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Old 10-31-2008, 10:40 PM   #1
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Default Help with equipment for all grain

I have made one batch of all grain so far. I used a 10 gal cooler for my MLT, and a 10 gallon pot. I thought that this worked out pretty good. In the last week, I have come across 3 15.5 gal kegs, that was such a good deal, that I couldn't pass up.

The issue I have now, is that I do not have much storage space in my garage, due to other projects, and tools. I have the skills, and the tools to work with stainless, as well as aluminum, and I have looked at every brewing rig posted here. I want to build a single tier system, and I realize that I need a pump for this. My issue is, that I want to build this once, and not redo any of the work. I do want to under build, nor do i want to overbuild.

I am also looking at moving this setup to my basement where i have more room. I currently have 2 turkey fryers for brewing outside my garage, and I do reralize that I need to use electric or natural gas if I move indoors.

I should also mention, that I plan on making 10 gal batches in the future. Any suggestions would be appreciated. i should also state that I have a plasma, and a tig in my garage. thanks, Jeff

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Old 10-31-2008, 10:47 PM   #2
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Plasma, tig, 3 kegs....the world is your oyster my friend! My only comment would be that a pump is not mandatory. Lots of three tier gravity systems out there. Only drawback is that it puts the HLT quite high and also you may need a step stool to stir the mash.

Get busy and good luck!

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Old 10-31-2008, 10:50 PM   #3
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Yes, that is why I want to do a single tier...... I guess what I am getting at, is do I want to incorporate heat exchangers, ( and the added expense), or do I want to be more or less plain jane with just the pump??? Should I go ahead and run electric heaters, or should I go ahead and go with natural gas?

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Old 11-01-2008, 12:49 PM   #4
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If you're going to brew inside, electric would seem to be the better choice.

You talk about space constraints, yet you want to have a single tier system. A 3 tier system properly planned is not difficult to operate and has a smaller footprint and does not require a pump. There is no such thing as a perfect system, they are always evolving and getting better. Best advice is to figure out where you really want to brew, batch sizes and method and design from there. By limiting yourself to a single tier system you've already ruled out options for a system that may actually work better for you.

Keep us posted.

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Old 11-01-2008, 01:46 PM   #5
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Boiling that much water inside would be a big mistake IMHO. I thought about going with an electric setup a few months ago until I realized (someone pointed out) how much water vapor would be in the air in just an hour's time.

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Old 11-01-2008, 02:44 PM   #6
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I know of a few brewers who have the luxury of a basement for all weather brewing and they all have some sort of exhaust fan that works well. One guy uses a hood from a kitchen remodel with success. We don't have basements in Texas so I'd look to advice from those in the northern climes for advice concerning indoor brewing; there are plenty who do it but MikeinCtown does bring up a good point to address. Good luck with the new brewery.

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Old 11-01-2008, 03:50 PM   #7
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Yes, I did not think about the humidity, until I ran across that in a post after i posted this question.

I have tons of room in the basement, but space is extremely limited in my garage. I was just checking out my breaker box, and I will have no problem adding circuits for electric brewing. Now, I need to look at adding some sort of exhaust to get rid of the humidity.

These are the reasons I asked for advice. In the mean time, I will brew outside my garage, with my current brew rig. It consists of two different trucks, and a couple of corny kegs. It is for sure going to be the next trend. LOL

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Old 11-01-2008, 04:38 PM   #8
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You can still use propane in the basement as long as you have good ventilation.

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Old 11-01-2008, 07:04 PM   #9
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I am pretty wary of using propane in the basement. I think that I just might build a three piece modular single tier system. that way, I can carry three pieces up from the basement as well as the rest of my brewing equipment. ( my basement is only half a flight of stairs off of the garage.)

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I'ma IPA 1
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Old 11-02-2008, 10:45 AM   #10
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If you're going single-tier, you need two pumps, my friend. One to get sparge liquor to the top of the lauter tun and one to get sweet wort from the lauter tun to the kettle.

You can start with one pump by putting the kettle on the floor and lautering into the kettle with gravity. But then you need to pick up a kettle full of 11+ gallons of hot, sweet wort and set it on your burner. Not too bad if you've got a buddy helping, but sort of difficult by yourself. That'll save you an initial outlay.

I'd think about using gas on the kettle and electric in the HLT. A 240v element in the HLT ought to be easily added to your system.

Check Craigslist for range hoods and stuff. Then it's just a matter of running another dryer vent to get the ehxaust outside.

Good luck,

Bob

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