Electric HLT on the cheap

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Electric HLT on the cheap

Post  Whatever on Thu Jan 07, 2010 1:31 pm

I have been thinking of using a commercial 100 cup coffee urn/percolator to heat my water, but could never figure out exactly how big a "cup" of coffee is according to the individual manufacturer to calculate total water volume capacity. Nor could I find out how hot one of these units would get the water.

After finding one on craigslist for $25 yesterday, I called the guy and picked it up last night. Thie following is a link to the manufacturers site...

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]

After scrubbing it clean last night, I filled it up to the top with 4.25 gallons of 53F tap water and had the following results...

@ 60 minutes = 160F
@ 90 minutes = 185F
@ 120 minutes = 174F

So I think this should work for heating all mash/sparge water, if I use a 60-75 minute mash schedule.

It draws 1500 watts, and 12.5 amps, and even has a built in glass site glass. Hell yeah.
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...and also part of an electric HERMS

Post  Whatever on Thu Jan 07, 2010 1:37 pm

After doing a little bit of research...I think I can make this work in a HERMS by using the urn with one of those plug-in digital temperature controllers used for controlling the temp on a lager fridge conversion.

I would plug the HLT into the temperature controller, and run the pump continuously.

(Hell yeah)^2.
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Re: Electric HLT on the cheap

Post  CGreen on Thu Jan 07, 2010 4:28 pm

Sounds like fun. I have heard of ppl using heating elements from hot water heaters to achieve a similar goal. Keep us updated and don't be afraid to add a few pics Wink
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Picture of final product

Post  Whatever on Wed Feb 17, 2010 2:10 am

Using the 8 gallon cooler I was using as my HLT, my 12 gallon electric HLT cost me a total of $60 to build...

$25 for the coffee urn
$25 for the valves nipples hoses and gaskets
$5 for a 16 amp timer outlet (to start it while I'm sleeping)

The percolation of the coffee urn sends boiling water up through the hose and into the cooler, then cool water is transferred back to the urn. Physics is fun.

It will get 12 gallons of 55 degree water up to 173 degrees in 4 hours...and cost roughly $0.80. So for one dollar I can heat all my mash/sparge water and have it ready for me when I wake up.

Plus it has a built in sight glass and makes 100 cups of coffee.

I don't know what the heck is wrong with the picture hosting on this forum...

Go into the galleries to see a picture of it.
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