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Old 03-06-2012, 04:16 AM   #1
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Default Building my Two Cooler All Grain Brewery

Time to stop lurking and start writing. Since I'm basing my all grain setup on what I've learned here, I thought I'd share the progress as I go along. This may take a while, so who knows how long it may be between posts.

I got stars in my eyes looking at all the shiny stainless steel equipment out there, and the engineer in me thought the recirculating versions looked super cool, but the more I thought about it the more I liked the simplicity of coolers.

So here's the plan. Cooler for the HLT, cooler for the MLT, one big pot, one burner and one pump. I want to be able to do 5 to 15 gallons at a time so I got the 70 Quart Ice Cube since it's narrow and tall and should still work for the smaller batches. I brew with a couple of other guys and we usually do 10 gallon batches, but I like the option of going big or going small.

I'm looking at the 20 gallon megapot for my brew kettle (because SOMETHING has to be stainless!). I saw a similar pot sold by Home Brew Stuff that cost less, does anybody have one of these? Opinions?

I plan to batch sparge, so I'll use the one pump to fill the MLT and then heat the water for the HLT while the mash is going. After the boil I'll fill the HLT with ice water and recirculate wort through my immersion chiller to cool it off (because I have to recirculate SOMETHING!).

Any advice or feedback as I go along would be greatly appreciated.

The coolers arrived today. Now I just have to clear some space in the garage so I can get the stand (ok, shelf). Here's what I'm planning (roughly)...

two-cooler-plan.jpg  
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Old 03-06-2012, 04:22 AM   #2
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By the way, I got the shelf and floor burner idea by browsing the sculpture art gallery here...
http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f51/show...rew-rig-46578/

Definitely a gold mine for ideas.

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Old 03-06-2012, 04:33 AM   #3
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Megapots? Here is where I got mine:

http://www.waresdirect.com/products/...l-/80-Qt168826

I got the 100 quart pots. They appear to be from the same manufacturer, with different resellers. Not much more cost, that much more capacity. If you decide to go that way, the false bottom for the Megapots fits perfectly.

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Old 03-06-2012, 05:34 AM   #4
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Where did you get those coolers from?

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Old 03-06-2012, 05:39 AM   #5
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Holy crap man you have been lurking... For years lol

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Old 03-06-2012, 05:20 PM   #6
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I ended up getting the coolers through Amazon. They turned out $10 cheaper each vs. the best I could find locally. The site said they were out of stock, but they shipped in about a week.

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Old 03-06-2012, 08:25 PM   #7
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Man Amazon is selling this cooler for $45 right now... What did you pay?

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Old 03-06-2012, 08:38 PM   #8
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Why do you need two coolers for batch sparging?

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Old 03-06-2012, 11:24 PM   #9
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Yup, $45 for the cooler with free shipping. Couldn't pass it up.

As for the two coolers, I'm only doing one burner so I need a place to pump sparge water out of my brew kettle before lautering the mash. I probably wouldn't loose too much heat while draining the MLT, so the cooler might be overkill... but for $45 it's cheap and insulated. I also plan on filling it with ice during the boil and then running the wort through a chiller in the ice bath for cooling.

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Old 03-14-2012, 06:31 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ThreeDogsNE
Megapots? Here is where I got mine:

http://www.waresdirect.com/products/...l-/80-Qt168826

I got the 100 quart pots. They appear to be from the same manufacturer, with different resellers. Not much more cost, that much more capacity. If you decide to go that way, the false bottom for the Megapots fits perfectly.
Did you install a valve and thermometer on this kettle? And if so was there any problems?
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