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Dustinj 12-29-2012 04:59 PM

Building my brewery
I posted in equipment but wasn't sure which forum is more correct.

As stated earlier I'm a beginner. I got the craft a brew one gallon extract kit. I'm going to modify my crawfish boiler with a weld less spigot and thermometer to move up to 5 gal brews and on to partial mash. Please help point me in the right direction.

I have plenty of space so thats not a problem. I'm a diy'er so building instead of buying sounds fun and much cheaper.

I'm go into put in an order with northern brewer. Can I ferment in one of their 6 gal bottling buckets with a spigot or should I go plastic carbouy then transfer to bottling bucket.

I have seen some setups on here with spigots and bottling spouts. I don't like the idea of siphoning. Seems like a lot could be wasted. As well as messy.

I will build an emerssian cooler out of copper tubing and connections from home depot.

I'll also be getting mesh filters and hydrometer kits and all of that stuff as well. I want to get to where I have a brew coming to finish every weekend or so, so I'll be growing and buying buckets and carbouys pretty frequently.

Thanks for any advice

hoppyhoppyhippo 12-29-2012 05:06 PM

I would recommend getting a plastic bucket for your primary, they come with a grommeted lid and you just need a bung and airlock. You can also use a plastic carboy but considering the bucket is cheaper, that would be my personal suggestion. That way if something goes wrong, it's cheaper to replace.

Siphoning is not messy at all. I've never spilled a beer siphoning. Actually the most beer I've spilled is the actual bottling. Just get an auto-siphon, they pump start and once they get going they don't stop. Also they keep the trub from hops, dead yeast, etc. in the bottom of your fermenter instead of your beer.

Homebrew is a touch messy. It's like any other form of cooking there's bound to be a little mess, just gotta clean it. Myself to adapt to bottling overflows/hose dripoff I bottle over my brew kettle, any beer that falls in there I use as my carbonation test with some of the more cruddy stuff at the bottom of the bottling bucket

h22lude 12-29-2012 05:07 PM

You can definitely use your crawfish boiler. Just make sure to wash it really good. It wouldn't hurt to wash it a few times. Any fats or oils stuck to the inside will not be good for your brew. Oils and fats kill head retention.

You can use a bottling bucket for a fermenting bucket but I highly suggest you still rack to a bottling bucket to bottle. If you don't rack you will have to pour the priming sugar in top of the beer and then stir it which you can do but now you are stirring up the trub which you will then have to wait until it settles again. I find it much easier to put the priming sugar in the bottling bucket and rack on top of it. Racking will mix the beer and sugar up well without having to stir. If you use a bottling bucket for your fermenting bucket, you can still use the spigot. You can build a dip tube so your don't pull any trub.

unionrdr 12-29-2012 05:10 PM

I use 2 plastic fermenters with spigots. One is the old Cooper's micro brew vessel,the other a BB ale pail. The spigots are easy to remove & keep clean too. Just makes my job so much easier. I built a bottling bucket with the italian spigot that has the recess on the spout for 3/8" tubing from a bottling wand to fit tightly.

Dustinj 12-29-2012 05:38 PM

Ok, so I'm thinking, use a plastic carbouy to ferment. Is it ok to get the one with a spigot to transfer to the bottling bucket? I just like the idea of spigots and a two or three tier system.

feinbera 12-29-2012 05:53 PM

Don't fear the siphon! With an auto-siphon, it's not hard or messy at all.


(epic beard not required, but it helps)

Dustinj 12-29-2012 06:19 PM

Ok I'm sold. I'll buy an auto siphon to transfer then a bottling bucket.

I think I'm ready to get my order together.

Thanks guys

Dustinj 12-29-2012 07:10 PM

Ok, so after crawling all over northern brewer I decided on their deluxe brewers kit, and weldless thermometer and spigot for my 20q kettle. I can then add carbouys from there and build a wort chiller myself.

Thanks again

BWN 12-29-2012 11:06 PM

Don't buy a kit that comes with a five gallon carboy for secondaries. It would be a waste of money. If you decide later on that you want to secondary you can buy one then. Most brewers don't use secondaries anymore unless doing something like adding fruit or oak. You would be better off buying a second bucket. It is cheaper.

Dustinj 12-30-2012 02:16 PM

Thanks Bwn. I've been all over northern and now more beer. I agree I think I will go with a 6 gal fermenter and go from that to the bottling bucket and keep it simple.

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