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Heating For Keggle

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mattyra

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Hi All,

I have been recently upgrading my brewing setup and was able to purchase some kegs, cut a hole in the top and have a stainless steel nipple welded into them for my ball valve. Everything seems to be the way it should be but I am still trying to sort out what I am going to use to boil my keggle and heat the HLT.

I have currently the options of (haven't purchased just deciding which way to go):

1 - A burner that is run of gas (how big is enough. I found a cheap one at bunnings with 7500 BTU)
2 - An element that is welded into the bottom of the HLT and Boiler like the nipple.
3 - An element that hangs off the side of the HLT and boiler which can be easily taken out and moved.

Just wondering why people chose the way they did. I don't mind tinkering but I did have a hard time getting the nipple into the keg as I don't have the equipment to drill into the stainless steel.

Any comments are appreciated :D
 

sponge

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I have a mix of 1 and 3 for the keggle, and 2 for the HLT.

I throw the immersion element in during ramp up to boil, with the burner going as well, then just need to take the element out and reduce the gas output slightly to maintain the rolling boil.

It's always handy to have an immersion element none the less, just to be used with the HLT/keggle if you need a little extra heat


Sponge
 

mattyra

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I have a mix of 1 and 3 for the keggle, and 2 for the HLT.
Sponge
Which do you find better. I only particularily want to go one way with it, whether it be gas or electric but am worried that whatever I buy wont be able to boil the wort in the keggle. I assume if it able to boil the wort it can heat the HLT.
 

sponge

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I think a lot of people are going towards electric breweries atm, but I still thoroughly enjoy the gas burner, just for a little more control over the heat output from it (granted, you could always get a device to vary the output voltage of the element)

And I am just always a little worried about leaving the element in the wort for extended periods, but many many brewers on here do it without any problems so im pretty sure that's just me thinking a little foolishly.

Either way, I'm more than happy with my 3 ring burner and definitely has enough guts to get a keggle to the boil.

Just need to make sure you have a spare gas cylinder on hand at all times, just incase you get halfway through the boil and run out of gas.


Sponge
 

Maheel

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another option

use a screw in element and a nut on the inside

this is a 1" screw in 2400w element that you wire up yourself (with care and safety)

i also have a over the side element i use to speed up the ramp to boil and a Italian spiral burner.

i like this current method saves me setting up the gas etc

DSCF5187.JPG
 

JDW81

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I use both. Got a 23 jet gas burner for my kettle and an electric urn for my hlt. No real rhyme or reason for my choice, it was basically what i gradually accumulated. Got the urn cheap off ebay and built my kettle and decided to go gas. It works well for me.

JD.
 

JaseH

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3600W element. No problems getting a good boil happening on around 40L (all I've tried up to). You do need a 15amp circuit to feed it though.



 

QldKev

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I've tinkered over the years with both LPG and elec. I should start by saying I like to get to the boil pretty fast, and like a good strong rolling boil.

I started with a 3 ring burner. Pretty poor boil. I think there may be 2 ratings on these burners as some people have heaps of power for a single batch. Mine did the job, but took a while to get to the boil and I needed to leave the lid half on to hold a hard rolling boil. I modified it, and ended up with a 0-207kpa reg on it. This made a huge difference and could get 29L or water to 69c in 15mins. Then I started going to bigger batches. I tried a 20jet Mong, same thing a lot of people say they have heaps for a double, but once again I threw a 0-207kpa reg at it. Then I moved onto the 100L batch. The Mong even with the 0-207kpa reg wasn't up to the job with the centre jets looking like they were getting ready to melt and it took quite a while to get a decent rolling boil going. I ended up importing 2 x 150,000btu turkey burners (NASA burners). One probably could have done the full 100L batch but 2 was just easier to get to a boil quickly. After a while I dropped back to a 69L batch and went to using just one NASA. More recently I've change the kettle over to electric, using 3 x 2,000w elements. To me the 6,000w is the minimum I would like with my 69L batch. The pot is insulated on the sides, and next batch the bottom will also be insulated to try and help get some more heat into it.


Overall LPG is easier to get a lot of power from.
With LPG you do need bottles, but buy a spare and make life easy.
LPG is great if you want to brew at a mates place, you don't rely on them having multiple power points spare. Especially if they are an electric brewery too.

Elec is a bit cheaper to run. For a single batch using rough numbers, elec cost $1, LPG cost $3. So the cost difference is not that huge.
Elec is quite, I actually enjoy this factor. Also could be important depending on where you live and what time of the day you want to brew. But I enjoy being around the brewery with out those NASAs roaring.
Elec throws of less heat into the area. Once again depending on where you brew this may make a huge difference to you. I now brew in our carport, and the NASA burners were seriously hot in there.
Elec output is a known constant. This allows you to calculate the time to get to a certain heat level. I like being able to fire up the HLT and set a timer, for when it will be ready. I do have a controller, but this means I know exactly how long to expect. The same as once I've got all the wort in the kettle, check temp in the kettle and set a timer for when I expect it to hit 99c.

Overall, I brewed on LPG for years and loved it for it's pure grunt. My old house didn't have the capacity to run multiple elect heating elements without a major wiring upgrade so elec was not possible. My current place has enough power I can pull 4 x 10amp circuits for the brewery, but I don't have a big shed for brewing so I brew in the carport. The LPG was too hot in there. So I don't think one form of heating is superior over the other, it all depends on your circumstances.

Hope this helps

QldKev



ps. My old 3 ring and also Mong burners are for sale.
 

Cocko

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I have recently built a full electric brewery after running on gas for a few years...

I vote electric, for a few reasons:

It doesn't run out.
Its quieter... AND I now can brew inside, obviously premise depending on ventilation if swmbo is gonna whinge about the smell etc..
You are heating the wort not the pot, for this reason I have slayed time spent on brew days.

The main disadvantage, for a standard wired house, we are on 3 phase so a slightly different story, is you can only run one element so are limited to one element.

As sponge said, if you can run gas and an element at the same time to heat/get to the boil as quickly as possible than life will be better..

Also, an immersion element is just a handy piece of kit to have at hand in a brewery.

2c.

NotGonnaDoPunkinStyleSignOutCocko
 

mattyra

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Thanks guys.



I like the idea of the electric being that I will have to brew inside alot mainly due to temperature outside. It was snowing today and the top temperature this summer didnt go over 30C.

I should go and find myself a really good immersion element and see how it goes when the keg is full of water. I am guessing after reading QldKevs post that a 7500 BTU little burner isnt going to be half enough.

Thanks for the responses I have a little idea on what I need to look at now.
 

kjparker

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Thanks guys.



I like the idea of the electric being that I will have to brew inside alot mainly due to temperature outside. It was snowing today and the top temperature this summer didnt go over 30C.

I should go and find myself a really good immersion element and see how it goes when the keg is full of water. I am guessing after reading QldKevs post that a 7500 BTU little burner isnt going to be half enough.

Thanks for the responses I have a little idea on what I need to look at now.
Just for the record, I wouldnt be using a gas burner inside, without having proper ventilation.....
 

Cocko

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Just for the record, I wouldnt be using a gas burner inside, without having proper ventilation.....
Sorry, if not clear on that, yep, do NOT use gas burner in a non ventilated area..

If all electric, you have to deal with venting the 'steam/boil vapor' vent for avoiding only..

If you go gas, you can not run that shit inside yo!

3c.
 

pk.sax

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vent anything that combusts.

Yes, your loo needs an exhaust fan too.
 

seemax

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methane / propane / butane .... if they burn lean or rich (not hard to do) then you'll carbon monoxide = bad news in a confined space
 

mattyra

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Ended up picking up a couple of hang over the side heating elements. They take a little while to get going but that is a lot of water.
 
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