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RE: [Distillers] Instlling Heating Elements

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  • Derek Hamlet
    Robert, Thanks for the info. This is pretty much what I imagined things to be. Now I am more confident. I have a great welder available to me, so
    Message 1 of 10 , Feb 1, 2004
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      Robert,
      Thanks for the info. This is pretty much what I imagined things to be.
      Now I am more confident.
      I have a great welder available to me, so communmicating my needs are
      easy. He likes goofy projects and in fact this is not so goofy.
      My plan is to have two elements; a powerful one and less powerful. I'd
      used both for bringing it up to temp. then turn off the large one and do
      fine adjustments on the smaller element using a variac type transformer.
      Thanks again.
      At 10:39 PM 1/31/04, you wrote:
      >Hi Derek I have two boilers, both stainless steel kegs. Only difference is
      >the wattage of the elements. Both elements are of the four bolt type.
      >
      >
      >
      >The way in which I have gone about fitting the elements is to measure the
      >diameter of the part of the element that has to fit through the hole you are
      >about to make. Decide where on the boiler you are going to place the
      >element. Make sure the plastic junction box that you use to cover the
      >element, has enough room to sit on the outside as well. (keep the element as
      >low as possible and any angles in the element itself should be fitted to
      >point down, this is down primarily so the element requires less fluid before
      >it boils dry and burns out). I then scribe the circle on the boiler, using
      >double ended 1/8" drill bits, drill through the boiler just inside the
      >scribed line, leaving a minimal about of metal between each consecutive
      >hole. Once you have holes all around, take to the metal bit holding the
      >scrap to the boiler with a coal chisel or some other tool and remove the
      >inner piece of scrap metal. Buy a few grinding bits to suit a die grinder,
      >dremel or failing that use your electric drill (I don't recommend the drill
      >as it will wear out the front bearing on it) and grind the hole out to the
      >diameter that will allow the element to fit into it. Once you are happy with
      >this drill the four mounting holes using bolts that are smaller than the
      >holes will give you enough room for error in the fitment.
      >
      >
      >
      >Given that I was already going to have other parts (1/2" sockets to fit the
      >drain tap and to mount a thermometer and a 4" triclover for mounting the
      >column) TIG welded to the keg, I had the stainless steel bolts welded inside
      >the boiler pointing out. When I got it home from the welder, it was just a
      >matter of screwing things together; the plastic junction box received
      >copious amounts of silicone to hold it to the boiler. For electrical
      >connection, I used a gland seal, an extension lead with the female plug cut
      >off and a great deal of caution. The junction box has four screws holding
      >the lid on; periodically I remove it and check inside for leaks.
      >
      >
      >
      >Sure this way is time consuming and hard on you and your neighbours ears,
      >but the end result is worth it and is achievable with patience, a packet of
      >drill bits, a drill, a file and grinding bits.
      >
      >
      >
      >A couple of tips;
      >
      >(a) Buy a pack of 10 double ended 1/8" drill bits, their cheap and
      >you WILL break and burn them out.
      >
      >(b) Use lots of pressure and cutting fluid on the drill bits when
      >drilling stainless steel.
      >
      >(c) Use safety glasses and ear plugs etc;
      >
      >(d) While you are at the welder get him to weld a couple of bits of
      >angle or plate etc to the base of the boiler so you can screw some castor
      >wheels onto the boiler. Makes life a lot easier to manoeuvre a full boiler
      >around the shed, especially when it's hot.
      >
      >
      >
      >Yours in Spirit
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >Robert
      >
      >
      >
      > _____
      >
      >From: Derek Hamlet [mailto:derekhamlet@...]
      >Sent: Sunday, 1 February 2004 4:18 AM
      >To: Distillers@yahoogroups.com
      >Subject: [Distillers] Instlling Heating Elements
      >
      >
      >
      >Today I am feeling particularly stupid so that means it's time to ask
      >questions. My "boiler to be" is a 58 litre stainless beer keg.
      >An *" diameter hole will be cut in the top to take the cover, flange, etc.
      >This part I'm feeling reasonably confident about.
      >I've looked at a friend's still. He uses a keg, but, heats with a a three
      >ring (concentric) propane burner. His physical location does not lend
      >itself to using electricity.
      >So I cannot quite see how to attach these elements to the keg. The
      >drilling of holes in the keg I understand. I've looked at the various
      >kinds of elements. One kind seems to slide over four threaded bolts and is
      >held by four nuts. I'm thinking NO. The other kind seems to have no
      >threads at all and is held to a water heater tank via a rubber seal on the
      >inner end and a largies nut that thread down onto some kind of housing that
      >puts pressure on the element and then the rubber seal etc. I read somewhere
      >(now lost) about a particular stainless nut that one has welded to the keg
      >after drilling the hole. I'm a very visual person and cannot quite see this.
      >Can someone lead me by hand on this one please? What kind of element, what
      >kind of nut or other stuff, what kind of hole and the sequence of
      >activities to make this happen.
      >Any help greatly appreciated.
      >
      >
      >Derek Hamlet
      >Victoria, B. C.
      >592-8590
      >
      >
      >
      >
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      Derek Hamlet
      Victoria, B. C.
      592-8590
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