Future Enhancements

Computer-Controlled Dough-In

I have often considered mounting the grain mill over the mash vessel and tying the grain mill motor to a binary output of the ADIO board via a SSR in order to automate the dough-in process. This would also require a computer-controlled motorized mixer.

240 V Sparge/Boil Electric Water Heater Elements

I've been studying the use of electric elements by Ken Schwartz and, subsequently, by C.D. Pritchard with interest in introducing a 240 volt electric heater element into my sparge and boil vessel to completely eliminate the need for propane stoves. The SSR (solid-state relay) that I use to control the heater elements is rated at 120 and 240 volts. I plan to keep the 1500 watt element to maintain the sparge water temperature and introduce a 4500 watt element to bring the sparge water to the target temperature.

Sparge Pressure Transducer Water Level Indicator

The sparge float/potentiometer water level indicator needs to be replaced with a pressure transducer water level indicator identical to the one used to measure the boil wort level.

New Boil Wort Solenoid Valve

I would like to replace the Honeywell boil wort solenoid valve with a stainless steel, direct-operated solenoid valve with a ½" pipe size and a larger orifice.

New ADIO Board

The IBM DACA ADIO board does not provide enough analog inputs to adequately monitor the state of the brewing system. Additional analog inputs could be used to monitor the RIMS tube inlet and outlet temperature, the boil vessel temperature, the counter-flow chiller inlet and outlet temperature, the mash pH, …

New PC Motherboard, Memory, Disk-Drive

An Intel Pentium-based motherboard is needed to upgrade the operating system to Windows 95/98.

Windows 95/98 Graphical User Interface

The existing character graphic user interface can be replaced.

Off-the-Shelf Recipe Package Integration

I would like to integrate the control software/firmware with an off-the-shelf recipe package. I will need to identify a package which is capable of storing the information which the control software/firmware needs (times, temperatures, compensated water volumes, …) in a file format (i.e. text) which the control software/firmware is capable of reading.


Hopdrops are solenoid-actuated tubes which are capable of dropping hops (or other adjuncts) into the boil vessel under computer-control.

State Save and Battery-Back Up

The fact that the state of the entire system is saved to a batch file can be used as part of disaster recovery. If power were to be removed from the system, the system could be restarted, specifying the batch file as input. The software could restore the system to the state as it was last represented within the batch file.

Battery backup may not be needed as long as information which is written to the batch file is flushed as it is written.

The battery backup would only supply power to the PC.