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madman960 11-14-2012 09:50 PM

metal drum projects
I just found out today that I can get 35 and 55 gallon metal drums for free. They are sealed. 1 had about 2 inches of water in the bottom. The other was completely dry.

I plan to turn 1 55 gallon drum into a fermentation chamber. I will cut it in half add some hinges and clasps. I will also insulate it.

A second 55 gallon drum will be cut and modified to fit a propane burner and then lined with furnace cement to retain heat for mashing. I will try to make a mash chamber with the smaller drum but not certain it is tall enough. My original plan was to do this with a washing machine tub but this should be easier as there is nothing to take apart.

1 small drum will be made into a large wort chiller. Only modification it should need is a spigot to drain the water. I would put the bucket of hot wort into the barrel; fill barrel with ice water and stir. I am trying to design a bucket lid that will house a mash paddle and work like an old school butter churn to cool the wort.

Please feel free to criticize and make suggestions for improvement.



madman960 11-14-2012 09:50 PM


madman960 11-14-2012 09:51 PM


madman960 11-14-2012 09:52 PM


madman960 11-14-2012 09:53 PM


madman960 11-14-2012 09:54 PM


madman960 11-14-2012 10:02 PM

I will post step by step instructions and photos for each project. Each project should cost under $50.


barmyarmy 11-14-2012 10:35 PM

Your pics are not working. Are the drums stainless steel?

madman960 11-14-2012 11:04 PM

I will try to fix the pictures. They show up on my computer.

The drums are not stainless. They are in new condition. The drums should not need to be ss for these projects. The wort will not come in direct with the drums.


madman960 11-17-2012 04:39 PM

Here is a link for the furnace cement:


1st thing to do with the metal washing machine tub or the empty barrel is to cut a hole about 2 inches from the bottom to insert a burner pipe. Next line the tub or barrel with half to one inch with furnace cement. Make sure you do not fill in the hole for the burner. The purpose of the cement is 2 fold. 1st it will heat up the water faster and 2 it will help retain heat much longer. Or you could cut the bottom out completely line the drum or tub with furnace cement and use blocks to keep it above the burner. Once you turn the burner off you would need to put a lid over the pot to retain more of the heat.


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