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-   -   Got permission from SWMBO... (http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f36/got-permission-swmbo-20316/)

ayrton 01-23-2007 11:58 AM

Got permission from SWMBO...
...to get the required hardware to go all-grain!

I'm going to look around for it even after I ask, but a while ago, someone here posted a really excellent how-to on all-grain brewing, complete with tons of pics. Anyone have a link to such a thing?

I do have a couple questions, though:

First, I understand that you buy all the grains required, and put them in your mash-tun. As I understand it, you heat up some "strike" water, and then pour it on the grain bed, and then collect it from the spout, and repeat a few times until it becomes clear, at which point you pour that wort into the brew pot.

1) How do you maintain the temperature of the water/wort going through the grain bed? It seems to me that water at 155 degrees would cool pretty quickly after being poured and collected several times.

2) Where do you get the hot water to pour onto the grain bed? I take it this requires a second pot, as the brew pot will already be in use for pouring the finished wort.

I'm so sick of paying through the nose for malt extracts, which then burn right on the bottom of my brew pot.

Yooper 01-23-2007 12:11 PM

The best resource I've found is howtobrew.com. It explains it thoroughly. These is also a link I just saw yesterday in someone's post and has complete directions and pictures. I can't remember whose post it was though, but someone else around here will, I'm sure.

You keep the temperature by having an insulated mash tun. Most people use modified coolers, with either a manifold or false bottom, and a bulkhead fitting. My understanding is that most of these coolers only drop a degree or two during the whole hour. Of course, it helps if you temper the cooler first. Add a gallon or two of boiling water, swirl it around and let it sit for a few minutes. Then pour the water back into your kettle. Then add 170 degree water (or whatever temperature water you need to maintain your mash temp, usually 10-15 degrees higher) and grain and stir. If your temp is too high, add some cool water. If you temp is too low, add some boiling water. There are calculations to help with this.

You also need hot water for the sparge, so yes, you'll need a couple of pots. But the hot water pots can be smaller, only 3-4 gallons or so.

I'm just starting AG brewing, and found howtobrew.com (as well as the "regular" book by the same name) essential.


JimiGibbs 01-23-2007 12:20 PM

Here's another good resource.... I'm gathering the stuff now.


simzy 01-23-2007 12:46 PM


Originally Posted by JimiGibbs
Here's another good resource.... I'm gathering the stuff now.


I agree, this site has very simple/easy-to -follow instructions on how to brew all grain. It also has a suggestion on how to make a very cheep mash tun.

I actually just priced this sites mash tun set up, and a stainless steel turkey fryer at sears, and total cost was less then 100 dollars.

ayrton 01-23-2007 12:51 PM


Originally Posted by JimiGibbs
Here's another good resource.... I'm gathering the stuff now.


That's the one I remember! Thanks a bunch, everyone.

cweston 01-23-2007 01:51 PM

The *easiest* way to maintain sparge water at the desired temp is to have a second boiling pot or "hot liquor tank."

But you don't have to do it that way, if you're trying to stick to a budget.

I boil all of the sparge water while the mash is resting.

The amount needed for the first of two batch sparges goes into the mashtun. The rest goes into a second old cooler which has a spigot.

Then, after draining the wort into the brew kettle, the water for the second batch sparge comes from the second cooler. It's only been in there 15 minutes or so, so there's very little heat loss.

aseelye 01-23-2007 02:20 PM

Watch the BrewCam project, he shows on video the parts that are different than extract, was very helpful to see it once before I did it myself.

Orfy 01-23-2007 03:39 PM

Take a look at my link for a simple cheap set up.

Reustonium 01-24-2007 09:24 PM

The best place to pick up an all-grain setup is from Northerbrewer.com

If you are choosing between their 5 gallon coolers and their 10 gallon coolers, definitely go with the bigger cooler. I got the 10 gallon coolers and can routinely do some big beers at 5gallon batches

sailsandskates 01-25-2007 02:08 PM

All grain rules!-& the local cows are happy!
Great idea on using a "back up" cooler for having hot water available.
Nice picture description of all grain process- www.donosborn.com/homebrew/all_grain_how_to.htm

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