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Old 11-05-2012, 08:56 PM   #1
ParanoidAndroid
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Default What should I ask for Christmas (Single Tier Brew Stand)

The family is asking what I want for Christmas and I figured Id go ahead and get some items for a brewstand. Im looking at making the switch to all grain early next year. They want the list soon...as in like a couple of days. My wife and I are looking to have kids next year, so this is probably MY last Christmas.

Since they need it so soon I dont have a lot of time for research. I know I can go through threads and find some answers but Im in a hurry.

I have three kegs waiting to be converted.

I was thinking about the biggies:

3 - Banjo Burners (which model?)
2 - March Pumps (any specific one?)

I can get some angle iron from my brother who works at Nucor Steel, so that shouldnt be a problem.

Anything else you guys might recommend?

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Old 11-05-2012, 09:03 PM   #2
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Scrap the banjo burners and ask for some electric goodies!

I believe most people use the march 809 pumps.

You could ask for a false bottom, hop screen, sight glasses, thermometers?

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Old 11-05-2012, 09:19 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ParanoidAndroid View Post
The family is asking what I want for Christmas and I figured Id go ahead and get some items for a brewstand. Im looking at making the switch to all grain early next year. They want the list soon...as in like a couple of days. My wife and I are looking to have kids next year, so this is probably MY last Christmas.

Since they need it so soon I dont have a lot of time for research. I know I can go through threads and find some answers but Im in a hurry.

I have three kegs waiting to be converted.

I was thinking about the biggies:

3 - Banjo Burners (which model?)
2 - March Pumps (any specific one?)

I can get some angle iron from my brother who works at Nucor Steel, so that shouldnt be a problem.

Anything else you guys might recommend?

rofl! i'm impressed by the blichmann burners
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Old 11-05-2012, 10:03 PM   #4
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Ahs has sale on march pump dunno bout now. Chugger pump pretty good.

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Old 11-06-2012, 01:03 AM   #5
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the fittings were the parts that added up the quickest. couplers, half couplers, ball valves.

what's your cooling solution? IC? plate chiller? CFC?

love my march pump 809 HS (high speed).

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Old 11-06-2012, 12:53 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Antler View Post
Scrap the banjo burners and ask for some electric goodies!

I believe most people use the march 809 pumps.

You could ask for a false bottom, hop screen, sight glasses, thermometers?
Would like to do electric but wouldnt I have to switch over an outlet to 240V?






I also have a 50ft Copper CFC.

Question on the pumps:
Do the pumps sit in between each keg and do they just move the liquid from 1 to 2 to 3....or do you use one of the pumps for recirculating?
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Old 11-06-2012, 03:17 PM   #7
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for 10 gallon batches you will want 240v. if that's not plausible in your brewing location then propane it is.

for the pumps, they end up in many different configurations depending on some brewing preferences.

start your brew day by heating water in the HLT.
add this water to the MLT with your grains (doughing in). use one of the pumps to push the water from HLT -> MLT
add more water to HLT if necessary to have proper amount of sparge water, start heating to proper temp.

**question 1*** how do you plan on maintaining temperature for your mash or adjusting temp?
HERMS? you would run your pump from MLT -> 50' copper coil in HLT -> MLT in a loop. the liquid inside the copper coil works like a heat exchanger to build heat. you can also run the second pump to try and mix up the HLT by just going HLT->HLT to keep fresh water on the HERMS coil.

RIMS? MLT -> RIMS -> MLT. this is like herms but directly heating the wort, not using a heat exchanger.

Direct Fire MLT? add heat to the bottom of the mlt with propane. this will require recirculation from bottom of MLT to top of MLT with one pump to ensure you don't scortch the wort.

Insulated MLT? no active heating, just insulate the MLT and hope for the best.

hopes and dreams?

at the end of the mash, pump the wort in the mash tun to the boil kettle. now you have some of the volume in your BK and must sparge (rinse grains) to get the rest of the sugars out and hit your boil volume. if you have 2 or 3 burners you could have just heated HLT water and MLT water at the same time.

***question 2*** what is your sparge method?
No Sparge: you add no rinse water to gather sugar still stuck to the grain. this method is FAST, just drain the MLT and you're done, but you have to have much bigger grain bills since you're leaving a lot of stuff in the MLT. results in more expensive grain bills.
batch sparge: 1 or 2 "batches" of water get taken from the HLT, moved to the MLT. stir the MLT, redrain. repeat. this gets more sugars out of the MLT grains but is slower.
fly sparge: basically you add water to the MLT while draining wort out of the bottom. it's continuous sparging. you must set your input and output flow rates the same... slower but more efficient. requires 2 pumps or a gravity setup. pump 1 MLT -> BK. pump 2 HLT -> MLT.

at the end of your sparge you have all your volume in your BK. you start your boil, add your hops, add your finings. i like to run my pump bk -> bk for the last 15 min to sanitize the pump and the lines. also boil your 50' IC for the last 15 minutes.

turn off heat, begin cooling wort. i recirculate my pump BK -> BK to give motion in the kettle to help the IC work faster.

once you hit pitching/fermentation temp, transfer from BK -> fermenter(s).

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Old 11-06-2012, 05:47 PM   #8
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Ok after don't some research it looks like I might go single tier with a cooler for a mash tun. I like the idea of a rims or herms but from what I've read the costs don't justify the benefits. So that would be something in the future.

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Old 11-06-2012, 06:06 PM   #9
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There is a LOT of planning that goes into a proper stand, so I'd suggest that since you don't have time to fill out all the details...just ask for what you KNOW you'll need. I would probably say a pump or two, fermenters, ball valves, high temp hose, couplers for the kegs, etc. There's a lot of little details that need to be figured out with fittings, connections, etc...and it depends on how you want the process to work, welded vs weldless, etc. To give you an idea, I spent months planning out my end game into all grain...not the whole time, but I wanted to minimize repurchasing things.

I would agree that a cooler MLT is a good bet for a beginner system. That's the route I went and am happy with it. Eventually, I want an automated MLT, but I'm fine with a cooler for now. A 10G round will serve you well for pretty much all 5G batches and some 10G, but a larger 70QT+ Coleman Extreme would be good for massive 5G/10G batches.

Edit: After thinking about it for a second, I would ask for gift certificates to Northern Brewer, Brew Hardware, etc....popular places. Kind of lame, but would give you more time to think about it and make sure you don't have anything you won't use when it comes to build time.

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Old 11-06-2012, 08:23 PM   #10
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+1. i thought i had my stand "all figured out" after a few weeks of planning. i ended up with 3 different fitting orders from Bargain Fittings, some stuff from Northern and Brew Hardware, and then ultimately got the grinder out and cut about a foot out of the height of the stand. i started propane and am now going electric. i went weldless, then converted to soldered and am now contemplating starting new keggles with the bottoms cut out for bottom drains because the need for dip tubes seems silly to me.

a part of this is that the joy of brewing for me is tweaking the process... but realize you will never be "finished" so don't put anything on your list that you don't KNOW you need (ball valves, pumps, possibly the cooler, gift certs.

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