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Old 12-24-2011, 01:33 AM   #1
jd-santaclarita
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Default What system would you buy/build with $2000?

Assuming it had to be very compact and "pretty"..?

The reason I ask is because I am rebuilding my cobbled together 3 vessel single tier system of keggles/coolers its in shambles as we moved. I want to go all electric. So heres why I ask: I showed my wife the video of the Speidel Braumeister a couple weeks ago and said it was too expensive but kinda cool. I went on my merry way to build a single-vessel-biab-electric setup and ordered an 82qt bayou pot...It showed up last night...She says "really..you are buying more ugly crap....why dont you just buy that nice one and be done!" It came up yet again today....I feel like I'm getting pressured from my non-brew-savvy-beer-hating-wife to buy a nice expensive brew setup!!

So I know there are some goods and bads with the speidel...I havent researched it enough to know the details though. I usually do 5 or 10g batches and would like to continue that. 10g would prob be my norm, unless its a big beer.

So I'm not wondering if there are some good options for a compact electric brewery that would give me flexibility as well as meet the wife-pretty factor (aka...contained/hidden into a 1 or 2 vessels without a mass of tubes/wires/ghetto-equipment sprawled everywhere).

If you were in my shoes what would you do? I dont want to miss my window here

Thanks all,
JD

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Old 12-24-2011, 01:58 AM   #2
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To me...building the system and tweaking it as time goes by is a lot of the fun and entertainment value. I like a single tier 3 vessle, 2 pump, all electric that if you spend the money right makes for a really nice setup. Maybe start with 2 vessles to get in under $2k and move on from there.

Buying the system just isn't fun for me.

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Old 12-24-2011, 02:06 AM   #3
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I'd do a similar system as dtfeld suggests, using a 1-wire control network, 20 gallon Megapots from Northern Brewer, a slightly modified false bottom from Blichmann (the 30 gallon one fits almost perfectly in those kettles from NB), at least one peristaltic pump, and a plate chiller. A modular shelving system like the Gorilla Rack makes a great stand for an electric rig (simple, inexpensive, not too aesthetically displeasing). Sink the investment into the brew rig and skip the fancy fermenters for now. If you have any leftover cash, use it to start construction on a cold room/fermentation closet.

That's pretty close to the rig I already have, but with your budget, I could really soup it up!

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Old 12-24-2011, 02:30 AM   #4
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I would take the assertion that one cannot create some bling starting with a Bayou Classic 82 gallon pot as a personal affront, and build a recirculating BIAB system, with a 5500W 240V ULWD heating element, a control panel with a single PID to control the element, a timer, and a pump on/off switch. I would also incorporate a hand winch on a "gallows" (or hanging from the ceiling) to raise and suspend the bag. Throw in a set of kettle liquid return attachments that can be swapped out for recirculating during the mash, whirlpooling after the boil, and cleaning-in-place, and a 2-inch bottom drain bottom-center for draining, and I think we would be getting close.

If you really want to appease the wife put together a reasonably well-finished wooden stand, and perhaps even enclose the kettle with wine-barrel staves with the same finish.

How's that, lol?

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Old 12-24-2011, 03:42 AM   #5
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Oh man..Yuri_rage...you just blew my mind. I had no idea about the 1-wire network control option...I've been working on my linux/python skills lately...this is so timely as it would be awesome to have a linux powered brewery..I'm not sure what hw i need to buy to make that happen though, time to check it out. Jeffmeh - I may still go with the 82q bayou pot(s) depending on what direction I go. Nice stainless pots...always look fancy to me

Thanks for the info..very helpful.
-JD

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Old 12-24-2011, 11:33 AM   #6
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Do the research and you will be building a Kal clone using Keggles. Seeing as you already have 2 keggles, all you would need is 1 more and the parts to build the control panel and a nice brew stand and the other odds and ends. Others have done it and the ones who polished their keggles really sets them apart. After building a Kal clone myself I think you can do it for a round $2000 if you do it all your self and are good with basic electricity. If you buy something for $2000 you will get a nice system but not get $2000 worth, your probably paying close to 40% for labor. Your a home brewer and everyone knows home brewing is a labor of love of what you create, so why not build a much better kick as system that even the wife would say WOW.

If you build it, She will come!

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Old 12-24-2011, 11:56 AM   #7
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give me the 2000 and let me build it

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Old 12-24-2011, 04:00 PM   #8
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Someone a while back built an e-brewery using two Blichmann kettles on and entertainment center. It looked really nice! I can't find the thread for it now. Maybe someone else remembers it.

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Old 12-24-2011, 04:02 PM   #9
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Skip the Blichmann kettles, IMHO. You'll blow your whole budget on those alone, and they're not THAT special. However, I do really like the Blichmann false bottom.

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Old 12-24-2011, 06:35 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yuri_Rage View Post
Skip the Blichmann kettles, IMHO. You'll blow your whole budget on those alone, and they're not THAT special. However, I do really like the Blichmann false bottom.
I agree! It was more the setup that I found impressive. Still can't find the thread.

Yuri, could you tell me about your kettles? I noticed that they are copper colored. Did you have them coated/plated?
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