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Old 12-11-2012, 05:37 PM   #1
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Default Need Advice on Equipment, NEW to AG

I know this might be a little overwhelming, but going to ask it any who. I would like to get into all grain brewing and was wondering what I should start off with, ie, mush tuns and sizes, pot sizes, ect… Doing 5Gal batches only.
I have been doing extract for a bit and thought I might as well jump into the big dogs. Right now I have an 8 gal brew pot, two carboys and that’s it. Should I purchase equipment or make my own, another thing kept in mind is my budget, I know some of the equipment is quite expensive and I am pushing towards just making my own mush tuns and what not. I have also seen some people having two, depending on what type of sparging method is done…Thanks for the help
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Old 12-11-2012, 05:47 PM   #2
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Get yourself a 5 gallon water cooler with a spigot. They usually have them at Home Depot for about $30. False bottoms are expensive but you can get a kettle screen (bazooka screen) instead. You need a ball valve and all the parts to attach that to the screen through the cooler when you remove the water spigot.

An 8 gallon pot is pushing it since you will be boiling close to 7 gallons to start with. Boil overs could be an issue if you aren't extremely careful.

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Old 12-11-2012, 05:56 PM   #3
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You should have two pots, one good one for boiling 7 gal of wort and one cheap one for a hlt with at least 5 gal capacity. Get a 8-10 gallon cooler. I have a round 10 gal igloo. Fit a valve on it in place of the cheap one. Leave a little stub of nipple sticking out of the inside. You can attach a toilet water hose or a bazooka tube to it with a coupling. Spray insulate the lid if it's an igloo. Get a grain crusher and a drill if you don't want a work out. Other wise investments include a good thermometer, a refractometer, some cheap buckets, long steel spoon.

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Old 12-11-2012, 05:59 PM   #4
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The only thing you need to add to you set up for all grain 5 gallon batches is a $1 paint strainer bag from Home Depot. I've used a cooler tun and done BIAB and found the latter much easier, and quite effective. You should have no problems doing 16 pound batches in an 8 gallon pot.

Here is my simple 4 gallon setup:
http://woodlandbrew.blogspot.com/2012/09/biab.html

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Old 12-11-2012, 06:17 PM   #5
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You can do just as WoodlandBrew says and start with a very simple BIAB. After that see if you want to stay there or want to do other things that BIAB might not satisfy with. The sky is really the limit depending upon how much you are willing to spend. For me, I went from extract brewing on my stove, to extract with a turkey fryer, to partial mash, then to all grain. At each step along the way more stuff was purchased, made or hobbled together. If you are simply looking for a way to make some suds then go with BIAB and you might happily stay there. However, if your hobby leads you to do much more tinkering and your the type that is always looking for a new way to do stuff--like me--then try slowly progressing through the stages. For me, trying to find the better way to do things is as much fun as making the beer itself. At each stage you learn something new about brewing. My first all grain batch was made with an eight gallon brew kettle (that I still boil with) on a turkey fryer burner with a cooler for mashing. The mash was then transferred to a homemade Zapap two bucket lauter tun for lautering. I made many batches this way but have upgraded to a MLT made from a cooler fitted with a Bazooka screen and ball cock. My latest project was building a brewing water filter.

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Old 12-11-2012, 07:01 PM   #6
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Thanks for the help, i may try the BIAB method...

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Old 12-11-2012, 07:35 PM   #7
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Buy as little as possible until you figure out what your pain points are.

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Old 12-12-2012, 12:24 PM   #8
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Been looking into this BIAB concept, might take a stab at it, looks easy enough.

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Old 12-15-2012, 01:09 AM   #9
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I just did my first biab and it is really easy. Once you get the basics down from extract it is only one more step. Plus, no ballcock needed.

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Old 12-15-2012, 01:23 AM   #10
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ya def will be doing the BIAB, having my grandma sew me up a voile bag and just got a 15.5 keg from my father law, starting to piece my stuff together nicely,

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