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Old 04-19-2010, 02:11 AM   #1
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Default In need of guidance.....

Ok, If this is the wrong spot for this or there is a thread I have missed please feel free to point it out to me or move this post.

I am still pretty new to brewing beer but my family makes wines and has some working knowledge of making alcohol. We have equipment to currently make 5-6 gallon batches at a time. We had been doing partial mashes.

I REALLY want to make more beer at 1 time, move to all grain and am on a tight budget. I was brewing with my father and will be splitting the batches with him as well as some of the costs but waiting 6 weeks to have 2.5 gallons is a looooong wait for something we have on a 2 week cycle. I really do not want to have to sac up every other weekend to brewing (There is a drive involved and visiting/odd job helping with). When, I think If I brewed x2 or bigger batches I could move into 1 weekend a month cycles and have plenty of beers even some to share with friends. Don't get me wrong I do not mind heading home so much BUT summer and camping/fishing IS coming and I would rather be able to be "outdoors" after a long winter.

I have my 1st 1/2 bbl keg and was going to turn it into a keggle to use on the propane burner as a large boil pot but am now looking ahead to a 3 tier setup. Since 1/2 bbls are not easy to come by or cheap I do not want to sacrifice one to the "learning curve". I also am looking for advice on what to add to it and how to set it up and I need some guidance. I am pro-DIY to save on overhead.

I am thinking about an all stainless steel setup. I have issues with plastics and chemicals as well as mixing metals in the process. I am planning to use only stainless steel and glass for anything that will be touching the mash/wort/beer and to grow or acquire 100% virgin ingredients to make my beer recipes as much as possible.
I also am leaning to not only creating a nice 3 -teir set up but also plan on using some 1/2 and or 1/4 bbls for fermenting primary in and then moving into glass carboys for secondary (I like secondaries and being able to see what is going on). I will be using bottles and then moving into corny kegs (or all sanke system) and the world of keg/CO2/kegerators and fermentation temperature control.

- Is this the correct path?
- What set ups do you recommend?
- Any other hurdles that I can avoid?
- I am on a super budget and will be hunting for the deal or waiting for sales.


I'm not drunk, I'm from Wisconsin.
We have been out drinking your state since 1848!
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