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Old 05-15-2009, 09:44 PM   #1
Makeyermark
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Default Need tips on my 1st AG batch

I have been brewing for a little over a year now and feel it is time to make the leap to all grain. However, while I do have a spare cooler, it is not rigged for mashing. What is the simplest method for preparing a 1st (5 Gallon) AG batch without any special gear? Grain types and quantities thereof? Should I use as much water as possible in the wort?

I basically have a standard large cooler, a 5 gallon pot, turkey fryer.

Thanks for any tips, even if the tip is stick with Extract Brewing you noob

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Old 05-15-2009, 09:53 PM   #2
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Check out DeathBrewer's minimash tutorial. Basically, you're going to want to mash in a bag.

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Old 05-15-2009, 09:58 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Makeyermark View Post
I have been brewing for a little over a year now and feel it is time to make the leap to all grain. However, while I do have a spare cooler, it is not rigged for mashing. What is the simplest method for preparing a 1st (5 Gallon) AG batch without any special gear? Grain types and quantities thereof? Should I use as much water as possible in the wort?

I basically have a standard large cooler, a 5 gallon pot, turkey fryer.

Thanks for any tips, even if the tip is stick with Extract Brewing you noob
Well that bad news is I don't think you will be brewing this weekend but I am glad to hear you are making the trek to all grain. Keep in mind that you can't brew a 5 gallon all grain batch in a 5 gallon pot. You will need room for the excess that will evaporate as well as room for foam and breathing room in general. I have a 13 gallon pot for my 5.5G batches for reference but that is a bit much.

I think this is the best guide to convert your cooler.

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f51/chea...version-23008/

As far as grains, that is up to you. Do you have a recipe you have picked out or are you doing a Brew in a Bad deal?

It is not about just adding more water. There are specific amounts you want to add when you mash depending on how thick you want it. The fairly standard approach is 1.25qt per pound of grain you are mashing.

Then you need to heat enough sparge water to reach your boil volume and that depends on how much you evaporate during your boil. Typicaly the average evap rate is 9-15% an hour so you may want 6 gallons to boil down to 5 gallons for example.


This is just not enough info so check out the links from this post

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f36/all-...torials-78963/
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Old 05-15-2009, 09:59 PM   #4
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Jump to the All Grain forum. Lots of ideas there.

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Old 05-15-2009, 10:44 PM   #5
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Well first off a 5 gallon AG batch requires about 6 or more gallons of wort. Therefore a 7 gallon boil kettle is practically a minimum. However if your turkey fryer kit has an aluminum fry pot, that's probably 10 or more gallons and you can use that.

The cooler needs to be converted to a mash/lauter tun. As long as there is a spout on the front you can do it. Either build out a copper manifold, or create something lihe the "home depot special". Here is a link to help you do that:

Converting a cooler to a mash tun - Home Brewing Wiki

Buy your grains precrushed in a kit, like:

NORTHERN BREWER: Ale Kits (All Grain)

Items you'll need: 6.5 gal bucket w/lid, airlock, 7+ gallon boil kettle, propane burner, siphon/tubing, thermometer, and probably a few other basic items.

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Old 05-18-2009, 08:55 PM   #6
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Thanks for the tips and links guys! I went ahead and did an Extract batch this weekend, while I convert my cooler for mashing. Next batch will be AG!

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Old 05-26-2009, 06:14 AM   #7
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Update. Well, Thanks to Humann Brewing for the (above) link to the mash tun conversion. I built mine this weekend and after a few adjustments, no leaks. Pretty siked to try my first AG.

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Old 05-26-2009, 01:32 PM   #8
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Just a clarification. An unmodified cooler is absolutely fine for mashing. It's the lautering or filtering step it's not ready for. You can use a big grain bag to hold the grain and be able to pull it out of the wort or you can dump the whole thing through a strainer. Making a mash/lauter tun is ultimately the easy way to go though.

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Old 05-26-2009, 03:10 PM   #9
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My advice is to watch the temps. Realize that mashing at different temps yields different beers. I did not know this and my first batch, an IPA was too sweet and full-bodied for my taste. I also did not get the hop utilization that I think I should have got.

That said, AG was easier than I thought and made a darn nice Blonde on my second batch.

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