Welcome to the homeBBBrew board!
Like the BBB, the homeBBBrew board is not a club, just a place to talk about making beer. Is there a swap you would like to see happen? If we can find a few others who have something similar then lets do it!

I just really like the work levifunk is doing!

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02/04/08 01:35 PM  
Brewing Setup
I'm looking to upgrade my system... something 10-15 gallons. I have been planning to build a system myself for a while now, but due to time constraints, I'm thinking just purchasing a system. The one on the top of my list right now is the Brew-Magic (my brother would split the cost with me). So this brings up the question... what do you guys brew with? Are you happy with it? What would you change?



02/04/08 03:56 PM  
Re: Brewing Setup
I have a morebeer sculpture 1000 with modifications for HERMS. I've had it for about 5 years and still love it. I also acquired two of their 12 gallon conical fermenters.
02/04/08 07:58 PM  
Re: Brewing Setup
I have a 12 gal SS kettle with a false bottom for a mash tun. I have an insulated wrap on the mash tun. For my boil, I have a 15 gallon SS kettle with a false bottom. I picked up a 20 gallon restaurant grade Al kettle for a hot liquor tank. I still need to fit a valve on the hot liquor tank. My brewing involves lots of moving, as I haven't built a brew stand yet. I eventually want to build a HERMS type system. I use a counterflow chiller with a pump to transfer the wort.

For fermentation, I have a cooled and heated conical. I truly believe given the choice of spending money on mash control or fermentation control, the later is better choice. Most brewers I know, do not have fancy systems, but they make goodd to excellent beer.

I normally brew 5 gallon batches since I like have a variety on hand.

02/04/08 08:25 PM  
Re: Brewing Setup
Mash in a cooler (batch sparge)

boil in a converted keg (13.5 gallon)

ferment in better bottles

02/05/08 12:45 PM  
Re: Brewing Setup
Mash and batch sparge in 12 gallon cooler.

Boil in either 7.5 gallon SS pot or 15.5 gallon keggle, depending on batch. (5 gal is more common due to wanting variety and limited mash size)

Ferment in carboys in water bath or with heat wrap for temp control. (Although ambient is working good right now. ~62-64)

It's nothing fancy but makes good beer. As WitSock mentioned, fermentation temp control is paramount.

02/05/08 12:58 PM  
Re: Brewing Setup
OK, I live in a shoebox-sized apartment, so don't laugh. I've only been doing all-grain for a little less than a year and it took SteveG's dinging of extract & specialty grain results to get me to make even that jump.

- Mash in 1 or 2 cylindrical 5-gallon coolers depending on batch size/OG. Batch sparge

- Boil in 2-4 4-gallon pots on my gas range top.

- Ferment in glass 5 and 6 gallon carboys.

Temp control is a big issue for me as I live on the top floor of my building and, what with heat rising and all, I rarely get ambient temps below 68 and am often in the low 70s. I have recently gotten a small fridge and a t-stat control kit, but was embarrassed to find I have nowhere to put it! Guess I'll have to give up some furniture . . .

02/06/08 10:07 AM  
Re: Brewing Setup
Erik, I do all grain in a small apartment too. I mash in a cheap thin army surplus store 8-10 gallon steel pot, lautering with a hose braid manifold attached to a gooseneck siphoner.

I boil in a sturdy restaurant supply 8G aluminum pot, getting wort out with a slotted copper ring attached to a gooseneck siphoner, and cooling through a counterflow chiller attached to the sink.

The simplicity of a small apartment setup can be nice: a batch takes about 3.5 hours from the time we start heating the mash water to the time everything is clean at the end, with a fair bit of time to relax in between.

I agree temp control can be tough. But, I'm able to keep things at 68F or below by putting a T-shirt on the carboy, wetting it one time, and then stacking ~10 ice cubes up near the neck of the carboy 3X each day (before and after work and before bed). They melt slowly and keep the shirt wet with cold water. Regardless of yeast strain, I usually stop doing it as soon as the ferment shows any sign of slowing.

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