« on: July 24, 2012, 01:36:27 PM »
Definitely sounds like the way to go.
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Perhaps a way to make an Eisbock?
With a pump and a little mod to your design, you could do this.
HLT on bottom, mash tun on top, kettle on side.
I think your 2-tier system will meet your objectives, setting aside construction issues that I'm not qualified to evaluate.
I'm thinking though you could build a 3-tier system that would operate entirely by gravity and do away with lifting and pouring of wort into the boil kettle. The 3-tier design would probably be a little taller than your current milk-crate system. You could save some height by converting a cooler into your mash tun.
Buy a pump.
Filling the HLT, recirculating MT (for step mashes or vorlauf), transfer to kettle, recirc kettle, transfer to fermenter.
Its worth it.