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Old 03-20-2011, 06:54 PM   #1
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Default When to switch to all grain

I got about 15 brews all extract w/ spec. grains under my belt, and i'm debating all grain. How much more time is involed and equiptment. I have an outdoor burner w/ an 8g polar brew pot. with temp. and ball vaule.

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Old 03-20-2011, 06:55 PM   #2
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Add a simple cooler mash tun and a second kettle or cooler for HLT and you're set, under $100 easily. My brew days take about 4.5 hours.

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Old 03-20-2011, 07:18 PM   #3
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Yup, Add a mash tun, you could get away with not getting a HLT (hot liquid tank) but i would suggest you get one. An aluminum turkey fryer would work.

If you search craigslist or E-bay, this is what i paid:
Mash Tun ___________$30 (used cooler and fittings)
HLT & extra burner ___$20 (Turkey fryer kit from craigslist)

If you search you could pay $50 to upgrade to an all grain kit, i made that money back in savings after my 3rd batch of beer. It adds a few more hours to your brew day but your not really doing anything too advanced, you may need help with getting your temperature correct the first few times though.

You will make better beer. That's why i switched.
On Deck ______________ Tasty's Brown (Brown with NB)
1st Primary ____________ Sour Pliny
Kegged________________ Sangio.Port Wine
Bottle Ageing __________ Giddy Gremlin, RyIIIPAWhiskey Vanilla Porter (Bottled 4-20)

SILVER - BABO - "Oaked Whiskey Vanilla Porter"
SILVER - Celebrewtion - "Bourbon Vanilla Porter"
GOLD - BABO - "Hoptop"
SILVER - BABO - "Screaming Cream"
Honorable Mention: (x2) Giddy Gremlin RyIIpa (x1) Pliny The Mexican
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Old 03-20-2011, 07:24 PM   #4
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You should try this next little baby step, Australia's full volume, no sparge, BIAB. It allows you to try out all grain for less than $10.
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Old 03-20-2011, 07:57 PM   #5
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When you feel you're ready, you'll know. You'll just need a MLT of some sort or another, and an extra pot or way to heat up sparge water is handy.

Some people just keep doing partial mashes throughout their brewing career, and some go to all-grain quickly. Both ways can make exceptional beer, so there isn't any need to move to AG unless you feel you really want to.
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Old 03-20-2011, 09:09 PM   #6
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Doing partial mini-mashes cost me nothing more.If i were going all grain i would have to buy a pot with valve or cooler.Wont cost much really.For now im doing half extract half mash just because i have a lot of extract left otherwise i would be trying all grain,for now im seeing how much better it is.Doing 2 gallon batches makes it pretty conveinent for this for me.
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Old 03-20-2011, 09:16 PM   #7
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+1 for BIAB method... very fun way to start all grain!
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Old 03-20-2011, 09:18 PM   #8
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check out deathbrewers easy stove top all grain. I haven't gone all grain yet, but plan to via that method. Might as well try it out for very cheap to free, and then I would imagine you will know for sure if its for you or not.

Or partial mashes will help you decide too. Thats probably the next logical step because you are going to end up with beer and not wasted ingredients. You might get discouraged if something goes wrong with a deathbrewer method AG, but from what i can gather its relatively hard to mess up a partial mash.
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Old 03-20-2011, 09:26 PM   #9
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Sounds like all you need is a HLT and possibly another stockpot. I use a cooler with a homemade braid and batch sparge. I heat my strike and sparge water on my stovetop then use my turkey fryer outside. Works great and I get pretty good efficiency.
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Old 03-20-2011, 10:07 PM   #10
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I wouldn't jump for another pot to be an HLT. Use your existing pot for the HLT and upgrade to a larger brew pot. Pick a cooler size and convert it. Done.

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