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Old 08-22-2011, 03:23 PM   #1
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Default Your Brewstand Retrospectives?

I'm planning out a brewstand build and would like to know how people have felt about the dimensions or materials of their builds.

My plans so far include:
-Needs to be able to be disassembled (Not easily necessarily but can't be welded) and will probably be bolted together.
-Planning on using angle iron instead of square tubing. I think this will be sufficient support, yet make it lighter and more accessible for bolting.
-I won't immediately be putting any automation other than a pump, but I would like to leave the option open in the future
-The stand will hold keggles
-I have a hunch cutting angle iron is going to be a pain, so I would like to minimize the cuts.

Most of my inspiration is drawn from bobby_m's overbrook brewery. I would try to clone it, but I couldn't find dimensions anywhere.

So given all that, what dimensions have you found to be the best? The original Brutus build is 28" tall. Has someone found this too tall, or short? To be economical with my cuts, would it be possible to get a 6' length of angle iron then cut it into a 48" and 24", making the stand just 24" tall or would that be too low?

Also, any advice or hindsight (even if entirely unrelated) about building your stand would be greatly appreciated.

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Old 08-22-2011, 03:32 PM   #2
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I recently built my brew stand and used some metal crates that included some angle as well as some square tubing. Cutting it was not difficult. I used an angle grinder I bought at Harbor Freight for $20 and I bought a metal blade for my compound miter saw (chop saw). I will take some pics when I get home and post them. My brother-in-law is a welder so he helped me. Furthermore, I put casters (also from Harbor Freight) on it so I could wheel it in and out of the garage. I think that bolting it would have been just as easy. All that to say that cutting the iron is pretty straight forward. One tip - my chop saw has a plastic insert on the deck that I melted before I thought to remove it....

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Old 08-22-2011, 03:42 PM   #3
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I was going to get the cheap angle grinder from HF today actually to see if I could manage the cuts. Its good to hear they aren't that hard - I also think I can do it after watching the ease in this video


Did you find the grinder to be sufficient, or did you end up using the chop saw more often? The reason I ask is that I guess I could rent one for a few hours to make all the cuts (although it would still be more expensive than that 20$ grinder).
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Old 08-22-2011, 03:56 PM   #4
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If I were to start over from scratch, I would go modular. IOW, each module would be a stand alone unit. One each for the HLT, MT & burner. This would make for flexible and compact storage. A separate stand for a control panel if needed. A pump (could be on a portable stand). You could also build them so that they could be bolted together if desired. My setup has sort of evolved into a modular arrangement. Keep in mind that the outdoor propane turky fryer type cookers are also stands that can hold a kettle. Two or three of those and you have a modular rig. You could elevate one just a bit so that it could hold the HLT and drain it by gravity for the sparge. Otherwise you would probably want to use two pumps with everything more or less at the same height.

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Old 08-22-2011, 03:59 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sarsnik View Post
I was going to get the cheap angle grinder from HF today actually to see if I could manage the cuts. Its good to hear they aren't that hard - I also think I can do it after watching the ease in this video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1ms495wcnF8

Did you find the grinder to be sufficient, or did you end up using the chop saw more often? The reason I ask is that I guess I could rent one for a few hours to make all the cuts (although it would still be more expensive than that 20$ grinder).
The chop saw will give you truer cuts. IOW, it's difficult to cut accurately with a hand held angle grinder. It's a breeze to do so with a chop saw. Both tools are handy to have around for all kinds of projects.
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Old 08-22-2011, 04:07 PM   #6
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agree with the chop saw. I had my metal pre-cut which was great but i ended up trimming my inserts with my angle grinder and it was a bit of a pain and took alot longer than I think a chop saw would have taken. However, time wasn't an issue so it all worked out.

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Old 08-22-2011, 04:09 PM   #7
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Yeah modularity might be a good idea. I might have to bring this stand cross country in the future, so it might be even easier to move that way in addition be being able to be bolted.

I was considering getting a saw, but I figured even rough cuts by hand could be leveled and smoothed with a grinding pad. I also though cutting angle iron instead of the tubing would probably be neater given there are only two edges to line up.

Getting a saw isn't out of the question though. It is worth buying one over renting one? I've always been more into hand tools, so most of this is new to me. How large of a saw - amps, rpm, blade diameter - would be practical? I see harbor freight has a large one for $99, and the reviews seem ok.

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Old 08-22-2011, 05:59 PM   #8
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HF also has a 6" chop saw for only $35...check out the video. W/ a decent blade I think this would cut plenty fast and be accepatable for "occasional / light" use.

http://www.harborfreight.com/power-t...saw-41453.html

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Old 08-22-2011, 06:13 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Catt22 View Post
If I were to start over from scratch, I would go modular. IOW, each module would be a stand alone unit. One each for the HLT, MT & burner. This would make for flexible and compact storage. A separate stand for a control panel if needed. A pump (could be on a portable stand). You could also build them so that they could be bolted together if desired. My setup has sort of evolved into a modular arrangement. Keep in mind that the outdoor propane turky fryer type cookers are also stands that can hold a kettle. Two or three of those and you have a modular rig. You could elevate one just a bit so that it could hold the HLT and drain it by gravity for the sparge. Otherwise you would probably want to use two pumps with everything more or less at the same height.
That's what I'm doing. In the process of welding each of the 3 stands now. Just making 3 stand alone stands that can be bolted together on brew day then broken down after I'm done.
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Old 08-22-2011, 06:21 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by wilserbrewer View Post
HF also has a 6" chop saw for only $35...check out the video. W/ a decent blade I think this would cut plenty fast and be accepatable for "occasional / light" use.

http://www.harborfreight.com/power-t...saw-41453.html
Ah nice find. With the 20% coupon (TOOL20) its pretty cheap...can you do a will call to one of their stores? I have one near my work I think, so I might as well save on shipping.
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