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Old 10-31-2013, 07:51 PM   #1
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Default Back in the game, what is the best kit to buy?

I'm just getting back into the game, right now im shopping for good brewing kit. And there's so many different companies out now that sell em. What is the best FULL kit I can buy within the $500 range?
And advice?

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Old 11-01-2013, 12:46 AM   #2
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You say you are getting back into the game. So I would assume you have brewed in the past. Extract or all grain? Getting the system the way you want may be easier if you bought the pieces separate. A turkey fryer would cost you about $50 at Lowe's or Craigslist. If all grain the 10 gallon mash tun from Home Depot is about $40 with the parts costing you about $10. Then all you need is a pot to boil a 5/10 gallon batch and a bucket/carboy which is pretty cheap. Hope this is what you were referring to.

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Old 11-03-2013, 05:59 PM   #3
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Thanks for the turkey fryer tip, I used to work with a stove top setup. Garage brewing sounds soooooo much better. And I haven't moved past Extract brewing. Ill probably get into all grain after a couple batches.
But what I ended up deciding. Since I have to start from scratch again, is to buy the Master Brewer's Equipment Kit with Kegging Setup from Midwest Supplies. And a 30qt stainless turkey fryer with propane burner from ebay.
Now that I have a game plan, I do have a question, will a 5 gallon glass carboy be big enough to act as a 1st stage fermentor? I like the idea of fermenting in a see thru container, so I can see wats going on.

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Old 11-04-2013, 01:56 PM   #4
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Default 6.5 gallon carboy

Get a 6.5 gallon carboy for primary because you will need room for the krausen when the yeast get going.

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Old 11-04-2013, 03:28 PM   #5
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will a 5 gallon glass carboy be big enough to act as a 1st stage fermentor? I like the idea of fermenting in a see thru container, so I can see wats going on.
You can use a 5 gallon carboy, but you would need to use a blow-off tube during the high krausen phase of fermentation (usually the first three or four days). You might find it easier to use a larger carboy, instead.

As for other equipment, a while back I started a thread on the subject of setting up a complete system, and I worked out that a pretty complete system could be set up for about $350, pieced out separately. A kit would probably be a good deal less. I did recommend getting a wort chiller as well, which would likely be at least another $200 with all the fittings needed. The point is, you can get started for a good deal less than $500, but how much you end up spending will depend on how deep you want to get into it - it can be a very cheap hobby, or a bottomless money sink, depending on how you approach it.
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Old 11-05-2013, 01:24 AM   #6
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Sounds like you have a solid plan. While I would agree on the IC, if you have any patience you can make a chiller for less than $80. Lowe's has the tubing for about $50 or so. The elbows and attachments are super cheap. Plus you get the satisfaction of building it yourself. Just my opinion.

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Old 11-05-2013, 06:13 AM   #7
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Get a 6.5 gallon carboy for primary because you will need room for the krausen when the yeast get going.
Even with that, you might still need a blow-off tube for the first two or three days. I just brewed a batch of a relatively light brown ale which I'd pitched with the Ringwood yeast, and was using a 6 gal. carboy, but when I went to check on it tonight it krausen was pushing up out of the airlock. Fortunately, I had a suitable tube and a large pot to feed it to on hand. Even so, now I'm concerned about possible contamination from when I removed the airlock - it is unlikely, but still a possibility that is worrying me.
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Old 11-05-2013, 10:37 AM   #8
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Electric BIAB with plate wort chiller. One pot. Excellent mash temperature control. No stuck sparges. Easy cleanup using the pump to flush the system. Cheaper than propane and never run out of gas. Excellent efficiency. Build your system for $500 or less.
See thread here.

Or, just do it the way everyone else does. It's all good.

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Old 11-05-2013, 03:31 PM   #9
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Welcome back how long have you been away from brewing?

A lot of people have moved to plastic carboys like better bottle, I use a generic brand which is the same thing and have brewed with them for a couple years now and love them.

You're ok with extracts, there are a few of new extracts like Rye, Marris Otter, and Organic as well as all the standards. If you want to delve into the word of Partial Mashing. Get a cooler or convert one of your existing coolers and use the brew in a bag method.

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Old 11-06-2013, 02:37 PM   #10
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Been away for about a year now, and I never brewed solo before, I was the second hand in the operation.

I blew my $500 budget out of the water, the more research I did the more equipment I bought.

Heres a list...

Master Brewer's Equipment Kit with Kegging Setup From Midwest supply, but I upgraded the Analog refrigerator thermostat control to a Digital control for $20 more. I also purchased Autumn Amber Ale w/ Munton's 6 gm dry yeast kit as my first batch...

Then I purchased a King Kooker with 38000btu burner from Amazon(stainless pot setup)

After that, I started looking into Aeration, and bought a 20CF industrial oxygen tank from my local welding supply shop, and the BIG OXYGEN SYSTEM from Williams Brewing.

Then I went back to Midwest Supply, and bought a Fermenting Heater and a Fermenter's Favorites Plastic Bottle Filler (I wanna bottle some batches into my flip top bottles and growlers)

And after that, I went to NY Brew supply and bought a Stainless Steel Immersion Wort Chiller / Pre-Chiller

A few more smaller/random items Ive purchased off ebay are, a TRUE BREW FLOATING GLASS THERMOMETER, 21 inch stainless stirring spoon, and of course a nice halogen work light from Amazon.

Am I missing something?

Cheers!

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