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Old 03-01-2011, 11:30 AM   #1
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Default Indoor NG setups - recommendations?

I just recently converted my boiler from oil to NG, which of course opens up some new options for brewing as well!

What kind of options would I have for a brewing setup that would be capable of full boils for 5 gallon batches safely in my basement? What kind of considerations would I need to make for ventilation, etc? Portability would be a plus - something that I could use in the basement during the winter, then in the back yard during the nicer months; but walking such a thing up the stairs and through the bulkhead doors could make this unwieldy at best...

This isn't something I'd be doing immediately; I'm just looking for ideas to mull over for a while. At this point, spring is rapidly approaching and brewing outside will soon be comfortable again - this might be something I look to have set up before next winter.

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Old 03-01-2011, 01:38 PM   #2
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Do you have a CO monitor in your basement? The big issue with running NG or LP burners in a confined space is CO poisoning.

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Old 03-01-2011, 05:04 PM   #3
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I definitely have a CO detector in the basement - is this the same as a CO monitor?

Part of what I'm looking for is whether or not there exist options that would not generate excessive amounts of CO - I mean, gas cooking ranges aren't really considered CO hazards, are they? Though, at the same time, I don't imagine a gas range would be really capable of bringing a full 6 or 7 gallons of wort to a boil...

Asuming there are no low-CO options available, are there any decent DIY options for ventilation that I could run out a basement window? I already expect to have to vent steam in such a manner, I could always extend some ductwork for CO collection, right?

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Old 03-01-2011, 11:25 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by stratslinger View Post
I definitely have a CO detector in the basement - is this the same as a CO monitor?

Part of what I'm looking for is whether or not there exist options that would not generate excessive amounts of CO - I mean, gas cooking ranges aren't really considered CO hazards, are they? Though, at the same time, I don't imagine a gas range would be really capable of bringing a full 6 or 7 gallons of wort to a boil...

Asuming there are no low-CO options available, are there any decent DIY options for ventilation that I could run out a basement window? I already expect to have to vent steam in such a manner, I could always extend some ductwork for CO collection, right?
Right. The difference between a cooktop and a brewing rig is the BTU's you're dealing with. My cooktop, for example, has a 16k-20k (I forget exactly) BTU burner as it's largest one. The LP burner I now use to brew with is 150k BTU. Therefore, the burner generates alot more CO than the cooktop.

You're also right in regards to ventilation. You'll need to figure out a way to move enough air to sweep out the excess CO. (Think something similar to a vent hood).

Sorry I can't be more specific. I thought about this for myself a couple years ago and never came up with a solution that was both safe and cost-effective. I resigned to brewing outdoors when weather permits.
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Old 03-02-2011, 12:30 AM   #5
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I've worked on the HVAC design for a few commercial kitchens that have BTU's in the range of these LP cookers for each piece of equipment. A general rule of thumb, considering this is light duty with no grease and just steam, you'd want to have a hood that extends at least a foot in each direction from the equipment on burners. Multiply the length of the hood times 150 to 200 CFM, and that's the amount you should exhaust and makeup with fresh air. You'll also want a fireproof wall assembly near the burners

In general, I'd recommend brewing outside if you don't know or are not comfortable with what you're doing.

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