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  1. R

    Insulating gaps in detached garage

    Hi all-- not sure if a Homebrewing forum is the best spot to ask for insulating advice, but I've been surprised before by the depth of knowledge here. And it's for a good homebrew cause! I'm trying to make my workshop/homebrew space in my detached garage a bit more comfortable for these cold...
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    Advice on Armaflex insulating for fermenters?

    I'm at the point of insulating my fermenters.....but when I look at my rather stiff, rectangular sheets of insulation, I'm having a hard time envisioning them wrapped around my fermenters. Is there any advice you can offer to an insulating newbie?
  3. R

    FYI: super helpful tool--the deburring tool

    Just wanted to throw this one out there for all the folks 'not in the know' like me. When you cut, machine, or otherwise put an edge on metal, it tends to leave lots of nasty, snagging, tear-your-flesh burrs on that edge. Sure, you can spend forever and a half with a file and get rid of...
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    Fancy Schmancy Dual Fermenter Controller

    Modeled loosely on the control panel from theelectricbrewery.com, but simplified for heat/cool using STC-1000's. Here's the bling: Cover closed, powered up, ready to go! Cover open: Edited for having the wrong dang pic! The top controller controls a (to-be-built) chiller unit...
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    Glycol jacket sizing help

    I'm trying to determine how much copper coil--and what size--my fermenters need. They are tanks roughly 29" tall and 21" in diameter. They will be insulated, but will be situated in the garage year round (ambient ~32ºF through 90ºF). One thing I can't seem to find any info on is sizing the...
  6. R

    Rims tube vs element under the false bottom?

    I've basically only seen RIMS systems with the heating element in the tube, or direct gas fired. Why not have the element under the false bottom? That would seem to cut down considerably on hardware costs, and allow a greater similarity between your typical 3 vessels. Is it a dead space in...
  7. R

    Dairy collector conversion to 'conical' fermenters using strut

    As promised, here's a log on my progress on converting these monster dairy collectors into usable fermenters :). These things are big. No, not big, BIG. They are 29" from the start of the welded fitting at the base to the lip on top, and 21" in diameter. A pure cylinder would be ~43...
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    DIY brew stand-- "No Kill Like Overkill" (pic heavy)

    This project has been a long time in the works, as I sporadically get time to work on it. But I've made some good progress recently, so I thought I'd throw together a build log on it :). I started working on the concept seriously some time ago, drawing up plans in Sketchup (which I could...
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    DIY 'conical' dumb check questions

    Hey all-- I've scored a couple BIG (~40 gallon) dairy collectors from a club member, with the intent of using them as 'conical' fermenters. 316 stainless, wut wut! Buuuut, before I go ordering all the requisite bits and pieces (and inevitably getting it wrong) I'd appreciate a 'dumb...
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    Recipe double check for a competition

    Hey fellas-- A local brewpub is putting on a single-style, pseudo BJCP style competition. The desired style is an "American Dark Ale", detailed below: Now, one part plagues me in particular. They want a dry beer that is medium to full bodied and malt forward. So I as for feedback on...
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    paint prep for mild steel tube

    Hey all-- potentially noob question here. I've got all my mild steel tubing cut up for my brew stand, and I'm itching to start welding. But I recognize that any wort of paint prep is probably going to be a LOT easier to do before welding, leaving only a 'last wipe' before putting paint on...
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    Have you ever regretted an upgrade to a bigger pot?

    I'm in the process of parting out my upgrade away from my poor-college-student setup, and made the mistake of visiting a buddy who has a ginormous brewery setup. Well, I had been planning on going with a 3-keg setup, and even have the kegs on hand. But he got me to thinking that maybe I could...
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    Planning brewery upgrade--garage or basement?

    So, I've hit a snag. It's finally time for me to look into upgrading my shady college brew setup, but I'm not sure where I should put it. I have two potential locations in my house to put a semi-permanent brew system/sculpture, but each has it's own distinct advantages/disadvantages. I'd...
  14. R

    New oak barrel port project

    For a while now, I've been tempted to do a 'start to finish' barrel project. hat is to say, beginning with a new oak barrel, aging wine, spirits, then beer. So here's my current plan: I purchased a 3 gallon port wine kit from Midwest Brewing Supplies, which I will proceed to age in a 10...
  15. R

    No airlock activity...

    Ok, made a Schramm inspired mead a couple days ago, 18 lbs of honey with 18 lbs of tart cherries. Appropriate yeast nutrient was added to the must, and the 2 packages of yeast were re-hydrated per instructions with Go-Ferm. As of this morning, there's been no activity in the airlock, 36 hours...
  16. R

    Can I freeze fresh-picked berries for later?

    Ok, so here's the deal--I live in SW Michigan, and right now is the middle of berry season. I'd like to make some strawberry and raspberry meads, but my next order of fermentation equipment is still a week off or so, but by then I'll be wrapped up in family-visiting activities. Sooooo, can I...
  17. R

    Old kegerator gave up the ghost...Time for a new one!

    Waaaay back in 2008 I got my hands on a 5 cu ft Haier chest freezer. In April 2009 I finally put a nice, stained oak collar on it, complete with 3 Perlick faucets. Not 6 months later, it develops a refrigerant leak. So, needless to say, I've been without beer on tap for some time now (related...
  18. R

    Alternative hops for hefe?

    So with the recent heat wave that hit a couple days ago, I've been thinking it's about time to brew up a hefe. Looking around the place, I find 2 row, wheat malt, and crystal 40. Looking in the back of the fridge, I noticed a couple bottles of washed hefe yeast from a prior season, which is...
  19. R

    Straingin out solids

    Ok so I put my sake fermenter away for a few months and forgot about it, but I gots to move out! So I was figuring it'd be a good idea to get it into bottles or at least a glass carboy, rather than the large stone crock it currently is in. Just one problem...the entire thing is a massive...
  20. R

    Help me stock my liquor cabinet

    Well, I reached legal age some time ago, but due to my brewing habits I have yet to actually purchase any spirits. However, I've been looking to expand my palette recently, so I'd appreciate any advice on which commercials I should buy. Of main focus, I'm looking for recommendations for a...
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