Enough equip. to AG brew?

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dmbnpj

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So we have acquired 2 kegs and converted them to keggles. We have also made a hop bag (to make straining easier). We have 2 turkey frier burners we can use. We also have a cooler we can convert into a mash tun. We have also made a counterflow chiller. What we dont have is a march 809 pump. We also dont have the stainless steel spigot fittings that will go on the keggles and the cooler. My question is, is there a way we can do an AG brew with this setup like it is by possibly siphoning or some other method? Or, do we need the stainless spigot fittings and the march 809 pump before we brew?
 

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You have WAY more than I have! I have a 10 gallon cooler with a false bottom, with a ballvalve added. I have a turkey fryer, a wort chiller, and a smaller kettle for heating my water. I have some miscellaneous tubing. That's about it.

Many other brewers have automated systems, HERMS systems, etc, but you can AG in a bucket if you really want to.

Take a look at howtobrew.com (the all-grain section) to see the basic "how to" of brewing your first AG batch. It's much easier than you think!

Edit- here's the link: http://www.howtobrew.com/section3/index.html
 
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Yes, you can batch sparge and siphon the wort out of the mash tun into the kettle for now. You can add a plastic spigot if you want. Also you can use brass for your keggle fittings. (this is where the SS purists will chime in).

Cheap and easy weldless fitting. 3/4 - 1/2" brass bushing with a 3/4 lock nut (home depot has both) and a o-ring on the inside. Brass nipple to brass 1/2" ball valve.





Cheapest place for a brass head march 809hs was http://www.homebrewing.org/March-Pump-125_p_1015.html for $135. You can find the plastic head for cheaper elsewhere, but brass is harder to strip the MNPT ends.
 
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dmbnpj

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Very interesting on the brass way to go. Little confused though. Lowes and Home Depot are right up the street so if I can go there instead of buying online I would like to save some $$$. All the fittings online were going to be around $85 or so going the stainless route.

So, would I be drilling a 1/2" hole in the kegs?
 

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the hole size depends on whatever size weldless fittings you end up using. also, you'll probably need some high temp o-rings (the red silicone ones are the preferred ones around here it seems, and online is about the only place to find those). i think i've read others have done it with other o-rings. drilling a hole in a keg is best done with a pilot hole, a step bit, and some lubrication.

check here (Bargain Fittings) if you don't want to stand in the plumbing aisle at HD for like an hour trying to figure out exactly what parts you need. and honestly, you'll probably spend less money if you just buy the pre-made fitting from the website.
 
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dmbnpj

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yeah, thats the website i was looking at where all the fittings I will need will cost around $85 or more! was trying to go the cheaper route since so many other items we need are going to cost $$$. trying to save where possible.
 

android

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you can definitely siphon, that would be the cheapest route possible i believe. i think at the minimum, you should make up a bulkhead for the mash cooler so you can drain it, you can get all those parts are HD, look at one of the mash tun cooler threads, the parts should all be listed somewhere.
 
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dmbnpj

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How do you siphon, and with what, since that wort is going to be super hot?
 

android

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sorry, i misread the OP. i thought you had an immersion chiller. i guess without the pump for CF chiller, siphoning might be a problem.
 

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You can get SS racking canes at the LHBS (or on line).
If you're going to siphon through the CFC into the fermenter, make sure you can raise the kettle high enough to get a reasonable flow rate. I use a spigot in the kettle, and need to raise the kettle to about 45" above the fermenter. At that height, it takes me about 20 minutes to drain 5.5g, leaving the wort between 65 and 70F (depending on the time of year).

-a.
 
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dmbnpj

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wow, 20 minutes is a long time. That means you have to leave your tap water hose on for 20 minutes straight while the wort drains? Wouldnt it be more cost effective to just buy the pump in the beginning rather than wasting all that water, and time, over time? Thanks for letting me know it is possible but I think if it takes 20 minutes to drain each time I will just drop the $140 on the pump in the beginning.
 

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I am using 1 keggle, one po man's HLT (aluminum pot that came with turkey fryer that I put a ball valve on), 5 gallon converted cooler for a mash tun, two turkey fryers and a homemade CFC to do all-grain... Just did my first 10 gallon batch today... The only part to crap the bed was my recirculating pump for my CFC.... Died after I accidentally unplugged it at the end of my keggle to carboy transfer....
 
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dmbnpj

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10 gallon batch sounds cool, what recipe did you use?

what pump are you talking about?
 
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dmbnpj

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drilling a hole in a keg is best done with a pilot hole, a step bit, and some lubrication.
This bit is $43 plus tax!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Plus $5 for the lube.


We also bought a 7/16" center punch to start the bit in so it wont walk all over the keg. Is the center punch necessary and will it even work on the stainless keg?
 

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10 gallon batch sounds cool, what recipe did you use?

what pump are you talking about?
I did EdWort's Bee Cave Brewery's Haus Pale Ale.... If you haven't made it, I suggest at least one batch... I am currently draining my first keg of it at an alarming rate....

As far as the pump, it was the cheapo submersible pump from Harbor Freight... This one...

Works good for recirculating ice water through my CFC... And the price is right... Until I can afford to pick up a March pump or two...

Speaking of Harbor Freight, they have step bits on the cheap... It won't last you a long time, but it will get you through a keg or two...
 
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dmbnpj

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How do you hook up your CFC to ice water?

Dont CFC's just connect to a water spigot so you only get the temperature of whatever your tap water is coming out of that spigot?
 

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You sure can. Use one keggle for a boil pot and the cooler to mash in. You will need to find an immersion chiller and batch sparge. Use the other keg to heat mash and sparge water in. My first set up just had brass valves in the keggle that were picked up at a local hardware store. There was a piece of copper pipe from the valve to the center bottom of the boil pot. The HLT had a same type valve.



 
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dmbnpj

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Well I found the 2 pack of step bits today at harbor freight. $14.99 plus tax. Better than $43 but hopefully they will get through the 3 keggles we have.

So, are you telling me the center punch will work on the stainless kegs in order to keep these step bits in place?
 
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Well I found the 2 pack of step bits today at harbor freight. $14.99 plus tax. Better than $43 but hopefully they will get through the 3 keggles we have.

So, are you telling me the center punch will work on the stainless kegs in order to keep these step bits in place?
Yes, or it will walk like crazy. Small pilot hole would be best. And lots of oil.
 
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dmbnpj

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How do you drill a pilot hole without that walking around on you if you dont center punch that first also?
 

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I built a 1/2" copper manifold with drilled holes in bottom and it worked great for my MLT. It's a bit of work, but if you have a drill press, it should not take too long. Some people slot their manifold too. (I set mine up on a CNC at work had it drill holes every 1/4 inch, then rotate a bit, set back 1/8" and start another row. You could just put lightly in a vise and hold with the hand...)
 

Duckfoot

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How do you hook up your CFC to ice water?

Dont CFC's just connect to a water spigot so you only get the temperature of whatever your tap water is coming out of that spigot?
Sorry for the later reply on this one....

Here is a description of what I am running at the moment...

Good luck!
:mug:
 
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dmbnpj

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Ah I see, so I need some sort of water pump. Good thing I havent sold the mag12 pump from my fish tank yet. :)
 
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