Membership questions? Log in issues? Email

Author Topic: Preparing for the switich to all grain  (Read 2595 times)

Offline darvyle

  • Cellarman
  • **
  • Posts: 53
Preparing for the switich to all grain
« on: January 08, 2010, 04:52:41 pm »
Hello everyone, I've been lurking on the forums for a bit and I've got a few questions for the masses. I'm looking to make the switch to all grain brewing but I'm not sure what equipment might be best or exactly what i need.

I need a cooler to convert into a mash tun and I'm not sure of the exact size or style that might work best. I like a range of beer so I'd like to be able big and session beers, If i had to lean in a direction i make more big beers then session beers.  should I go rectangular or cylindrical?  I'm going to make the conversion to brewing 10 gallon batches when i go all grain.

Scales. I'm going to need a good scale to weigh out my grains, any suggestions on a quality scale?

Mills. what should I look for in a mill?

Storage for grain, my basement is on the damp side so I'm leaning towards getting something that is air and moisture tight.  Any suggestions on good containers?  Anything i should do to prepare my grain before it goes into storage?  I've heard things like freezing it or flushing the grain with CO2.

I'm going to use my existing pot to heat water for mashing/sparging the grains.  getting a new pot for the conversion to 10 gallon batches.  Is there anything I'm missing?

Are there any pieces of equipment that you wish you had when you made the switch to all grain that i might want to look into?

Thanks for your feedback.

Offline bluesman

  • I must live here
  • **********
  • Posts: 8825
  • Delaware
Re: Preparing for the switich to all grain
« Reply #1 on: January 08, 2010, 05:07:55 pm »
I would start with the following items.

1. 70 Quart Coleman Extreme
2. Escali 11lb scale.
3. JSP Maltmill
4. Rubbermaid Storage Totes
5. Banjo burner
6. assorted fittings and hoses for transfer
7. SST water supply line (hose braid)

This is enough to get you started. Others will chime in and add to the list.
Ron Price

Offline Hokerer

  • I spend way too much time on the AHA forum
  • ********
  • Posts: 2654
  • Manassas, VA
Re: Preparing for the switich to all grain
« Reply #2 on: January 08, 2010, 05:31:10 pm »
Also, for a pot for 10 gal batches, get, at minimum, a 15 gal pot.  And, if you don't already have one, you're gonna need some sort of chiller to cool it down after the boil.

Offline darvyle

  • Cellarman
  • **
  • Posts: 53
Re: Preparing for the switich to all grain
« Reply #3 on: January 08, 2010, 06:13:29 pm »
Thanks for the feedback guys, yeah i have an immersion chiller that i made out of 50ft of copper tubing.   I've read that a old stainless steel 15 gal keg works great, I'm going to give my distributor a call and see if he has any laying around or intended to be scrapped and convert that.

Offline mrdrysdale64

  • Cellarman
  • **
  • Posts: 41
    • Bay Area Mashtronauts
Re: Preparing for the switich to all grain
« Reply #4 on: January 08, 2010, 07:14:15 pm »
The only advice I have to give you is that bigger is better. I started all grain with a B3 set-up with a 7 gallon kettle and two five gallon Gott coolers for the mash tun and HLT. I found out real quick that the capacity was too small for a big gravity beer. I believe the minimum kettle size is 40 quarts. That will give you lots of room for a rolling boil for up to a 8 gallon batch. Obviously if you are considering 10 gallon batches you will need an even bigger kettle. Spend the money now for what you want because you will ultimately spend more later!  ;D

If you have $2700 of extra cash; there is a Brutus 10 on eBay that would take care of most of your brewing needs for a while!  ;D I would buy it but I have access to the original just a few miles down the road!
Mike "Mr. Drysdale" White
Bay Area Mashtronauts

Offline mpg157

  • 1st Kit
  • *
  • Posts: 3
Re: Preparing for the switich to all grain
« Reply #5 on: January 08, 2010, 08:36:49 pm »
I would consider trying to go all grain with the Brew in a Bag method.  I did this, and it was very easy to make the transition.  All you need is a ten gallon kettle, a wort chiller, and a bag you make from a sheer curtain from wallmart.  At least try this before getting mash tuns and all the other equipment the other posts suggest.  You will have to get a large brew kettle and a wort chiller anyway, so the only expense to try Brew in a Bag is $7.00 for the curtain and some time sewing it into a bag.  You can google "Brew in a Bag" to find websites that give step by step instructions with photos.  I have been brewing in the bag for the past year and have won several medals with this method.


Offline denny

  • Administrator
  • Retired with too much time on my hands
  • *****
  • Posts: 27129
  • Noti OR [1991.4, 287.6deg] AR
    • Dennybrew
Re: Preparing for the switich to all grain
« Reply #6 on: January 09, 2010, 08:37:09 am »
For cooler conversion ideas, see
Life begins at 60.....1.060, that is!

The best, sharpest, funniest, weirdest and most knowledgable minds in home brewing contribute on the AHA forum. - Alewyfe

"The whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so certain of themselves, and wiser people so full of doubts." - Bertrand Russell