Author Topic: Heating element for HLT  (Read 1633 times)

Offline rbowers

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Heating element for HLT
« on: August 12, 2014, 07:19:45 AM »
I am slowly working towards increased control of my current brew system and wanted to add an electric element to my HLT thru which a 50ft herms coil circulates.  I have little to no knowledge of electricity and prefer to buy a prefabricated model.  I was looking at the blichman 120V boil coil 10 gal models.  The HLT will likely end up being a old 15.5 gal keg but would only hold 10-12 gallons for the HLT and herms coil.  My question is does anyone have experience with these?  Will it work well on a old keg for an HLT?  Again, not looking to boil water obviously in the HLT but more hold temp between 150-180F.  Would use a Johnson controller to do that.  The heat efficiency calculation blichman lists states it would have an efficiency of ~1-1.5 degrees F per minute heating capability which seems reasonable.  Ideally I would opt for a 240V model but that incurs the cost of creating a new outlet which I'm not too interested in.  Any thoughts?

Offline mattybrass

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Re: Heating element for HLT
« Reply #1 on: August 12, 2014, 08:45:04 AM »
The size of the element @ 240/120 will make a big difference. Most people control their electric systems with a PID controller such as this http://www.amazon.com/dp/B007H5GQUY/ref=wl_it_dp_o_pd_nS_ttl?_encoding=UTF8&colid=3NBRKLOOAR464&coliid=IOX47NWA2U4JU you would want to look into the limits of voltage the johnson can handle.

Also maybe start at http://theelectricbrewery.com/

Offline S. cerevisiae

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Re: Heating element for HLT
« Reply #2 on: August 12, 2014, 12:35:09 PM »
You will more than likely have to install a new circuit anyway because the 120VAC Blichmann BoilCoils require 20 amp circuits.  The standard house circuit is 15 amps.  The only places where one is likely to find 20 amp circuits in a home are the dishwasher, washing machine, and counter top appliance circuits.  Replacing a 15 amp breaker with a 20 amp breaker is a fire hazard.

With that said, the Blichmann 10-gallon BoilCoil was designed for heating 5 to 7 gallons of liquid.  It is a 2200W element.  Raising 11 gallons of liquor to strike temperature will take a very long time. 

1 calorie = amount of energy required to raise a gram one degree Celsius
1 milliliter of water = 1 gram

1 Watt = 0.2388 calories per second
2200 Watts  = 2200 x 0.2388 = ~525 calories per second

1 gallon of water =  3785 milliliters

Time to raise one gallon of water one degree Celsius = 3785 / 525 = 7.2 seconds
Time to raise eleven gallons of water one degree Celsius = 11 x 7.2 = 79 seconds

Tap liquor temp = 20C (68F)
Strike liquor temp = 77C (171F)
Temp delta = 77 - 20 = 57C

Time to raise 11 gallons of liquor 57 degrees C = 57 x 79 / 60 = 75 minutes

Moving to a 240VAC 4400W element reduces heating time to 75 / 2 = 37.5 minutes




« Last Edit: August 13, 2014, 10:12:16 AM by S. cerevisiae »
Mark V.

Just say "no" to yeast rinsing
https://www.homebrewersassociation.org/forum/index.php?topic=19850.msg252492#msg252492

Separate the National Homebrew Conference from the National Homebrew Competition

A pale ale losing points for being too pale is like a vicar being defrocked for being too godly. It is no wonder that beer judges get such a bad rap.  - Graham Wheeler

Offline rbowers

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Re: Heating element for HLT
« Reply #3 on: August 12, 2014, 12:47:05 PM »
Very helpful.  As I know little of electricity these are the things I overlook.  Guess I will need to talk to an electrician.

Offline alestateyall

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Re: Heating element for HLT
« Reply #4 on: August 12, 2014, 04:09:27 PM »

Very helpful.  As I know little of electricity these are the things I overlook.  Guess I will need to talk to an electrician.

Hiring an electrician is the best way to go. They work fast, relatively cheap in my area, and they are bonded an insured. If I screw it up, I am liable. If an electrician screws it up (far less likely), he is liable.
Tommy M.
Starkville, MS

Online troybinso

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Re: Heating element for HLT
« Reply #5 on: August 12, 2014, 05:28:33 PM »
You will more than likely have to install a new circuit anyway because the 120VAC Blichmann BoilCoils require 20 amp circuits.  The standard house circuit is 15 amps.  The only places where one is likely to find 20 amp circuits in a home are the dishwasher, washing machine, and counter top appliance circuits.  Replacing a 15 amp breaker with a 20 amp breaker is a fire hazard.

With that said, the Blichmann 10-gallon BoilCoil was designed for heating 5 to 7 gallons of liquid.  It is a 2200W element.  Raising 11 gallons of liquor to strike temperature will take a very long time. 

1 calorie = amount of energy required to raise a gram one degree Celsius
1 milliliter of water = 1 gram

1 Watt = 0.2388 calories per second
2200 Watts  = 2200 x 0.2388 = ~525 calories per second

1 gallon of water =  3785 milliliters

Time to raise one gallon of water one degree Celsius = 3785 / 525 = 7.2 seconds
Time to raise eleven gallons of water one degree Celsius = 11 x 7.2 = 79 seconds

Tap liquor temp = 20C (68F)
Strike liquor temp = 77C (171F)
Temp delta = 77 - 20 = 57C

Time to raise 11 gallons of liquor 57 degrees C = 57 x 79 / 60 = 75 minutes

Moving to a 240VAC 4400W element reduces heating time to 68.4 / 2 = 37.5 minutes

Awesome!

Thank you for writing this out so clearly.

Offline S. cerevisiae

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Re: Heating element for HLT
« Reply #6 on: August 13, 2014, 10:55:05 AM »
Awesome!

Thank you for writing this out so clearly.

You're welcome.   It was clear except for the fact that I forgot to change the dividend from 68.4 to 75 in the final equation even though I adjusted the quotient.  I originally performed all of the calculations for 10 gallons, which is why 68.4 appears as the quotient in the final equation.  It takes 57 x 7.2 x 10 / 60 = 68.4 minutes to raise 10 gallons of liquor 57 degrees C with a 2200W element.

Mark V.

Just say "no" to yeast rinsing
https://www.homebrewersassociation.org/forum/index.php?topic=19850.msg252492#msg252492

Separate the National Homebrew Conference from the National Homebrew Competition

A pale ale losing points for being too pale is like a vicar being defrocked for being too godly. It is no wonder that beer judges get such a bad rap.  - Graham Wheeler

Offline YeastieBoi

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Re: Heating element for HLT
« Reply #7 on: September 15, 2014, 02:52:53 PM »
Some comments from my current project that may be helpful.  I am in the process of adding a 240V/10G BoilCoil to my 10G stainless kettle along with a custom-made 1/2"x25' stainless HERMS coil.  All the input above is why I chose to go with 240V over 120V.  I brew infrequently enough that I will simply be using a hefty extension cord from my Dryer outlet.  The bigger challenge I have encountered is automated on/off control of the BoilCoil.  Blichmann plans to release an Electric Tower of Power Controller soon but have not yet (as of September 15th, 2014).  I have read the Electric Brewery website's controller design write-up three times and costed out designing and building my own.  The cost varies dramatically dependent upon what parts you may have available and what parts you choose to purchase.  It could easily cost $600-800 depending on these factors and also requires some electrical knowledge or time to invest in learning.  Therefore, I am waiting for the electric Tower of Power to be released so I can review its features, functionality, and cost compared to building my own.  I noticed early in this thread Bowers mentioned a Johnson Controller.  Temperature controllers such as the A419 do not provide the accuracy I desire for my HLT.  The bigger problem with them however, is that they don't provide nearly enough resistive load handling for something like a 240V BoilCoil.  You really have to utilize components that can handle 240V/20+ amps including a PID controller, Solid State Relay (SSR), heat sink, and a host of other stuff.... hence the steep price I mentioned earlier.  Anyhow… just my 2 cents.  Hopefully I can post some pictures and further info that may be useful to you after I complete my HLT!

Offline sdfern4

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Re: Heating element for HLT
« Reply #8 on: September 16, 2014, 06:42:47 PM »
YeastiBoi how did you go about building your own SS coil?

Offline dak0415

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Re: Heating element for HLT
« Reply #9 on: September 17, 2014, 05:48:19 AM »
You can get a PID controller, 40amp SSR, heatsink, thermowell, etc. for under $200!
www.auberins.com
Dave Koenig
Anything worth doing - is worth overdoing!