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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Beginners Beer Brewing Forum > Never brewed before, starting with All-Grain
View Poll Results: Is this a good idea?
Yes, all-grain for the win. Just do your research. 64 59.81%
No, there's some things that you can only learn with experience. 43 40.19%
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Old 10-07-2008, 07:51 AM   #1
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Default Never brewed before, starting with All-Grain

Hi. I've never brewed a batch of beer in my life, and I'm skipping using extract and starting out with All-Grain brewing. I'm in the process of making a DIY mashtun, DIY wort chiller, and culturing my own yeast while I wait for the probe thermometer to get here so I can roast my own grain. My first batch will be an Irish Red, fitting for my heritage.

Am I insane? Or is this just love at first sight, or both?

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Old 10-07-2008, 07:56 AM   #2
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Sounds like proposing marriage to the first girl you're going to kiss.

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Old 10-07-2008, 08:09 AM   #3
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As long as you understand the process well you might have a good chance. It helps a lot if you have someone near you that can help you brew for the first time. If that is not possible then watch another brewer at his place.

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Old 10-07-2008, 08:17 AM   #4
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I don't think it is insane as long as you understand the process throughout from start to finish. It's not brain surgery but if you do a couple of extract brews you know can learn a lot about boiling 7 gallons of liquid, cooling,transferring and possibly filtering said liquids,pitching yeast at the proper temp and then fermenting in the correct temperature range for the yeast. Run the recipe and process by the forum and it will help greatly.

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Old 10-07-2008, 08:24 AM   #5
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There's nothing wrong with starting with all grain, but culturing your own yeast and roasting your own grain, that's a lot of things to keep straight.

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Old 10-07-2008, 09:22 AM   #6
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I think it's a lot to do. I watched friend's do extract batches before I ever attempted mine but when I did mine I realized how much work goes into it. I couldn't imagine starting out on All Grain, especially if you do have a problem it'll be harder to track down.

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Old 10-07-2008, 09:59 AM   #7
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my first was all-grain. It's a ton of work to do your first time out. Expect it to take you all day, and spend about a month researching everything you need to know. stuff you don't understand? keep reading until you do. You'll feel a bit scared that day, but by the end, you'll understand the process very well. I do about 50/50 extract and all-grain these days.

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Old 10-07-2008, 12:06 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by amercuric View Post
Hi. I've never brewed a batch of beer in my life, and I'm skipping using extract and starting out with All-Grain brewing.
Good luck, you're going to need that and a whole lot more.
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Old 10-07-2008, 12:14 PM   #9
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While I don't think it's nuts (I went AG by my 3rd batch), I would highly recommend doing a partial mash recipe first. You could use one that has more 2-row in it (to reduce the needed extract), and that will at least give you the basics for going AG without the risk of having really terrible efficiency.

Whatever you decide, take everyone's advice to read, read, and read some more. Plan out every step, divide up and label your hop additions. And I would honestly leave the yeast culturing and grain roasting until you've got a few AGs under your belt. It's great that you want to jump straight in, but you may be trying to manipulate too many things right from the start. If your yeast doesn't turn out well or if you roast your grains incorrectly, you're going to be off to a bad start. For your first time, I would recommend using quality-assured products (from you LHBS or another source, like Austin Homebrew) to control for any first time errors you might make.

Either way, keep us posted and good luck!

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Old 10-07-2008, 12:30 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by amercuric View Post
Hi. I've never brewed a batch of beer in my life, and I'm skipping using extract and starting out with All-Grain brewing. I'm in the process of making a DIY mashtun, DIY wort chiller, and culturing my own yeast while I wait for the probe thermometer to get here so I can roast my own grain. My first batch will be an Irish Red, fitting for my heritage.

Am I insane? Or is this just love at first sight, or both?
You're not insane, it sounds like you've been doing a lot of reading. Like others have said, I would cut out culturing your own yeast & roasting your own grain. Learn the process first then start experimenting.

Also, the good thing about doing an extract kit or something similar is you learn whether your sanitation process is effective. I'd be so upset if I wasted hours of work I put into AG because I didn't sanitize properly.

Why not just pick up an extract kit first as a 'practice swing'?
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