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Old 01-15-2010, 06:57 PM   #1
Overdue4Brew
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Default Quick question for the experienced AG brewers

Howdy

Well... my friends and I have finally started making the transition to AG after about 25 extract batches (only 4-5 or them being kits we didn't develop). I've done some research but am still a little confused on the HLT/later tun area.

So far we have made a mash tun our of a 10gal home depot cooler. Would we need to create another one of similar constuction... or would we use something differnt. A turkey fryer for example. We have one at the moment, but we would be using it for the final stage I'm assuming.

Any suggestions or links to a reference that might explain this step a bit further to me?

I've seen HLT's that look to be the same thing as what we have made as a mash tun... but I'm wondering how well they hold temperature and if it's even actually needed.

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Old 01-15-2010, 07:14 PM   #2
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I'm not sure I understand your question 100% but most AG brewers use a 3 vessel setup.
The HLT is much like the boil kettle but it is used for heating strike and sparge water. Your MLT cooler should be set up with a braid, false bottom, or manifold of some kind to lauter the sweet wort from the grain.
Some use an extra cooler to store the hot liquor that they used the BK to heat. Some use a giant bag (brew in a bag) and use only the BK, and some use 2 vessel setups with pumps. There are so many ways to tackle this, and your route will depend on space, budget and technical expertise.
This is a good read: http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f36/all-grain-pictorial-video-tutorials-78963/
and so is
http://hbd.org/cascade/dennybrew/
and
http://www.suebob.com/brew/allgrain.htm

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Old 01-15-2010, 07:18 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bendavanza View Post
I'm not sure I understand your question 100% but most AG brewers use a 3 vessel setup.
The HLT is much like the boil kettle but it is used for heating strike and sparge water. Your MLT cooler should be set up with a braid, false bottom, or manifold of some kind to lauter the sweet wort from the grain.
Some use an extra cooler to store the hot liquor that they used the BK to heat. Some use a giant bag (brew in a bag) and use only the BK, and some use 2 vessel setups with pumps. There are so many ways to tackle this, and your route will depend on space, budget and technical expertise.
This is a good read: http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f36/all-grain-pictorial-video-tutorials-78963/
and so is
http://hbd.org/cascade/dennybrew/
and
http://www.suebob.com/brew/allgrain.htm
thanks... i think http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f36/all-grain-pictorial-video-tutorials-78963 has a few answers to my question lol
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Old 01-15-2010, 07:18 PM   #4
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I'm confused as to what you are asking as well.

My ag setup is my turkey fryer and 7.5 gallon kettle to heat strike, and sparge water and do the boil, and a cooler with braid. I also have taken to using my bottling bucket with it's graduated volume measurements to know how much I'm getting out of my tun during mash and sparge. I go from tun to bucket, then bucket to kettle.

Can't be simpler.

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Old 01-15-2010, 07:21 PM   #5
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You don't want to heat the cooler with a burner - it will melt!!! But some people use a converted keg and keep a flame under it to maintain temp. The insulation on the cooler means you don't need to worry about this.

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Old 01-15-2010, 07:21 PM   #6
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i think i was confusing myself as well... lol

as of now i see i have everything we need. my setup is almost identical to yours now revvy

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Old 01-15-2010, 08:29 PM   #7
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I do the same as Revvy. You can spend as much or as little as you want on equipment. In the end, you'll still make beer.

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Old 01-15-2010, 09:45 PM   #8
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Adding a second burner and a dedicated liquor tank will speed things up on brew day. Even if it's simply another turkey fryer...you can begin your wort boil during the sparge.

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Old 01-15-2010, 11:28 PM   #9
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Quote:
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Adding a second burner and a dedicated liquor tank will speed things up on brew day. Even if it's simply another turkey fryer...you can begin your wort boil during the sparge.
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Old 01-15-2010, 11:59 PM   #10
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ok so now we call it "BIABSPIAB" BREW IN A BAG SPARGE IN A BAG another acronim to add to the list
ok so i have been using a modified brew in bag. i brew 5 gallon batches. i came across a 6.5 gallon aluminium fryer pot and a 5 gallon gott coller (round) at sales for $5 each and got a 5 gallon paint strainer bag, the bag fits into the cooler and am able to pull it over the threads. preheat the the cooler and then add 3 gallons mash water to the grains in the bag in the cooler at about 162 stir and i get 150 mash temp droping 2 degrees in 90 minute mash. because the bag is streched over the coller threads the top holds the bag in place and am able to shake the cooler to stir the grains without removing the lid. while masing i heat my 3.5 gallons of sparge water to 180 degrees in the boil pot, when the mash is done i pull the bag and sit it in the a callander over the cooler and squeze the bag and then the bag goes into the sparge water in the pot for 15 minutes. 180 gets me 170 sparge temp. I have my stove down to where to know where to set the dial to maintain 170. after the 15 minute dip sparge i once again put the bag in a coolander over the pot. turn the heat up. squeeze the bag then remove to go in the garden. I add the mash from the cooler. usually do a 60 minute boil. i am usually several ponts over the origianl gravity called out in the recipee and have gotten final gravities 1.010 or lower for recipees that call for brewhouse efficiencies of 75 percent. this is working well for me and have done 7 to 12 pounds of grain, i think 12 would be about max for my 5 gallon cooler.
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