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Old 02-24-2007, 05:17 AM   #1
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Default Cheap & Easy 10 Gallon Rubbermaid MLT Conversion

You can buy Kewler Kit conversions that supply you with a pre-build bulkhead and faucet for converting a 10 gallon Rubbermaid beverage cooler into a mash & lauter tun. But off-the-shelf components from your local hardware store work just as well, and cost far less. I got all my parts at my local Home Depot for a fraction of the cost of a Kewler conversion kit, or other commercial products.



Parts List:



Here are the parts you will need for the conversion (see picture, left to right):

- Rubbermaid 10 gallon round beverage cooler
- all stainless steel ¼” hose clamps x 2
- brass square head plug (Watts A-737)
- ½” x 12” (or larger) braided stainless steel supply hose
- 3/8” female barb adapter (Watts A-298)
- 5/8” stainless steel fender washer (sometimes hard to find, but try Fastenal or read this thread if you are stuck)
- 3/8” MIP x 1-1/2” brass nipple (Watts A-786)
- seal from plastic spigot of cooler (shown below)
- Teflon tape (note: everything to the left of the tape in the picture above goes inside the cooler, and everything to the right goes outside)
- 5/8” O-ring (preferably heat resistant, if you can find one)
- 3 x 5/8” fender washers
- 3/8” threaded ball valve
- 3/8” male barb adapter (Watts A-294)

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Old 02-24-2007, 05:18 AM   #2
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Default Step 1

Assembly:

Step 1 - Remove the spigot from the cooler:

- using a wrench to firmly hold the nut inside the cooler, remove the plastic spigot from the Rubbermaid cooler
- retain the seal from the inside of the cooler for use in Step 2 below

Step 2 - Inside parts:


Stainless steel braid
- cut the ends off the stainless steel braided supply hose using a hacksaw or rotary tool (my Dremel tool cut through the braid like nothing -- took about 60 seconds)
- using a set of needle nose pliers, grab the flexible hose inside the braid, and PUSH the braid off the hose (don't pull!)
- insert the brass square head plug into one end of the braid and secure with a hose clamp (or you can just crimp down the end, but then the braid may float up in your mash)

Bulkhead
- apply a few wraps of teflon tape to threads on the brass nipple
- slide stainless steel washer onto brass nipple
- securely attach female barb adapter to brass nipple
insert seal from plastic spigot on inside of cooler and insert brass nipple inside

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Old 02-24-2007, 05:19 AM   #3
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Default Step 3

Step 3 - Outside Parts:



- pull brass nipple all the way through the hole in the cooler, and insert O-ring
- apply teflon tape to threads on nipple



- add fender washers as spacers to ensure a tight fit of the components once the ball valve is attached (mine needed 3 washers)
- attach the ball valve
- apply teflon tape to the male barb connector, and attach it to the bal valve

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Old 02-24-2007, 05:19 AM   #4
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Default Step 4

Step 4 - Attach Stainless Steel Braid

- slip a SS hose clamp over the open end of the SS braid
- slide the braid onto the barb connector inside the cooler, and tighten the hose clamp

EDIT: The hose clamps didn't work. See my update here: http://www.homebrewtalk.com/showpost.php?p=253344&postcount=62



The Finished Product

That's it. You now have a cheap MLT that was easy to put together. To be sure mine didn't leak, I filled it to the 10 gallon capacity with water, and let it sit for 45 minutes. Didn't leak a drop!



For additional details and some higher res photos, go to:
http://members.shaw.ca/Fly_Guy/mlt.htm
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Old 02-24-2007, 05:27 AM   #5
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Default

AWESOME!!!!!!!

What was the total bill?

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Old 02-24-2007, 05:57 AM   #6
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Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Toot
AWESOME!!!!!!!

What was the total bill?
Well, these are Canadian dollars, but here goes:

- Rubbermaid 10 gallon round beverage cooler - $34.99
- all stainless steel ¼” hose clamps x 2 - $0.66/ea
- brass square head plug (Watts A-737) - $1.09
- ½” x 12” (or larger) braided stainless steel supply hose - $4.99
- 3/8” female barb adapter (Watts A-298) - $1.72
- 5/8” stainless steel fender washer - $0.39
- 3/8” MIP x 1-1/2” brass nipple (Watts A-786) - $1.49
- 5/8” O-ring (preferably heat resistant, if you can find one) - $0.59
- 3 x 5/8” fender washers - $.29/ea
- 3/8” threaded ball valve - $6.89
- 3/8” male barb adapter (Watts A-294) - $1.89

Total cost: $56.23 CDN, which is about $8 USD.

No seriously, it would be about $46 US.

If you buy something similar from places like morebeer.com, it would be over $100. It took all of about 5 minutes to assemble everything (although I did do a few trips to Home Depot to find the parts to make it all work).
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Old 02-24-2007, 08:29 AM   #7
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Can I use this for the Wiki or do you want to add it?

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/wiki/index.php/Converting_a_cooler_to_a_mash_tun

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Old 02-24-2007, 02:15 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by orfy
Can I use this for the Wiki or do you want to add it?

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/wiki/index.php/Converting_a_cooler_to_a_mash_tun
Sure, add away. I'm not a wiki kinda guy.
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Old 02-24-2007, 03:31 PM   #9
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Default

Thanks.

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/wiki/index.php/Converting_a_cooler_to_a_mash_tun

If you add it to your signature it'll help others.

Cheers.

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Old 02-24-2007, 03:38 PM   #10
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Great posting FlyGuy!!! And good job on the mash tun!

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