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Old 12-02-2012, 07:32 AM   #1
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Default beginner brewer needs list

Forget the 10 gallon igloo cooler mashtun with stainless steel flase bottom dome or the pH meter (for now) let's start a list of the most important items that a beginner kit doesn't provide that can significantly affect brewing.

#1 on the list should be a stir plate with a 2L flask (2L because it accomadates most all of your brews and is only a few dollars more than a 1L flask) search how to make your own stir plate or buy a cheapo (cost not quality) one that uses a potentiometer, a DC fan and some magnants. I got mine for less than 40 bucks with shipping and making your own is even cheaper (Google it)

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Old 12-02-2012, 08:12 AM   #2
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Far more important than the stir plate is sanitizer.

Every beginner that buys a kit gets no rinse cleaner and thinks they have what it takes to sanitize. I've never heard of an online retailer or a brew store explaining that they need to also have sanitizer.
You will have better luck brewing without a stir plate than without sanitation.
99 percent of beers that actually turn out poorly are from infection.

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Old 12-02-2012, 11:58 AM   #3
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Quote:
Far more important than the stir plate is sanitizer.
+1 to this! A quart of StarSan FTW!
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Old 12-02-2012, 12:22 PM   #4
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If it could be packaged and sold I reckon the thing that would be of most benefit to, NEARLY, ALL beginners is........................


















PATIENCE

And, regarding the batch after pitching, a sizable dose of "leave it the fcuk alone"

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Old 12-02-2012, 02:12 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 45_70sharps View Post
Far more important than the stir plate is sanitizer.

Every beginner that buys a kit gets no rinse cleaner and thinks they have what it takes to sanitize. I've never heard of an online retailer or a brew store explaining that they need to also have sanitizer.
You will have better luck brewing without a stir plate than without sanitation.
99 percent of beers that actually turn out poorly are from infection.
So true. The kit I bought actually told me to sanitize with the cleaner included, so I had no idea there was a difference with my first batch (bottled it Friday and it did not seem to have any off flavors so I have my fingers crossed). Now I know, and I have sanitized like crazy.
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Old 12-02-2012, 02:17 PM   #6
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1. star san, star san, star san and star san.
2. a nicely sized boil pot
3. hyrdometer and flask, or refractometer
4. if you want to do BIAB you need bags. if you want to use hops socks, you need them too.
5. tubing for the inevitable boil off tube (don't wait until you need the tubing to buy it, or you will also be buying cleaner for the walls, floor, ceiling, and whatever is nearby your fermenter).

and don't forget the star san.

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Old 12-02-2012, 02:25 PM   #7
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One item I didn't have on my first few batches but soon realized I needed was a long SS spoon. Since I have an 8 gallon pot I like to boil my full 5 gallons of wort and reaching the bottom of the pot to make sure all the extract has dissolved is impossible with a conventional kitchen spoon.

Rick

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Old 12-02-2012, 09:35 PM   #8
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whats the flask used for?

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Old 12-02-2012, 09:37 PM   #9
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It holds the liquid for your hydrometer. You have to buy both pieces.

I didn't know that when I bought mine.

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Old 12-02-2012, 09:45 PM   #10
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My hydrometer came in a tube,so I use that. I bought an 8oz (smallest bottle) of starsan like feb of last year,& only used aobout 1/2" of it. Stuff lasts a long time & is a no rinse sanitizer. Great stuff! Plus a bottle tree & vinator for bottling day makes life easier & quicker,also taking up only a 2 foot footprint. Ani favor the 2' plastic paddle I got from midwest for any & all stirring. Including the beer/top off water in the FV to help mix & aerate. No scratches from SS sponns to worry about.
Buy some muslin hop socks,& keep the grain socks from extract kits with steeping grains,& partial mash kits. I have a great way of cleaning them if you're curious. And I mean like new clean...
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