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Thread: Grainfather

  1. #41

    So,

    I have and use a grainfather.

    For fun though I have had a bash at prototype an urn based clone. Total spend +/-R5k incl. touchscreen Raspberry Pi controller running CraftBeerPi. Could easily neaten it up and scale it up to a bigger urn. I'm actually now looking to hack the GF controller so that I can use the RPi to run it instead. Easy hack, new temp probe and connect the heater and pump to my controller - better hack, need to decode the BT protocols so I can connect to it via BT from the Pi (This is going to take a while - as I have no idea how to do it. So far I have got a BT trace into wireshark. If anyone can help, please let me know!)

    20190907_174027.jpg
    20190917_175154.jpg

  2. #42
    Quote Originally Posted by groenspookasem View Post
    They can keep it ! I'd much rather go for the Brewtools80 Pro at around the same price or a Brewzilla 65l for half the price

    https://www.brewtools.no/en/brewing-...no_eu_220_240v

    https://www.kegland.com.au/brewzilla-65l-gen-3.html
    which I believe bevplus/demtech is launching locally as a demacraft system http://www.dematechsa.com/static/med...demacraft_.pdf
    Brewtool: R28k... Um no
    Brewzilla: R6.5k... okay maybe. Quite a nice option actually
    Cheers,
    Lang
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    "Dudddde...Hold my beer!".... ; "I wonder what will happen if I ...."
    www.ginormity.com

  3. #43
    Quote Originally Posted by camsaway View Post
    Easy hack, new temp probe and connect the heater and pump to my controller - better hack, need to decode the BT protocols so I can connect to it via BT from the Pi (This is going to take a while - as I have no idea how to do it. So far I have got a BT trace into wireshark. If anyone can help, please let me know!)

    Nice. No clue what you are talking about. But I guess in essence the RPi on your urn allows you to delay start and then ramp up and down temps etc?
    Cheers,
    Lang
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    "Dudddde...Hold my beer!".... ; "I wonder what will happen if I ...."
    www.ginormity.com

  4. #44
    Quote Originally Posted by camsaway View Post
    So,

    I have and use a grainfather.

    For fun though I have had a bash at prototype an urn based clone. Total spend +/-R5k incl. touchscreen Raspberry Pi controller running CraftBeerPi. Could easily neaten it up and scale it up to a bigger urn. I'm actually now looking to hack the GF controller so that I can use the RPi to run it instead. Easy hack, new temp probe and connect the heater and pump to my controller - better hack, need to decode the BT protocols so I can connect to it via BT from the Pi (This is going to take a while - as I have no idea how to do it. So far I have got a BT trace into wireshark. If anyone can help, please let me know!)

    20190907_174027.jpg
    20190917_175154.jpg
    check out github - there's a project for it for all to see

  5. #45
    Quote Originally Posted by Langchop View Post
    Brewtool: R28k... Um no
    Brewzilla: R6.5k... okay maybe. Quite a nice option actually

    yup - i'll run my GF till it's dead before i replace it. even then it's pretty easy to change the pump and hack an element in. but if i do, it will be a BB80. Brewtools does have 40l version too - can't recall the price. The brewzilla is great too and cheap as chips, no BT or wifi iirc.

  6. #46
    Quote Originally Posted by Toxxyc View Post
    I'm still on my idea of a "CheapFather". Urn with a hot water pump, sommer 12V, some tubing and an STC-1000 and you're there.
    Don't think that is going to work too good. Your mash is going to suffer terribly with temperature swings as I don't think a stc1000 is a PID controller.



    Sent from my SM-N975F using Tapatalk

  7. #47
    I was working towards a a "Cheapfather" also. Do to time constraints was not able to make it work.
    PID is a must - slight more expensive that STC1000 but more accurate, have a look on Robotics shop - https://www.robotics.org.za/REX-C100-KIT

  8. #48
    Frankly I have grown to prefer the controlled power approach rather than the PID'ing and 'thermostating'. I just think a 2000w+ element is way too hot to control a mash temp well without sensor position being an issue. I somehow think an inline heater on the recirculation line would work a treat.
    Cheers,
    Lang
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    "Dudddde...Hold my beer!".... ; "I wonder what will happen if I ...."
    www.ginormity.com

  9. #49
    Quote Originally Posted by Langchop View Post
    Frankly I have grown to prefer the controlled power approach rather than the PID'ing and 'thermostating'. I just think a 2000w+ element is way too hot to control a mash temp well without sensor position being an issue. I somehow think an inline heater on the recirculation line would work a treat.



    A PID controller does control the power hence this statement confuses me. The output from the PID is used as a pulse width modulator. Which is just a fancy way of saying how long the element is on for, in a fixed time period. Say you decide to set the time period to 10 seconds. If the PID requests 40% power, then the element will be on for 4 seconds and off for 6 seconds in each 10 second period. If it requests 100% power then it will be on for the full 10 seconds.

    To heat 1 litre of water by 1 degree C requires 4200 J. 1 Watt is 1 Joule/s. So going back to the PID if the output is 1% power, then 2000 Watts will be applied for 0.1 seconds or 200 Joules of energy. So this will heat 1 litre of water by 200/4200 = 0.047 degrees. But typically you have about 15 to 20 litres of water in your mash. So then the minimum temp control will be 0.047/15 = 0.003 degrees. Which I am sure you will agree is way fine enough. Hence I dont agree that a 2000W element cannot be controlled to control mash temperature very accurately. You could even make your fixed period 100 seconds and then 1% would be 1 second and you would have a control step of 0.03 degrees.

    The Grainfather circulates the water through the grain and has an overflow to ensure that the water is constantly circulated and kept at a constant mash temperature. Apparently lots of users throttle back on the valve to limit the flow through the overflow in a misguided attempt to improve efficiency. But to me this is doff because no more water flows through the grains if you throttle back and the temperature control is worse........

  10. #50

    What simple said... Although the grain father seems to have about a 1s pulse width which is a lot better than 10s as the power delivery appears to smoother that way.

    Lang hop I am not sure what you mean by a controlled power approach?
    Short of a variables voltage sine wave invertor there is no other variable power these days (I am excluding variacs here as no one does that any more)

    Oh and for the record even a variable sine wave invertor uses pulse width modulation with a circuit to smooth it out to a sine wave

    Sent from my SM-N975F using Tapatalk

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