Author Topic: upgrading to the next level  (Read 694 times)

Offline hulkavitch

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upgrading to the next level
« on: May 03, 2014, 10:22:49 AM »
I currently have a 10 gallon home depot cooler with a copper manifold and a 16 gallon bayou classic with thermometer and sight glass for my boil kettle. I use an immersion chiller, batch sparge, and a single camp chef burner.Looking in the future to move to a tier system. I thought i would turn my current mash tun into my HLT, keep the boil kettle as is and add a new mash tun.

I was thinking 20 gal stainless with a false bottom and all the other bells and whistles. Any options/direction would be appreciated. Low cost better...but i have been known to blow a lot of money in the past.

Offline troybinso

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Re: upgrading to the next level
« Reply #1 on: May 03, 2014, 10:39:22 AM »
I would say that say that all you need is a hot liquor tank and another burner (or electric element) for it. If your mash tun is working fine, I wouldn't mess with it. Hot liquor tank is the easiest and cheapest and mash tun is the most complicated thing to add to the brewhouse. Just a big kettle with a spigot and thermometer. Get it up off the ground so you can use gravity to the mash tun.

How big a batch are you making?

Offline hulkavitch

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Re: upgrading to the next level
« Reply #2 on: May 03, 2014, 10:43:18 AM »
I just moved to 10 gallon batches, I have 3 of them under my belt. Going well with the exception that it takes 1.5 hrs to chill

Offline hulkavitch

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Re: upgrading to the next level
« Reply #3 on: May 03, 2014, 10:51:19 AM »
i guess I could do another home depot cooler with a spigot and a pump

Offline klickitat jim

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Re: upgrading to the next level
« Reply #4 on: May 03, 2014, 11:06:07 AM »
Pump. Recirculating (whirlpool) will cut your cool time. I have a 60' 1/2" copper whirlpool IC and with 45-50º well water I have a 1 minute half life when cooling. With 50 being the coldest I can go, I drop 75º in a minute, then another 35 or so in another minute, and so on. Takes about 15 minutes to get below 60.

I also have a SS direct fire recirculated mash tun. I get nice clear well converted wort that way, and with my camp chef on low flame it holds mash temp nicely.
« Last Edit: May 03, 2014, 11:08:34 AM by klickitat jim »

Offline hulkavitch

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Re: upgrading to the next level
« Reply #5 on: May 03, 2014, 12:18:04 PM »
any recommendations on a pump that wont break the bank?
 

Offline Steve in TX

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Re: upgrading to the next level
« Reply #6 on: May 03, 2014, 12:20:56 PM »

any recommendations on a pump that wont break the bank?

Chugger pumps. You can get a pump with a stainless head for the same price as march with a plastic head. Chugger with a plastic head is even cheaper.

Offline klickitat jim

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Re: upgrading to the next level
« Reply #7 on: May 03, 2014, 03:29:41 PM »
Mine is chugger from more beer. Forgot what I paid.

Offline euge

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Re: upgrading to the next level
« Reply #8 on: May 03, 2014, 06:06:32 PM »
Muahahahh...!

If you can afford it just make a good decision.
The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. -Richard P. Feynman

Offline hulkavitch

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Re: upgrading to the next level
« Reply #9 on: May 05, 2014, 08:43:58 AM »
are you implying that spending more money is always the best decision?  I once was told the best thermometer to buy was a thermoworks for $100 i ended up buying a different model from thermoworks  that takes 2 secs more to read for $30....

Offline euge

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Re: upgrading to the next level
« Reply #10 on: May 05, 2014, 10:29:30 AM »
No. But I can see people thinking that way.

I mean make the best decision that fits your needs and doubly so as the costs goes up. Cheaper is preferable in my way of thinking but sometimes you gotta spend some extra to get to that next level. Avoid buying equipment  that'll necessitate buying more equipment for it to perform properly unless it is all part of the plan. Unfortunately I have plenty of equipment that I no longer use sitting collecting dust, and as an aggregate they add up to significant investment.

The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. -Richard P. Feynman

Offline Jeff M

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Re: upgrading to the next level
« Reply #11 on: May 05, 2014, 10:34:32 AM »
No. But I can see people thinking that way.

I mean make the best decision that fits your needs and doubly so as the costs goes up. Cheaper is preferable in my way of thinking but sometimes you gotta spend some extra to get to that next level. Avoid buying equipment  that'll necessitate buying more equipment for it to perform properly unless it is all part of the plan. Unfortunately I have plenty of equipment that I no longer use sitting collecting dust, and as an aggregate they add up to significant investment.

I think its time to start selling some of the dusty things to gain back some of the $$!
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Offline S. cerevisiae

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Re: upgrading to the next level
« Reply #12 on: May 05, 2014, 02:51:40 PM »
I once was told the best thermometer to buy was a thermoworks for $100 i ended up buying a different model from thermoworks  that takes 2 secs more to read for $30....

Using that train of thought, is a $30.00 thermometer that much better than a $10.00 Lab thermometer?  I learned a long time ago that the cheapest route to satisfaction with one's gear is to purchase what one wants the first time, even if it means having to save for a significant amount of time.   

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Offline AmandaK

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Re: upgrading to the next level
« Reply #13 on: May 05, 2014, 03:39:09 PM »
I once was told the best thermometer to buy was a thermoworks for $100 i ended up buying a different model from thermoworks  that takes 2 secs more to read for $30....

Using that train of thought, is a $30.00 thermometer that much better than a $10.00 Lab thermometer?  I learned a long time ago that the cheapest route to satisfaction with one's gear is to purchase what one wants the first time, even if it means having to save for a significant amount of time.

Guess that depends on how many times you break the lab thermometer.
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