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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Beginners Beer Brewing Forum > Brewing cost
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Old 12-16-2006, 09:20 PM   #1
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Default Brewing cost

I’m wondering what is the most economical way to purchase brewing ingredients. Is it more cost effective to get a kit or will I save money buying the ingredients separate?

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Old 12-16-2006, 09:25 PM   #2
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From my experience, it works out to be about the same if you buy the ingredients in a kit or individually. Advantage of not using a kit is the freedom to alter the recipe a bit, easier, anyway. However, if you buy items in bulk, you can save a bit. For example, 55 lbs. of DME, hops by the lb., Corn Sugar by the pound. Also, it will save money if you learn how to harvest your yeast (liquid only).

Going all-grain is supposedly significantly cheaper (in the long run), not including initial equipment and labor.

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Old 12-16-2006, 09:33 PM   #3
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Going all grain and buying in bulk will save money in the very long run, since you'll have to figure in a mill and storage containers.

Yeast harvesting is a relatively easy first step.

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Old 12-16-2006, 10:19 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by david_42
Going all grain and buying in bulk will save money in the very long run, since you'll have to figure in a mill and storage containers.

Yeast harvesting is a relatively easy first step.
True, AG is the way to go to save the most money if you brew and drink/share a lot.

Does anyone know the ROI (Return on Investment) cost for say going AG and brewing 100 gal per year? How many batches do you have to brew to pay for all the equipment you have to buy?

FWIW, this is a serious question...anyone?
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Old 12-16-2006, 10:41 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by homebrewer_99
True, AG is the way to go to save the most money if you brew and drink/share a lot.

Does anyone know the ROI (Return on Investment) cost for say going AG and brewing 100 gal per year? How many batches do you have to brew to pay for all the equipment you have to buy?

FWIW, this is a serious question...anyone?
There are a lot of variables when it comes to the cost of going all grain so it's kind of an individual thing.
I can tell you what I save between grain and malt extract with each batch.
I buy my base malt (American 2 row) in a 55 pound sack. It costs me about 30 dollars or roughly 55 cents per pound. I use about 9 pounds or so in a batch. I don't buy specialty grains in bulk so figure about 2 pounds average at 1.50 per pound.
On grains alone I'm spending about 8 dollars or so. The equivalent in malt extract would be approximately 14 to 18 dollars depending on how much you use and if you use dry verses liquid extract. I'm guessing I'm saving about 6 or 7 dollars per batch.
Folks who brew extract check my numbers. I haven't purchased much extract lately and I could be off.
I honestly don't think I will ever pay off my AG equipment with the savings but brewing cheaper wasn't my primary reason for going AG. I love the hobby and the capability of having more control over my beers was worth the investment.
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Old 12-16-2006, 11:56 PM   #6
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OK, I wasn't really referring to the price of grain and extract...I meant the price of the full-fledged brewing equipment racks and boil kettles/kegs a lot of these guys have been displaying...and they look great BTW.

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Old 12-16-2006, 11:58 PM   #7
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Saving money by going AG is one of the great misnomers of homebrewing since your need for new equipment on a continual basis goes up exponentially! Now, when are pH meters going to become more affordable...

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Old 12-17-2006, 05:06 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by david_42
Going all grain and buying in bulk will save money in the very long run, since you'll have to figure in a mill and storage containers.

Yeast harvesting is a relatively easy first step.
I was wondering about this, I know that there are hundreds of forums about yeast harvesting, but how much is it really gonna save me? Also, are there any risks like contamination, etc. that come with harvesting? If so, it seems to me, that at my time in brewing it would just be worth the peace of mind to spend the extra couple bucks.
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Old 12-17-2006, 05:09 AM   #9
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The biggest expense that I have been able to save on is the salvage of yeast, freezing/storing and purchase stuff in bulk... You go online and even at a homebrew shop, it's less money to buy stuff for three brews at a time... AG is the best way go with harvesting yeast... BUT, you have to look at it this way... When you brew your own beer, your brewing HQ stuff... At a store you would pay "sometimes" $10 for a 4 pack of gooooooooooood beer.... For between $30 to $50, your making 5 gallons...

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Old 12-17-2006, 05:15 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RichBrewer
There are a lot of variables when it comes to the cost of going all grain so it's kind of an individual thing.
I can tell you what I save between grain and malt extract with each batch.
I buy my base malt (American 2 row) in a 55 pound sack. It costs me about 30 dollars or roughly 55 cents per pound. I use about 9 pounds or so in a batch. I don't buy specialty grains in bulk so figure about 2 pounds average at 1.50 per pound.
On grains alone I'm spending about 8 dollars or so. The equivalent in malt extract would be approximately 14 to 18 dollars depending on how much you use and if you use dry verses liquid extract. I'm guessing I'm saving about 6 or 7 dollars per batch.
Folks who brew extract check my numbers. I haven't purchased much extract lately and I could be off.
I honestly don't think I will ever pay off my AG equipment with the savings but brewing cheaper wasn't my primary reason for going AG. I love the hobby and the capability of having more control over my beers was worth the investment.
Yeah, but you're Rich, Brewer.
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