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Homebrew Brine Maker

Discussion in 'Ice Management' started by Township1, Dec 5, 2011.

  1. Township1

    Township1 Member
    Messages: 94

    We are currently setting up a brine program for our small municipality.

    Here are some photo's of our home brew brine maker for your viewing pleasure, and to provoke any questions, comments or suggestions.

    We are also working on other builds as part of this, here is a Linkhttp://www.plowsite.com/showthread.php?p=1369011&posted=1#post1369011 to our truck/sprayer build.

    We ran the brinemaker for the 1st time today, and it produces 26% right out of the pipe, with a little tweaking of the valves we were able to get it to right around 23%.

    Questions for any "experts" out there;

    1 - Our salt is fairly dirty, will the suspended debis other then the salt mess with the salimeter/hydrometer readings?

    2. If the suspended debris (solids) settle out in storage, will it take any of the salt content with it as it settles?


    Here are the pictures;

    Standing up the 6000 gallon storage tank
    [​IMG]

    Tank almost up
    [​IMG]

    Brine maker loaded up at our shop, where we built it
    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  2. Township1

    Township1 Member
    Messages: 94

  3. Township1

    Township1 Member
    Messages: 94

  4. Township1

    Township1 Member
    Messages: 94

  5. Kubota 8540

    Kubota 8540 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,952

    Well, I wouldn't consider myself as an expert, but I have made 20-30,000 gallons? My answer to question 1) I haven't noticed any difference in salimeter readings. 2) The only thing that will settle to the bottom is the debris. I have had some good clean salt and I have had some real dirty salt. But even after months of setting the only thing settled was the debris. Mine looks like a limestone sand paste. I have brine that sets from 1 winter to the next and it is fine.
     
  6. SnowMatt13

    SnowMatt13 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,535

    For and debris you could run an in-line "t" strainer with a removable mesh screen filter.

    I have had some debris come in my salt....depends sometimes what the trucks hauling it might have been hauling before they brought my salt. I have a basket filter on top of my production tank and one of the above mentioned strainers when it gets pumped from production to storage tank. I use a finer mesh screen that helps catch more.

    My distribution systems on my trucks have an in-line filter too.
     
  7. Township1

    Township1 Member
    Messages: 94


    Thanks Kubota - I tested what we made last week today and the salimeter reading where the same, there was a noticable difference in the clarity of the brine, so it was clear the suspended solids had settled out, without taking salt content with it.

    How acurate are you when taking your readings? - Seems like a awfully fine line between 23.3 % and say 22 %.
     
  8. Township1

    Township1 Member
    Messages: 94


    Thaks Matt - strainer won't work in our production design. I could put on on the storage take feed, but I have the feeling it might be more trouble then it is worth. All the trucks will be equipped with strainers, so I think we are good.

    The salt we are currently using is from last year, and I think most of the dirt is from the general dust from our summer operations in the building. I think as the year rolls on the salt we actually get "cleaner for us"
     
  9. Kubota 8540

    Kubota 8540 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,952

    I use the salinometer that measures weight per gal on a scale of 0-26.4. It's real easy to get within .5% of 23.5? Most of the time I'm at 23.5%.
     
  10. leon

    leon Senior Member
    Messages: 872

    brine maker

    The dirt you are finding is the dissolved shale from the deep
    mined Halite you are using. The small amount of shale melts
    and becomes silt.

    What I do not understand is why a saline refractometer is
    not used rather than a hydrometer?
     
  11. Kubota 8540

    Kubota 8540 PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,952

    Most likely price, pretty hard to beat $16-22

    Hey Leon make any head way on the de=icing unit manufacturing?
     
    Last edited: Dec 9, 2011
  12. Township1

    Township1 Member
    Messages: 94

    Thanks leon

    We think the dirt is just from our summer operation - We have now made about a little over 8000 gallons, as we go the "crust" off the salt pile we noticed it got a lot cleaner.

    We have both a refactometer's and hydrometer - writing on the hydrometer is just a little bigger.