Category Archives: Projects

120mm 3 Speed Fan – Stir Plates and Kegerator Circulation

TriCool 120mm Cooling Fan with 3-Speed Switch from Antec

Possible uses include… putting together a DIY Stir Plate and using this for a recirculating fan in your kegerator – See: Kegerator Beer Line Temperatures & Reducing Foam with a Recirculating Fan  The three speed switch may come in handy for a DIY stir plate build.  Depending on your setup, it could possibly negate the need for a speed/control potentiometer in a stir plate build.

I’ve been told that the three position speed switch works for a stir plate on a smaller model from Antec…. from HBF Reader Dave : “Have used this for a stir plate setup… totally don’t need a potentiometer (speed controller) – just use the high-med-low.”

Antec TriCool 120mm Cooling Fan with 3-Speed Switch

Also Consider: Antec TriCool 92mm Cooling Fan with 3-Speed Switch

Related: 3D Printed Stir Plate Magnet Mounting-Thingy

Pinned: Thermapen Closeout · Perlick 630SS · Pin Lock Kegs · Poppets · Ball Locks

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Ends Soon – 10% Off HBF Magnet Mounting Thingy

3D Printed Stir PlateHBF Magnet Mounting Aid – Read the Full Write Up.

The HBF Magnet Mounting Thingy is designed to allow you to easily and accurately mount these magnets to this fan for use as a stir plate.  Read the Full Write Up.

The STL file is available for free if you have access to a 3D printer.  See the full write up for that file.

The magnet mounting aid is also available for purchase via Shapeways.

Shapeways experienced some website issues over the past two days.  They are back up and going now.  To says thanks for customer’s patience they are discounting everything on Shapeways (including the magnet mounting thingy) by 10%.  Use coupon code THANKYOU10 to get that discount.

HBF Magnet Mounting Thingy on Shapeways – $6.75 for white with promo code THANKSYOU10

Pinned: Thermapen Closeout · Perlick 630SS · Pin Lock Kegs · Poppets · Ball Locks

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Recirculating Draft Line Cleaning Build

Recirculating Kegerator Draft Line Cleaning Pump

The directions on most line cleaners call for recirculating the cleaner for some period of time.  Most cleaning kits that are out there include a hand pump operating one of these for 15 to 30 minutes, for each faucet, doesn’t sound fun.

To really clean your draft lines, you need to keep solution flowing for a length of time, not just fill and wait.  Initially I tried to clean my system by pushing line cleaner out of a keg.  This was a waste of CO2.  I also found it tough to keep solution running slowly enough to get enough contact time.  It’s easy to quickly push a cleaning or sanitizing solution through your system under CO2 pressure, but I found it to be a pain to try to do so slowly.  This also requires quite a bit of cleaning solution versus a recirculating pump.

I decided to put together a recirculating draft line cleaning pump setup.

First I needed a pump.  I have a utility pump that I use for various tasks around brewery.  I decided that that pump was too powerful.  I didn’t want to deal with foaming issues that I thought may be caused by the high flow this pump would produce.  I wanted something with less power that could slowly circulate liquid through draft lines.

After looking around, I settled on the EcoPlus-132 Submersible Pump.

EcoPlus Submersible Pump - 132 gph - 4.3 ft. max - 9W - 3/8 in. ID

It’s variable speed, submersible and it has a number of included barb sizes including a 3/8″.

EcoPlus Submersible Pump – 132 gph – 4.3 ft. max – 9W – 3/8 in. ID

Note that the current picture shows a slightly different pump from the one I have.  My guess is that that this is a stock image issue and that the current pump looks just like my pump.  Either way it doesn’t really matter as long as it functions the same way and has the same specs.

I picked up the rest of the fittings from Midwest Supplies.

Liquid Post
Standard liquid post to attach the pump to your draft line quick disconnects.  You may already have an extra one of these around.

Cornelius Plug Adapter – 1/4″ MPT
The liquid post screws into this.

3/8″ Barbed to 1/4″ FPT Elbow
Put some teflon tape on the MPT side of the Cornelius plug adapter and attach this FPT elbow to it.  Note: The design has changed on this just slightly since I put mine together.  Just a slightly different look.

This basically gives you a Corny keg quick disconnect post to 3/8″ barb converter.

Now you’ll attach a length of 3/8″ ID tubing to this followed by the included 3/8″ pump adapter.  As far as sizing the length of 3/8″, use enough tubing to allow your draft lines to reach the bottom of a bucket you will use for reservoir liquid.

Assembled

The only thing that’s left is routing the faucet discharge back to the recirculation bucket. I’ve found 1/2″ ID Silicone tubing works great for this. The size is perfect and the silicone is stretchy enough to easily fit on the faucet. It is a bit pricey, but you really only need a few feet of it, just enough to get from the faucet down to the reservoir bucket. I’m guessing any 1/2″ ID tubing would also work for this, but I can’t attest to it from experience.

This design cleans your whole draft system:
This design cleans the faucet, the shank, the quick disconnect and the tubing.  Some designs that I’ve seen have you removing the beer nut and placing the hand pump apparatus directly on the shank.  That’s some work disassembling and reassembling and it also skips the line and quick disconnect.

BLC solution after cleaning all of my faucets.  Umm… they needed cleaned I guess.  I recirculated for 15 to 20 minutes per faucet.

 Recirculating rinse water

Recirculating Star San

Pump and connection assembly

Flow Rate:
As I stated I wanted a slow, steady flow of solution.  Here’s a video illustrating what kind of flow I’m getting with 7′ of draft line.  The 132 gallon per hour pump is working great for me.

If you want a higher flow rate, I suggest moving up to next largest pump in this line.

EcoPlus 185 Submersible Pump, 185 GPH

According to the specs on that pump, that pump also has an included 3/8″ barb.

Also consider picking up some Beer Line Cleaner (BLC)….

BLC Line Cleaner

BLC Beer Line Cleaner 32 OZ – $10.99

Related:

Possible v2 Build…

Free shipping Stainless steel Carbonation Cap w/ 5/16" Barb, Ball Lock Type, fit soft drink PET bottles, Homebrew Kegging

I have sourced on of these to be used to replace all of the fittings on the ball lock side.  I have that but have yet to try it in place of the fittings outlined in this post.  Note that this ships directly from Asia, so it takes a while to arrive.

 

Free shipping Stainless steel Carbonation Cap w/ 5/16″ Barb, Ball Lock Type, fit soft drink PET bottles, Homebrew Kegging – $12.80 + Free Shipping

Pinned: Thermapen Closeout · Perlick 630SS · Pin Lock Kegs · Poppets · Ball Locks

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toppost:draftrecirpump

Coleman 48 Quart Cooler + Building a Mash Tun

Coleman 48-Quart Cooler

48 Quart/12 Gallon Cooler from Coleman 

Holds 63 cans, tall enough to carry 2 liter bottles, hinged lid, two way handles, rustproof and leakproof drain.

This is the same cooler that’s featured in the AHA’s Article… Building a Mash Tun has Never Been So Easy.  That build is based on Denny Conn’s design.

Coleman 48 Quart Cooler

Also Consider: Two Piece Mini Keg Bung

Not a member of the American Homebrewer’s Association?… I think you should consider joining.  Here’s Why

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How to Build a Mash Tun from the AHA

A how-to video from the AHA – Join.  Director Gary Glass walks through putting together a Cooler Mash Tun Build based on this 48 Quart Coleman Cooler.

This setup is based on Denny Conn’s great design.  Denny is the co-author of Experimental Homebrewing and the keeper of Wyeast 1450 Denny’s Favorite 50.  Check out some of Denny’s recipes now available from Brewcraft.

See the AHA’s Article on this: Building a Mash Tun has Never Been So Easy

Related:

Not a member of the American Homebrewer’s Association?… I think you should consider joining.  Here’s Why

All Grain Brewing Picks and Reviews

Pinned: Thermapen Closeout · Perlick 630SS · Pin Lock Kegs · Poppets · Ball Locks

10% Off HBF Magnet Mounting Thingy

3D Printed Stir PlateHBF Magnet Mounting Aid – Read the Full Write Up.

The HBF Magnet Mounting Thingy is designed to allow you to easily and accurately mount these magnets to this fan for use as a stir plate.  Read the Full Write Up.

The STL file is available for free if you have access to a 3D printer.  See the full write up for that file.

The magnet mounting aid is also available for purchase via Shapeways.

Shapeways experienced some website issues over the past two days.  They are back up and going now.  To says thanks for customer’s patience they are discounting everything on Shapeways (including the magnet mounting thingy) by 10%.  Use coupon code THANKYOU10 to get that discount.

HBF Magnet Mounting Thingy on Shapeways – $6.75 for white with promo code THANKSYOU10

Pinned: Thermapen Closeout · Perlick 630SS · Pin Lock Kegs · Poppets · Ball Locks

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XYZprinting Da Vinci 1 3D Printer – Tap Handles, Stir Plates and More + 3D Printing Tips

XYZprinting Da Vinci 1.0 3D Printer, Grey

I’ve had my XYZpringing Da Vinci 1 3D Printer since the end of 2014.  I’ve used it for a lot of projects including several homebrewing related prints.  A few of those… Pub Style Tap Handle6 ml Measuring Cup for Star SanMagnet Mounting Thingy – more projects are on the way including a completed 5L Capable Stir Plate using the Magnet Mounting Thingy + This Fan and These Magnets.  It’s relatively easy to design your own prints and pre-designed STL files abound on sites like thingiverse.

The Da Vinci 1,0 is 2014 CES Editors’ Choice Award Winner – Most Affordable 3D Printer.  It has a large 475 cubic inch build volume (7.8″ x 7.8″ x 7.8″).  It includes ABS filament.  User Manual, Printer Cleaning Guide and Load Filament Guide are all available as PDF files under the Product Information section.

XYZPrinting DaVinci 1 Purchase DateI’ve been very happy with this printer.  Check out a few tips below.

XYZprinting Da Vinci 1.0 3D Printer

DIY Stir Plate3D Magnet Mount in Action

Some Da Vinci 1 Tips  –

  • I clean the printer bed with a cloth and warm water first (as suggested in the directions) but then go a step further by completing a final cleaning with rubbing alcohol.  I picked this up from Make Magazine.  It doesn’t take much.  Several drops along with a paper towel or clean cloth do the trick.  This cleans off any residual oil and helps the model stick to the platform.
  • The printer includes a glue stick for helping to affix prints to the bed.  These are just standard UHU Glue Sticks.  I’ve found a thin even coat of glue works the best.
  • A properly calibrated and leveled bed is a big part of getting a quality print.  If your first layer is getting spread out, your bed is too high.  If edges are lifting up, your bed is too low.  I’ve found the built in calibration routine on this printer to be difficult and time consuming.  I started using Gap Feeler Gauge to do a manual calibration.  Note that this is not the factory recommended method for calibration.  I picked up this set of feeler gauges to do this.  I use the .2 mm gauge.  It’s a quick and simple process.  I start one of the demo prints and wait for the printer to warm up and print the purge line on the right hand side of the bed.  As the print head moves toward the middle of the bed to start the demo item, I unplug the printer.  The printer head and bed are hot so be careful and cautious if you decide to do this.  I move the head above each of the adjustment screws and adjust until the .2 mm gap tool just starts to drag on the head.  Complete 3 times at each point and then go back around to double check and fine tune.  This process takes just a few minutes.  Again… this is not the factory recommended solution.  If you do it, do so at your own risk and be careful – the print head and bed are hot.  Also… I did not develop this technique.  I found it on a forum.  It seems to be pretty widely mentioned.  I think the factory solution could also produce good results.  I just didn’t put a lot of time into getting good at it.

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