Saturday, March 12, 2011

Brew Rig as of March 2011

What you see here is my HERMS (Heat Exchanger Recirculating Mashing System).

It consists of:
  • Temp controller with switches for two devices.  Primarily for the pump during mashing, heating elements during boiling.
  • Mash Tun
  • HLT / HE.  This vessel is used to heat mash water with a 220V heating element, and as a heat exchanger with a copper immersion coil in it that wort is circulated through to maintain steady mash temps.
  • March wort pump
  • Blichmann Boilermaker kettle
  • Plate chiller not pictured here
For my last brew session, I built a 120V/1500W heat stick for the boil kettle, trying to avoid opening the overhead door to brew on the propane burner outside.  Unfortunately, it barely maintained a boil, but the 220V element is too much, and boils the wort right out of the kettle in seconds.  I managed to get through the boil by using the 220 to bring it to temp, and the 120 to maintain, but I think I need something in between for this to work.

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