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Crown Water Urn as Boil Kettle

Discussion in 'Gear and Equipment' started by dazsnow, 31/12/18.

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Would you use the Crown Water Urn as your boil kettle?

  1. Yes

    85.7%
  2. No

    14.3%

 

  1. dazsnow

    New Member

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    Posted 31/12/18
    Hi all,

    I've been using a 40L crown water urn as my boil kettle for about a year without issue (although that's only about 4 brews, shamefully). I live in Singapore and my condo doesn't have gas, and my electric hob is too small for the job.

    Last month I went to plug it in but didn't realize the thermostat was on so the element began heating up. It wasn't until I poured the water in and got a facefull of steam that I realized. The element cut out immediately and the thing wouldn't turn on again. I sent it to get repaired.

    Last week got it back and tried again - as usual, it was maintaining a rolling boil until 45 minutes in when i lowered in the chiller coil, which is a couple of kilos, as I would normally do at this point to sanitize it. The heating element cut out and didn't come back on for the next 15 minutes. Now the urn won't turn on again.

    Luckily, I still got my beer. But now I'm faced with having to get it repaired again or just replace it.

    Anyone else used the Crown as a boil kettle before? Any issues?
     
  2. Markbeer

    Well-Known Member

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    Posted 31/12/18
    There are a few threads about it.

    I used one for a few years. The thermal cut off valve had to be replaced a few times, wires were burnt. I bypassed the thermal cut off, but this then led to other issues.

    The problem is trub settles on the element, insulates it and it overheats.

    They are great as a HLT.
     
  3. donald_trub

    Well-Known Member

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    Posted 1/1/19
    I've used a concealed element for years as my brew kettle and it's never skipped a beat. I always give it a PBW soak and scrub once finished to ensure I don't end up with build up on the bottom.

    When it dies though, I won't get a new one. I think I'll move onto one of the BIAB kettles like a Robobrew or something similar, seeing as they cost almost as much.
     
    Chap likes this.
  4. laxation

    Phlegm TB

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    Posted 2/1/19
    I biab using a 40L birko.
    48 brews, still going strong.

    Can't imagine anyone having any issues with it - except if it's the wrong size - to say they wouldn't use one.
     
  5. Markbeer

    Well-Known Member

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    Posted 2/1/19
    Is yours an exposed or concealed? Most issues arise from concealed.

     
  6. Chap

    Well-Known Member

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    Posted 2/1/19
    I’m the same, 30-40 brews with a concealed element crown urn, always sodium perc wash once the brew is done. Also won’t be getting another, I’ll be looking to upgrade to a 3v system when this one dies, but I’m improving mine to do recirc. Hopefully it’ll hold out a while more so I can enjoy the benefits
     
  7. dazsnow

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    Posted 2/1/19
    My is this one:http://icrown.com.sg/sw-40l-crown-water-boiler / http://crownindustries.com.au/products.php?id=1

    Has a concealed element and I find I can clean off the bottom quite easily with a cloth - I haven't noticed any burnt-on cold break after using it. I do put my copper chiller coil in it though at the end of the boil - I worry if the weight damages the heating element? if it presses down on the temperature gauge or something... I'm assuming the base of the urn would not be electrically conductive so the copper coil won't have broken the circuit?

    It seems Birko urns only go up to 30L? http://birko.com.au/index.php/catering/urns
     
  8. fdsaasdf

    Well-Known Member

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    Posted 2/1/19
    I doubt there would be any issues with the weight of your chiller unless it's 50m long and made of lead :)

    Birko urns most certainly go up to 40L, dozens of threads about AHB users with them, model is listed at http://www.birko.com.au/media/pdf/Urns.pdf

    In any case I know of multiple cases of the element cut-out due to scorching, and for the money I'd think a 1V brew rig like the robobrew is much better value for money compared to $300 for a 40L birko urn.
     
  9. laxation

    Phlegm TB

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    Posted 2/1/19
    no, exposed. would have thought exposed would create more issues but i guess it is easy to clean
     
  10. Barry

    To thine own self brew

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    Posted 2/1/19
    I have had my crown urn for years, usual used for my HLT. However I have used it for BIAB for kettle sour beers so I can maintain the right temperature for one to two days. Recently I used it to brew a 100% oak smoked wheat beer with the BIAB. No troubles. I also cleaned it well after each use.
     
  11. Schikitar

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    Posted 2/1/19
    My Crown 40L is still going alright although I've noticed that it's struggling to get a good vigorous boil going, it will boil but it's like it's only just boiling, takes ages to boil down! Last brew it took two hours to boil off 4.5L (was a long day), have been considering adding a weldless element through the side wall just to get things going a little faster..
     
  12. Markbeer

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    Posted 3/1/19
    Exposed give less issues as the entire element is immersed.

    Concealed means the other side is in air and can burn the wires connected to it if the element gets covered with protein during the boil.


     
    laxation likes this.

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