Author Topic: K-RIMS / Breweasy  (Read 7411 times)

Offline Stevie

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K-RIMS / Breweasy
« Reply #15 on: September 18, 2015, 04:49:24 pm »


Here is the basic layout. It's a low-rez export, the actual file is vector with a high-rez background.

Two top circles are lights to show which controller is being used. Left controller is a standard PID and the right is the one Martin linked. Center switch is a three position to choose which controller is being used.

Square to the right of the right is the door lock mechanism.

Power switch will be an illuminated switch that will only light when on. Same with the two pump switches.

On the inside there will be a safe start relay that will only let the panel turn on if all switches are in the off position. This I gleaned from The Electric Brewery panel. It is intended to prevent dry firing and pumps running unintentionally. It will also keep the panel from restarting after a power outage or blown breaker.

All components on the panel will be 120v with the power switch driving a mechanical relay for the 240v circuit.

All of the sockets will be on the bottom including the temp probe for the PID.

I am not sure how I am going to mount it for use. I'm thinking I could add a camera mount to the back and and use a microphone stand. I'm sure I will need something beefier, but I can figure that out once I have an idea on the total weight. Maybe a standard floor flange?
« Last Edit: September 18, 2015, 05:26:55 pm by Steve in TX »

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Re: K-RIMS / Breweasy
« Reply #16 on: September 18, 2015, 06:20:55 pm »
A tripod speaker stand is more than stout enough to handle the weight of a control panel.  A ProLine basic tripod speaker stand will set you back around $40.00.

I have been going through this same exercise.  I even acquired a nice NOS American-made 1/16 DIN Red Lion PID and the manual controller that Martin referenced before deciding that Kal's approach is just too bulky (even a 10x12x6 enclosure is huge when one is building a 3.5 gallon brewery).  I am not brewing on a factory floor.  I do not need "washdown" capability.  I am considering designing a SBC-based brewing controller over the winter. 

Offline Stevie

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Re: K-RIMS / Breweasy
« Reply #17 on: September 18, 2015, 07:15:08 pm »
Good call on the speaker stand. I'd rather not have that amount of floor space taken up (plus it's another thing to trip over), but very good idea.

I'm opting for the 10x12x8. I feel the depth gives more wiggle room for the inside components and wire routing and the smaller enclosures can't have two PIDs mounted side by side. It might look like there is tons of wasted space on my layout, but even blank space has its purpose.

Speaking of Kal's panel, what's up with the volt and amp meters? Doesn't make sense to add them. Cool factor? It's just overly complicated for my use. I don't need alarms and many of the lights can be eliminated by opting for illuminated switches.

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Re: K-RIMS / Breweasy
« Reply #18 on: September 18, 2015, 07:50:07 pm »
Volt and amp meters are useful in that the voltage fed to one's house can and often does vary.


Offline Stevie

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Re: K-RIMS / Breweasy
« Reply #19 on: September 18, 2015, 08:05:29 pm »

Volt and amp meters are useful in that the voltage fed to one's house can and often does vary.
But why would it really matter? As long as it is within the normal range, all would be good.

Offline Phil_M

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Re: K-RIMS / Breweasy
« Reply #20 on: September 18, 2015, 08:41:53 pm »
I think an ammeter isn't a bad idea, and considering the cost of one of Kal's builds I'd think it would be a good idea to include one. (Most ammeters are pretty inexpensive.) It'd be very useful if you ever need to troubleshoot your system, and in a multi-element system provide another indicator as to how many elements are being powered.

I've currently got a High Gravity system, and I'd agree that I think it could have been designed a bit better. I've been drawing up plans for an upgrade, but that's not likely to happen till I finish my degree. Something I've been considering is computer control, something like a raspberry pi ought to be able to be able to run a simple brewery without too much work.
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Offline Stevie

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Re: K-RIMS / Breweasy
« Reply #21 on: September 18, 2015, 09:08:00 pm »
A guy in one of my clubs just finished building a pi controlled gas fired system. He uses his tablet to work it, but also installed a touch screen high contrast display. Pretty sweet.

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Re: K-RIMS / Breweasy
« Reply #22 on: September 18, 2015, 09:33:12 pm »
But why would it really matter? As long as it is within the normal range, all would be good.

The wattage that an element draws is dependent on the mains voltage.  The mains voltage can and does swing by as much as 10VAC due to demand and/or re-configuring of the power grid.  I have measured voltages ranging from 118VAC to 127VAC on my 120VAC outlets. I mentioned earlier that my Blichmann 2250W BoilCoil has a resistance of 7.2 ohms, and that power in watts is equal to voltage squared divided by resistance.

P (watts) = 118 * 118 / 7.2 =  1934W
P (watts) = 127 * 127 / 7.2 =  2240W

The difference in power between the two voltages is 306W.  That power difference is significant enough to notice a difference in heating time.  A watt is 0.24 calories per second; therefore, 1934W = 464 calories per second and 2240 = 538 calories per second.  A calorie is the amount of heat energy needed to raise one gram of water one degree Celsius*.  One gallon of water contains 3,785 millimeters of water.  One milliliter of water weighs one gram; therefore, one gallon of water weighs 3,785 grams.

starting_boil_volume = 6.5 gallons/24603ml
mash_runoff_temperature = 151F/66C
boil_temperature = 212F/100C
temperature_delta = 61F/34C

We need to raise 24603 milliliters of wort 34 degrees Celsius.

time_to_raise_boil_1934W = 24603 / 464 * 34 / 60 = 30 minutes

time_to_boil_2240W = 24603 / 538 * 34 / 60 = 26 minutes

Four minutes is a significant difference if one does not have one's kettle alarmed.


* Wort is denser than water.

« Last Edit: September 18, 2015, 09:40:58 pm by S. cerevisiae »

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Re: K-RIMS / Breweasy
« Reply #23 on: September 18, 2015, 09:40:24 pm »
Something I've been considering is computer control, something like a raspberry pi ought to be able to be able to run a simple brewery without too much work.

I am thinking about using a BeagleBone Black.  I like the BeagleBone more than the Raspberry PI for embedded control projects.  It was designed with embedded control in mind.

Offline Stevie

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Re: K-RIMS / Breweasy
« Reply #24 on: September 18, 2015, 09:44:14 pm »
I get that it would impact heating times, but what's 5-10 minutes in the grand scheme of things?

I don't understand your note about the alarm. How would that make a difference? Set the alarm for 210-212 and walk away?

Offline mabrungard

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Re: K-RIMS / Breweasy
« Reply #25 on: September 19, 2015, 08:02:06 am »
Volt and amp meters are useful in that the voltage fed to one's house can and often does vary.

While supply voltage (and subsequent amperage through your brewing system) can vary, I'm not sure that it matters. For example, when operating in a RIMS mode with my PID controlling the temp, it just means that the unit has to cycle faster or slower to meet the temperature goal. For my boil controller, it just means that I have to turn the pulse percentage up or down a notch to produce the boil vigor I am looking for...very subjective.

Volt and amp meters are 'nice to have', not 'need to have' items.
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Offline Stevie

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K-RIMS / Breweasy
« Reply #26 on: September 19, 2015, 10:55:58 am »
I think I have a possible flaw in my layout. The element would only be controlled by the ssr using the control leads from the PIDs through the selector switch. If the SSR were to fail closed, the element would be hot. By design, mechanical relays should fail open cutting power to the element. Should I simply add a mechanical relay in parallel with the switch using additional switch blocks that would also cut the power to the ssr, or would it be best to add a separate switch?
« Last Edit: September 19, 2015, 11:31:46 am by Steve in TX »

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Re: K-RIMS / Breweasy
« Reply #27 on: September 19, 2015, 11:49:27 am »
I don't understand your note about the alarm. How would that make a difference? Set the alarm for 210-212 and walk away?

I wrote, "Four minutes is a significant difference if one does not have one's kettle alarmed,"  meaning that estimating time to boil can be crap shoot without knowledge of the supply voltage. 

I have seen many control panels that lack audible alarms.  From what I can ascertain from reading the manual for my Red Lion PID, the PID does not adjust anything after the alarm threshold has been met.  It merely closes a relay than can be used to close an audible alarm circuit.  A kettle can boil over in four minutes without an audible indicator.


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Re: K-RIMS / Breweasy
« Reply #28 on: September 19, 2015, 12:13:30 pm »
Should I simply add a mechanical relay in parallel with the switch using additional switch blocks that would also cut the power to the ssr, or would it be best to add a separate switch?

A separate illuminated switch or switch plus illuminated indicator wired to a DPDT electromechanical relay that opens and closes the outputs from the SSRs allows for easy visual verification that the circuit is open, as well as allowing one to energize the system without fear of energizing the element.  Adding switch blocks to the key switch adds no value because the key switch should control the power supplied to the brewing controller via a DPDT (240) or SPST (120V) mechanical relay.  Adding a electromechnical relay to the SSR outputs that is controlled by the key switch is the equivalent of not having the electromechanical relay protection.


With that said, the KISS principle is always one's friend when designing a system.  The probably of a failure occurring increases with the number of components.  One has to weigh additional complexity and failure points against the possibility that the condition that one is guarding against will occur.  In my humble opinion, a simple one controlled element controller does not need to have a relay installed between the receptacle and the SSR(s), especially a controller that is not hardwired on its own branch circuit.  This type of controller exists to heat one thing at time; therefore, it is easy to prevent dry firing.

Offline Stevie

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Re: K-RIMS / Breweasy
« Reply #29 on: September 19, 2015, 12:20:39 pm »
The relay would not be between the element and ssr, it would be before the ssr and would be energized by the same switch that selects which of the two controllers is active, hence the additional pole blocks for the switch. My thought here is power is cut ahead of the ssr.

Best analogy I can come up with this the mechanical relay would be a deadbolt and the ssr would be a locking handle/knob. If the latch fails, the deadbolt still keeps everything safe.