What burner should I use with my new brew stand? What burner works with low pressure propane? What is the difference between low pressure and high pressure propane? These are all questions faced when building a brew stand or sculpture. They can also be difficult questions to answer if you have not experienced the different burners. Let’s face it, we want to make the right choice up front because brewing equipment can become expensive. This article discusses low pressure propane regulators and low pressure regulators.
Over the last month I have had the chance to fine tune my current brewing sculpture and consider the options that I want on my new sculputure which is in the planning stage. I have come to the conclusion that low pressure propane is the right option for me. During my research, I read several people discussing what regulator to use with certain types of jet burners. I found numerous opinions on what works best. I read anything from a 0-30 psi adjustable high pressure regulator to a standard .5 psi regulator.
The most important information you can learn in this article is to know what type of burner you really have. If you followed the Brutus Ten design, you will notice that most people have installed a jet burner. They can be cheaper in price and work great for automation. Most of these jet burners are, indeed, low pressure propane.
So. Let’s think about pressure for a moment. I had the general thought that I want this thing to burn like a jet engine. The more propane pressure, the quicker it will heat! After all, if I turn my garden hose on to wash down the house or driveway, I want it to have as much pressure as possible so the stream is nice and steady. This seems reasonable to apply this to a propane burner, however it really is not correct. This goes back to knowing what kind of burner you have. High or low pressure?
I initially constructed my system taking the advice from several threads from some of the more popular internet brewing forums. Over and over again I read that a 0-30 psi regulator would work great! Guess what? It did work, but not as well as it should have. You see, I installed a Honeywell gas valve to assist in automating my mash tun through temperature control. If I had the 0-30 psi regulator throttled down, it would work (with fine tuning by way of the ball valve).
If I just would have taken the original advice from Lonnie Mac over at alenuts.com, I would have figured this out long ago. He has said several times that he runs his jet burners on a low pressure regulator(s) and has not had any issues. I installed a low pressure regulator in place of my adjustable 0-30 psi regulator. I purchased a Mr. Heater brand .5 psi 200,00 BTU low pressure regulator . I fired up my jet burners and noticed that I did not need to throttle back anything with the ball valve. The burner provided a perfect flame! In fact, I am able to run two burners at the same time off this regulator. There are other low pressure regulator options available such as the two stage regulator, however that is not covered in the scope of this article. (The two-stage low pressure is a great option as well)
Below are a few different videos which showing the jet burner being used with a low pressure regulator. The propane valve and ball valve are completely open. This is a 23 tip jet burner rated at 175000 BTU. (.5psi Low Pressure Propane)