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Old 04-03-2009, 08:29 PM   #1
annasdadhockey
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Default Cost Analysis

SWMBO was curious about how much it costs per 12 oz. bottle to do an all grain brew. I know it's easy to figure out...Total cost divided by # of bottles equals cost per bottle, obviously. My question is, if I get 11 gallons into the fermenters(6.5 gal glass carboys), what is a reasonable yield to be able to get into bottles? This will be my first All grain, Biermuncher's Centennial Blonde. Accounting for cold break and everything else that will settle out in primary, what can I expect? 10 gallons? 10.5 gallons? What have you guys gotten out of it?



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Things are going great too. I think I've only punched her in the face 3 times!
FERMENTING: Heady Topper Clone?
CONDITIONING: 40 gallons KBS clone in a Jim Beam Barrel (since 11/24/12)
DRINKING: Smoked Robust Porter, Orange Coriander Pale Ale #5
THINKING: first foray into lagers?
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Old 04-03-2009, 08:33 PM   #2
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I usually plan for about a quarter gallon loss per primary fermenter. Roll over the blankspace below when your wife is not reading this. So your system should be good for 110 bottles give or take.

You will spend a massive amount on equipment most likely. Never count that in your estimates. It makes the beer seem REALLY expensive.



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Old 04-03-2009, 08:39 PM   #3
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Yes BUT, eventually you have to realize the massive savings you're getting per bottle. I think on average a 6pack of 12oz around here goes for 7-9 bucks for the more custom beers. My guess would be I get about 5 gallons out of a 6 gallon batch, after transfers etc. (very conservative btw). Then you figure 1 gallon is 128 oz * 5 = 640 oz, divide by 12 = 53 bottles... divide by 6 per pack thats just shy of 9 12 packs... if we go a little less conservative, just enough to fill up that 9th 12 pack, at the cheapest thats 9x7 = 63$. On average most of my AG brews go between 30-35 w/ the expensive hops and liquid yeasts I'm prone to. Thats still almost half the cost.... Yes equipment is expensive, and yes we homebrewers are prone to always wanting more, but eventually it should more than pay off anyway...

That's my idea behind it all anyway...

Edit: You could also always work it like a bank... every batch you brew saves you 30 bucks... and "save" that in a "more gear" pot so you're allowed to buy more gear.... Also that means you have impetus to brew and drink a lot more beer... so you can keep adding to your pot of gold

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Old 04-03-2009, 08:43 PM   #4
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she definitely knows its way cheaper, even cheapr than extract, she was just curious. Thanks guys. I'll go with the 110 bottles when I do the math for her. I just got what you meant about the blankspace. I've actually done quite well in the gathering of equipment. Between getting good buys, and selling off some things I don't need anymore(not beer related), I'm actually ahead about $200. The centennial blonde ingredients cost me about $50 and change, including priming sugar, irish moss, etc. divide by even 100 bottles, Its about $.51 a brew. At 110 bottles, we're talking $.42 per. She'll be quite happy with that.

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Quote:
Originally Posted by dfc View Post
Things are going great too. I think I've only punched her in the face 3 times!
FERMENTING: Heady Topper Clone?
CONDITIONING: 40 gallons KBS clone in a Jim Beam Barrel (since 11/24/12)
DRINKING: Smoked Robust Porter, Orange Coriander Pale Ale #5
THINKING: first foray into lagers?

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Old 04-03-2009, 09:09 PM   #5
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Here's a pic of my brewstand...just completed today

[IMG][/IMG]

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Anybody can be a rockstar when the rest of the room is wearing helmets and drooling on themselves.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dfc View Post
Things are going great too. I think I've only punched her in the face 3 times!
FERMENTING: Heady Topper Clone?
CONDITIONING: 40 gallons KBS clone in a Jim Beam Barrel (since 11/24/12)
DRINKING: Smoked Robust Porter, Orange Coriander Pale Ale #5
THINKING: first foray into lagers?
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Old 04-03-2009, 09:18 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pompeiisneaks View Post
Yes BUT, eventually you have to realize the massive savings you're getting per bottle. I think on average a 6pack of 12oz around here goes for 7-9 bucks for the more custom beers. My guess would be I get about 5 gallons out of a 6 gallon batch, after transfers etc. (very conservative btw). Then you figure 1 gallon is 128 oz * 5 = 640 oz, divide by 12 = 53 bottles... divide by 6 per pack thats just shy of 9 12 packs... if we go a little less conservative, just enough to fill up that 9th 12 pack, at the cheapest thats 9x7 = 63$. On average most of my AG brews go between 30-35 w/ the expensive hops and liquid yeasts I'm prone to. Thats still almost half the cost.... Yes equipment is expensive, and yes we homebrewers are prone to always wanting more, but eventually it should more than pay off anyway...

That's my idea behind it all anyway...

Edit: You could also always work it like a bank... every batch you brew saves you 30 bucks... and "save" that in a "more gear" pot so you're allowed to buy more gear.... Also that means you have impetus to brew and drink a lot more beer... so you can keep adding to your pot of gold

Going to the store to buy a 6-pack only takes a few minutes, while making starters, the boils, the mash, the sparging, the transfers, and the bottling can take over 12 hours. Don't get me wrong, I get a kick out of all of this, but like they say...time is money, so if you add that in it isn't really cheaper...unless your time isn't worth much. Still totally worth it!
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Old 04-03-2009, 09:28 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by steelerguy View Post
Going to the store to buy a 6-pack only takes a few minutes, while making starters, the boils, the mash, the sparging, the transfers, and the bottling can take over 12 hours. Don't get me wrong, I get a kick out of all of this, but like they say...time is money, so if you add that in it isn't really cheaper...unless your time isn't worth much. Still totally worth it!

Time doesn't factor into the cost if it is an enjoyable hobby done on hobby time.

I figure my standard batches are 65 cents/bottle, give or take with a "miscellaneous" $2/5gallons thrown in.
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Old 04-03-2009, 09:56 PM   #8
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I would also add that it is going to vary a lot from brew to brew or beer to beer and most importantly how you buy your ingredients or grow them even.

I just did my first lager and I think I have $13 into it and resulted in a full 5 Gallon keg and a full 1/2G growler that I will bottle into a Christmas special 5 pack. Anyways I cam to $15 by:

7.75LBs of grain at .65c = 5.08
2oz of hops = $3
liquid yeast = $5
propane $2

I will also re-use the yeast so next batch it will be free

This is as simple and as cheep as it will probably get until I can use my own hops

On the other hand if you don't buy in bulk and pay more than $/lb for grain and only buy the hops you need for that brew the price could easily double.

Also a more complicated and more ingredient recipe is going to up the price, I think a lot of mine will be in the $20s for 5 gallons but that is also using liquid yeast and washing it for future batches, buying bulk grain and hops.


Now granted this is just what it costs on brew day. This doesn't take into account all the equipment that is purchased before brew day. That is a different story.

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Old 04-03-2009, 10:07 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Boerderij_Kabouter View Post
You will spend a massive amount on equipment most likely. Never count that in your estimates. It makes the beer seem REALLY expensive.
You really don't have to, as I just found out. I've been extract brewing since 2006, and have over time upgraded here and there. Most expensive thing was the brewpot - I do full boil 5 gal batches in the kitchen in a 8 gal pot.

I was reeling from a recent recipe price-out using liquid and dry malt extracts. I then input the recipe in it's original AG form in the software, saw a minimum of 25% savings and started googling. Eventually I found more info about using a cooler with a homemade SS braid and batch sparging.

Poking around the basement, I realized that I had 2 9 gallon rectangular coolers. Did a temp test to see how long it would keep warm water warm, and I was off to the races.

I've done 3 AG batches since the end of February. I've already paid for the parts needed for the DIY braid, ball valve, etc more than 3 times!
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Old 04-03-2009, 10:09 PM   #10
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Last but not least, figure it as either the most expensive (for the family budgetting money, so you get more...) or least expensive (to SWMBO so she doesn't think it is expensive). I budget every brew, whether or not I get a good deal, based on the full markup price at LHSB. So every batch (5 gal) costs between $20-$50 depending on mild or IIPA. If I get a good deal on a sack of grain, read free, it just means that I get a good deal on a sack of grain.

I just made a 10 gallon batch of stout for $45 and it should last me about a month to a month and a half. At $.56 a pint I feel that is a smoking deal! If I buy bottles (I keg) then I figure that they will last over the course of five brews, so add $.10 and you get around $.75 a bottle. Still less than all of the craft breweries around me. A sixer of Pliny will cost me near $20 or a growler for the same.



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