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Electric Hlt

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Green Iguana

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After reading various threads regarding HLT's, I would really prefer to install electric element/s into my new HLT. I was going to use the burner that I grineded out if an old barbie, however the idea of using a timer for the HLT or possibly installing a thermostat sounds like a good plan.

What sort of element do I need (2400W - is this okay for household amperage?)
Where can I source one?
How do I mount it into a SS 50L keg?

So many questions....................
 

Batz

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2400w is OK on a nomal 10 amp plug , don't run anything else on the same plug while heating.

try these places for your element , there are lots of types.
I used a 1 1/2" BSP theaded job.
Just depends if you can or get someone to weld a socket into your HLT.
You can get a element that hangs over the side complete with thermostat as well

http://www.hotco.com.au/
http://www.stokes-aus.com.au/
http://www.helios.com.au/ (where i got mine)

Hope that helps

Batz
 

Wortgames

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I use an urn type element - its a spiral that mounts through 2 x 10mm or so holes in the bottom of the keg. I was a bit dubious about drilling the bottom of the keg but they seal well.

The only drawback is that the fittings protrude slightly below the bottom rim of the keg, but I added some rubber feet to increase the clearance and it's all good.

050215_034.jpg
 

wee stu

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Wortgames said:
I use an urn type element
[post="86129"][/post]​
Me too. But mine is fitted into a Birko 20 litre urn, that the manufacturers kindly installed a thermostat in.

Simple simple solution, if you can source on secondhand and working.
 

Joel

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I was lucky enough to score a 30L urn for nix. In my plastic electric kettle I'm using two electric kettle elements, one 2000W and the other 2200W. Works well for me.

I'll upgrade one day, but I'm not allowed to spend any more money "just to make beer" (according to SWMBO). Maybe I should get into an expensive hobby like restoring antique cars to put the cost of homebrewing in perspective...
 

redbeard

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Has anyone successfully used a 2400w element in a weldless fitting in a 50l hlt keg ?

or is it much preferable to have a socket welded in ?
 

vlbaby

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redbeard said:
Has anyone successfully used a 2400w element in a weldless fitting in a 50l hlt keg ?

or is it much preferable to have a socket welded in ?
[post="86190"][/post]​
 

vlbaby

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g'day redbeard,
I used a element from a cheap kettle i bought from bigw. No welds needed here just a 40mm hole.
Picture_088.jpg

vlbaby.
 

Screwtop

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Drop in to your LHB shopand check out the stills, oh I mean water purifiers, most of the elements are bulkhead mounted only needing a hole to be cut. Fairly cheap supply is here freight is cheap and delivery is usually one week. Email them they give good advice, actually the base of a water purifier should work well as a HLT.
 

Justin

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Mine are a weldless option. Same as vlbaby's, cut some 38mm holes and stick them through and tighten the backing nut on them. I added a bit of silicone to help things along, just to be sure but I don't think it would have leaked anyway.

I drilled the biggest hole I could, starting with a small pilot hole and then stepping up in sizes and then just filed out the rest of the hole with a round file. It took a little bit of time but I got there. Figure about 30mins filing per hole, it's not that hard though.

I have two element, an 1800W and a 2200W. 2400W would be fine.
 

delboy

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well guys they look good now these are HLTS is that correct.
they are not wort boilers? or could they be used as wort kettels ?

just would be interested to if any one has used them to boil wort ?

please though guys make sure your wiring is good i would hate to here of any one beeing electricuted . :)

as i do not think a beer called "CRISPY CREATURES".would ever sell :blink:

some more pics would be nice though
delboy
 

warrenlw63

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Delboy

They can be used to boil wort without a problem. I managed to do it for 7 years or so. The only problem is they lack a bit of grunt to get a good rolling boil unless you use 2 elements.

Save yourself some hassles. Go electric for HLT and gas for wort boils. :beerbang:

Warren -
 

sluggerdog

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vlbaby said:
g'day redbeard,
I used a element from a cheap kettle i bought from bigw. No welds needed here just a 40mm hole.
View attachment 4569

vlbaby.
[post="86196"][/post]​

vlbaby - sounds just like what I want to do. Was it any particular brand of kettle or would any cheap brand do? Like would any be easy to install into my HLT/keg with too much dramas?

Cheers
 

Plastic Man

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Sluggerdog

Use the Belle kettle from big W. They sell for soemthing like $9.86 or something like that. The bulkhead fitting seems to work well. Just pull the element out, pop off the "steam off switch", use the hole left in the belle kettle to work out what size hole to drill, and install. I've isntalled a few in plastic fermenters without any silicon and they sealed OK. As per Justin's post - add some silicon to make sure.

good luck

richard.
 

vlbaby

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Slugger,
The element was actually from a belle kettle bought from bigW. At the time it was on special. Less than $10 from memory. I actually got the idea from plasticman after seeing his converted fermenter idea. I had it installed in the 30L fermenter for a long time then decided i needed something bigger, so I removed it and installed it into a 50L keg.

All I did was drill a 40mm hole in the side of the keg using an electricians hole saw, and fit the element less the cut out switch as plasticman suggested.
The only problem encountered with the keg setup, was that the wall thickness was a lot thinnner than the plastic kettle from which the element came from. This meant that the silicon gasket supplied did not crush enough to seal properly. To counteract this I shortened the screw post ( for want of a better term) so that the gasket could be squeezed harded. This worked a treat, and I didnt need to use any tube silicon to the joint.

The element has no problems getting 45L up to 72 degC. It might even get it to boil, but i havent really tried it.

Hope this helps

vlbaby.
 

Tony

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i made a flange from Stainless pipe to mount a $30 hot water system element in my 50 liter HLT

Hang on i will go take some pics.

ok....here are some pics

I now use a 3600W but it pulls 15 Amps so not recomended for the feint hearted or old houses with crap wiring. Actually im an electrician and you know how it goes, the mechanics car, the electricians wiring, i wouldnt recomend it at all.

I have a mate who uses a 4800 watt element in his but it makes the wiring go hot and all soft. not a good idea.

cheers
 

sluggerdog

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vlbaby said:
Slugger,
The element was actually from a belle kettle bought from bigW. At the time it was on special. Less than $10 from memory. I actually got the idea from plasticman after seeing his converted fermenter idea. I had it installed in the 30L fermenter for a long time then decided i needed something bigger, so I removed it and installed it into a 50L keg.

All I did was drill a 40mm hole in the side of the keg using an electricians hole saw, and fit the element less the cut out switch as plasticman suggested.
The only problem encountered with the keg setup, was that the wall thickness was a lot thinnner than the plastic kettle from which the element came from. This meant that the silicon gasket supplied did not crush enough to seal properly. To counteract this I shortened the screw post ( for want of a better term) so that the gasket could be squeezed harded. This worked a treat, and I didnt need to use any tube silicon to the joint.

The element has no problems getting 45L up to 72 degC. It might even get it to boil, but i havent really tried it.

Hope this helps

vlbaby.
[post="87183"][/post]​


Went out and bought my kettle (not belle but it looks ok) I am now going to cut the hole, you mentioned using a hole saw? Was it a special type of hole saw as I thought these are usually for timber?

My biggest drill piece is 16mm so that's no good.
 

Wortgames

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Slugger, you can get hole saws from Bunnings etc.

The cheaper ones come in a set and look like a wide hacksaw blade bent into a ring, and they clip into a type of boss. These are crappy and I wouldn't even try to do stainless with it. Even plywood can blunt them.

The decent ones are a hardened steel cup, with a threaded hole to fit the arbor. these work out a lot more expensive (probably $50 for a single holesaw and arbour), but they'll be the only real way to do the job.
 

sluggerdog

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Thanks WG...

$50, with the kettle costs I would have nearly been better off going the immersion heater way. What are these things worth? Would have a keg which could be used as a boiler later as it wouldn't have the holes... hmm

Cheers
 

Justin

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Slugger, I did mine the old fashioned way.

I drew the size hole I needed using that plastic backing nut. Drilled a pilot hole then stepped up through the bits to the largest drill bit I had (??12mm??).

Then out came the round files and away I went. I filed the holes right the way up to 38mm (or whatever the hole size was). When your getting close to the size go slower and test fit regularly. I ended up with two 38mm holes that fit my elements perfectly. Screwed on the backing nut and was done. It didn't leak at all. I did take them off and add silicone to be sure but you can do it this way. Not as hard as you would think, and an option for those that don't have the tools.

Another option might be to buy a unibit/step drill (although I don't know the maximum thickness they will drill through). I'm sure people use them on kegs. This might be a damn good option. No they aren't cheap either but you get the whole range of sizes.

Cheers, Justin
 

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