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Old 03-09-2006, 05:23 PM   #1
PhattieM
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Default Noob Brewer, need all the help I can get

Ok after doing some perusing through the forums and I think its now time to get some information down.

The kind of beer I like is pretty light.. I like Heineken and Labatt Blue. I also really enjoy the vanilla-ey, coffee-ey type beers. Nothing too dark and nothing too bitter (with the exception of Guiness).

Now, what equipment should I buy given that I have $300 to spend and I want to make a very good beginner beer?

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Old 03-09-2006, 05:31 PM   #2
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Dang! $300 is nice! I would tell you what to get, but the more experienced guys around here can help you spend that much better. My whole setup is maybe $200, not counting the brewpot. I've used plastic 6.5 gal pails (cheap) and it worked well for my purposes (extract + specialty grains). I like my glass carboys better, though. I have one 6.5 gal carboy for primary, and two 5 gals for secondary. Nice and easy for 5 gal batches. You should look at any number of the pre-picked "Kits" on the big online hb supply sites. They'll give you an idea.

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Old 03-09-2006, 05:33 PM   #3
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By beginner beer I assume you mean extract beer. That is to say, not an all grain batch. For an extract brewer there are plenty of kits out there that will give you everything you need, and a few that give you everything you want.
http://www.morebeer.com/browse.html?...yword=&x=1&y=1
Has plenty of different kits to suit your needs. I started out with just a plastic bucket fermenter and a bottling bucket, but have recently added a 5Gal glass carboy to the mix.
You could easily blow $300 on those kits alone, but you shouldn't "need" much more than the $70 or $100 kits.

[edit] Removed html [/edit]

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Old 03-09-2006, 05:39 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by UNOmar
By beginner beer I assume you mean extract beer.
I honestly want the best tasting beer. By beginner I meant something thats not too advanced if there is a such thing. Id like to do the best possible beer for an entrance brewer and that extent is left up to what other people think.
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Old 03-09-2006, 05:45 PM   #5
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My first beer was a Brewers Best kit with extract and specialty grains (Scotch Ale). It turned out great! It was a little more work/patience steeping the grains and adding the hops at the right time, but I felt like I actually did something rather than just "pour contents of can and sprinkle yeast"

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Old 03-09-2006, 05:47 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PhattieM
I honestly want the best tasting beer. By beginner I meant something thats not too advanced if there is a such thing. Id like to do the best possible beer for an entrance brewer and that extent is left up to what other people think.
You'll probably want to do an extrat+specialty grain brew, then. All grain brewing is relatively advanced compared to extract brewing.

If you have not yet done so, it's worth your time to read through www.howtobrew.com to get an idea of the basics and equipment needed for your first attempt.

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Old 03-09-2006, 06:08 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PhattieM
The kind of beer I like is pretty light.. I like Heineken and Labatt Blue. I also really enjoy the vanilla-ey, coffee-ey type beers. Nothing too dark and nothing too bitter (with the exception of Guiness).
These beers are unfortunately more difficult to get right. The ligher flavor profile cannot mask of-flavors as well as the darker and hoppier beers. They also belong to the lager family of beers which required colder fermentation, colder storage over a longer time and more attention than ales.

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Old 03-10-2006, 02:26 AM   #8
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I started with a kit from my local store which consisted of
1 6.5 gal plastic bucket
1 5 gal glass carboy
1 airlock
bottle cleaning brush
carboy cleaning brush
small bottle of Iodophor sanitizer
racking hose and bottle filler
150 (roughly) bottle caps
bottle capper
ingredients for recipe of my choice (from their recipe list)
instructions

It cost about $120. To this I added an autosiphon (definitely worth it IMO) and a propane fired turkey deep-fryer which I got from Costco for about $100. The fryer came with an 8 gallon stainless kettle, which allowed me to do full-boil batches right from the start.

If light beers are your thing try this recipe

3 lb. Light liquid malt extract
2 lb. Extra Light DME
1 oz. Mt. Hood hops @ 5% AA boiled 60 min.
Wyeast #1007 German Ale yeast

I brewed this as a test to figure out a fermentation problem, and ended up with a great tasting, light colored, clean flavored beer. It was good enough that my mother in law, who loves light beers, drank half the batch in about a week, and keeps bugging me to brew another!

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Old 03-10-2006, 04:08 AM   #9
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all the big mail order catalogues have good starter kits, just go to there websites, heres a few: williamsbrewing.com, grapeandgranary.com,midwestsupplies.com,northern brewer.com

you could save money on shipping if you buy a kettle at walmart or somewhere, for partial-mash you need a 3-5 gallon.

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Old 03-10-2006, 11:35 AM   #10
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Quote:
propane fired turkey deep-fryer which I got from Costco for about $100.
Wow must be a nice one I got the whole shebang (excluding propane tank) at Home Depot for $44

Quote:
My first beer was a Brewers Best kit with extract and specialty grains (Scotch Ale). It turned out great!
You get that at Frank's?
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