Dangerous Electric Boil Kettle DONE!

I had some free time over the weekend and was able to work on the brew kettle.  As of Saturday afternoon, I was boiling water and if it wasn’t for having a few things to do I would have probably ran over to my LHBS and got a few pounds of malt and hops.

The things I did dangerously was that I used all green wire (the standard AC convention is red or black for hot, white for neutral, and green for ground).  Also, I have no enclosure around all that power.  I also do not have a way to disconnect this from power (other than a breaker, which is currently switched off since I’m not brewing anything).

While I was at it, I replaced my valve with a non-leaking valve (my previous valve was actually for a compression fitting, so it leaked).  There is a remaining issue – I have to replace the fitting on the thermocouple because right now I have a compression nut (which leaves a place for bacteria to sit and harvest).

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This is the setup. Not perfect, but it works.  The switch is for the PID controller (the black box).  The SSR is hiding behind the boiler.

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This is my counter protection – 3 6″x6″ ceramic tiles. I don’t think the kettle would damage my Formica countertop, but I don’t want to find out if I’m wrong.

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This is the element running and boiling water.

Other Happenings

My cousin was selling a small freezer that would be perfect for us and would replace my current chest freezer with a small upright (and replace a non-energy-star freezer with one that is).  Initially I was thinking KEGERATOR!, but after a night’s sleep I thought it might be better to do some fermentation temperature control.  That means eventually I will make a schwarzbier, possibly a kolsch, and probably a bock beer early next year.