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Old 10-29-2009, 04:06 PM   #1
Richardwhittaker
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Default Equipment for moving to AG brewing

I am looking to move to AG from kit/extract brewing.

The plan is to get myself set up so that I can do an 10 gallon batch.

My to buy list so far is

Kettle (how big? 15 gal? keggle?) - $$$?

Propane Burner (how many BTU?) - $$$?

Cooler for mashing (will this be big enough?) - approx $30

I am looking at an electric turkey fryer as my HWT - approx $100

Wort chiller (size of tubing? how long?) -$$$?

Am I missing any thing?

My plan is to buy the turkey fryer and cooler first, use the turkey fryer as my kettle until I can afford to get a real kettle and burner.

The other challenge Is I am looking to buy as much in Canada as possible.

I want to keep my setup relatively simple and affordable.

I will likely start with batch sparging and move to fly sparging.


Any suggestions would be Appreciated.

Richard

RIchard

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Old 10-29-2009, 04:23 PM   #2
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Depending on what type of beers you are brewing the cooler might not be big enough. I have one that size that I can't use anymore for 10 gallon batches of my I2PA which is 35lbs of grain. See http://www.rackers.org/calcs.shtml for a mash tun calculator. I am using a keggle and it just about fits in that.

I've tried all kinds of chillers and prefer the plate chillers from dudadiesel.com, not really much more expensive than immersion chillers.

The electric turkey fryer seems to be pretty small for HLT and 10 gallon batches.

Banjo or Hurricane burners would be my choice for heating. A 15 gallon kettle for 10 gallon batches is good, you could even go 20 if you were going to consistently do high gravity beers.

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Old 10-29-2009, 04:36 PM   #3
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Hi Richard,

I just made the switch to AG in July this year, and have been buying what I need, as I go. Keep in mind I only do 5 gallon batches at a time. I plan to move up to larger batches, when I do, I will get my hands on an old keg and remove the top for any updated brew kettle.

But right now, I use a 7.5 gallon kettle (gets tricky with longer boils and extracting a little extra wort) so I don’t drink the BIG BEERS until I have a nice safe boil going. I use a Bayou Classic SQ14 Single Burner Outdoor Patio Stove and it works great, got if for less than $40 American.

I used the identical cooler you listed for my mashtun. I cut apart a toilet supply line, removed the rubber tubing and the wire mesh works great as a screen. I still batch sparge. (but i have done a few fly sparges for comparison's sake) I found that a coleman 5 gallon cooler works perfect as a hot liquids tank, and id doubles as a mashtun if I want to do a partial mash. I found I only needed heat rated tube inside the mashtun, the cheap stuff works fine everywhere else.

I did find I needed to fabricate a wort chiller. So I bought 50 feet or ½” flexible cooper, a spring bender, washer supply line and made my own. It cost about $50 and saved a whole lot of time chilling the wort.

Cheers and happy brewing..
Daren

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Old 10-29-2009, 04:39 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Richardwhittaker View Post
I am looking to move to AG from kit/extract brewing.

The plan is to get myself set up so that I can do an 10 gallon batch.

My to buy list so far is

Kettle (how big? 15 gal? keggle?) - $$$?15 gal to do a 10 gal batch, kegs are 20-50 bucks on craigslist, (you can work out the legality yourself), weldless bulkheads around 30 bucks from www.bargainfittings.com

Propane Burner (how many BTU?) - $$$? I use a cheapo turkey fryer one...I think you want around 40-50k BTU minimum, but I could be talking out of my grain-hole

Cooler for mashing ( will this
be big enough?) - approx $30 This is how big your mash tun needs to be

I am looking at an electric turkey fryer as my HWT - approx $100

Wort chiller (size of tubing? how long?) -$$$? I use 1/2" copper tubing, 50', works awesome for 10 gal batches, was $38 for tubing from Menards, plus $10-15 for fittings to hook it up to water supply

Am I missing any thing? You'll need a manifold/false bottom/something or other in your mash cooler...build a manifold out of cpvc or copper or SS braid for cheap, invest in a false bottom, (depends on size/shape of the cooler, may not be an option), for spensiver.....manifolds are great for batch sparging, can have issues with fly sparging

My plan is to buy the turkey fryer and cooler first, use the turkey fryer as my kettle until I can afford to get a real kettle and burner. Turkey fryer will be too small for 10 gallon boils, but will work fine for 5 gallon boils, (this is what I did til I got my keggle)...just make sure the cooler you get is big enough for 10 gallon batches.

The other challenge Is I am looking to buy as much in Canada as possible.

I want to keep my setup relatively simple and affordable.

I will likely start with batch sparging and move to fly sparging.


Any suggestions would be Appreciated.

Richard

RIchard
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Old 10-29-2009, 06:21 PM   #5
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Did you check out the reviews of that cooler? They are bad if it won't keep cold it won't stay hot either. You need a good cooler not a cheap one. Something along the lines of an Xtreme or Max cold.

Also the cooler you are looking at doesn't even have a drain so instead of just taking the mgf drain out you'd have to drill a hole.

I did not see where you had mention the need for a manifold or false bottom for you Mash Tun.

get the biggest fryer you can afford look for one w/ minimum or a 20 psi regulator 30 psi is better

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Old 10-29-2009, 06:28 PM   #6
Richardwhittaker
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According to this



the cooler should be big enough for 10 gallons as it is 48 qts

As for using the Turkey fryer as a HWT. It holds 7.5 Gallons that should be close to the amount I need for the strike water in a 10 gallon batch. I then plan to heat the sparge water while i am mashing. I don't plan to try to use it for a kettle for 10 gallon batch. I will keep my eye open for a keg.

Richard

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Old 10-29-2009, 09:10 PM   #7
Richardwhittaker
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Quote:
Originally Posted by abracadabra View Post
Did you check out the reviews of that cooler? They are bad if it won't keep cold it won't stay hot either. You need a good cooler not a cheap one. Something along the lines of an Xtreme or Max cold.

Also the cooler you are looking at doesn't even have a drain so instead of just taking the mgf drain out you'd have to drill a hole.

I did not see where you had mention the need for a manifold or false bottom for you Mash Tun.

get the biggest fryer you can afford look for one w/ minimum or a 20 psi regulator 30 psi is better
I am planing to either use a braided stainless steel water line , or making one out of some copper pipe I have left over from some renos. I will look to see what other coolers are are around.

I'm going to see about hitting a flea market this weekend and see if I can find anything I can use.

Thanks for the feed back.
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Old 10-29-2009, 11:05 PM   #8
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instead of one separate big pot for my hlt I've just been heating my water inside on the stove in two ~3 gal pots I already had, then bringing that outside to mash/sparge. So far has been working well and means I don't need a big brew sculpture or multiple burners. Of course, if I step up to 10 gal batches I start to get into trouble (or just use more or bigger pots). But if you start with 5 gal batch this might save you a little cost if you just use existing pots for heating up water.

As for a kettle, I'm using a keggle and it's good. My local restaurant supply store has big aluminum pots for fairly cheap, and in Chinatown I've found big stainless pots for great prices (~$60-70). Of course this is in Los Angeles but you might be able to find similar.

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Old 10-30-2009, 03:11 PM   #9
Richardwhittaker
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I have a keg to use as a keggle! It is an old keg with a wooded bung (pic to follow) there is also a hole punched in it near the bottom. I also found that I have a 240v hot-water tank element in my shop, So I am thinking of making an electric keggle. I cut the top off Last night with a reciprocating saw. I know enough to be able to hook up the 240v circuit. my only question is what is a simple and cheap way of controlling the boil? Most of the Electric setups I have seen on this site look quite complicated.

Richard

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Old 10-30-2009, 04:54 PM   #10
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BTW, those coolers are usually cheaper from walmart...i paid $21 for mine this summer.....but may have been on sale...so if you find used ones on kijiji or flea markets, i'd say at least half that price as they're fairly cheap. I picked up one of the round beverage rubbermaid coolers(same as Flyguy used in the DIY section) off kijiji for $15 bucks, looks almost new..they're regular around $50 i think. I hate buying new, but sometimes ya have to if you can't come accross a good deal...but i love kijiji..

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