Author Topic: The Dreaded O Word  (Read 2049 times)

Offline dbeechum

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The Dreaded O Word
« on: August 22, 2010, 11:16:50 AM »
Hi, my name is Drew Beechum and I'm a disorganization-aholic.

It would be funny how horrifically disorganized I am in meat space (my computer data on the other hand - ocd like level of organization), but it drives my partner nuts. She takes one look around my office and runs screaming! :)

So, since I'm moving into my first house shortly (fingers crossed - mostly from the mound of paperwork needed to sign) I figure I should come up with a battleplan for turning my 300 square foot detached garage into a nifty and spiffy brewhouse. It'll be good for the brewhouse and for my partner to spend time there too. .

I've got grain storage down in a set of 5 gallon buckets with gamma seal lids (Like these, but there are better prices online) and some simliar things. Specialty grains get vacuum sealed and put into bins.

The rest.. the rest I'm hopeless about. So for those of you with piles of equipment - how do you organize it? Any clever tricks for reducing the floor space needed for the various bits and bobs? Carboys? Kegs? Hoses? Burners, etc? Got photos of how you organize everything?

The equipment list for me:
~20 cornie kegs
~8 carboys of various shapes
2 10 gallon kegs for fermenting
2 burners
78 quart mash tun
26 gallon boiler
2 50 liter kettles
1 8 gallon kettle
1 pump
1 CFC
2 IC's
3 CO2 tanks
1 racking cane / carboy cap CO2 barb assembly
various bits and bobs...

Lots of stuff and I want to get it squared away.
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Offline euge

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Re: The Dreaded O Word
« Reply #1 on: August 22, 2010, 11:39:30 AM »
Drew congratulations on purchasing a house! You'll love it though there's always something to fix LOL. I bought mine with brewing in mind. Not a determining factor just a consideration.

I keep my stuff along one section of a wall in the garage and stack kettles inside each other. Same with buckets. IC goes in a bucket or kettle. Burners- basically the whole brewery can be broken down an fit along a 6' section of wall. Empty kegs or those needing repair get stored there too which I stack everything else on including the 70qt tun. Full kegs get stored in a cool closet. Fermenter chambers are on mover's dollies and I can move them about the house if need be. There's a grain area in the garage but it's basically an office chair LOL

This still leaves me room for a truck and a car in the garage. I pull one out to brew.

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

Offline weithman5

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Re: The Dreaded O Word
« Reply #2 on: August 22, 2010, 12:28:32 PM »
first fill the 20 kegs with beer.  then put those into some refrigeration type unit (see how things are getting consolidated)  next invite a bunch of friends over to drink all the beer. this will make room for more beer and you can thus empty some of those plastic buckets of grain.....

congrats

Don
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Offline denny

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Re: The Dreaded O Word
« Reply #3 on: August 22, 2010, 12:40:56 PM »
Think vertical...use shelves and hang stuff on walls.
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Offline capozzoli

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Re: The Dreaded O Word
« Reply #4 on: August 22, 2010, 01:22:16 PM »
^ works with family members too^
Beer, its whats for dinner.

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Offline hoptomation

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Re: The Dreaded O Word
« Reply #5 on: August 22, 2010, 01:40:19 PM »
if you do isle shelving make sure there is enough space to walk up and down and pull things out.  think like an industrial engineer so label all shelving space with tape and its purpose or tape off spaces on the floor for larger pieces of equipment.  keep like/common process equipment together, helps keep things in manageable sizes of equipment lots.

heavy duty roughneck rubbermaid bins work great as well for smaller misc gear.  i have one for misc dry ingredients, scales, mill, storage, etc; another for cooking equip tools, thermometers, ph; another for bottling, carboy, sanitation, anything post fermentation.  i've doubled up on a few pieces of equipment to keep the organization clean, simple, true (like hydrometer for cooking and also for post fermentation storage) but it hasn't failed me yet.
Cheers - Luke

Offline rabid_dingo

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Re: The Dreaded O Word
« Reply #6 on: August 22, 2010, 02:19:49 PM »
For a second there I thought you were going to talk about Oxidation...:D

Get a couple of bicycle hooks or ladder hooks, that are coated in rubber or vinyl. Use them to hang
all your tubing.

I have three piles of cornies around the brewery(Garage). Specifically, the full-o-beer
ones are right next to the fridge waiting their turn. Those that are "clean" usually sitting on PBW or
Starsan are labeled with their contents using painters blue tape and a sharpie and are further away
from the fridge. Single stack. And the rest that I have yet to recondition and put new o-rings on are
stacked vertically two tall up against the far wall... As soon as a keg blows, rinse out and PBW for
storage no presure.

And my specialty grain is in shoe box sized sterilite bins(they hold 6# perfectly)
on shelves, large shipping label on the front with the contents, lovibond and potential gravity info...

Congratulations and good luck!  ;D
Ruben * Colorado :)

Offline gordonstrong

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Re: The Dreaded O Word
« Reply #7 on: August 22, 2010, 03:18:17 PM »
Quote
For a second there I thought you were going to talk about Oxidation...


Or worse, Oprah.

I tend to think of organization not in terms of optimizing for storage, but optimizing for retrieval.  So think about what items you use the most and have those most handy.  If you have other stuff that is essentially bulk, then you can have that less accessible.  Use your computer geek mind and think if your supplies should be FIFO or LIFO -- it affects how you design your storage.

If you have a lot of kegs, stack them.  You can go dense with them.  Carboys put in their boxes when not in use so they can be more easily stacked. 

Understand what supplies are likely to vary in quantity widely and don't dense pack those. Leave room for the ebb and flow of brewing. I've seen people who pack everything away so tightly that it takes them forever to get everything out to brew. And you don't want to have to re-engineer your storage every time you buy a new gadget or restock some supplies.

If you are going to brew in the garage, keep supplies near equipment (grain near mill, for instance). Think workflow as part of your brewing process. Whatever causes you to take fewer steps and do less work is a win.  Your brewing system should be always set up or be ready to go quickly; don't give yourself reasons not to brew.

All of this is pretty personalized, so it's hard to generalize.  Be flexible and adapt; you probably won't get it right the first time, and you should be open-minded about changing it as you see better ways of doing it after you brew a few times.
Gordon Strong • Beavercreek, Ohio • AHA Member since 1997 • Twitter: GordonStrong

Offline dbeechum

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Re: The Dreaded O Word
« Reply #8 on: August 22, 2010, 07:06:26 PM »
Or worse, Oprah.

No, not the Oprah!

Would love to see some photos of how people have their breweries setup. I tell you those kegs are a pain in the rear in terms of space.
Drew Beechum - Maltosefalcons.com
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Offline tschmidlin

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Re: The Dreaded O Word
« Reply #9 on: August 22, 2010, 09:29:01 PM »
Would love to see some photos of how people have their breweries setup. I tell you those kegs are a pain in the rear in terms of space.
I added some "uprights" to one of my shelving units that extends it to the ceiling.  Now I stack kegs on their side on the top shelf, 3 to a row and however high I need.  I can fit at least 15 kegs there, but I never have that many empty at one time.
Tom Schmidlin

Offline mthogan1997

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Re: The Dreaded O Word
« Reply #10 on: August 23, 2010, 12:34:07 AM »
Since I park cars in my brewery, I put caster wheels on my shelving (the 5-tier, free-standing kind they sell at lowes), and my brew rig. For the shelving, I attached the wheels to a sheet of 3/8 plywood and glued/screwed it to the bottom shelf.

Rolling the shelves and brew rig into position keeps everything close for set-up and clean up even though they are not close for storage.

Offline bluesman

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Re: The Dreaded O Word
« Reply #11 on: August 23, 2010, 03:31:49 AM »
Now is chance to finally get things right.  ;)
Easy for me to say. 
Some great ideas noted above.  Conceptualize the flow and lay it out on paper.
Flow is key.  Minimize repeptitive motions.  That's how it's done in a manufacturing environment.
I don't envy you.  Moving sucks but it gives you a chance to improve your living environment.

Congrats and good luck!
Ron Price

Offline MDixon

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Re: The Dreaded O Word
« Reply #12 on: August 23, 2010, 05:25:25 AM »
Wow if I had 300 sf for brewing I wouldn't have to circle the garage in shelves. I keep a majority of my stuff on desk tops I got for free. They were computer desk tops (nice ones) which were being thrown away. I put them on shelf brackets reported to hold 1000lb each and keep my kettles and such up there. My brewery sets up on cinder blocks or whatever when needed. Certainly not ideal.
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Offline Slowbrew

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Re: The Dreaded O Word
« Reply #13 on: August 23, 2010, 11:09:52 AM »
Gorilla shelves from Sam's Club work great.  Adjustable shelves and heavy duty.

You can also build a cabinet designed for cornies in the basement (assuming you have one).  I built one that holds 10 kegs and my glass primaries on an outside basement wall.  It works like a natural cooler and keeps the kegs at cellar temps without having to keep the basement cold.

Paul
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Offline deepsouth

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Re: The Dreaded O Word
« Reply #14 on: August 23, 2010, 01:25:07 PM »
i built a bigger house and i still need more storage....  you never seem to have enough.....
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