Author Topic: Go big or go home!!??  (Read 4286 times)

Offline ccfoo242

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Go big or go home!!??
« on: February 17, 2012, 06:18:50 PM »
There should be a warning to all would-be all grain brewers: don't order your first ingredients while drunk!  :o

So I was, a few weeks ago, when I ordered morebeer's Rogue I2PA clone kit.

And here I am, 2 days before my first all-grain brew day, wondering what have I got myself into!

It really wouldn't be a problem except that I only have a 5 gallon cooler for a mash tun. 17 pounds of grain is about 5 pounds more than it can handle. So, maybe I'll improvise and put 10 lbs in the cooler and 7 lbs in my boil kettle (or bottling bucket?).  I could just cut back on the grains and make up for the lost gravity with DME. 

I'm really not stressing over it...this will be fun and I love learning new stuff.

Any words of wisdom?


Intra cervisiam est deus.

Offline dannyjed

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Re: Go big or go home!!??
« Reply #1 on: February 17, 2012, 06:22:12 PM »
You could try a larger rectangle cooler.
Dan Chisholm

Offline a10t2

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Re: Go big or go home!!??
« Reply #2 on: February 17, 2012, 06:30:34 PM »
Or do two mashes.
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Offline brushvalleybrewer

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Re: Go big or go home!!??
« Reply #3 on: February 17, 2012, 06:46:55 PM »
In a humble log cabin off an unregarded back road, somewhere, deep in the heart of Pennsylvania’s hill country, we find our intrepid hero — the Brush Valley Brewer.

Offline a10t2

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Re: Go big or go home!!??
« Reply #4 on: February 17, 2012, 06:48:48 PM »
Beer is like porn. You can buy it, but it's more fun to make your own.
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Offline gmac

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Re: Go big or go home!!??
« Reply #5 on: February 17, 2012, 07:02:02 PM »
You could try a larger rectangle cooler.

Just make sure it's blue.  Blue is very important, probably more important than your ingredients, yeast or fermentation temps.  Blue makes it all better.

And there's nothing wrong with doing things (except driving) when you're drunk. Many of my best decisions have been made with beer involved. 

Offline bluesman

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Re: Go big or go home!!??
« Reply #6 on: February 17, 2012, 07:19:26 PM »
Don't hesitate to make an appropriate size yeast starter.

...and don't fear the foam.
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Offline ccfoo242

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Re: Go big or go home!!??
« Reply #7 on: February 17, 2012, 10:45:55 PM »
OK, so I'm supposed to get drunk and make a large yeast starter in a big blue cooler...got it, thanks!  :P

Seriously, though, I should just divide everything in half and do 2 mashes?

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Online tschmidlin

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Re: Go big or go home!!??
« Reply #8 on: February 18, 2012, 12:46:20 AM »
That would definitely work - not make two batches, but mash half and collect the runnings, dump the grain and do the next mash.  While the second half of the grains is mashing I would heat the first batch of wort to 180 or so and hold it there until the second half is done.

Or do two mashes side by side, collect from the first then dump the grains, dump the second half into the lauter tun and collect again.

Or call a friend who has a bigger mash tun.
Tom Schmidlin

Offline majorvices

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Re: Go big or go home!!??
« Reply #9 on: February 18, 2012, 06:39:18 AM »
I think this is a sign you need a bigger mash tun. $30 bucks and you càn have one big enough for twice that size mash. And you will only run into this problem again, soon.
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Offline ccfoo242

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Re: Go big or go home!!??
« Reply #10 on: February 18, 2012, 11:06:16 AM »
Would a false bottom sized for a 5 gallon round cooler fit the 10 gallon one?

I don't plan to normally do beers this big.  An standard IPA would be the most I would normally brew, so the 5 gallon cooler should be ok for most.

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Offline melferburque

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Re: Go big or go home!!??
« Reply #11 on: February 18, 2012, 11:11:34 AM »
Would a false bottom sized for a 5 gallon round cooler fit the 10 gallon one?

I don't plan to normally do beers this big.  An standard IPA would be the most I would normally brew, so the 5 gallon cooler should be ok for most.

the smaller false bottom I used worked in a ten gallon because it was domed, but it wasn't ideal.  fortunately it was my buddy that bought that, I learned from his mistake and bought the larger one, fits nice and snug in my ten gallon igloo.

Offline malzig

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Re: Go big or go home!!??
« Reply #12 on: February 18, 2012, 03:08:46 PM »
Or consider using your 5 gallon cooler and making two entirely separate half-batches.  That way, when things go wrong with the first one, you can try and fix it on the second one.

Offline ccfoo242

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Re: Go big or go home!!??
« Reply #13 on: February 18, 2012, 09:16:51 PM »
Ok, 2 mashes...I'll let you all know how I do...thanks for all the info!

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Offline majorvices

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Re: Go big or go home!!??
« Reply #14 on: February 19, 2012, 12:52:06 PM »
I just use a bog cooler with a stainless braid from a water return line. cheap. easy. ala Denny Conn. see www.dennybrew.com
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