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Old 07-06-2013, 04:26 PM   #1
frostyp's Avatar
Jun 2012
Preston, Lancashire / United Kingdom
Posts: 99
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

Seen quite a lot of cooler type mash tuns on forums etc ,
Now looking around and seeing stainless steel types also usually surrounded with Bubble foil wrap.
Simply is one better than the other? Does either have an advantage over the other?
Does the steel type retain heat as well as the cooler types do

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Old 07-06-2013, 04:32 PM   #2
Jul 2011
Florence, KY
Posts: 268
Liked 12 Times on 10 Posts

Stainless steel is more durable and could double as a boil kettle. A cooler will definitely hold a temperature better unless you have some really impressive insulation on the steel.

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Old 07-06-2013, 04:58 PM   #3
Jul 2013
Spring Hill, FL
Posts: 160
Liked 40 Times on 29 Posts

I am probably the noobiest of noobs on this site, so take this for what its worth, but I just brewed my 3rd solo batch & 1st recipe of my own design (Oaked Honey wheat) on Jul 4th using a mash tun I made out of a 10 gallon round Igloo and the cheapest plumbing I could get to make the filter tube and spigot. Beer Smith said my OG was supposed to be a 1.052 on a double infusion; I hit a 1.053, but dropped my boil timer at one point and had to reset it based on an estimated time, so I may have over-boiled a bit.

I'm a firm believer in the efficiency of the cooler.

We use the foil bubble insulation in our cockpit sun-shields for the helicopters, and they're not efficient at all. Because of this, I think there would be too much heat lost in a SS Tun even with insulation.

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Old 07-06-2013, 05:20 PM   #4
Oct 2012
Lexington, SC
Posts: 303
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I converted a 10 gal Igloo cooler to a mash tun with a bazooka strainer and I hold temps every brew day with no problem. I have heard nightmare stories about SS mash tuns.

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Old 07-06-2013, 05:26 PM   #5
Dec 2010
Mission, TX
Posts: 676
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No temp loss with these......buy they ain't cheap!
Green Bay Packers - 13 Time World Champions
Jygomundi Brews

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Old 07-06-2013, 08:39 PM   #6
May 2013
Bentonville, AR
Posts: 20
Liked 4 Times on 3 Posts

I'll second and third what these guys are saying. My first few batches were in a stainless steel pot, and I was reluctant to us a cooler mash tun. Bottom line, SS doesn't hold the temp well. I bought a 5-day rectangle Coleman cooler and parts from Lowe's to make a cooler mash tun (plenty of videos online to show how). I tracked my progress on Brewer's Friend and my efficiency went up a full 10% when I started using the cooler mash tun and batch sparging. Keeping the right temp during the mash has greatly accelerated my brewing efficiency.

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Old 07-06-2013, 10:10 PM   #7
Aug 2012
Posts: 154
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I just made the jump from partial mash to BIAB AG, and I mashed my grains in and igloo cooler with only a 1 deg temp loss over 90 minutes. It also frees up my kettle to heat up the sparge water.
"We don't sell Duff, we sell Fudd."

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Old 07-06-2013, 11:29 PM   #8
Nov 2011
Lino Lakes, MN
Posts: 558
Liked 40 Times on 34 Posts

I use a Coleman Extreme cooler. It will hold temp within 1 degree for an hour. $35 for the cooler and about another $35 for a spigot and copper manifold. I bought the 70 qt. there is a good thread on this website on how to modify it.
This might be the beer talking....but I really love beer!

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