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Old 02-27-2010, 09:38 PM   #1
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Default Designing all grain brew setup (brewtus-esque) questions

First of all, hello! I was a lurker and just got around to registering for the forums.

I was hoping to get some guidance/ideas for building a "linear" all grain brew setup, similar to the "brewtus/brutus" setups I have seen. I would like to use 15.5 gal kegs, as I already have 1 in a "keggle" configuration, and one yet to be converted to anything. I am currently brewing with a single kettle that has a max capacity of ~ 6 gallons, so I've been doing 5 gallon batches.

I would like something along the lines of this:

.

I'm trying to get a rough gathering of materials and costs. I figure I need 3 kegs (already have 2) a false bottom kit, 2 pumps, a myriad of plumbing and ball valves, and 3 burners - not including the stand. Plus the electronics for the control panel?

I haven't been able to find very specific information on the dimensions or blueprints required to build the stand suitable for three 15.5 gallon kegs, nor the type of burners being used (right now I'm using a generic turkey fryer burner - it does the job for now).

I'm sure a lot of people here have experience with these so I was hoping I could get some input on design specs, approximate costs, and any "pitfalls" to avoid.

Thanks a bunch!

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Old 02-28-2010, 12:11 AM   #2
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Who's rig is that? You might start out by asking that person.

PTN

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Old 02-28-2010, 02:28 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by paulthenurse View Post
Who's rig is that? You might start out by asking that person.

PTN
I don't know, I found it through google images.
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Old 02-28-2010, 05:39 AM   #4
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I think the Brutus 10 build instructions are publicly available.

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Old 02-28-2010, 02:02 PM   #5
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BYO sells the issue with Lonnie Mack's Brutus 10

Brutus 10 plans




You may also want to look through this thread for inspiration

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f51/show...rew-rig-46578/

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Old 02-28-2010, 03:26 PM   #6
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The first step in designing a system like this is to set some goals.

How much automation do you want vs. manual regulation?
Do want to clean in place or hose the vessels out on the lawn?
Would you rather turn ball valves to direct flow or use quick disconnects on hoses.
Natural gas, propane or electric?
Do you want to step mash or single infusion only?
Do you want to fly sparge or batch sparge?

3 metal vessels aren't always the best option depending on what your goals are.

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Old 02-28-2010, 04:26 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wayne1 View Post
BYO sells the issue with Lonnie Mack's Brutus 10

You may also want to look through this thread for inspiration

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f51/show...rew-rig-46578/
Great thread, thanks.

As far as my goals...

The first step in designing a system like this is to set some goals.

How much automation do you want vs. manual regulation?
- Ideally, I'd like as much automation as possible (and as I can afford) but I'm sure that all comes at a price
Do want to clean in place or hose the vessels out on the lawn?
- Again, if it's possible to do without price outweighing benefit - I'd prefer to do it in place. The winters here can be pretty cold and hosing stuff down outside isn't an option for at least 3 months out of the year. I use my kitchen sink now, but as my vessels and process grows, that would no longer be an option...so I guess it is a pretty high priority.
Would you rather turn ball valves to direct flow or use quick disconnects on hoses.
- Probably ball valves
Natural gas, propane or electric?
- At this point, probably propane. I am on NG heat here, but I'd have to (pay someone to) run a gas line out to my garage where I plan to keep this thing. However, NG may be cheaper to use as fuel in the long run and it could pay for itself? It's ~$20 to have a gas grill sized tank filled here. I'd welcome any input on that. I still haven't figured out how much propane I'm using per all-grain brew yet.
Do you want to step mash or single infusion only?
- Open to input
Do you want to fly sparge or batch sparge?
- Probably fly sparge, but again - open to input.
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Old 02-28-2010, 05:51 PM   #8
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fly sparging would require 2 pumps.

cleanup may be easier with quick disconnects if everything is interchangeable

do you have water in your garage?

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Old 02-28-2010, 05:58 PM   #9
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When it comes down to it, the biggest decision centers around the mashtun design and how you will maintain mash temps. An insulated tun mostly takes care of it without any "system". After that it gets more complex like direct fire RIMS (uses the most energy) and you may scorch if you compact the bed and lose recirculation. Tube RIMS works pretty well and without having to keep a full HLT. HERMS can be done without any electric elements but does use a bit of gas because you have to keep your HLT temp up a few degree above mash temp for the whole mash.

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Old 02-28-2010, 06:07 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nicknoty View Post
fly sparging would require 2 pumps.

cleanup may be easier with quick disconnects if everything is interchangeable

do you have water in your garage?
Yes, I have water in my garage.

I was planning on using an insulated mash tun...though I'm still researching on what I would use for the insulation. As many setups as I have seen that have insulated mash tuns, I figure people have been able to insulate them well enough to not have to worry about too much temperature bleed off.

The cooler mash tun I'm currently using loses maybe 2*, if not less.
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