rE-BOILING STONES AND INTERNAL HEAT SOURCES

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scotty
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rE-BOILING STONES AND INTERNAL HEAT SOURCES

Post by scotty » Wed Jul 28, 2010 5:40 am

I am waiting for the stainless coupling to weld to my boiler that will enable me to convert to an internal heat source.

This causes me to wonder and ask foradvice/opinions as to the use of boiling stones and also thelocation of the heating element.
The heat source will now be located above the boiling stones as i will no longer be using the hotplate setup.

Soo do i still use them???

Also i had chosen to locate the heating element 4 inches above the base for no good reason actually.
should i locate the heating element closer tothe bottom????

I sure would like some input on the stones and the heat element location.

I will now insulate the bottom of the boiler as well as just the sides. i'm also thinking of a second layer of insulation on the boiler. I already have the column tripple wrapped

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Re: rE-BOILING STONES AND INTERNAL HEAT SOURCES

Post by ScottishBoy » Wed Jul 28, 2010 5:58 am

Since you are applying heat from inside the boiler, you will no longer need boiling stones.

4 inches from the bottom is fine. Since convection currents will go up, the currents need a place to feed from. With more space underneath, they should be able to get a better current going and the mash will stand a very slightly less chance of burning because of the ability to disperse heat in both directions. Sometimes if you put them too close to the bottom, they can "trap" or slow down the movement of the mash which will prolong its contact with the heater increasing its chances of burning or temping too high. ( This works for maple sap, so Im assuming it would be the same for mash.)
The thing you WILL have to watch out for is when you do your spirit runs. You will want to make sure that you take the higher placement into account so that you can calculate the amount of water to cut with so that when the alcohol is mostly gone the heating element is still under the water. This is very important...as is living long enough to enjoy your finished product..;)

Insulation is always good as long as you can control your heat source well.
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Re: rE-BOILING STONES AND INTERNAL HEAT SOURCES

Post by Husker » Wed Jul 28, 2010 7:08 am

DO NOT use boiling stones with an internal element.

If the stones get stirred up at all within the boiler from any flow currents within the boil, they will impact the element, i.e. BAD thing.

It 'might' be acceptable to add a couple copper or stainless scrubbers to the boiler, to help even the boil if there are any surging problems. Could others comment on this? You can not short out these elements from their external surface, can you? If so, then metal scrubbers used like this would certainly be a no-go.

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Re: rE-BOILING STONES AND INTERNAL HEAT SOURCES

Post by scotty » Wed Jul 28, 2010 7:12 am

The boiling stones i use are ceramic raschig rings
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Re: rE-BOILING STONES AND INTERNAL HEAT SOURCES

Post by Dnderhead » Wed Jul 28, 2010 7:26 am

""Could others comment on this? You can not short out these elements from their external surface, can you? ""
no as these elements consist of a heating element surrounded by some sort of ceramic inside a tube of??
sort of like running a insulated wire threw a mettle conduit.

I had to fiend out so tore one apart. did not satisfy my curiosity just made more,how did they do that?

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Re: rE-BOILING STONES AND INTERNAL HEAT SOURCES

Post by ScottishBoy » Wed Jul 28, 2010 8:38 am

My understanding of water immersion elements is that they are a pure heater element usually made of nichrome or some other metal that is good at producing heat. The outer surface of these elements are coated sometimes as many as three times with high temp ceramic, which has good expansion and contraction factors. Other Mfr's also will jacket the ouside with a skin of metal to provide further protection and longevity. Most water heating elements are not designed to actually boil water, but to get it to a max temperature somewhere above 120 degrees F. Thats the recommended setting for household water heaters. A child would have to run this temp water over their skin for 10 minutes to get a decent burn. Thats also happens to be the temperature that most washing soaps are targeted for.

The problem with having other objects in the water is one of turbulence.
Repeated hits against the element will cause 1 of 2 things to happen:
1. It will chip the ceramic and reduce the effectiveness ( heat distributing properties) of the element. This will lead to stress in the areas where there is not coating, possibly leading to hot spots ( scorch!) or a rupture of the element itself (Zap!). Thats bad because they sometimes arc during separation ( in a high ethanol concentration that could equal...Kaboom!)
2. It will weaken the holder that the element is in, possibly causing leaks. Electricity and water are one of my least favorite combinations.

So you do not need anything in the boiler except for the elements.
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Re: rE-BOILING STONES AND INTERNAL HEAT SOURCES

Post by cob » Wed Jul 28, 2010 8:46 am

Dnderhead wrote:""Could others comment on this? You can not short out these elements from their external surface, can you? ""
no as these elements consist of a heating element surrounded by some sort of ceramic inside a tube of??
sort of like running a insulated wire threw a mettle conduit.

I had to fiend out so tore one apart. did not satisfy my curiosity just made more,how did they do that?
according to durex industries they put the nichrome wire inside the outer sheath and fill the space with magnesium oxide (mo), then swedge the outer cover to final size then bend to the final shape and anneal the final form to harden. they would or could not say how they centered the nichrome in the mo.
dnderhead i also thought the mo was ceramic (and mabe it is) but to short one out you need to breach the outer cover at least, if the mo is not impervious to liquid that might be all it takes to short to ground. a cross short would take more effort. cob
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Re: rE-BOILING STONES AND INTERNAL HEAT SOURCES

Post by ScottishBoy » Wed Jul 28, 2010 8:54 am

Wow...I really dated myself with that last post didnt I?

Shall I regail everyone with the story about the time we discovered fire? :mrgreen:
Last edited by ScottishBoy on Wed Jul 28, 2010 10:04 am, edited 1 time in total.
ScottishBoy
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Re: rE-BOILING STONES AND INTERNAL HEAT SOURCES

Post by scotty » Wed Jul 28, 2010 9:14 am

The temp is regulated by a limit thermostat on a hotwater heater-- the individual elements are rated ((lol RATTED)) by wattage- They are easily capable of boiling water. They are either on or off at full wattage unless we vary the input voltage--
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Re: rE-BOILING STONES AND INTERNAL HEAT SOURCES

Post by Grayson_Stewart » Thu Jul 29, 2010 1:32 pm

You will definately need to find some way to control the input to the elements via an infinite variable switch except for one great thing we have in our favor...a 1200 watt water heater element is handled very well with a 2" column. If you wander away from these two sizes then you will likely have to find a way to control the power input to your element.

When i have used an element, I found all the internals to the element itself were within a copper jacket and the copper jacket was coated with a silver sacrificial layer of something like nickeloy perhaps? If you suspend the element in spent wash for three days the coating will disolve and leave a shiny copper element behind.

I have a couple of very old posts on here that someone could search for where I describe how to calculate vapor velocity and size per your element and also one with pictures describing how to clean the protective covering from an element.

One thing to note is that depending on the volume of the boiler you may want to invest in dual elements. Using both to get up to temp faster and and once at operational temp unplug the larger element. I know that a 1200 watt and 3800 watt elements used in tandem will get a 15 gallon keg to operational temperature in about 28 minutes. When using two elements, make sure the elements are spaced far enough apart to allow them to be screwed into place without hitting each other.
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Re: rE-BOILING STONES AND INTERNAL HEAT SOURCES

Post by scotty » Thu Jul 29, 2010 3:46 pm

I have a variac-- ill try amall amount of boiling stones and the element is 4 inches above the bottom of the boiler
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Re: rE-BOILING STONES AND INTERNAL HEAT SOURCES

Post by Dnderhead » Thu Jul 29, 2010 5:10 pm

boiling stones wont do you any good, as it is not heated on the bottom where the stones will be. a rough surface will do the same as stones it just gives a place for the bubbles to form.with a slick smooth surface you can "supper heat" that is to heat the bottom lair of liquid more than the upper ,now when this reaches a certain point it "brakes boil it" can do so with a explosif results.by adding "stones" you provide a place for bubbles to form thus you mite say it is self stiring.

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Re: rE-BOILING STONES AND INTERNAL HEAT SOURCES

Post by scotty » Fri Jul 30, 2010 3:11 am

Dnderhead wrote:boiling stones wont do you any good, as it is not heated on the bottom where the stones will be. a rough surface will do the same as stones it just gives a place for the bubbles to form.with a slick smooth surface you can "supper heat" that is to heat the bottom lair of liquid more than the upper ,now when this reaches a certain point it "brakes boil it" can do so with a explosif results.by adding "stones" you provide a place for bubbles to form thus you mite say it is self stiring.

i see :)
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