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Old 04-29-2012, 07:43 PM   #1
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Default Must have accessories

I've got the basic beer making kit and plan to brew frequently, so now I want to know from the experienced guys, what are the best must-have accessories for homebrewing?


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Old 04-29-2012, 07:45 PM   #2
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15 gallon ss pot, chiller and refractometer


Here is a chiller that is a great idea

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f51/dutc...ng-ics-321116/


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Old 04-29-2012, 07:46 PM   #3
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A wort chiller. Seriously I wish I had gotten one earlier back when I began brewing. Getting the temp from boiling to pitching in 15 to 20 minutes instead of an hour or two was really nice.

If you're not doing a full boil it isn't as important, so then I'd reccomend a larger brew pot so you can do full boils!

Also, if you don't have an area that stays cool for your fermentation you'll want to work something out for that. Cheapest way to do that is a swamp cooler. Search swamp cooler on this site and you'll find some great instructions on this cheap way to keep your fermentation temps down.
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Old 04-29-2012, 07:48 PM   #4
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A chiller
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Old 04-29-2012, 07:57 PM   #5
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Is the swamp cooler intended for brewing lagers? if so, I am not doing any lagers yet...if you think I should use a swamp cooler for ales, I have a spare bedroom that stays 65-68 year round that I can use.

Also, I am ordering a wort chiller today. I'll need it for my next batch.
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Old 04-29-2012, 08:07 PM   #6
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68 isn't cool enough for ambient temperature. Fermentation can easily make the temps in the fermenter raise by 10 degrees (though I had one shoot up to 78 degrees in a 63 degree room). Some strains are more forgiving of this, but if you are using a British style strain it will turn out darn nasty lol.

Do you have an ice chest that will accommodate a carboy? You can just use this, and fill it with water around the carboy. This will go a long ways toward controlling ferm temps.
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Old 04-29-2012, 08:18 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Gear101 View Post
15 gallon ss pot, chiller and refractometer


Here is a chiller that is a great idea

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f51/dutc...ng-ics-321116/
+1 Then, start looking into what's best for you as far as fermentation control (swamp cooler, ice bath, converted freezer, etc.)
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Old 04-29-2012, 08:26 PM   #8
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#1 hydrometer or refractometer to determine final gravity has been reached.
#2 fermentation temperature control
#3 Stir plate: at least make starters when using liquid yeast and pitch proper amounts
#4 Turkey fryer or some other method with a large pot (at least 30qts.) to do full boils. Preferably somewhere other than the stove.

There is plenty of other stuff you will want as you progress.
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Old 04-29-2012, 08:52 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bottlebomber View Post
68 isn't cool enough for ambient temperature. Fermentation can easily make the temps in the fermenter raise by 10 degrees (though I had one shoot up to 78 degrees in a 63 degree room). Some strains are more forgiving of this, but if you are using a British style strain it will turn out darn nasty lol.

Do you have an ice chest that will accommodate a carboy? You can just use this, and fill it with water around the carboy. This will go a long ways toward controlling ferm temps.
I lowered the temp in that room down to 63. hope that works until I decide on a more reliable method.
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Old 04-29-2012, 08:54 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by epistrummer View Post
I lowered the temp in that room down to 63. hope that works until I decide on a more reliable method.
If you can put it in a relatively large volume of water in that room you will have pretty good control. The water helps draw the heat away and also buffers the temperature changes in the room very nicely.

Your ale will ferment very well in the mid 60's


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