OK everyone…tomorrow is the big day – first all grain…
I thought that I would take some time to provide an overview of my system. I have been brewing extracts for about 8 or 9 years (1 or 2 partial mashes). I have been getting more serious over the past 2 years. I have robbed ideas from those on this site (thank you!) and I have always enjoyed reading about someone else’s rig – so I figured it is my time to return the favor….
I struggled for a few months about building a single tier rig (no weld build via slotted angle iron, purchase something “commercially”, or get a local welder to construct the frame and then do everything else myself). Well – since I am a DIY’r I wanted to go as cheap as possible. However, I found a guy in the Philly/NJ area via craigslist – He makes stands and will weld BKs/MLTs/HLTs. His price was reasonable and the speed at which he would complete the job compared to me was a “no brainer”. If interested – PM me and I will fwd the contact info (not sure how much business he wants). Below is what I purchased from him:
Single tier stand with 3 – 6 inch banjo style burners/ fully plumbed for LP
HLT/MLT/BK – all with welded ports, temp gauges, sight glasses, valves, etc.
Some other points about the system:
To the stand, I added 2 SS chugger pumps. I know that I have read mixed reviews – but I thought these pumps were awesome during my water test. Not an issue at all priming, very quiet, and they move the water fast. I also installed “wet area” switches to control each pump (and a GCFI).
Plumbing – I am using ½ inch ID high temp silicon tubing with cam lock QDs and ss street elbows (as recommended by BobbyNJ). I did not grind the threads off of the street elbows. It did not leak during water test – I hope it doesn’t cause a problem down the road. We will see….
To the HLT – I added a copper coil for HERMs – it is about 25 ft of 3/8 inch copper tubing. I sure hope its long enough. Who doesn’t worry about if his pipe is long enough?
To the BK – I added a side pick-up tube in the bottom and a recirculation arm for pump assisted whirlpool. My only concern is the amount of wort that will be left behind after transferring to fermenter. Water test resulted in 0.75 gallons remaining. I use hop pellets. Plan to whirlpool during cooling with an immersion chiller (50 ft of ½ inch copper coil that I made), remove the IC after desired temp, whirlpool for an additional 5 min, and then let wort settle for 15 – 20 min.
I am taking the afternoon off tomorrow to brew a 10 gallon batch of a simple nut brown (all grain kit from NB)…I will post updates when I can…..
15 lbs English Maris Otter
0.5 lbs English Chocolate Malt
0.5 lbs Briess Caramel 120
0.5 lbs Belgian Biscuit
0.5 lbs Briess Special Roast
Sacch’ Rest – 154 for 60 min
Mashout – 170 for 10 min
Sparge at 170
2 oz. Fuggle @ 60 min
Wyeast 1945 NB Neobritannia (yeast starter stirring…)