I decided to make the jump to all-grain with a gusto. I've done half a dozen extract brews over the last few years, but the beer was never all that great. So after reading as much as I could stand and lending a hand in an all-grain session or two, I decided to take the plunge. My father-in-law is a welder. Since I'm getting a bunch of labor for free, I decided to spend the money on stainless. We spent last weekend building the basic two tier frame. Props to lehr on the design, I modeled this one after his.
Movin' on up
All done for now.
Ready for casters, heat shields and burners to be mounted next time. The burner areas are all three 17"x17" inside measurements. I'm planning to do BG-14s in all three. There is an Agri-supply nearby so I can probably avoid shipping charges and get a bargain.
Here's my plan for plumbing the RIMS part of my build.
I'm using the Triclover 3 way valve from BrewersHardware.com as the center of this design (I haven't drawn in the the return line from RIMS tube to MLT, but it should be obvious where it goes). The tubing from each keggle will be 1/2" and the tubing from the valve to the pump will be 1". There is a regular ball valve set between the pump and the RIMS for managing flow on the back side.
I like this design for a few reasons. I can partly fill my MLT from HLT from the bottom up before pouring in my grain. Then I can begin circulating water from HLT for doughing in before transitioning to RIMS from the MLT side. This also allows me to add water from HLT into the circulation during the mash if I get stuck. Finally at the end, I can go back to HLT for sparging. Everything is also neatly contained in one small area of my structure and I don't have plumbing lines running back and forth.