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  • GW Kent Solenoids

    Hello All,

    We are just about to pipe our glycol lines and are looking at which solenoids to use. We could just go with the Asco Red Hat which are standard, but I was just looking at the GW Kent site and saw their solenoids and they are pretty inexpensive.

    Anybody have any experience with the ones from GW Kent? Good, Bad, Otherwise?

    Any other recomendations?

    Cheers,

    Dave
    David Schlosser
    Brewmaster / Founder
    Naked Dove Brewing Company
    Canandaigua, NY

  • #2
    Buy solenoids that you can buy rebuild parts for from multiple sources.
    Cheers!
    David R. Pierce

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    • #3
      Has anyone used the GW Kent solenoids?

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      • #4
        I have 10 of them in use, the 24volt DC ones, been in for a couple weeks in our new brewery facility seem pretty solid so far

        Laughing Dog

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        • #5
          They are a pretty standard diaphragm solenoid valve. They are robust and simple. If I had to guess they look to be GC brand valves that Kent stocks. We have used them on everything from air ride suspension on vehicles (previous life) to propane control, to geothermal applications. go for it.

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          • #6
            Be carefull on ordering low voltage units. 24vdc does not like to work with 24vac output. Although you can use 24vac solenoids with 24vdc output. I already made this mistake and had to scramble through the scrap pile to get things going.
            Cheers!
            Frank Kassik
            Kassik's Brewery

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            • #7
              This site continues to have the answer to nearly every question I could ever ask. Thanks guys!

              Cheers,
              Scott

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              • #8
                We purchased 2 last November. One failed last week. We ordered new coils from GW Kent, replaced them and now are up and running.

                Rich

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                • #9
                  Hello Dave! Pilot-operated solenoid valves will always be prone to debris in the glycol, among other things. I would consider a 50% failure rate per year unacceptable. For new installations I like quarter-turn, single acting, spring return, pneumatic operators on ball valves. They aren't too much more expensive. Especially if you consider the value of your time to order a new one, receive it, install it, waste some glycol on the floor, and this doesn't even consider that your tank contents might be ruined by now. Do it right the first time and make great beer every time. Good luck!
                  Phillip Kelm--Palau Brewing Company Manager--

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                  • #10
                    pneumatic actuators

                    hey Phillip do you have reliable source for the pneumatic actuators you mention above? We are about to re-plumb out glycol system and add tanks, I was going to go with the ball valve and solenoid but have had problems with solenoid coils in the past... I want to look into this route a bit deeper. Thanks CS
                    Last edited by mcervecero; 11-15-2012, 03:17 PM. Reason: didn't sign name

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                    • #11
                      We looked at those and other cheaper options but in the end went with the Asco red hats due to their reportedly extremely low failure rate. I am not saying anything bad about anyone else but the red hats rep is very solid. The guys from GandD chillers really wanted us to buy them and not even from them, we ended up getting 12V through Grainger. That's just one area I wouldn't skimp on considering what's riding on it.
                      Eric O'Connor

                      Co-founder/Brewmaster
                      Thorn Street Brewery
                      North Park, San Diego, CA

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                      • #12
                        The right Red Hats are an extremely good product for the job. I've had very low failure rates with them. And yes, do all of your field control in 12 or 24VAC. One common cause of solenoid failure is debris in the glycol. Especially tiny PVC shavings and glue residue from poorly installed glycol plumbing. In any system, you should install a wye strainer to remove this debris. As far as the pneumatic ball valve operators, they are a commodity. I don't have a particular source, but know they can be found at any controls outlet. Ball valves have a few advantages over solenoids: they offer a higher coefficient of flow, reducing pump demand, they don't require any pressure differential to operate; and they are usually bulletproof. That said, they do require good utility air as well as control circuit and are more expensive to install. Another valve style I installed a while back were those that came with Cool-fit system. These are not spring return pneumatic valves, but rather motor driven each way. Different circuitry required of your control panel. I'm not sure how reliable they were, but should have been for the price. More recently I installed pneumatic valves on a steam train to replace failing solenoid valves there. For this job, I can recommend Spirax Sarco Angle Pattern Valve c/w pneumatic operator. Very nice equipment specifically designed for steam and not too expensive. Good luck!
                        Phillip Kelm--Palau Brewing Company Manager--

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