This review is by Homebrew Finds Contributor Brad Probert. Brad is an engineer, expert homebrewer and experienced reviewer. Grab a link to Brad’s website at the end of this review.
Blichmann RIMS Rocket
I heard the term ‘RIMS’ long before I really knew what it was. The decoded acronym ‘Recirculating Infusion Mash System’ didn’t help much, either. In hindsight, the acronym has all the info in it to describe what it is. It’s a system to control mash temperature by adding heat to your recirculating wort. You use a pump to draw wort out of your mash tun, push it past a heating element, and then return that heated wort back to your main mash tun. Connected to a controller, a temperature sensor monitors the temperature of your recirculating wort and turns your heat source on or off based on the measured temperature, as compared to your target temperature. And since this heating element is outside of your mash tun, a RIMS can be used whether your mash tun is a plastic cooler or a steel pot.
Connected to a RIMS Controller and Mash Tun
Blichmann offers two levels of RIMS. The first is a 120V system that has a 2000-Watt heating element, and the other is a 240V system with a 3500-Watt heating element. The 120V system is designed for up to 10 gallon batches, and the 240V system is up to 20 gallons. To get an idea of the heating potential, Blichmann provides a formula on their website to calculate the heating potential.
°F/minute = 0.0068*(Wattage/gallons of wort).
So with 6 gallons of wort in your mash tun, the 2000W/120V system can heat at about 2.3 degrees/minute. The 3500W/240V system on the same 6 gallons can heat it 4 degrees/minute.
The heating element sits inside a stainless steel canister that holds about 0.75 gallons of wort. With the heating element’s large corkscrew design, it has a lot of surface area to transfer heat to your wort without scorching. There are 1/2″ NPT fittings on the inlet and outlet of the canister. On the outlet you need a Y-fitting so you can install a temperature sensor to monitor the temperature of the wort as it exits the RIMS Rocket.
The heating element connects through Blichmann’s custom heating element connection. The large, robust connection ensures a solid electrical connection and grounding to the housing for safety. You disconnect your cable to make cleaning and storage easier, so you don’t have to drag the cord around like a tail. And although not waterproof to dunk in a bucket of water, it has a good-sized splash shield to protect the connection from the splashes that come with the wet sport of brewing.
Smooth Machined Inside of Housing
The inside of the housing is machined and designed to be free of crevices or cracks. This is important since mash recirculation is practically guaranteed to have some level of grain particles passing through that you don’t want to get stuck. The heating element built into the base seals to the main cone of the housing with a large O-ring. And it is held together and tightened with a circular band clamp with a threaded nut/bolt combination. This clamp makes for fairly easy disassembly to clean inside as often as you’d like.
Compare Models, Prices and Availability, Review Continues Below:
- Blichmann Engineering RIMS Rocket at MoreBeer
- Blichmann Engineering RIMS Rocket at Adventures in Homebrewing
- Blichmann Engineering RIMS Rocket at Brew Hardware
- Blichmann Engineering RIMS Rocket at Great Fermentations
- Blichmann Engineering RIMS Rocket at Beer & Wine Hobby
- Blichmann Engineering RIMS Rocket at Keg Connection
- Blichmann Engineering RIMS Rocket at homebrewsupply.com
- Search Amazon “Blichmann RIMS Rocket” – offerings vary