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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Equipment/Sanitation > Stout Tanks and Kettles brew rig (photos)
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Old 08-14-2011, 06:40 PM   #1
Sarrsipius
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Default Stout Tanks and Kettles brew rig (photos)

I wasn't sure if this post should go in this forum or the company reviews forum. I wanted to post my experience with Stout Tanks and Kettles (www.conical-fermenter.com/) and show how the final project turned out.

I ordered the kettles (HLT, Mash tun, Boil Kettle) in mid December with a projected delivery date of June 2011. In late May John from Stout tanks advised that the kettles would be delayed until late July. They finally arrived yesterday (8/13) after 10 days in shipping from Oregon to Indiana. The delay was beyond John's control and his communication was good so I don't hold this against them.

It was well worth the wait. The quality of the kettles is very good. Here is everything after unpacking.



I spent a couple hours cleaning and assembling everything. The quality of the materials used is excellent. I would call the weld quality very good. Over all I would rate the kettles as very good and I think they are well worth the money and the wait.

Likes:
-heavy gauge stainless
-tri clamp connections
-price

Dislikes:
-Long Wait
-some of the tri clamp gaskets are hard white plastic style. I replaced these with BUNA and/or Silicone gaskets that I already had. The provided gaskets probably work but I prefer rubber or silicone.
-difficulty dissembling 3/4 inch valves (see below)
-Mash tun thermometer placement (see below)

Stout Tanks recommends dis-assembling all the valves to clean them prior to the first use. The 1 inch valves cam apart and went back together easily but the 3/4 valves were not as cooperative. I was able to get one of them apart but the threads where pretty gnarled up with slivers of stainless coming off. The other 3/4 inch valve I couldn't even get apart. To be fair, I didn't communicate this issue back to John at stout tanks because I can live with it and it's a relatively minor issue. I'm sure he would work to make it right if I asked him to.

The Mash tun thermometer is right in the center of the tank (see pics). Since these tanks were custom made I'm sure I could have specified where to put it but I did not. It's too high to be submerged for some batches. I brewed a 10 gallon cream ale as the first batch on this system and with 18lbs of grain and 5 gal of water the top of the mash just touched the thermowell. This resulted in an inaccurate reading. If I had to do it over I would have requested that the thermometer on the mash tun be placed about 3 inches lower. This is my fault and I don't hold it against Stout Tanks and Kettles. Just something to consider if you buy a mash tun from them. I can still maintain mash temp by referencing the HLT thermometer since this is a HERMS system.

Overall I am pleased and would recommend these tanks to anyone. Just be ready to wait for them if it's a custom order.



HLT


HLT Inside with HERMS Coil


Mash Tun Inside with False Bottom


BK


Pump Power Switches


Filtration


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Conical : bohemian pils
Keg 1: Brown Ale__Keg 2: Hellas
Keg 3: Hellas__Keg 4: air
Keg 5: AIR 6: Edworts Apflewien

My HERMS rig

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Old 08-14-2011, 07:26 PM   #2
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Very nice!

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Old 08-15-2011, 03:22 PM   #3
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Sweet looking setup, dude!

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Old 08-15-2011, 06:39 PM   #4
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I'm glad to hear you are happy with the quality and workmanship. My tanks are due in late Sept or early Oct. I ordered a mash tun and a BK with two extra TC ports for electric elements.

I had the same problem with a valve on a small conical I bought from them.

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Old 08-15-2011, 09:37 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bowhuntah View Post
I'm glad to hear you are happy with the quality and workmanship. My tanks are due in late Sept or early Oct. I ordered a mash tun and a BK with two extra TC ports for electric elements.

I had the same problem with a valve on a small conical I bought from them.
Did you specify where to put the thermowell on the mash tun? I really wish I had asked them to place it lower.

Did you get your valve apart or did you give up?
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Conical : bohemian pils
Keg 1: Brown Ale__Keg 2: Hellas
Keg 3: Hellas__Keg 4: air
Keg 5: AIR 6: Edworts Apflewien

My HERMS rig

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Old 08-15-2011, 11:27 PM   #6
bowhuntah
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sarrsipius View Post
Did you specify where to put the thermowell on the mash tun? I really wish I had asked them to place it lower.

Did you get your valve apart or did you give up?
I never gave a thought to thermowell placement but out of curiosity, I just checked out their site. The diagram of the mash tun shows the thermowell placement about 1/3 up from the bottom.

I gave up om the valve.
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Old 08-15-2011, 11:42 PM   #7
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Those are sweet!

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Old 08-16-2011, 01:24 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bowhuntah View Post
I never gave a thought to thermowell placement but out of curiosity, I just checked out their site. The diagram of the mash tun shows the thermowell placement about 1/3 up from the bottom.

I gave up om the valve.
I hadn't thought about it either. As you can see in the pics, it is actually about half way from the bottom. It's fine for mashes with >24lbs (approx) of grain. Less than than and it isn't submerged.
__________________

Conical : bohemian pils
Keg 1: Brown Ale__Keg 2: Hellas
Keg 3: Hellas__Keg 4: air
Keg 5: AIR 6: Edworts Apflewien

My HERMS rig

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Old 09-02-2011, 03:12 PM   #9
Shansta
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Default Cost?? Exactly what I am looking for

Your setup is awesome. I have been putting together my plans for building my brewing stand and automated setup. I am going to go with Stout Tanks as well.

Your setup is exactly what I am going for. If you do not mind me asking, what was your cost for everything??

Did you build your stand??

Do you have any sort of plans for your connections and stand?? If so it would be a GREAT help.

Also, where did you find your heat exchanger?? I have not seen that plate product before.

Thanks - Shane -

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Old 09-03-2011, 02:49 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shansta View Post
Your setup is awesome. I have been putting together my plans for building my brewing stand and automated setup. I am going to go with Stout Tanks as well.

Your setup is exactly what I am going for. If you do not mind me asking, what was your cost for everything??

Did you build your stand??

Do you have any sort of plans for your connections and stand?? If so it would be a GREAT help.

Also, where did you find your heat exchanger?? I have not seen that plate product before.

Thanks - Shane -
I'm at about $2700 for everything (see parts list below)

The stand is from brewersequipment.com. I'm happy with the stand but the transaction was painful. Search the forum for reviews of this site. He has HORRIBLE customer service and terrible communication with customers.

The Chiller is from www.homebrewstuff.com

Hose clamp Menards x 6 $0.60
NPT to pipe fitting (pump fittings) Menards x 3 ? ?
T fittings Menards x 3 $3.00
Copper pipe (10ft piece) Menards x 1 $11.99
Brew Stand/Burners www.Brewersequipment.com$650.00
Pumps www.Brewersequipment.com x 2 $210.00
1.5" tri clamp hose barbwww.brewershardware.comx 5 $119.75
1/2 FPT to tri clamp for pump out to chiller www.brewershardware.com x 2 $30.00
1.5" Tri Clover gasketwww.brewershardware.comx 12$9.00
Boil Kettlewww.conical-fermenter.com $389.00 $50.00s/h $439.00
MLT www.conical-fermenter.com $379.00$50.00s/h $429.00
HLT www.conical-fermenter.com $479.00$50.00s/h $529.00
1/2" FPT to tri clamp fittings for chiller (wort in) www.ebay.com12.15 $5.25 $17.40
1/2 in silicon tubingwww.homebrewstuff.comx 16 $2.95 $47.20
Chillerwww.homebrewstuff.com $125.99 $7.95s/h $133.94
ball valves www.homebrewstuff.comx 2 $27.99 $7.95s/h $1.88
Chiller Thermometer www.homebrewstuff.com $59.99

Total $2,761.75

If SWMBO asks...it's about $500.00.
__________________

Conical : bohemian pils
Keg 1: Brown Ale__Keg 2: Hellas
Keg 3: Hellas__Keg 4: air
Keg 5: AIR 6: Edworts Apflewien

My HERMS rig

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