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Old 06-30-2011, 08:46 PM   #1
walrusbt
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Default Just starting. What other equipment should I get?

Can't wait to get started home brewing. Lucky for me, my birthday is coming up so I'm going to get most of what I need as presents. In the meantime, I'm on CL regularly looking for a freezer to convert into a fermentation chamber. So for initial equipment I settled on the Midest Supplies Kit that's $100, but I probably have $100-$150 left to spend. I know there are countless threads on "what do I need" so I apologize in advance but appreciate your help.

The kit includes:
• 5 Gallon Glass Carboy
• 6.5 Gallon Plastic Fermenter with Lid
• 6.5 Gallon Bottling Bucket with Spigot
• 8 Oz. of Easy Clean No-Rinse Cleanser
• Drilled Universal Carboy Bung
• Airlock
• Hydrometer
• Bottle Brush
• Carboy Brush
• Twin Lever Red Baron Bottle Capper
• Bottle Caps
• Liquid Crystal Thermometer
• Bottle Filler
• Fermtech AutoSiphon upgrade
• Siphon Tubing
• Shutoff clamp

I probably have $100-$150 left to spend...what else should I get? I have on the list:
- Kettle (8gallon+) and burner so I can do full boils
- Large Funnel - figure I'll need this soon enough
- Another Carboy - I imagine I'll need this but since a secondary isn't necessary most of the time, maybe I don't need this since I could ferment two batches with what I'm getting in the kit. I think there is a good chance after the first batch I'll do some half-size batches. Maybe a 3 gallon carboy or BB would be appropriate.
- Some 22 oz bottles (saving the 12 oz at home)
- Wort chiller
- Pre-chiller - it sounds like full boils are the way to go. I live in Texas so I imagine I'll need this. I'm not sure of the tap water temperature, but I'm guessing it's upper 70s - it's cool but not cold.
- Beer recipe kit

Missing anything major on this list? Anything you'd change? Thanks so much.

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Old 06-30-2011, 08:56 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by walrusbt View Post
Can't wait to get started home brewing. Lucky for me, my birthday is coming up so I'm going to get most of what I need as presents. In the meantime, I'm on CL regularly looking for a freezer to convert into a fermentation chamber. So for initial equipment I settled on the Midest Supplies Kit that's $100, but I probably have $100-$150 left to spend. I know there are countless threads on "what do I need" so I apologize in advance but appreciate your help.

The kit includes:
• 5 Gallon Glass Carboy
• 6.5 Gallon Plastic Fermenter with Lid
• 6.5 Gallon Bottling Bucket with Spigot
• 8 Oz. of Easy Clean No-Rinse Cleanser
• Drilled Universal Carboy Bung
• Airlock
• Hydrometer
• Bottle Brush
• Carboy Brush
• Twin Lever Red Baron Bottle Capper
• Bottle Caps
• Liquid Crystal Thermometer
• Bottle Filler
• Fermtech AutoSiphon upgrade
• Siphon Tubing
• Shutoff clamp

I probably have $100-$150 left to spend...what else should I get? I have on the list:
- Kettle (8gallon+) and burner so I can do full boils
- Large Funnel - figure I'll need this soon enough
- Another Carboy - I imagine I'll need this but since a secondary isn't necessary most of the time, maybe I don't need this since I could ferment two batches with what I'm getting in the kit. I think there is a good chance after the first batch I'll do some half-size batches. Maybe a 3 gallon carboy or BB would be appropriate.
- Some 22 oz bottles (saving the 12 oz at home)
- Wort chiller
- Pre-chiller - it sounds like full boils are the way to go. I live in Texas so I imagine I'll need this. I'm not sure of the tap water temperature, but I'm guessing it's upper 70s - it's cool but not cold.
- Beer recipe kit

Missing anything major on this list? Anything you'd change? Thanks so much.
One thing that comes to mind is some sanitizer. Easy Clean is not a true sanitizer, but it's good for cleaning. I use Starsan.
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Old 06-30-2011, 08:57 PM   #3
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The next thing that you are going to do....is pitch the bottles and go for kegs. So much easier in the long run than dealing with cleaning, sanitizing, etc... Just my 2 kegs worth.

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Old 06-30-2011, 08:59 PM   #4
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Bottle tree
Bottle blaster to clean inside the bottles easy.
Kettle or turkey fryer kit to do full boils.

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Old 06-30-2011, 09:21 PM   #5
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Quote:
One thing that comes to mind is some sanitizer. Easy Clean is not a true sanitizer, but it's good for cleaning. I use Starsan
I had Star San on my list as well as a tub and crate for storage but left it off. Thanks.

Quote:
The next thing that you are going to do....is pitch the bottles and go for kegs. So much easier in the long run than dealing with cleaning, sanitizing, etc... Just my 2 kegs worth.
Kegs sounds great, and about 7-8 years ago would have been my likely avenue. I just don't host as much as I used to and need to be able to take my beer on the go. (I don't drink as much as I used to either which is why I'll probably try some half-size batches after the first batch).

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Bottle tree
Bottle blaster to clean inside the bottles easy.
Kettle or turkey fryer kit to do full boils.
Thanks. By bottle blaster are you referring to what I'm seeing listed as a bottle rinser on the home brew websites?
http://www.austinhomebrew.com/product_info.php?products_id=1322
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Old 06-30-2011, 09:28 PM   #6
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1. Starsan
3. Refractometer
2. Immersion chiller
In that order.
Btw welcome and good luck. Take good notes.

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Old 06-30-2011, 09:29 PM   #7
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After my first brewing experience last weekend with a setup similar to yours I would say the two things that would have made my life a lot easier are an outdoor burner and wort chiller.

Those two things would have my friend and I at least two or three hours and a clean up job from a boil over on his stove.


joe

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Old 06-30-2011, 09:29 PM   #8
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Star-san, and a blow off tube.

Get some tubing that fits that hole lid for the air lock. It should fit tightly. You want a few feet. Run that into a container of water.

On many beers, the fermenting yeast will be so active, they will blow out the airlock, then clog the airlock. You don't want this =)

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Old 06-30-2011, 09:30 PM   #9
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You may want to get some additional bottling/cleaning equipment and backup consumables:

Bottle Dryer, Bottle washer, Bottle Rinse, Carboy Rinse, extra tubing, extra gaskets, extra bottle bucket spigot (I break one every 2 brews for some reason), How to brew (book), extra hydrometer, extra airlock, etc.

I started with the Midwest kit, but I wished that I would have purchased the add on kit at the same time. http://www.midwestsupplies.com/equipment-upgrade-kit-two.html

None of this is necessary to make good beer, they just make things easier.
Keep in mind that outside of the buckets/carboys/capper, the other items break easily and shipping is very expensive.

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Old 06-30-2011, 09:32 PM   #10
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http://www.austinhomebrew.com/index.php?cPath=178_56_151&osCsid=20f792e1fb870d5b 5970ec161f6dca6d

The first or third.
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