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Old 01-16-2010, 04:53 AM   #1
erykmynn
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Default MLT and HLT capacity question

So I've found that the consensus is 10gal for the Mash Tun if you're building one from a water cooler. Since a 5 gal isn't enough for 5 gallon batches of a big beer.

But I can't figure out definitively how big the Hot Liquor Tank should be. Many setups match, but is that necessary? Theoretically, it's pretty-much just for sparge water unless you're doing multiple infusions too, no? I would think I'd want to do hotter water off the stove/ Hmm all that is a bit fuzzy in my head right now.

Space is an issue where I live, and I noticed that a 5 gal will slip inside a 10 gal for storage. That could be really convenient since every square foot here is at a premium.

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Old 01-16-2010, 05:29 AM   #2
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I have a 12 gallon mash tun, 10 gallon kettle and 7.5 gallon HLT and all three stack inside each other nicely. I heat water in my kettle to mash in with, so my HLT only needs to hold the sparge water.

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Old 01-16-2010, 05:22 PM   #3
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So then would a 10 gallon mash tun, 8 gallon kettle, and 5 gallon HLT be workable if my plan is similar? Am I ever going to get so little (less than 1-1.5 gallons) back out of my initial mash / infusions that I'd need to sparge with more than 5 gallons?

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Old 01-16-2010, 07:26 PM   #4
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The only way you'd get so little volume from the first runnings is if you have a really thick mash. The 10 gal MLT will have plenty of room even for really big beers, so there shouldn't be any need for mashing that thick. My first MLT was a 5 gal cooler, because I happened to have one with a broken valve sitting in my shop. My first AG attempt maxed out the mash tun, so I quickly upgraded to a 10 gal. I now use the 5 gal to hold sparge water, and it's worked fine so far.

I've been doing quite a few 10 gal batches lately, and I'm thinking about getting a larger MLT, which means the 10 gal will probably become the new HLT.

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Old 01-16-2010, 09:05 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by erykmynn View Post
So then would a 10 gallon mash tun, 8 gallon kettle, and 5 gallon HLT be workable if my plan is similar? Am I ever going to get so little (less than 1-1.5 gallons) back out of my initial mash / infusions that I'd need to sparge with more than 5 gallons?

For that matter, a ten gallon MT, an eight gallon kettle and any HDPE bucket will work also if you want to keep it to a minumum. An unheated cooler is just a holding tank. W/ the use of an hdpe bucket, you can just use that to hold first runnings and your kettle can function as an HLT till all your sparge water is in the MT. Bobby M has an all grain primer worth checking out. Oh, best not to use your fermenter as there are nasties in unboiled wort.
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Old 02-17-2010, 07:23 PM   #6
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Just did my first all-grain batch with a 10 gallon rubbermaid and batch sparging from a 10 gallon kettle and 5 gallon pot (for 2nd rinse).

Worked out pretty darn well! I think I calculated my efficiency wrong, but all my numbers were in the ballpark.

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