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Old 04-08-2008, 09:07 PM   #1
Madhaterm3
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Default With What You Know Now, What would you do? Spread some wisdom..

With the knowledge you have now what system would you go with, if any? After you've learned to brew would you still buy a kit?

Lets say your max expenditure is $500.00.


So far my top pick is (with an extra 5 gal keg): http://www.midwestsupplies.com/products/ProdByID.aspx?ProdID=6877

I want to make a purchase that I won't have to upgrade in the future. Every time I buy something I end up upgraded and upgrading... AND upgrading. I'm sure this hobby won't be any different. Still I want to make a wise first investment. The plastic bucket systems don't seem like the best, but apparently they work.


I'm a serious beer drinker. Favorites beer is Guinness extra stout. I spend a lot of money on beer and am ready to start brewing my own.

Please let me know of any recommendations, or just wisdom you could pass on. Thanks so much. -Matt

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Old 04-08-2008, 09:35 PM   #2
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With this hobby you are going to upgrade and upgrade no matter what My sugestion is spend less, get a kit, and add to it as you learn more and find what you like.

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Old 04-08-2008, 09:53 PM   #3
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I would have;

Started doing All Grain 10 Gallons, gone straight for the plate chiller (therminator) and pump, bypassed the bottles altoghether and kegged.

I'd still do an extract or two now and again, and I still plan to.

Had I done that I could have enough money to buy that new and amazing thingamawhutzit that'll change every aspect of my brewing in an astounding way.

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Old 04-08-2008, 09:58 PM   #4
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I bought a kit and I'm not tempted by the fancier equipment. I've only spent about $25 so far beyond the kit. I did however have a few leftover parts from when I did it years ago, in particular a second carboy and a bottle washer. Neither of these are big$$$ anyway.

My first batch came out really good, my second and third are coming along nicely. I just don't think it'll be necessary to upgrade. I don't have anyplace to put any big equipment anyhow.

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Old 04-08-2008, 10:04 PM   #5
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Looking back, I should have said screw it went AG from the get-go.

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Old 04-08-2008, 10:08 PM   #6
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I would do a full-boil sooner -- it was the change that yielded the biggest improvements in my beer.

Plus, you'll need that if you want to go AG eventually. I think you may want to do a few extract batches first, just to get the basics of sanitation, brewing, cooling, etc. down before proceeding to bigger things.

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Old 04-08-2008, 10:09 PM   #7
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The number one thing I would do differently is to buy a minimum of a 10 gallon kettle. I have gone through 3 different pots, each time thinking, this one will do it. I first got a 5 gallon, then a 7.5 gallon (which is barely big enough for a full boil for a 5 gallon batch.)

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Old 04-08-2008, 11:21 PM   #8
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That kit seems to have the fermentation and serving part covered, but you'll need a kettle, burner and relatively soon a mash tun.

My best advice: bigger really is better. A 40 quart kettle is fine for 5 gallon extract batches, marginal for 5 gallons AG and useless for ten gallon batches. I have 30, 40 and 60 quart kettles. and I don't do ten gallon batches.

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Old 04-08-2008, 11:25 PM   #9
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10 gallon pot, Immersion chiller, 10 gallon cooler based mash tun, two 6g better bottles and two 5g better bottles. If you want to bottle, you'll need the capper. If you want to keg, get a two-keg starter kit with picnic faucets and a 5lb tank.

I'd suggest finding someone local that is brewing all grain and go check out what they're using.

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Old 04-09-2008, 12:57 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zacster
I bought a kit and I'm not tempted by the fancier equipment. I've only spent about $25 so far beyond the kit. I did however have a few leftover parts from when I did it years ago, in particular a second carboy and a bottle washer. Neither of these are big$$$ anyway.

My first batch came out really good, my second and third are coming along nicely. I just don't think it'll be necessary to upgrade. I don't have anyplace to put any big equipment anyhow.
"I just don't think it'll be necessary to upgrade"
So said I
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