Mash Tuns: How Big Should I Go? - Home Brew Forums

Register Now!
Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Equipment/Sanitation > Mash Tuns: How Big Should I Go?

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 01-18-2011, 04:56 PM   #1
hiphops
Recipes 
 
Jun 2010
New York City, New York
Posts: 296
Liked 5 Times on 5 Posts



I like to brew 5 gallon batches and have been using a 5 gallon cooler as a mash tun. I've noticed that, as a general matter, the 5 gallon mash tun can mash a total of about 4 gallons of water, when its filled with grains.

I recently started using the iPhone app Brew Pal and, from their calculations, it seems as if I need a bigger mash tun. Their calculations call for an amount of water that often exceed 4 gallons of water, sometimes as much as 6 gallons.

I guess I can always go out and get another cooler. However, I'm not sure my tiny NYC apt. can hold a 10 gallon mash tun (I guess I can get a 7 gallon cooler but are somewhat hard to find.)

Any thoughts on how to continue using a 5 gallon mash tun when I need more water than the mash tun can hold?
__________________
Swim - bike - run - repeat
Indict - convict - affirm on appeal - repeat
Brew - bottle - drink - repeat

 
Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-2011, 05:00 PM   #2
BendBrewer
Recipes 
 
Jan 2010
Bend, Oregon
Posts: 3,134
Liked 77 Times on 59 Posts


Get a 10 gallon cooler. You can store stuff inside it.

 
Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-2011, 05:14 PM   #3
wilserbrewer
BIAB Expert Tailor
HBT_SPONSOR.png
 
wilserbrewer's Avatar
Recipes 
 
May 2007
Jersey Shore, Jersey
Posts: 9,429
Liked 1318 Times on 1010 Posts


If the iphone says you need a bigger cooler, i would go get one asap...

J/K, it is my understanding that a 5 gal cooler will do 5 gal batches up to about 1.060.

 
Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-2011, 05:19 PM   #4
hiphops
Recipes 
 
Jun 2010
New York City, New York
Posts: 296
Liked 5 Times on 5 Posts


i used to use the free app sparge pal. however, my beers never came out good based upon the sparge pal's calculations. then, i started using brew pal. although i haven't drank any beers made with brew pal yet, so far, it seems much better. the gravity readings are much more accurate and i just seem to have a better "feeling" than with sparge pal. the only wrinkle i am seeing is that, according to their calculations, i need a bigger mash tun, which would probably explain why my beers never came out all that hot using sparge pal.
__________________
Swim - bike - run - repeat
Indict - convict - affirm on appeal - repeat
Brew - bottle - drink - repeat

 
Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-2011, 05:23 PM   #5
motobrewer
I'm no atheist scientist, but...
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Recipes 
 
Oct 2009
Thiensville, Wisconsin
Posts: 8,212
Liked 489 Times on 378 Posts


Quote:
Originally Posted by hiphops View Post
Any thoughts on how to continue using a 5 gallon mash tun when I need more water than the mash tun can hold?
think you answered your own question.

you could partial mash. or get a bigger one.

i just upgraded to a 12 from a 5, brewdays are much nicer.

 
Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-2011, 05:25 PM   #6
BendBrewer
Recipes 
 
Jan 2010
Bend, Oregon
Posts: 3,134
Liked 77 Times on 59 Posts


Use 1 qt water/1 pound grain as a ratio for your mash.

 
Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-2011, 05:26 PM   #7
hiphops
Recipes 
 
Jun 2010
New York City, New York
Posts: 296
Liked 5 Times on 5 Posts


thx moto. i guess i'm too much of a lawyer sometimes: i only ask questions to which i already know the answer!!!

Go Badgers. Maybe we'll have better luck at the rose bowl next year!
__________________
Swim - bike - run - repeat
Indict - convict - affirm on appeal - repeat
Brew - bottle - drink - repeat

 
Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-2011, 05:34 PM   #8
Timboosh
Recipes 
 
Jul 2010
Chicago Suburbs
Posts: 102
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts


I've got a 36 qt marine igloo that I converted (I had it "gifted" to me after a road trip last summer because my buddies didn't want it). I've only used it a few times, but I think anything bigger than a 14-15 Lb grain bill would be pushing it past it's limit. So... unless you get really good efficiency and/or really don't plan on making big beers (over about 1.060), I would go bigger than 36 qts.
__________________
Bottled - Autumn Amber Ale (Midwest Spls)
Bottled - Wounded Knee IPA (Edwort)
Kegged - Deception Cream Stout (NCBeernut)
Kegged - Bo's American Brown Ale (First Recipe)

 
Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-2011, 05:41 PM   #9
Homercidal
Licensed Sensual Massage Therapist.
HBT_MODERATOR.png
 
Homercidal's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Feb 2008
Reed City, MI
Posts: 30,652
Liked 4765 Times on 3217 Posts


I use a 48 quart rectangular cooler and I can't imagine doing any big beers in a smaller mash tun.

 
Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-2011, 05:56 PM   #10
Ace_Club
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
 
Ace_Club's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Sep 2008
Chicago, IL
Posts: 43,844
Liked 2384 Times on 2186 Posts


I always refer these questions to this thread. The chart that is provided is excellent for determining what size you should go with.

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f11/how-...-needs-123585/
__________________
Arguing on the internet is like running in the Special Olympics, even if you win you're still retarded.

Where are guys? - Ginger

Eat a bag of kittens, Ace. - Yooper

 
Reply With Quote


Reply
Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Mash Tuns: Round coolers vs. Rectangular coolers? TarHeeledTexan Equipment/Sanitation 13 01-15-2011 04:28 PM
DIY Mash Tuns: Pros and cons of cube vs. "gatorade" style? moxie Equipment/Sanitation 29 06-15-2010 01:40 AM
Cooler mash tuns vs pot as mash tun? JUSTINTIMEBREWING Equipment/Sanitation 1 02-05-2010 08:50 PM
Anyone have Experience with this guys lauter tuns? Grummle Equipment/Sanitation 6 11-06-2009 01:44 PM
Some questions about Mash Tuns chefchris Equipment/Sanitation 9 09-08-2008 04:55 PM


Forum Jump