Basically, I’ve a heated and cooled exchanger hooked up to the fermenter with small closed-loop recirculating pump putting distilled water through the fermenter-side of the BrewTech FTSs, but with my own little Arduino controller handling the OneWire temp probes and relays. The chiller is a hacked up freezer, and the heater is 100W coil, both submerged in distilled water.
I’d love to swap to a BrewPi Spark3 to get the nice analytics and make the install look professional instead of … what it looks like now.
It’s pretty easy to see how to set up a control algorithm to trigger the heater or trigger the chiller, but I also need to control the recirc pump. Electrically, I can just make the pump run whenever the heater or cooler are commanded to activate, and could thus use this setup with the BrewPi, but that’s not going to be the most efficient. Right now I have the recirc pump only run when the water temp gets close to what I want the beer temp to be. So the general algorithm I’m using is something like this when flattened:
if (waterTemp is diverging from targetTemp)
enable the heater or chiller as appropriate
if (beerTemp is diverging from waterTemp)
enable the pump
So the question is, I suppose: Is the control loop configurable enough these days to handle something approximating this, or would I need to go electrical here?
Thanks, Elco. I’m going to pick up a heating pad and try that technique out on the next round through. Actively heating and cooling the water has worked really well given the environment I’m dealing with here, so I think it’s a worthwhile setup in general, but I think getting all of the bells and whistles of BrewPi going is worth the investment in a heating pad, too.
Hey Elco, first let me start by saying how much I love BrewPi. I’m a homebrewer and a geek so it really is the best of both worlds.
Until now I have only used my BrewPi (RaspberryPi non docker w/ spark 3) to monitor temps and SG (with Tilt) and graph it over primary. But now I have built a glycol setup and want to use the spark to control the pump. Here is a quick overview of my setup. I have the pump, glycol reservoir and radiator w/ fans at the bottom of a chest freezer. The lines with glycol come out and go into a SSBrewtech 14G conical. I have been trying to get my head around all the different setting you have to tweak to get a glycol system to work right and I just can’t figure it out. Also, I just updated BrewPi and Spark to 0.5.9.
Really, all I want is for the pump to turn on as soon as it hits the set point and turn off one degree below. Any help would be greatly appreciated.
This may belong in a different post / forum but it seemed like a good start. What I am looking for information wise is parts, wiring schematic / drawing of how to have the RPI + brewpi to “override” if you will, a AC unit to change the temperature of the cooling temp till the cooling liquid is cold enough it drops the temperature of the fermenter chamber to a set temp. then turns off and doesn’t turn back on again until the temperature change X’ degrees variable. I have a RPI, some resistors, and arduino and a Brewpi spark 3.
Main struggle is how to wire/splice the cables. Software wise I wonder if the new software will integrate that stuff or what but any suggestions or input for bread crumbs of things to check out would be greatly appreciated.
Set up no fridge sensor, only a beer sensor.
Set up a cooler actuator to control your glycol pump and adjust the PWM settings to a period of 10 minutes (600) and a minimum ON time of 10 seconds.
Set Kp very low, try 5. That would mean one degree too low would be 5/100 * 600 = 30 seconds per 10 minutes glycol flow.
Ok for clarification - cause it sounds simpler than what I was thinking. The SSR will turn the AC Unit on, and I have to manually “set” the AC cool temp 1x time. When the temperature of the fermenter needs to be adjusted the unit will turn on from the SSR, the unit will continue to cool the “Antifreeze” like liquid until the fermenter temperature has been adjusted to the new “set” temperature. The pump that pushes the liquid around the fermenter will be activated from another SSR and they work in conjunction with each other based on the temperature probe (RTD, DS18B20, etc.) in the fermenter? Here are some of the ideas I was pulling from & again wanted to verify the thought process or logic was correct based on the brewpi capabilities.