Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing > My idea for a mash tun-please dont laugh
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Old 01-03-2013, 10:07 PM   #1
BobbiLynn
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Default My idea for a mash tun-please dont laugh

First off, ordered my first all grain kits, but without much thinking about extra equipment I'd need. I knew I had to filter and sparge the grain, but I didn't think I'd need anything really special for it.

Please let me just describe this thing, don't make me show a picture. It's just something that I tossed together before looking up what mash tuns are supposed to look like, or even know they were called that, actually. I've got some burlap duct taped to the sink for insulation, and yes, it's laughable. Is it possible it could have worked/could work though?

I have an old stainless steel metal sink that already runs to tubing made for hot liquid, from the drain at the bottom. You plug the drain by clipping the end of the tubing to the side of the sink. It's a square sink. So I made a mesh square basket to go in it. Then I took more layers of mesh screening I found laying around the property, added them to the basket thing(made wire handles for it too) to allow for a fine filtration. Now I just gotta add the right amount of layers so it filters the way I want it to. Then I just let the wort run out the bottom drain of the sink and into my pan, right? Well, not right into the pan, but into the pan once it starts running clear, before that, keep putting it back into the top.

I can soak the whole basket in hubby's oxygen/hydrogen electrolysis machine to get it clean and rust free, then sanitize it. I thought then all the spent grain would be left in my basket and I could carry it right out to the compost pile when I'm done. The sink bottom is not flat, it goes down at a slope toward the drain, why wouldn't this work?


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Old 01-03-2013, 10:21 PM   #2
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Wow, that sounds horrible.
You already have/need a boiling kettle... why not just use a paint strainer and do a BIAB? It doesn't get any simpler than that.


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Old 01-03-2013, 10:26 PM   #3
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What do you plan to cap it off with? Doesn't really seem like it would hold temperature for long... do a test run with hot water and see how it holds up!
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Old 01-03-2013, 10:28 PM   #4
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Someone told me about BIAB later, after I already had this hideous thing put together. For years, I've just been sticking to the same old extract recipe kits and thought going to all grain would broaden my horizons, my actual knowledge at this point is quite limited. I probably will going with BIAB, but kind of wondering if anyone thought the monstrosity I put together would work.
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Old 01-03-2013, 10:30 PM   #5
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Honestly, it doesn't seem too promising...

I'd BIAB this brew and look into getting a cooler for future mashes
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Old 01-03-2013, 10:31 PM   #6
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Hmmm......rust......interesting.....
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Old 01-03-2013, 10:34 PM   #7
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Sort of sounds like you're doing a brew in a bag method. The grain bed will act as a filter. After the mash perioed drain a few quarts of the wort into a jug, do this until the wort is no longer full of grain husks, debris. Gently pour these runnings back into the mash tun. Once the wort runs clear of the debris, drain it to the boil kettle. Same procedure when you add the sparge water. Try to keep the mash temp where you want it. Sparging you can do cold with no ill effect.
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Old 01-03-2013, 10:35 PM   #8
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I think the mesh system you created would work to lauter the grains, because it sounds like it's just a great big strainer. But as my fellow Virginian points out above, holding your mash temp for an hour in the sink could be a problem. If you could fix that, you might be in business.

edit: ahh, it's a stainless steel sink. Figure out a way to direct fire that thing without melting your outlet tubing, treat it like a big metal mashtun. Then, yes, I think it could work! Probably in the minority, but you've already gone to a lot of work, might as well see it through!
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Old 01-03-2013, 10:36 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by h4mmy86 View Post
What do you plan to cap it off with? Doesn't really seem like it would hold temperature for long... do a test run with hot water and see how it holds up!
I was thinking a big sawblade for the lid. I could pick it up on the sides with oven mitts. I checked and it covers the whole top of the sink. It does hold up in hot water, already checked that.
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Old 01-03-2013, 10:40 PM   #10
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Is that mesh galvanized or plain steel? If there is rust on anything I would stay away. Ever put a cheap steel utensil in the dishwasher? There will be rust everywhere after a mash, and that would be disgusting. I don't know if rust is toxic but I wouldn't want to drink rust beer.

Geez, I built a dennybrew mash tun for well under $20 since I already had a cooler. Or go BIAB.


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