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Old 02-01-2013, 03:02 PM   #1
it99
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Nov 2011
new york, ny
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I have a rectangular 48 quart cooler i was going to make into a mash tun.
I plan on doing batch sparging only.

I've read different things about whether to make a copper manifold or use SS hose from home depot. I just want to make what will make better beer. I don't mind extra effort or time. So what is the appropriate thing to build? Is there a link to some build instructions??? thanks

Also I was going to add a 3 peice SS ball valve to my cooler. Can I just purchase something at Home depot or do i have to get something in particular? I just want to do it the right way.link would be appreciated?

Also would be the stanadard brewining width for tubing 1/2" or 3/8" or what would be a good one to use???

thanks so much!!!

 
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Old 02-01-2013, 04:36 PM   #2
matt2778
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I built my manifold out of cpvc. It's much cheaper than copper and it allows me to batch or fly sparge. I also built the manifold so that its a pressure fit requiring no glue, which allows me to disassemble and toss in the dishwasher after each brew session.

 
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Old 02-01-2013, 04:42 PM   #3
Stocktonbrew
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I too have a 48qt cooler and used a 1/2 inch copper tube. The book how to brew covers this well, or just do a google search on building a MLT. I used bargainfittings.com for my valves and bulk head fittings. They have everything and fast shipping. I batch sparge and am very happy with my setup.

 
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Old 02-01-2013, 05:08 PM   #4
it99
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Nov 2011
new york, ny
Posts: 20

Thanks for the info. I just read some of the "How to brew" book and he you ideally need around a foot grain bed and can't be too low. I'm only going to do 5 gallon or 2.5 gallon even batches. So my 48 quart would be way too big. So sounds like I probably need a 5 gallon round beverage cooler then? Is this true and you probably can't do a manifold for that size so maye use the SS braided hose. Does that sound right? Thanks!


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Originally Posted by Stocktonbrew View Post
I too have a 48qt cooler and used a 1/2 inch copper tube. The book how to brew covers this well, or just do a google search on building a MLT. I used bargainfittings.com for my valves and bulk head fittings. They have everything and fast shipping. I batch sparge and am very happy with my setup.

 
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Old 02-01-2013, 05:14 PM   #5
PeteNMA
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Dec 2012
Cary, North Carolina
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If your only going to batch sparge you don't need a manifold. The manifold is to ensure that all the grain is washed down during fly sparging. If you batch sparge you achieve the same effect by stirring the mash after you add the sparge water

 
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Old 02-01-2013, 05:20 PM   #6
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San Simeon, CA
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Quote:
Originally Posted by it99 View Post
I have a rectangular 48 quart cooler i was going to make into a mash tun.
I plan on doing batch sparging only.

I've read different things about whether to make a copper manifold or use SS hose from home depot. I just want to make what will make better beer. I don't mind extra effort or time. So what is the appropriate thing to build? Is there a link to some build instructions??? thanks
I went from a PVC manifold to a copper manifold and finally to a SS braid and never looked back...

Quote:
Originally Posted by it99 View Post
Also I was going to add a 3 peice SS ball valve to my cooler. Can I just purchase something at Home depot or do i have to get something in particular? I just want to do it the right way.link would be appreciated?
I'm still using the inexpensive brass ball valve I picked up at the local hardware store several years ago. Many just use a hose with a clamp or simple plastic valve. Personally I avoid Home Depot like the plague... Just put "Ice chest mash tun conversion" in search and you will be inundated with clever methods of the process...


Quote:
Originally Posted by it99 View Post
Also would be the stanadard brewining width for tubing 1/2" or 3/8" or what would be a good one to use???

thanks so much!!!
I use both for different fittings... The whole thing is easier than it sounds. Good luck...
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Old 02-01-2013, 05:40 PM   #7
it99
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Nov 2011
new york, ny
Posts: 20

Does the shape really matter round 5 gallon vs. 24 quart rectangular.

Seems like everyone I know has a rectangular cooler but they might be doing more than 5 gallon batches and need the bigger area.??

 
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Old 02-01-2013, 05:52 PM   #8
cram
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Jun 2011
Poway, CA
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Round or rectangular coolers both work fine. I have a 10-gallon round cooler with a copper manifold (and I use it more than my 15 gallon SS mashtun with a false bottom). Having had both a SS braid and a copper manifold, I prefer the manifold because it takes the abuse of a mash paddle much better and it doesn't float up like a braid can. Over time, the braids tend to suffer, although, they're cheap to replace. Copper is definitely more expensive than CVPC but it's not as easy to scratch and some might say it's more aesthetically pleasing. Plus, your yeasties will like a bit of copper in the wort. Either way, building a manifold is a fun project and there are plenty of examples of pictures and how-to threads on HBT. But the braid will get you started more quickly.

Bargain Fittings is a great source for the bulkhead and valves. For the price difference, I am not sold on 3-piece being better than 1-piece, though. Both can be broken down and cleaned when necessary.

 
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Old 02-01-2013, 06:10 PM   #9
it99
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Nov 2011
new york, ny
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Sorry one more question:
Does grain bed depth matter much if you are just batch sparging??

I think the things i've read they are using fly sparging.

Thanks

 
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Old 02-01-2013, 07:29 PM   #10
Stocktonbrew
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If you already have a 48qt cooler, i would use that. You can make small or big beers with it without worrying. Batch sparging is easy and it works well. If you make a copper manifold you can batch or fly sparge with it and it will last forever. Make sure you clean it out after every use or it will smell like vomit and you will have to make a new one(I will never do that again).

 
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