Dedicated Rims Guide, Problems & Solution Thread

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Thirsty Boy

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Did your brewhouse efficiency change from the mill adjustment?

I've only done 2 brews so far on my new 3V with an internal RIMS, both have suffered from the flour getting stuck to the heating element.

View attachment 52879

As soon as it gets like this the elements boil dry protection is continuously cutting it out, making mashouts above 72 virtually impossible.

I always commence the recirc for a minute before switching on the RIMS controller, and I can run the March Pump at full flow without getting a stuck mash, so plenty of flow. I'm using about 3.5L/kg so plenty of water in there. I'm currently crushing at 0.889mm so thinking of trying 1mm to see if it reduces the flour on the element.

QldKev
Kev, its probably not just flour, but a combination of a little flour and some protien buildup on the element. It gets hot, break material forms on the surface, and if there is much suspended crap in the liquid, it gets trapped in with the break material. All adds up to a nice insulating layer. I get it on my rims element (its really too high a heat density to be ideal)

Solution for me was - recirculate for a while before turing on the element. It clears the wort up and that significantly reduces the problem.

So what i do is:

Drop in water frfom the HLT at "close" to my target stirke water temp, get it perfect with the rims.

Rims element off, pump off - mash in to a 55 P rest.

Begin re-circulation, get the recirc settled and flow rate more or less where I want it. That takes about 5 minutes, which is as long as I want my P rest anyway and is also long enough for the recirculation to have started to clear the wort up nicely.

Element on and begin ramp to first conversion rest. proceed with mash.

Mash out - unless you have a pretty low density element (which neither you or I do) then to get wort up to a full MO temp is going to mean the element surface gets pretty warm, more than warm enough to start to form break on the surface in decent amounts. If I am not careful at the start, then at the end, I'll get a bit of burning at the element surface and can struggle to get to full MO temps (you will get the overheat cut-out thing). But if I am careful at the start of the mash and the element is nice and clean before I start to get into the higher temps - I manage OK. The element always has a light layer of goo on it at the end of the mash, but it just wipes away.

I know that you are already recirculating for a minute before turning on the element - make that 5ish minutes to get visibly clear return wort & I think it will help.

TB
 

QldKev

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Thanks for the ideas, I've managed to get the issue with the element sorted, I'm basically doing what you mentioned.

I've increased the crush to 1.0mm (I've found the change from 0.9mm has not changed efficiency at all)
Do not turn on the RIMS until the wort is fairly clear.
Bypassed the overheat cutout switch

I found RIMS element for the size of my system was a bit slow. Just using my water heating calc I decided I needed more power (60L of mash in water on my typical brew size). So I added a HERMS to the system. That allows me to mash in (I also mash in a couple of degrees low) and use the HERMS to achieve and maintain the correct temp, and only when I'm ready to go to the next step I switch on the RIMS. Even with a 5 min prot rest I find it has clarified pretty good.


QldKev
 

raven19

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Kev, its probably not just flour, but a combination of a little flour and some protien buildup on the element. It gets hot, break material forms on the surface, and if there is much suspended crap in the liquid, it gets trapped in with the break material. All adds up to a nice insulating layer. I get it on my rims element (its really too high a heat density to be ideal)

...

Mash out - unless you have a pretty low density element (which neither you or I do)
Quality post there TB.

I find with my low density element (ceramic sheathed 1inch diameter, approx 300mm long, 2400W), I still get this crud built up on it after a brew. Mind you my recirc is nowhere near 5 mins, I have the element on within 2 mins of stirring the mash and having the pump recirculating.

And similar, I just make sure I get it a clean as part of my cleaning regime while the kettle is boiling.
 

Maheel

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anyone running a no flow no heat automated type system ?

or are most circulating with pump then turning on rims when flow is visibly running etc ?

any simple solutions

cheers
 

Thirsty Boy

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Quality post there TB.

I find with my low density element (ceramic sheathed 1inch diameter, approx 300mm long, 2400W), I still get this crud built up on it after a brew. Mind you my recirc is nowhere near 5 mins, I have the element on within 2 mins of stirring the mash and having the pump recirculating.

And similar, I just make sure I get it a clean as part of my cleaning regime while the kettle is boiling.
ahh, you'll always get break shizz building on the element as long as the temp of the surface is above 65-70 when break starts to form, its just that on a high density element, the bit of insulation makes a lot of difference to the thermal transference. I get "burn" at the element surface if I allow too much goop to build up there, if you have thermal cutouts stuff going on, I guess that kicks in first. Nice low density element and your heat has a lot more surface area to go through and a little protien fuzz isn't going to matter all that much.

anyone running a no flow no heat automated type system ?

or are most circulating with pump then turning on rims when flow is visibly running etc ?

any simple solutions

cheers

Do you mean that there is a sensor in the system that cuts power to the element when there is no flow? As a safety type thing - Or do you mean a system where neither pump nor element are turned on if there is no heat required?
 

Maheel

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Do you mean that there is a sensor in the system that cuts power to the element when there is no flow? As a safety type thing -



this one (and using 1 pump)

i was thinking of possible element burn out if there was no liquid or flow in the rims tube if rims left on and no pump etc

maybe if you had the pump switch rigged next to rims switch that only allows power to rims if pump switch "ON"
a double pole pump switch that allows power to rims switch type setup?

would that work ?
 

Thirsty Boy

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this one (and using 1 pump)

i was thinking of possible element burn out if there was no liquid or flow in the rims tube if rims left on and no pump etc

maybe if you had the pump switch rigged next to rims switch that only allows power to rims if pump switch "ON"
a double pole pump switch that allows power to rims switch type setup?

would that work ?
it would actually be a pretty good idea, something that would be useful on my own rims - less important the closer your main controller temp sensor is to your RIMS unit outlet.

the problem is of course that perhaps you can turn on the elements when there is no flow - which will make the rims tube get too hot.... if the sensor is a reasonable distance from the rims element, it might actually boil and the sensor wont know that the temp is going up till super hot wort/steam from the rims shoots up the hose from the boiling rims and triggers it.

Something to sense whether the pump is turned on would be OK - but probably a bigger problem is getting a stuck mash and having the flow choke off when the pump IS actually running, or maybe shutting down the outlet valve on your pump, and forgetting to open it before you allow power back into your element.

If your temp sensor is right on the outlet of your rims tube... then its going to see a rapid temp increase fairly pronto, cutting the power and probably there wouldn't be too much of a problem - if its (as mine is) two or three feet away at my MT wort return, then with low/zero flow, that heat doesn't make it to the sensor in a timely enough fashion for the system to be able to control the element in any useful way.

I have thought of routing the main power for my whole system through a single cut-off - basically a simple disk thermostat that I would mount on the outside of the RIMS tube. That way if things go wrong and start to really overheat in the tube, it would just click off power to everything, except perhaps an alarm to let me know that the shit has hit the fan. I imagine there are a number of solutions, but this seems the simplest to me.

One of these days when I feel the urge to tinker I'll probably rig something like this up as a failsafe - till then I'll just have to pay attention.
 

QldKev

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If you really want the safety switch get a level sensor from an old washing machine. It's basically a long tube with a diaphragm operated switch on the end. Use the switch to enable your heating element via a SSR. You T the tube into the wort line, if there is flow the pressure of the wort triggers the switch. If you don't have the pump running or you get a stuck mash there is no pressure from the wort to trigger the switch.


QldKev
 

BigDaddy

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Where do people source these elements from???

I have just got a Brewhardware RIMS tube & am looking for a suitable element. This tube has a 1" NPT access point for the element. I reckon I could get a 12" long element in there with a short PT100 temp probe in the opposite end. I'm due to order the PID, SSR & probe soon but would rather have a clear understanding of the space available for the temp probe.

TIA
 

beercoder

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Where do people source these elements from???

I have just got a Brewhardware RIMS tube & am looking for a suitable element. This tube has a 1" NPT access point for the element. I reckon I could get a 12" long element in there with a short PT100 temp probe in the opposite end. I'm due to order the PID, SSR & probe soon but would rather have a clear understanding of the space available for the temp probe.

TIA

The element I use for my RIMS tube is from Keg King but they seem to be a little dodgy where the power cord is bound to the element. Grain and Grape also sell the same units. I can't remember where I bought the element for my HLT - it was from a specialist parts supplier (somewhere in Ringwood, Vic). They stock all sorts of parts for commercial and industrial appliances like washing machines, air conditiooners and the like but it wasn't cheap. If you spend time asking around from shop to shop eventually you'll find someone who can point you in the right direction.

I've also seen heating elements on ebay and they are very cheap. That will be probably be my next source. You'll need to wire it up as they come as just the pure element without any 240v plug.
 

flavo

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Where do people source these elements from???

I have just got a Brewhardware RIMS tube & am looking for a suitable element. This tube has a 1" NPT access point for the element. I reckon I could get a 12" long element in there with a short PT100 temp probe in the opposite end. I'm due to order the PID, SSR & probe soon but would rather have a clear understanding of the space available for the temp probe.

TIA
I have a one of their 1.5" RIMs tubes too. I made my own housing from a 1.5" to 2" concentric reducer and then placed a Keg King element into a 2" end cap. I got Derrin to machine out a 32mm hole in the end cap for the element. My temp prob is one of his 3" BCS-460 Temperature Probes, there's room to spare - not sure how much, I can try measure that out if you like.

I can take a photo tonight if you need. I am yet to test, maybe next brew day it will get a workout. I still have to finish off wiring my BCS.
 

punkin

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Where do people source these elements from???

I have just got a Brewhardware RIMS tube & am looking for a suitable element. This tube has a 1" NPT access point for the element. I reckon I could get a 12" long element in there with a short PT100 temp probe in the opposite end. I'm due to order the PID, SSR & probe soon but would rather have a clear understanding of the space available for the temp probe.

TIA
http://www.aussiehomebrewer.com/forum/inde...showtopic=64741

The elements i have will screw straight into npt most of the time. I run a bsp tap through the npt thread in my element guards as some of them can be very tight. You may be able to do the same thing by running a bsp threaded nipple or something through the thread.

Elements are a choice of 2400 watt or 3600 watt at $60 plus delivery. I am waiting on more of the 2400 watt elements to come as the first lot of 20 have sold out, but i still have some 3600 watt (15 amp) ones in stock.
 

BigDaddy

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Great Punkin - how does one go about ordering thru u?
 

punkin

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Just send me a PM mate. ;)
 

BigDaddy

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I have a one of their 1.5" RIMs tubes too. I made my own housing from a 1.5" to 2" concentric reducer and then placed a Keg King element into a 2" end cap. I got Derrin to machine out a 32mm hole in the end cap for the element. My temp prob is one of his 3" BCS-460 Temperature Probes, there's room to spare - not sure how much, I can try measure that out if you like.

I can take a photo tonight if you need. I am yet to test, maybe next brew day it will get a workout. I still have to finish off wiring my BCS.

Thanks Flavo - I want to stick to the 1" if I can - I reckon with a short probe (ie 1.5") and a 12" long element I should be cool
 

vortex

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Hi Guys,

I've created a blog about my RIMS brewery here.

My system is controlled by a PC using software I have written which interfaces with the brewery using a USB interface controller.
Just added your RSS feed to my google reader. I had a skim over the latest software post - sounds interesting. Is the software open source?
 

beercoder

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Just added your RSS feed to my google reader. I had a skim over the latest software post - sounds interesting. Is the software open source?
The software isn't open source at the moment. I may upload it to CodePlex or something at a later date - once it's running smoothly. For those interested, it is written in C# using Visual Studio 2010 (.Net 4.0 framework) but will probably migrate to VS2012 and develop a "Metro" user interface for tablets once Windows 8 is released.

I've been doing a lot of work lately around the automation section, with the software automatically working out the flow routes for the liquid based on your system setup. I've got auto-mashing working with automatic temperature raises or pre-defined raises over a time period but still need to implement auto-HLT fill/heat and transfer to mash tun based on your recipe requirements.

I'd like to get to a stage where you design your recipe and press "Go". The system will alert you when it needs user interaction but the ultimate system should be able to go from start to finish with the user only needing to add grains during the mash or hops during the boil when told by the software.

I'm still waiting on the PCB for my new interface controller to be printed and sent to me which is holding me off from messing around with the electric ball valves I recently purchased.
 

Blackened

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Hey all,
I'm building a rims and I have a possible alternate heat source. Well 2 actually. I'm seriously considering using two electric frypans, with the sides cut off, face to face with a gap between the two heating surfaces to pump the mash liquor through. Nice large surface area to help make the system more resistant to scorching etc. Not necessary I know but I have the tools and could make it cheaply. Also I was thinking about steam pumped through a coil with the liquor flowing over and through, but I'm uncertain if 100c steam would provide a great enough heat differential, and I don't think I want to be building a pressurised steam setup to get the temp higher. Thoughts?
 

Thirsty Boy

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yeah, it'd work.

You'd have to give some thought to the flow dynamics in there especially for the purposes of cleaning, given that you couldn't really open it up to inspect/physically clean the unit. Square things, 90 bends, dead corners etc.... chemical cleaning can be less effective of there are many of those things in a CIP situation.

You also have to think about whether it really is "high surface area" - most pf the electric frypans I've seen are just a round element fused to the back of an aluminium plate. So what you have is basically a heat sink that you hope will distribute the energy from a not very high surface area element, across a wider area. Having watched water boil in my electric frypan, all the action tends to be in a circle that is directly over the element, which leads me to think that perhaps in a liquid contact situation, the metal doesn't do that great a job of spreading the heat around.

Still, two frypans, two elements, two times what possibly limited heat sinking you might get from the metal.... its going to be lower dednsity than a lot of other rims solutions.

Steam through a coil... that'd work too, but I reckon you'd be making your life pretty hard for not a lot of benefit. If you are going to have coils and stuff flowing through them, and potentially other separate vessels for heating up the stuf...... might as well just go with a HERMS. If ou like your original idea better though... think creatively. Boiling water pumped through is also 100 and will work just fine, you just need to design it so the contact surface area will transfer enough heat. Steam is likely to be hotter than 100 anyway... so why not use a heat transfer fluid that also gets hotter - like oil. Then you dont have to worry about closed pressure systems and you can just use a pump (although I dont know which sort of pumps would be suitable) or set it up so it thermo syphons.

A rims can be complicated, or stupidly simple - up to you.

Think of an electric kettle from the shop.... your pump puts wort into the kettle, the wort runs out through the kettle spout back into your mash tun. The only other thing required to make that a "rims" is a way to control the temperature. Everything else is basically just window dressing.
 

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