PicoBrew questions

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Nick Christensen

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Hi there PicoBrew users – I haven't had time to do a true homebrew since I had a kid 3 years ago. What I have had time to do – with mixed success – is participate in my local brewery's wort share, buying 5 gallons off them and fermenting it at home.

So the idea of the PicoBrew is pretty intriguing, but it's also quite a financial commitment and I'm hoping some experienced users can help with some questions.

  • Aside from using a standard keg, is there any advantage to going Pro vs. C?
  • I already have a 5-gallon keg and a CO2 system. Is it practical to brew two batches using the PicoBrew and then ferment a larger batch in a carboy?
  • Is the Pico Keg small enough to fit in a personal-sized fridge that could be used for temperature regulation during fermentation?
  • If you don't use a small fridge, what do you use for temperature regulation?
  • What kind of heat does it put out / what kind of ventilation do you need? Would you use this in an unfinished basement?
  • Is it at all possible to jerry-rig the PicoPacks to include some personal touches?
  • Other thoughts / feedback?
 

Virginia_Ranger

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1. The standard keg can be much more useful for non-pico brewing if your inclided to do so.
2. I brew two batch of the same receipe (each in thier own keg) and transfer into a 5 gallon for fermentation.
3. Dorm size? I believe so.
4. I ferment under pressure using a spunding valve (not their fast fermentation method) so I let it get up to 78-80 F.
5. You won't need any venelation systems unless the smell affects you (I love it :)).
6. They just announced they will release PicoPacks frames you can buy and fill with your own ingredients (no release date yet).
7. I love my Pico but you have to pair it with more tradiontional brewing ideas to get the best results. The instructions it comes with are really only for the machine and don't cover brewing best practices so don't try and follow it by the book, if you feel like they missed a step, they probably did.
 
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I have a Z1 as I purchased the Z2 and when they launched this they did not tell you how the system would work. The Z2 is simply (2) Z1's, and somewhat cumbersome to try to brew a 5 gallon batch. Other than that the Z1 can ferment in a 5 gallon keg or you can purchase a 2.5 gallon keg and transfer into it. I have a brand new Z1 system that I would like to sell - it is new and never been powered up. I can ship anywhere and am willing to take $1,400 for the system.
 
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