Active Member

    Joined:
    May 14, 2019
    Messages:
    208
    Likes Received:
    181
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Retired
    Nosybear
    Bubbles in the line are caused by a suction leak. Bubbles on the pressure side are leaks.
    So that means a leak between the Pump Inlet & the Mash Tun. does the Pump have a 2 piece pump head? If so may be a leak in the o-ring. Suction Leaks cause cavitation. It's not just noise it can damage the impeller.
     
  14. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2012
    Messages:
    9,745
    Likes Received:
    7,087
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Aurora, CO, USA
    That's what I thought. The only place it could happen is at the bulkhead. So here come the silicone o-rings....
     
  15. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2012
    Messages:
    9,745
    Likes Received:
    7,087
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Aurora, CO, USA
    Fixed. I finally got both the air and water leaks stopped. One of my NPT fittings needed a bit more teflon tape. No more bubbles!
     
    Head First, Trialben and ChicoBrewer like this.
  16. 56 Firedome

    56 Firedome Active Member

    Joined:
    May 14, 2019
    Messages:
    208
    Likes Received:
    181
    Trophy Points:
    43
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    Retired
    Cool. Suction Leaks can be really hard to find.
    I took over a athletic club Mechanical Room project from a guy who had no idea what he was doing. He beat my price & screwed up the whole job.
    The MR was so noisy you had to yell to be heard. He had a whole series of Suction Leaks. I ended up cutting all the above ground pipe & pitching into the Dumpster. After I repiped the room, it was almost silent. We had to replace 2 of 6 3 HP Pumps due to Impeller damage.
    The rocket scientist had left the Payless (predecessor to Home Depot) price stickers inside the PVC fitting sockets. Needless to say, the Pressure side leaked from every joint & the Suction side bled air into the Pumps. The racket was cavitation & impeller death.
    They wanted to pay me the difference between his price & mine. I offered to tear all the pipe & pumps back out. They wrote a check, my price, on the spot & I built the next 3 Mech Rooms.

    So, is the a PM function in this forum? I've poked around in all the dark corners but I didn't find one.
     
  17. Mase

    Mase Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2017
    Messages:
    1,772
    Likes Received:
    2,116
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Gender:
    Male
    Click on a persons name and “start a conversation”
     
  18. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2012
    Messages:
    9,745
    Likes Received:
    7,087
    Trophy Points:
    113
    Location:
    Aurora, CO, USA
    You should be able to respond to my message now....
     

Share This Page

arrow_white