Let's talk brewstands....

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Dude

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Need input.

I'm getting ready to build one--but I need to have it so it doesn't trake up a lot of room, and it needs to be fairly inexpensive to build (less than 200 bucks, for sure. I've got XtrmXJ welding it so I'm good there. Just need inputs on the design. This thing has to grow with me, so it has to be functional at first to only utilize 1 pump, and most importanlt not take up too much space and be portable.

Here is my rough design--PLEASE critique, add suggestions.

Top tier holds the HLT, bottom right tier holds the boil pot, middle left tier holds the mashtun. Shelf below that I will mount the pump and a plate chiller (I'm gettin' a Shirron, dudes!!!!!)

 

Eric_Duel

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I like the design. Well drawn as well.

While I can't comment on the functionality of the design, would it be helpful to build it in parts which hook together? The plumbing would have to disconnect but you could design the left part of your system to fit inside the right side for storage. I only suggest this because of your concern for space. I have a similar situation and have considered this setup.

Best of luck,
Eric
 

DrewsBrews

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Dude said:
Here is my rough design--PLEASE critique, add suggestions.
You call that rough? You should see some of the drafting I have to deal with at my job.

I need to make one these for myself in the next couple of months. I like the layout, especially for space saving. I wouldn't need the space for a pump since I won't use one and I have a brewpot coil chiller already, but those shelves would come in handy.

One thing you might want to keep in mind is that this thing will be top heavy. I'm going to try to splay the wheels and legs out a little at the bottom to give mine extra stability. I was thinking about going with the sheet metal trays like you have, but I've decided that flat bar welded on its edge would be much stronger to handle abuse and the weight of loaded kegs. That or just more square stock the rest of the frame will be made from. Keep us posted on what you end up using.
 

DeRoux's Broux

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just curios, why do you want a pump? it just seems like another piece of equipment that can crap out during the middle of a brew. gravity is free! just curios, and nice design too!
 

Beermaker

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I dont think your going to have enough room under the HLT to stir. And I would recommend making your mash tun a dumper. So much easier on a system like that. Weld 2 uprights that will balance the tun, but can be tilted to dump into a wheel barrow, or bucket. I wish I had one on mine, and it will be my next addition soon. Other wise, it looks pretty good and compact. I think 2' seems a bit wide for the kegs to sit on also.
 

tnlandsailor

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A pump is a great addition to your brewery. 3-tier designs, although pump-free, have the drawback of needing basically a step ladder to access the HLT, plus the danger of having the HLT so high up in the air full of scalding temperature water. With a pump, you can now lower the HLT and have only two tiers to your brewery which is much safer and convenient. In addition, you can utilize your pump to vorlauf your mash much faster and efficiently than manual vorlaufing. You can have my pump when you pry it from my cold dead fingers.....

Regarding stand design, I've always been a fan of modular design. If you have a pump, your HLT can stand all alone on a small stand that is foldable or has legs that are removeable which will save space. I think the kettle should have it's own stand as well. It would be nice to be able to put away the HLT and mash tun during the boil to get a head start on clean up. Having everything on a mondo gargantuan stand just never appealed to me, one, because I just didn't have room to store something that big, and two, because incremental cleanup really saves time on brew day.

Prosit!
 

david_42

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My stand is made of industrial modular shelving. I can just take it apart to move it or shift the shelves up and down whenever I get new gear.

How were you planning on supporting the burners?
 

Baron von BeeGee

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Looks like a sharp design to me. The only thing I notice, and it may not be a factor to you, is that it looks like the design would preclude going to a mashtun capable of direct heat. Could the pump and chiller be alternatively mounted on the front of the sculpture freeing up the space underneath the mashtun for a possible future burner?
 
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Dude

Dude

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DeRoux's Broux said:
just curios, why do you want a pump? it just seems like another piece of equipment that can crap out during the middle of a brew. gravity is free! just curios, and nice design too!
I think a pump is going to be a necessity with the system I eventually evolve to. I most certainly will eventually go to a HERMS or (or HERMIT) type system as my experience level (and desire) grows. Even now sometimes I wish I had a pump to get every last drop of wort out of the CFC!!!

Beermaker said:
I dont think your going to have enough room under the HLT to stir. And I would recommend making your mash tun a dumper. So much easier on a system like that. Weld 2 uprights that will balance the tun, but can be tilted to dump into a wheel barrow, or bucket. I wish I had one on mine, and it will be my next addition soon. Other wise, it looks pretty good and compact. I think 2' seems a bit wide for the kegs to sit on also.
Good observation--but do you guys (all grain) really stir the boil pot all that often? The hop stopper is in the way of the bottom of the pot anyway--so if I stir it is only to incorporate addnl; ingredients I add during the boil. When I designed it I made sure there was enough room to stick my head near the pot--this SHOULD be okay. My mashtun is going to be a rectangular cooler--and although TRUE it will be heavy, that middle tier is low enough where I can move it easily enough. For sure--when/if I go to a keg/kettle mashtun, I'll incorporate a dumping system. Thanks for the future idea!

tnlandsailor said:
Regarding stand design, I've always been a fan of modular design. If you have a pump, your HLT can stand all alone on a small stand that is foldable or has legs that are removeable which will save space. I think the kettle should have it's own stand as well. It would be nice to be able to put away the HLT and mash tun during the boil to get a head start on clean up.
Interesting. Now you are forcing me to re-think this. Thanks, Dennis. :rolleyes: :p

david_42 said:
How were you planning on supporting the burners?
We haven't gotten that nailed down yet--but my plan is to just take the guts from the turkey fryers I had and weld that into place beneath each shelf. I didn't include it on the drawing because it provided too much clutter.

BeeGee said:
Looks like a sharp design to me. The only thing I notice, and it may not be a factor to you, is that it looks like the design would preclude going to a mashtun capable of direct heat. Could the pump and chiller be alternatively mounted on the front of the sculpture freeing up the space underneath the mashtun for a possible future burner?
True, true. I figure it is going to be a long time before I needed that, and I figured it would be easy enough to make work when that time comes. I'm still contemplating taking out that middle shelf to cut down on cost anyway. As for some other ideas as well, I'd like to see if I can adjust the heights a little more to actually make this work with 100% gravity. If it involves setting the mashtun on a block of wood for the time being, so be it. Like I said this has to grow with me.

Thanks for all the comments guys--I'm going to make some changes and repost it.
 

Truble

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For some reason I was not able to see the plan. Must be getting blocked here at work.
 

DeRoux's Broux

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that's cool, i didn't think about the herms or hermit system set-up. i'm just a simplton. i have to keep things on the remedial side :~)

i double the dump option for the mash tun. i hate scooping out grains from that bad boy. we need to get robert to do some modification on ours corey!!!!
 

DrewsBrews

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Ahh. I've seen people refer to whirpooling and recirculating but never asked what they meant.

So now that I have, can anyone direct me to a thread that speaks to the purpose of these so I don't hijack this thread asking questions? :D
 
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Dude

Dude

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tnlandsailor said:
His Royal Dudeness?
Got a problem with that? :p

Dennis..on your website, what burner/frame is that which holds your brewpot? It has those 3 pegs that kind of secure the kettle?

Michael_Schaap said:
Hey Dude, have you seen this? Don't look like it gets much simplier then this...

http://powersbrewery.home.comcast.net/stand.html

I thought you said something about having someone who is going to weld things for you, but was not sure. I never thought copper tubbing would be so strong....
Yeah, I love that brewery, but the copper stand scares the crap out of me. No way is it safe holding all that weight.
 

Truble

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Now that I can see it, I like the approach of moving the brewpot under the Top Tier, saving length of the rig as opposed to one after the other, but I now see what everyone meant about stirring. A pump will allow you to relocate it, though. Looking forward to rev1.2.
 

SwAMi75

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Lookin' good, man. You draw that yourself?

Do you plan to gravity feed from the mash tun to the boil kettle? If so, do you think you've got enough of a drop to do so?

Also, do you plan to heat your strike water in the boil kettle, then pump it into the mash tun? If so, have you considered setting it up so it underlets? That is, pumping the water in under the grain bed, to help preserve heat? That would be sweet.

I'm liking it......thanks God I've got you to try all this stuff out, so I can learn from your mistakes. :D I'd like to add a water manifold and a filter onto mine. That would kick ass.

Hope you get it sorted out before I get back.....me want. :D
 

AHammer16

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I am no where near the caliber of you guys but I just have to say, over build and over engineer because you will regret it if you dont. There is nothing more aggrivating than having to go back and redo something or add something on.
Think about your brewing future, build to that end.
 
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Dude

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Okay, here is what I think is going to be the final design. Right now it can be run completely with gravity, but can easily be adapted to utilize a pump. It can also be fitted where I can use a keg as a MLT in case I go away from the cooler. There will absolutely no lifting or re-arranging of heavy objects until the carboy is filled at the end of the brew session. No lifting of scalding hot water over my head, no extreme dangers.
I took many suggestions into account, but I think this is it.
One question though--is 20" gonna be wide enough? Worried about COG.

All heights are in inches and uh, sorry for the rough design. ;)


 

DeRoux's Broux

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looks good dude. as said before, the nice thing about using a keg for a MLT isw the abaility to add direct heat. just nice to have in case of...well... you know :~)
 
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Dude

Dude

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DeRoux's Broux said:
looks good dude. as said before, the nice thing about using a keg for a MLT isw the abaility to add direct heat. just nice to have in case of...well... you know :~)
I totally agree. That is why it can easily be modified in the future to do just that. Right now, I'm set in my ways of doing single infusion mashes. :p

Just wanted to bump this cause I finally got most of the metal and it is getting welded this weekend. I am so psyched. My father in law is doing all the welding (didn't even know he could weld until about a week or so ago). He gave me a cut list this weekend and a parts list. He can even get some of the expanded metal and grinding wheels for realy cheap from where he works.

I'll be sure to post pics during the process and afterwards. Hopefully the inaugural brew will be in early March!

DeRoux...what BTU are your burners? I got a couple from agrisupply that claim 170,000. I think I am boiling with a 55,000 right now, so it should be a HUGE upgrade.

:rockin:
 

DeRoux's Broux

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Dude said:
I'll be sure to post pics during the process and afterwards. Hopefully the inaugural brew will be in early March!

DeRoux...what BTU are your burners? I got a couple from agrisupply that claim 170,000. I think I am boiling with a 55,000 right now, so it should be a HUGE upgrade.
cool! glad to hear it's movin' along.

my burners are just plane ol' 55,000 btu burners, so that will be a big time saver.

keep us posted :rockin:
 

Truble

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I am ordering a couple of those today! I am gathering my parts to make some more outdoor equipment, and those would rock.
 

anthrobe

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Dude,
definately keep us updated with pics and suck. I have spent the last couple of days looking at different systems. I am fed up with extract brewing and am going all grain soon. I was thinking of a three tier system similar to deroux's but have not decided yet.
 

Nate

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Not sure if you have access to a welder or not (my apologies if I missed this), but angle iron is pretty cheap if you buy it at the right place. The angles are also great places to mount things. My stand is shown below...
 

Truble

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just ordered a couple of those burners. Thx for posting the link. I hope to have a system thrread started soon. still designing and acquiring....
 

ian

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That is a great deal on those burners
I think that based on some of the deals I've seen that someone should post a thread with all the deals that they've found on. Maybe one of the mods could make it a sticky?

I'd start it but I have no real deals to post. . . .
 

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Dude,
if you are nervous about the stability of your stand, you could always weld some backets on the ends of your stand and make some outriggers that could be bolted in place during heavy wieght brewing.
I can't draw one, but if you weld some square stock with the open end facing away from the length end of the frame your outriggers could slide either inside or outside that and be bolted in place, make a frame then have some beefy flat stock welded on the bottom so the legs won't be in your way. Sorry if this isn't clear, but I'm running late for something. Good Luck & hope this helps
 
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Dude

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Nate said:
Not sure if you have access to a welder or not (my apologies if I missed this), but angle iron is pretty cheap if you buy it at the right place. The angles are also great places to mount things. My stand is shown below...
My GAWD! Nice website, nice brewery, nice everything! :rockin:

Hippie said:
Dude,
if you are nervous about the stability of your stand, you could always weld some backets on the ends of your stand and make some outriggers that could be bolted in place during heavy wieght brewing.
I can't draw one, but if you weld some square stock with the open end facing away from the length end of the frame your outriggers could slide either inside or outside that and be bolted in place, make a frame then have some beefy flat stock welded on the bottom so the legs won't be in your way. Sorry if this isn't clear, but I'm running late for something. Good Luck & hope this helps
No, that makes perfect sens, and we will probably end up doing somethign like that. Thanks!
 

pokey

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something suspicious about that being a 170,000 BTU burner....looks EXACTLY the same as the 55,000 BTU burners that they sell at Northern Brewer....

But then again, the price sure is right even if it is mis-labeled.
 
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Dude

Dude

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pokey said:
something suspicious about that being a 170,000 BTU burner....looks EXACTLY the same as the 55,000 BTU burners that they sell at Northern Brewer....

But then again, the price sure is right even if it is mis-labeled.
I am having reservations too, after comparing the two in person. They look pretty much identical in size, weight, etc. I hooked both of them up and the 170K one doesn't seem to be much louder or stronger flame. We'll see when I boil with it on Thursday. If it doesn't do much better than the burner I have now in the turkey fryer, I'll upgrade to plan B, a multijet burner.
 

DrewsBrews

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Are you hooking the burners up to a 20 psi regulator? Makes a big difference vs. having the same burner hooked up to a 10 psi regulator.

I used a 55k btu burner connected to a 10 psi reg on my first couple of batches. Now I use a burner like you bought connected to 20 psi reg and there is no comparison. Wide open, I can hear it while standing in the living room on the far side of the house with the doors and windows closed. Not to mention it heats up water just about twice as fast.
 
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