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Old 01-15-2012, 03:51 AM   #1
Mar 2011
Muncie, Indiana
Posts: 135
Liked 3 Times on 3 Posts

Alright. After doing some research I've come to the conclusion that buying a pre made kit would be a waste. Its cheaper to buy everything individually. I have put together a spreadsheet of the 3 sites i would buy supplies from.The list is based off all of the stuff that is included in each sites pre made brewing kits. This stuff is most likely base stuff and might be something that would be worth upgrading.
What off this list am i missing? Or what off the list should i improve.

My budget is 250$

Supplies i already have..

Bayou Cooker
15.5 Gallon SS keg converted to pot
2 x Glass 5 gal carboys
bottle capper
60 bottle caps
300+ empty bottles
Making a wort chiller (for about 50$ from supplies at lowes)
2 brewing books

So after i buy the supplies on the list and make the wort chiller it looks like i'll have approx 100$ to spend if i buy the base stuff listed on the list..

My initial thoughts are i might want to buy way more cleaners and also i might want to buy better thermometers.

So please look through my list in the google DOCS and see if with the money i have if i should buy whats listed or if i should upgrade any of the stuff listed.
Also if there is any supplies you don't see that you think it would be great for me to have as i plan on doing this for a long time please list that.

I still haven't chosen if i am going to go glass carboy or Better bottle but i know i don't want a bucket as id like to see the fermenting process!

Thanks for any advise. Ive done a lot of reading and a lot of research but now i'm just ready to start brewing so any last advice or items to make my brewing process simpler or give me a better chance at making the best beer i can is much appreciated.

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Old 01-15-2012, 04:29 AM   #2
Feb 2009
Arnold, Maryland
Posts: 404
Liked 31 Times on 15 Posts

On a budget, I would go with buckets over carboys and I would get an airlock vs. a blowoff tube, but not sure your bias towards those. I never got into carboys because they are more difficult to fill and clean. Get a long stem thermometer with a clip to attach to your brewpot. Get the sticky thermometers for the side of your buckets. If you're going to bottle, get a vinator and consider a tree or something to simplify the cleaning/drying process. I don't see a racking cane on your list which you'll need to bottle. Oh yeah, you need a long handle spoon if you don't already have one.

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Old 01-15-2012, 04:33 AM   #3
Jan 2012
Anchorage, Alaska
Posts: 269
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You may also want to get a Jet bottle/carboy washer.

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Old 01-15-2012, 07:24 AM   #4
Jan 2012
Los Angeles, CA
Posts: 29

Does the price in your spreadsheet include shipping? That can vary a fair bit. But anyway, if you have a local homebrew shop would strongly advise you to go there and check it out. I have two near me and both of them have prices very close to online prices, and if you go there intending to spend hundreds of dollars, you will develop a good relationship with the guys in the shop, and you never know, they might throw in a few small things for free.

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Old 01-15-2012, 09:02 AM   #5
Mar 2010
Posts: 408
Liked 7 Times on 7 Posts

I agree about getting buckets, but if you're going to stick with carboys I would get a 6.5 gallon as a primary, and a 5 as a secondary.

I love my buckets though. I have them, carboys, and better bottles. Really prefer the buckets.

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Old 01-15-2012, 09:04 AM   #6
Mar 2010
Posts: 408
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Old 01-15-2012, 09:08 AM   #7
Dec 2011
Posts: 340
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Filling and cleaning 12oz bottles gets old real quick. I'd consider moving to 1l ez caps or kegging.

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Old 01-15-2012, 12:33 PM   #8
Mikethepoolguy's Avatar
Jan 2010
Pineville, North Carolina, USA
Posts: 324
Liked 22 Times on 19 Posts

Use 6.5 gal. carboys or buckets for primary. Use the 5gal for secondary. You will need a carboy brush. Don't use better bottles for primary, imo. If you go AG you will want a couple different thermometers, for extract one is fine. A hydrometer is a must, but not necessary for your first batch. Buying ingredients and chemicals in bulk will save money, get the big bottle of sanitizer if you can. You need a big A spoon.

Back to the bulk thing. My LHBS sells hops for around $ 2. 59 an ounce but 4 oz is 4.59 and a pound is an even better bargain. Needless to say I never buy an ounce of anything.
Wahoo Hunter

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Old 01-15-2012, 01:30 PM   #9
Jan 2012
Stewartsville, NJ
Posts: 1,053
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Originally Posted by BobC View Post
You may also want to get a Jet bottle/carboy washer.
Is this actually necessary? I'm very new to this hobby and am currently 3 days into my primary fermentation. I have the Brooklyn Brew Shop kit, so I only have one 1-gallon carboy. I'd very much like to graduate to a 5-gallon, but I simply don't have the room right now, as I live in a condo that's currently on the market to be sold (minimal is key when selling your place). So with that said, I don't have the luxury of having a set-up of 5 gallon buckets, etc. So my plan is to invest in maybe 2 or 3 additional 1-gallon carboys so I can at least get a few batches going at staggered times. What I'm concerned about though is cleaning these suckers. Is it really that bad? I've found a few websites that give you cleaning tips (like putting rice and vinegar in the carboy and shaking), or using a long wire brush, etc. Am I going to have a hell of a time cleaning a 1-gallon glass carboy?

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Old 01-15-2012, 01:36 PM   #10
usfmikeb's Avatar
Jan 2011
Leesburg, Virginia
Posts: 3,148
Liked 239 Times on 201 Posts

If you get glass carboys, I highly recommend getting the handles that go around the neck, much easier to move them around.

Where will you be fermenting? Do you need any supplies to assist with temp control?

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