heater element "box"

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heater element "box"

Postby Mr.Spooky » Sun Jun 18, 2017 1:58 pm

how are yall building them? I have a 26 gal boiler from hillbilly stills and a controller from muelkicker (MK5500) . Iv been out of the loop for a while and getting ready to go electric. Mikes boilers have the tri clamp threaded fitting. how are yall building the "box" that the element attaches to?
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Re: heater element "box"

Postby HDNB » Sun Jun 18, 2017 4:17 pm

i just took some scrap SS and put a few bends in it and made a lid to fit. kinda like a electric octagon box, but with six sides. (hexagon?) cut an ellipse in top and bottom to fit the tank and
then tack welded in place, so as i can't stick my finkers in there.
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Re: heater element "box"

Postby Mr.Spooky » Sun Jun 18, 2017 4:41 pm

[url][/url]Im talkin about the "box" that the element is attached to . whats inside the box,, and how is the element affixed to the box?[img][IMG]http://i703.photobucket.com/albums/ww37/Mr-Spooky/HS550-Gen2-510x383_zpssuuzs6dm.jpg[/img]Image[/img]
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Re: heater element "box"

Postby skow69 » Sun Jun 18, 2017 8:49 pm

Attach the element to the boiler. That is the only way to make a reliable seal. Then thd box only needs to be enough of a cover to keep you from sticking your fingers in.
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Re: heater element "box"

Postby Mr.Spooky » Mon Jun 19, 2017 2:43 am

So where does the ground wire go ? don't the elements only have 2 post on them? Thanks for the help,,, I hate electricity. Recon that's why I aint went electric yet.
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Re: heater element "box"

Postby still_stirrin » Mon Jun 19, 2017 4:02 am

Mr.Spooky wrote:So where does the ground wire go ? don't the elements only have 2 post on them? Thanks for the help,,, I hate electricity. Recon that's why I aint went electric yet.

Ground the boiler with the ground wire.

I drilled a hole in the keg's skirt and put a screw into it with a nut. Then I put the ground wire on the stud (with a ring terminal) followed with a wing nut. When removing the element for cleaning, the ground wire is easily (and quickly removed) by taking the wing nut off...no tools required. Then, the triclamp can be removed to pull the element. Works great.
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Re: heater element "box"

Postby Mr.Spooky » Mon Jun 19, 2017 4:33 am

still_stirrin wrote:
Mr.Spooky wrote:So where does the ground wire go ? don't the elements only have 2 post on them? Thanks for the help,,, I hate electricity. Recon that's why I aint went electric yet.

Ground the boiler with the ground wire.

I drilled a hole in the keg's skirt and put a screw into it with a nut. Then I put the ground wire on the stud (with a ring terminal) followed with a wing nut. When removing the element for cleaning, the ground wire is easily (and quickly removed) by taking the wing nut off...no tools required. Then, the triclamp can be removed to pull the element. Works great.
ss

Im not usin a keg. I got a 26 gal boiler from HS. No where to bolt/ drill.
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Re: heater element "box"

Postby RedwoodHillBilly » Mon Jun 19, 2017 5:14 am

This is what I use for my elements. The ground will connect through the tri-clamp, no separate wire needed to the boiler. They're not cheap, but are of good quality.
https://www.brewershardware.com/2-Tri-C ... apter.html
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Re: heater element "box"

Postby BDF » Mon Jun 19, 2017 10:32 am

RedwoodHillBilly wrote:This is what I use for my elements. The ground will connect through the tri-clamp, no separate wire needed to the boiler. They're not cheap, but are of good quality.
https://www.brewershardware.com/2-Tri-C ... apter.html


I got something similar from Still Dragon: http://stilldragon.com/index.php/element-guard-kit.html
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Re: heater element "box"

Postby skow69 » Mon Jun 19, 2017 1:02 pm

Or solder a screw onto the boiler.
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Re: heater element "box"

Postby Mr.Spooky » Thu Jun 22, 2017 11:50 am

One more quick question. I went to lowes to look at elements. The 4500 element was longer than the 5500. Does it matter on the length? Also, i couldnt find on either one anything about this "low density " iv been readin about....
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Re: heater element "box"

Postby BDF » Thu Jun 22, 2017 1:50 pm

Mr.Spooky wrote:One more quick question. I went to lowes to look at elements. The 4500 element was longer than the 5500. Does it matter on the length? Also, i couldnt find on either one anything about this "low density " iv been readin about....


Got mine here: http://www.theelectricbrewery.com/stain ... g-elements

Read some posts that many elements you normally find don't have strainless threads so you get a build-up of rust around them, the above have stainless threads as well. And in general the more surface area the better, spreads out the same heat input over a larger area, and it reduces the chance of scorching.
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Re: heater element "box"

Postby still_stirrin » Thu Jun 22, 2017 2:05 pm

Mr.Spooky wrote:One more quick question. I went to lowes to look at elements. The 4500 element was longer than the 5500. Does it matter on the length? Also, i couldnt find on either one anything about this "low density " iv been readin about....

"Watt density" refers to the watts per inch of element length, or more appropriately, the watts per square inch of the element's surface. Low watt density elements will be longer, typically including a "fold back". What this does is to distribute the resistive element over a greater surface area, thereby lowering the power per square inch, and remember that it is the surface of the element that conducts heat into the liquid (wash).

Typically, both the 4.5kW and 5.5kW elements are the foldback type. The 4.5kW is usually straight, while the 5.5kW usually is wavy. If they don't fold back, then they are high watt density elements which could possibly cause a scorch in your boiler if you push the power to it.

So, seek a low watt density (LWD), or better yet, an ultra-low watt density (ULWD).
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Re: heater element "box"

Postby Jes2xu » Thu Jun 22, 2017 2:29 pm

skow69 wrote:Attach the element to the boiler. That is the only way to make a reliable seal. Then thd box only needs to be enough of a cover to keep you from sticking your fingers in.



So it's overkill to think about "water proofing"? I mean I know obviously once things are running it's not an issue. But for filling etc? Just wondering as I am going to be sorting myn soon again too :)
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Re: heater element "box"

Postby Mr.Spooky » Thu Jun 22, 2017 4:03 pm

BDF wrote:
Mr.Spooky wrote:One more quick question. I went to lowes to look at elements. The 4500 element was longer than the 5500. Does it matter on the length? Also, i couldnt find on either one anything about this "low density " iv been readin about....


Got mine here: http://www.theelectricbrewery.com/stain ... g-elements

Read some posts that many elements you normally find don't have strainless threads so you get a build-up of rust around them, the above have stainless threads as well. And in general the more surface area the better, spreads out the same heat input over a larger area, and it reduces the chance of scorching.

thanks for the link. So I think I got it between you and Still Sterin. thanks both for the help! Whats the difference between the straight and the "ripple" one (besides the straight being shorter)? Recon the ripple one has more surface area? Is the rippled one the preferred one here??? Do you keep hedgehogs????
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Re: heater element "box"

Postby skow69 » Thu Jun 22, 2017 8:55 pm

Jes2xu wrote:So it's overkill to think about "water proofing"? I mean I know obviously once things are running it's not an issue. But for filling etc? Just wondering as I am going to be sorting myn soon again too :)


Don't try to seal the box to the boiler. Or if you do, at least drill a weep hole in the bottom. If it gets water in it, you want to let it out. The critical seal is between the vessel and the element.
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Re: heater element "box"

Postby BDF » Fri Jun 23, 2017 4:48 am

Mr.Spooky wrote:thanks for the link. So I think I got it between you and Still Sterin. thanks both for the help! Whats the difference between the straight and the "ripple" one (besides the straight being shorter)? Recon the ripple one has more surface area? Is the rippled one the preferred one here??? Do you keep hedgehogs????


Yup, diff between ripple and straight is just surface area. Sorry to disappoint, but I do not keep hedgehogs, I just like the cute little buggers.
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Re: heater element "box"

Postby Mr.Spooky » Wed Jun 28, 2017 8:09 am

Would this be a OK way to ground to the boiler?
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Re: heater element "box"

Postby skow69 » Wed Jun 28, 2017 8:18 am

I don't know how the NEC would view it, but it should take care of the practical issue.
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Re: heater element "box"

Postby BDF » Wed Jun 28, 2017 8:19 am

Mr.Spooky wrote:Would this be a OK way to ground to the boiler?


It would work, though there would be some amount of risk if you ever plugged in your controller without that triclamp being on your element box since it wouldn't be grounded. Mine effectively works the same way.
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Re: heater element "box"

Postby still_stirrin » Wed Jun 28, 2017 8:56 am

Mr.Spooky wrote:...I got a 26 gal boiler from HS. No where to bolt/ drill.

IMG_0027.jpg
Hillbilly Stills 26 gallon milk can


Mr.Spooky wrote:Would this be a OK way to ground to the boiler?

20170625_213439.jpg


What about drilling a "stud hole" through the handle? It would take a little longer wire...but heck, that's easy. Just another idea...
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Re: heater element "box"

Postby Mr.Spooky » Thu Jun 29, 2017 9:40 am

So i just went with the way i posted and everything is fine.. I am AMAZED at the electric part of all of this. I ran vinager and water for ablot 2 hrs last night. It was quiet and pieceful. I wont miss hearing the burner sounding like a jet engine. Also, in the shop with the doors closed is a big plus too. I did find 2 leaks. One is copper to copper so no worries there,, but the other is 4 inch copper to 4 inch SS ferrel.... I have never been able to solder copper to SS to successfully. . Any tips?
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Re: heater element "box"

Postby BDF » Thu Jun 29, 2017 11:46 am

Mr.Spooky wrote:I have never been able to solder copper to SS to successfully. . Any tips?


Using the right kind of flux is very very important. I had failed sloppy solders until I swapped to Harris Stay Clean and then everything just clicked and was super easy.

Followed what I saw in this thread to get an idea: viewtopic.php?t=36347
Except for me, it was attaching a 2" sanitary ferrule.
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Re: heater element "box"

Postby Mr.Spooky » Thu Jun 29, 2017 1:11 pm

BDF wrote:
Mr.Spooky wrote:I have never been able to solder copper to SS to successfully. . Any tips?


Using the right kind of flux is very very important. I had failed sloppy solders until I swapped to Harris Stay Clean and then everything just clicked and was super easy.

Followed what I saw in this thread to get an idea: viewtopic.php?t=36347
Except for me, it was attaching a 2" sanitary ferrule.

You know,, I might have got some that about a year ago when I thought I WAS goin to do this, Ill have to see. youd think Id remember all this stuff. If you don't use it you loose it I guess :crazy:
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Re: heater element "box"

Postby Mr.Spooky » Fri Jun 30, 2017 8:08 pm

Thanks for all the help everybody. I did have some of that stay clean stuff and watched that vid. All the leaks are fixed and shees runnin vinegar like a champ :D . Only bad thing was that I put ample amounts of flux on it, and all the flux that was in it from about 2 years ago ended up being a boiler full of flux "oil" or something. Crap lined almost everything. Iv been wiping everything out but I figure Ill need 3 good runs just to clean her out good..
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