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PostPosted: Mon Mar 02, 2015 2:51 pm 
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Mahogany
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Hello,

I saw a discussion in another thread about the Lil Dipper Crock Pot and didn't want to start taking it over because this is a slightly different topic than it was.
This one is different in that I wanted to bring up the modification of the smaller crock pots for use as glue pots and not just use them.

While the small crocks that have thermostaticly controlled tempurature setting knobs which might be modified, I suspect they are sealed and made in such a way that it would be a real pain to do so.

So having used ready made 12v DC thermostatically controlled relays to turn cooling fans on/off for my power supplies and Ham Radio VHF/UHF radio repeaters I had seen the same versions of them made for 110v-120v AC as well. I found them on Amazon.com and they are called Okeler AC 110~120V Digital Temperature Controller Thermostat F. The cost is $11.59+$2.59 shipping.

Using one of the Okeler's you can set the temperature precisely where you want it and control the heating element inside of the crockpot. Not having a mini crock pot on hand to open up and examine I can't really speak further about the modification until I get one myself. I would think the best option is to get a mini-crock that was thermostaticaly controlled to begin with like the NESCO 1.5qt might be a start. The Lil Dipper is simply an on/off warmer/cooker with complaints that it doesnt get hot enough in cool room tempuratures. Or, that it gets too hot with the lid on.

Thoughs/Comments/Ideas?

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 03, 2015 7:45 am 
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Old Growth Brazilian Rosewood
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I went out and bought a lil dipper 8 years or so ago after reading here that it can make a decent HHG pot. Mine was not suitable and maintained a minimum temp of 155 - 160F (lid off).

For HHG, which was the intended use, I don't want to exceed 145F actual. It's true that HHG can tolerate higher temps for some period of time but back then I needed a glue pot to run all day.

Because of the unsuitability of at least my Lil Dipper (which was relegated to making baked potatoes....) I went back to my Rival "Hot Pot" which has served me very well for 10 years or so now. It's worked so very well that I also bought a spare, tested it out to make sure it worked well for my uses and then packed it back up and it's on a shelf for the day when the original Hot pot dies.

IIRC Rival Hot Pots in the small size are only about $15 and available lots of places so no shipping may be required.

When I consider the low cost of the Rival Hot Pot and the costs of the lil dipper and anything that may be needed to regulate temp the Hot Pots are a less expensive alternative. In my case mine has been on hundreds of hours over nearly a decade now and no issues.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 03, 2015 2:12 pm 
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Mahogany
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What I am talking about doing is adding a digital thermostat to set the the crock or hot pot at a specific temp and maintain it within +/- a certain number of degrees.

Is this the Rival Hot Pot you were speaking of ?

I saw the Hot Pot when I was looking around, I don't know why I didn't consider it. I guess I was thinking that having the ceramic cooking pot to hold the heat might be good.

If the Rival Hot Pot suits the bill, then to monitor the temp you could always add a digital temp readout if you want to get a precise tempurature setting.

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 03, 2015 4:03 pm 
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Old Growth Brazilian Rosewood
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Hi Dean - that one looks different than mine and it may be that they have changed since I last bought one. Mine is around the same size just not as stylish.

I put my HHG in either a baby food jar or 1, 2, and 4 ounce bottles and float the bottles in a water bath so the water is holding the heat nicely. I also put marbles in the bottom of the pot to keep my plactic bottles from direct contact with the heating element in the bottom of the pot. A Mario P. idea that I still do is keep a big-arse stainless bolt in the plastic bottles and this keeps them floating upright.

Couple of things - the beauty of HHG is that no special handling is really required beyond wanting it hot enough 135+ and not too hot below 145F. Back in the day HHG was kept in the glue pots and not in containers as I do. This is where you would want something that holds heat well and does not have hot spots that get over heated.

Anyway no need to go for precise temp control and I'm sure that back in the day Luthiers kept hot pots on open stoves, fireplaces, you name it.

To monitor temp I have a glass lab thermometer that stays in my pots and works fine.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 03, 2015 4:13 pm 
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Mahogany
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Yeah but where is the fun in that ? LOL

Seriously, I was just thinking along the lines of a side project to make something kinda cool and inexpensive. Most definitly there are more simple ways of doing it but that takes the experimentation fun out of it [:Y:]

So on the hot pot, if there is an issue with the bottom getting too hot and having to keep a marble/water buffer between it and the glue bottle. Do you think that a small crock pot would actually be a better solution overall in that the ceramic crock would better dissipate the heat and prevent the issue at the bottom?

Keep in mind I am very new to this stuff and it is all a learning event for me.

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 04, 2015 9:23 am 
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I use the rival unit with an inverted saucer from a teacup over the element. I set the temperature high and use my PID controller from my bending set up to control the water temperature. My thermocouple can tolerate being submerged in the water and since it is sitting idle when not bending sides I decided to give it a try. Works great.

Fred

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These users thanked the author Fred Tellier for the post: AR15DCM (Wed Mar 04, 2015 3:37 pm)
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 04, 2015 3:44 pm 
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Mahogany
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Basically with the Okeler thermostat, you would just disconnect the temperature rheostat on the Rival and wire it to the relay on the Okeler. As the temp drops the Okeler relay trips and turns on the element until it reaches the set tempurature then shuts off. Just like your air/heat thermostat in your house you can set the threshold of degrees it will drop or rise before going off or on respectively.

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 05, 2015 3:26 pm 
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The little dipper is what I use for a glue pot. Mine heats up to the low 140's (like 143deg on my cheap thermometer). I've used it a lot. Takes an hour or so to get to temp, but mine won't go beyond that. They must be really inconsistent. I guess I just got lucky.


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 05, 2015 6:03 pm 
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Mahogany
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I ended up buying this hot plate and this 4qt. pot.

The pot is perfect because it comes with a tray that when put in upside down will keep the jar off of the bottom.

When I checked the prices for the Rival Hot Pots they were about the same as the total for the hot plate and pot.

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PostPosted: Sun Apr 05, 2015 7:53 pm 
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bnjp wrote:
The little dipper is what I use for a glue pot. Mine heats up to the low 140's (like 143deg on my cheap thermometer). I've used it a lot. Takes an hour or so to get to temp, but mine won't go beyond that. They must be really inconsistent. I guess I just got lucky.

You can get it going within a couple minutes by heating the water in a pan on the stove first, if your shop isn't too far from the kitchen.



These users thanked the author DennisK for the post: bnjp (Sun Apr 05, 2015 7:55 pm)
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PostPosted: Sun Apr 05, 2015 7:58 pm 
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DennisK wrote:
You can get it going within a couple minutes by heating the water in a pan on the stove first, if your shop isn't too far from the kitchen.


Never tried that. I have a hotplate in my shop as well, but I never thought of using it that way. duh


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PostPosted: Sun Apr 05, 2015 9:53 pm 
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Mahogany
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LOL

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PostPosted: Wed May 20, 2015 2:03 pm 
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bnjp wrote:
DennisK wrote:
You can get it going within a couple minutes by heating the water in a pan on the stove first, if your shop isn't too far from the kitchen.


Never tried that. I have a hotplate in my shop as well, but I never thought of using it that way. duh


I also have a Lil Dipper that runs in the the low 140's. A small microwave in the shop lets me heat water for the pot in 3 minutes. I'm usually ready to glue in 10 min.

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 31, 2015 10:56 am 
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I vote for either making one with a thermocouple, Arduino, relay, and LCD. Chances are you can find everything including source code somewhere, because I'm sure it has been done. If you want something pre-built brewers use similar devices with dedicated refrigerators to make lagers. Even 10 years ago they were going for $50 and I have a suspicion they've dropped a tad since then. If you want to get a step fancier, this is exactly what PIDs are made for.


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PostPosted: Mon Oct 26, 2015 4:37 am 
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AR15DCM wrote:
Hello,

I saw a discussion in another thread about the Lil Dipper Crock Pot and didn't want to start taking it over because this is a slightly different topic than it was.
This one is different in that I wanted to bring up the modification of the smaller crock pots for use as glue pots and not just use them.

While the small crocks that have thermostaticly controlled tempurature setting knobs which might be modified, I suspect they are sealed and made in such a way that it would be a real pain to do so.

So having used ready made 12v DC thermostatically controlled relays to turn cooling fans on/off for my power supplies and Ham Radio VHF/UHF radio repeaters I had seen the same versions of them made for 110v-120v AC as well. I found them on Amazon.com and they are called Okeler AC 110~120V Digital Temperature Controller Thermostat F. The cost is $11.59+$2.59 shipping.

Using one of the Okeler's you can set the temperature precisely where you want it and control the heating element inside of the crockpot. Not having a mini crock pot on hand to open up and examine I can't really speak further about the modification until I get one myself. I would think the best option is to get a mini-crock that was thermostaticaly controlled to begin with like the NESCO 1.5qt might be a start. The Lil Dipper is simply an on/off warmer/cooker with complaints that it doesnt get hot enough in cool room tempuratures. Or, that it gets too hot with the lid on.

Thoughs/Comments/Ideas?

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