Beer Geek, Control Freak
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Buyers Guide

(a PDF version of this is available for download and print)

What does BrewTroller Offer?

If you have just come from the Decision Guide, then now you are probably wondering what is available to me?  If you haven’t, check out the Decision Guide, its a great place to start.

BrewTroller offers a number of components that all work in tandem to control your Brewery.  BrewTroller, however, doesn’t sell everything you need, but we will show you where to go to get the recommended stuff in the Parts List!

Controllers

The “Brain” of your brewery, and the foundation of what BrewTroller is, is the controller.  Right now, that controller is called the BrewTroller Phoenix. 
There are other versions of the controller, produced over the last few years, and there will be future enhancements, but for now, this is the best of the best in the industry, and provides a great level of flexibility and expandability.

The BrewTroller Phoenix is an Arduino Based custom circuit board, with all of the circuitry, connectors, and indicators to power your brewery. The Phoenix has an MSRP of $225.00.

This is the first thing you will need to get started!

Displays and Controls

You will need a way to control and interface with your Phoenix board.  This is most commonly achieved via a 20x4 character LCD screen mounted in your control panel enclosure.

To control this LCD screen, you will need an I2CLCD Controller.  This is the interface between your Phoenix, and the LCD.  The I2CLCD also contains the connector socket for the primary control item, the Rotary Encoder

These 3 items are on almost every build.  They cost for these items is (prices subject to change):

  • 20x4 LCD - $11.99
  • I2CLCD Controller - $29.99
  • Rotary Encoder - $6.99

Other options for control include 2 and 3 way switches, and the BrewTroller Web App.  The switches work in conjunction with the RGBIO boards sold at http://www.widgeneering.com to give you Auto/Off/On control of your outputs.  The switches sell for $5.99 on our website.
The BrewTroller Web App is free of charge, and compatible with any internet-connected BrewTroller

Other Common Components

There are lots of other things you would need to get started and build your BrewTroller.  Every Control Panel will need the following:

Components that make life easier, or are available on brewtroller.com include:

One set of components that deserve a little more explanation is the M12 series of temperature probes.  All of the temp probes sold on brewtroller.com are M12 finished, and are Dallas ds18b20 sensors mounted in stainless steel probes.  They can be used without the rest of the M12 components and wired directly, but the M12 connectors provide a very simple and cost effective way to run wires to your kettles.  Using extension cables, splitters, and the panel mount connector, you can run one wire and split it off for each vessel or temperature zone.  Check out our M12 Network page for more information.  Pieces include:

 

This is just the start, there are other options for pressure sensor monitoring, there are solenoids for filling water, for grain hoppers, there are stepper motors for hop droppers and for automatic lid closing, and many more options!

The BrewTroller Phoenix can handle 20 outputs, 8 digital inputs, 5 analog inputs, has I2C capability, RS485 connectors, and more.  We love our community as they are always finding new ways to add to the options of control!!

If you are looking for a more concise list of parts to buy for your setup, check out our Parts List for those!!

 

Cheers!