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Old 02-24-2010, 04:09 AM   #1
Jan 2010
Medford, NJ
Posts: 544
Liked 11 Times on 11 Posts

What tips / tricks would you wish you knew the second time around?

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Old 02-24-2010, 04:12 AM   #2
Dalarast's Avatar
Oct 2009
Virginia beach
Posts: 416
Liked 3 Times on 3 Posts

Spend more money up front to get the better more complete kit (i.e. wort chiller, better capper, etc).

The joy of making your own recipe or using one from this site instead of using a "pre-made" kit. More joy of actually creating something of your own design than someone else's kit.
No Waves Brewery

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Old 02-24-2010, 04:16 AM   #3
Jun 2006
South River, NJ
Posts: 2,587
Liked 21 Times on 17 Posts

forget bottling... PITFA.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~
~~~~~~~~~~~___//_ ____________________________~~~~~~~~~~~
~~~~~~~~~_/ [][]| | /```\/```\/```\/```\/```\ |~~~~~~~~~~
~~~~~~~_/_______| |____NOW TRIPLE HOPPED______|~~~~~~~~~~
~~~___/[_]| 00 /| | \,,,/\,,,/\,,,/\,,,/\,,,/ |~~~~~~~~~~
~~|___|___|___/_| |___________________________|~~~~~~~~~~
~~|=(*)[________]==(*)(*)=| \________/=(*)(*)=|~~~~~~~~~~

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Old 02-24-2010, 04:17 AM   #4
Schnitzengiggle's Avatar
Feb 2009
Tucson, AZ
Posts: 2,560
Liked 31 Times on 23 Posts

Start with all grain, you'll end up there anyway. Also, purchase equipment for 10 gallon batches you'll end up there too. Something I wish I had done up front is make a keggle, I bought a B315 pot from morebeer.com, and although it is a great pot it is too wide in diameter. I am currently trying to source kegs off of craigslist. Wort chiller is a must make your own, it will be better, and cheaper. Invest in a pump it will come in handy. Get a subscription to BYO, and Zymurgy they are great publications. Ask, ask, and ask more here on HBT because there are some brewing geniuses on this site.
follow me @ Broken Glass Brewery

Okham's Razor - simplest explanation is usually the correct one.

My DIY Kegerator - My DIY Fermentation Chamber - My DIY Portable Pump Box

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Old 02-24-2010, 04:42 AM   #5
arturo7's Avatar
Apr 2007
Huntington Beach
Posts: 9,847
Liked 558 Times on 376 Posts

I would have moved into AG sooner. I had in my head that a proper mash tun, HLT and a propane burner were absolutely necessary.

When it came down to it, I did my first AG on my stove. I employed a used, uninsulated $15 HDPE drum for the mash tun and my bottling bucket (5 gal pail) for the HLT. I used reinforced PVC tubing for the manifold and a water bottle with holes poked in the bottom for the sparge arm.

It made beer. Wasn't great but it was drinkable. Had I known this worked, I would have switched to AG after my 3rd or 4th extract batch.
Hey, knock that shvt off. We're drinkin' here.

Reason: grammar

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Old 02-24-2010, 04:52 AM   #6
cimirie's Avatar
Feb 2009
Orlando, FL
Posts: 800
Liked 20 Times on 19 Posts

I probably would have liked to have a wort chiller up front, but most of my knowledge I'm glad I didn't know up front. It was all a part of the "quest" we love so much. Every time you learn something new, you want to do more. Some of that may have been spoiled if I knew up front.
Originally Posted by StuporMan View Post
You guys joke around with this all you want, but let me tell you something: I tried making my own beer one time and wound up with herpes!

Primary: Billy Corrigan Ale, malted cider experiment, Optimator clone
Secondary: Sorachi Ace IPA
Bottled: Dark Lord Clone Imperial Stout, Winter 2010 Spiced Ale Ambassador Brown Ale, Michigan Berry pLambic
Kegged: Old Woodward ESB, Strawberry Blonde
On Deck: Honey brown ale, dry stout

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Old 02-24-2010, 04:56 AM   #7
Registered User
May 2008
Westside..... CenCal - the country that'll never take away my guns or money !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Posts: 3,865
Liked 13 Times on 13 Posts

i would not have passed up killer deals on equipment at scrap yards i didn't think i needed (at the time).

if somebody told me i would not stop until i had spent more money on brewing equipment than 2 of my 3 vehicles, i would have laughed maniacally.

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Old 02-24-2010, 05:03 AM   #8
Jun 2008
Austin, TX
Posts: 1,168
Liked 63 Times on 32 Posts

Pay attention to fermentation temp. Don't secondary. Make starters.

All cheap stuff that would have made my beer a lot better and saved me time.

Kegged: Belgian Dark Strong (8.9%abv)

Fermenting: Arrogant Bastard Clone, BCS Dry stout

Planned: Rye IPA, ESB, Oatmeal Pale Ale, Rye Amber

Can You Brew It Recipe Database
Convert an all grain recipe to extract
Hop Substitution Chart

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Old 02-24-2010, 05:12 AM   #9
Almaigan Brewing Co.
Shooter's Avatar
Dec 2008
Dublin (No, not that Dublin)
Posts: 4,562
Liked 271 Times on 209 Posts

Originally Posted by EricCSU View Post
Pay attention to fermentation temp.
+1 on this, fermentation control has been the biggest improvement to my beer.
Of all tyrannies, a tyranny sincerely exercised for the good of its victims may be the most oppressive. It would be better to live under robber barons than under omnipotent moral busybodies. The robber baron's cruelty may sometimes sleep, his cupidity may at some point be satiated; but those who torment us for our own good will torment us without end for they do so with the approval of their own conscience. - C. S. Lewis, English essayist & juvenile novelist (1898 - 1963)

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Old 02-24-2010, 05:14 AM   #10
Nov 2007
Irvine, CA
Posts: 138

If I were to do it again, i would still start extract. The only thing I would do different about that is get a 10gal pot to do full-boils and then not have to buy another one for AG. And like someone said above, go directly to kegging instead of bottling.

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