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Old 03-16-2012, 03:32 PM   #1
Martin30R
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Default Best single addition to your brew day procedure

What is the one thing that you've changed about your brewing procedure (equipment, procedure, etc) that has improved your experience? I'm not talking about the one change that helped you make better beer, but rather one that has made the process either easier or more enjoyable.

So far for me it is getting a propane burner and moving my brewery from the stove to the back patio. This has made things more fun, but also has introduced complexity regarding equipment mobility and no sink outdoors, etc.

Really I'm looking for smaller type changes that may help the average at home brew maniac (not "I built an e-HERMS brewery in my basement").

Thanks!

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Old 03-16-2012, 03:33 PM   #2
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Adding a pump... EASILY the single best addition to my brew day.

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Old 03-16-2012, 04:08 PM   #3
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Until I get a bigger kettle, spitting my boil into 2 pots until I boil enough down to add back to my big pot. I used to get massive boil overs every time trying to get the necessary amount of wort into my 7.5 gallon kettle. I now drain my first runnings into a smaller pot and put it on the kitchen stove and then drain my 4-5 gallons of 2nd runnings into my large kettle to put on the propane burner. My post-boil volume was always coming up short until I started doing this. Now I can easily manage hot break, get enough wort in my fermenter, and clean up is easier.

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Old 03-16-2012, 04:13 PM   #4
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Going to no sparge. I buy pretty much everything in bulk, so cost is not an issue, but now I not only save time, but I'm always dead on with my volumes. Sure, efficiency is now 60-65% down from 75-80%, but who cares? Maybe costs me an extra 5 or 6 bucks, but cost is not really the motivating factor anyway.

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Old 03-16-2012, 04:36 PM   #5
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Thermapen

Also finally getting a 1qt sprayer to keep a Star San solution in.

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Old 03-16-2012, 04:57 PM   #6
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A keggle. After going all grain, the 7g turkey frier wasn't cutting it. Now I've got a small BK for doing test batches when I go that route, and a 15g keggle for doing 5g and 10g (also, when I get to that point). Well worth the upgrade.

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Old 03-16-2012, 05:51 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jbsg02 View Post
Until I get a bigger kettle, spitting my boil into 2 pots until I boil enough down to add back to my big pot. I used to get massive boil overs every time trying to get the necessary amount of wort into my 7.5 gallon kettle. I now drain my first runnings into a smaller pot and put it on the kitchen stove and then drain my 4-5 gallons of 2nd runnings into my large kettle to put on the propane burner. My post-boil volume was always coming up short until I started doing this. Now I can easily manage hot break, get enough wort in my fermenter, and clean up is easier.
Does this affect your hop utilization? Not that I could see why it would but just curious.

I have an 8 gal kettle that has proven itself to be a little small for all grain. I've been managing okay with it but I almost always have sparge water left over that does not make it into the kettle.
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Old 03-16-2012, 05:59 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Martin30R View Post
Really I'm looking for smaller type changes that may help the average at home brew maniac (not "I built an e-HERMS brewery in my basement").
Thanks!
I was thinking going electric.. it's really not that difficult to do and it doesn't have to be super expensive (although it can be and mine was pretty spendy). I love brewing in near silence - except for my tunes going - and having electronic control over the temps is really nice.
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Old 03-16-2012, 06:23 PM   #9
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Adding cam locks to all of my valves and tubing has saved me a lot of time and been the most welcome addition to the brew day.

I also picked up about 20 sham wows at the nearby "as seen on tv" store for cleaning up spilled water and drying other stuff off. That has saved me a lot of money on paper towels.

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Old 03-16-2012, 06:25 PM   #10
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Immersion Chiller

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