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Equipment to move into all grain - 5-6 gal batch size

I already got some good advice to get a 10 gal brew kettle, would the 7 gal all grain starter system on NB be adequate for the mash and sparging ?

I am just trying to get my head around what I need, what it will cost and what space I will need. I really cannot imagine going beyond the 5 or 6 gallon batch size. ( famous last words I know…).

Thank you,

Tom

Well it depends what’s in the starter kit. All you really need is a pot and a paint strainer bag for biab. And of course something to ferment in. Of course you can buy a bunch of other stuff. It’s a hobby that can be as simple or as complicated as you want. If you want to use a mash tun you probably already have a cooler you can use.

Lots of ways to do it. I started all grain with the “cheap and easy” batch sparge in a cooler (dennybrew.com). I’ve tweaked here and there, but haven’t felt the need to try any other system. BIAB folks say the same about their setup. Do you have any specific questions or concerns about either approach you want to ask about?

I’m not an all grain brewer but keep some information available. Take a look at this site. Will be able to answer some of your questions when you play with some numbers.

I just looked at that all grain kit… for $230, I don’t know that it makes much sense. Keep in mind, you’ll still need a kettle and burner on top of it. My mash tun was a $30 cooler, a $20 conversion kit from Bargain Fittings, and a bazooka tube (I don’t remember how much that was). The BIAB option is cheaper, yet.

Thank you for all the help. I will take it slow and do another extract batch first. The joy of home brewing has opened my eyes a bit regarding all the extract recipes out there. I think my real desire is to be able to experiment a bit more than just taking the kit and following the steps. In reading I see there are many relatively safe ways to customize the brew a bit.

I have plenty of coolers in the basement and already have a burner, so I will find some videos of what the process looks like in action to help me figure out what I really need to buy other than a larger kettle. I am often guilty of jumping in with both feet and accumulating more shiney new toys then I need.

Thank you again

Tom

What size is your kettle? You could probably do a biab 3 gallon kit to get your feet wet

I only have a 5 gallon right now.

That will work. Mash in with 3 gallon s of water then drain in a strainer over the pot pour some more warm water over the grain until you get about 3.5 gallon s of wort and commence your boil as in extract. We can post some recipes for you if you want.

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I mash my 3G recipes in 5-5.5g…but you u can always add water after the mash…or in the fermenter…keep a close eye out for boilovers during the hot break.

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Last year did. Start brewing allgrain. And because had. All the equipment. All ready at home. Because of extract brewing. Only had to invest in a mashtun with false bottom. And a grain mill. Started out with. A 10 gallon cooler. And put my false bottom in. Works perfect. Did buy now a 10 gallon brew kettle. Converted this to mash tun. Feel got better. Temp control. When temp gets low. Just add some heat again.

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Here is a great source to start batch sparging if you haven’t already seen it http://www.dennybrew.com/

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That is a great site, thank you ! I was thinking I needed a round cooler until I read that.

Hey, you can’t get very easily cornered in a round tun!!:stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye: Sneezles61

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A round tun? Anywhere from 1900 to 2100 pounds? And I thought I was imprecise in my measurements :wink:

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I started with extract and rapidly moved to BIAB partial mashes. Spent a lot of time debating going AG and finally pulled the trigger over a year ago. I can do double batches and I now kinda wish I would have gone bigger. I got a 15 gallon kettle from Spike Brewing, did a cheap and easy mash tun (72 quart), used a cheap 48 quart cooler for a HLT so I only need one kettle, and have an Edelmetell burner. I’m happy with the setup and it works great for single or double batches.

Thanks for all the info. I will have to think a bit more and learn a bit more. Seems I will have some time to think as I just did my taxes and need to cough up some additional dough for the IRS next month. So no new brewing equipment till after April 15, but I will brew another extract batch in the meantime… Maybe the Irish red ale. Sounds good right about now.

Well that self discipline regarding not buying any brew equipment held for about a day… just started ordering some stuff to do all grain. I took the above advice and looked at the brew kettles on Spike Brewing and wow they look awesome.
I think I will go with the 10 gallon as I do not expect to make batched over the 5-7 gallon range. I see there are options for a spikit / coupler on the bottom. doing extract kits with only 2.5 -3 gal boils is not a problem to pick up and pour into the fermentor, but of course a full 5 or 6 gal is another story.

Is there any tricks/ advice regarding transferring the 5 gal of wort to the fermentor? I guess I could siphon or use gravity from the bottom coupling to the fermentor.

Thank you,

Tom

I still pour… I pour through a strainer into a bucket, then from the bucket into a fermentor. That’s most of my aeration procedure. It’s a fair amount of lifting, but not too bad. I consider it my exercise.

Note: this is after the immersion chiller has taken things down to pitching temp.

Thanks, I never thought of pouring through a strainer… That would be a big help in the path towards clarity. Is there any reason not to pour direct from the boil kettle into the fermentor? ( through a strainer on top of the Big mouth fermentor). I use dry yeast in the fermentor, mainly as I have not learned enough about liquid yeasts and starters etc. supposedly the dry yeast does not require much if any airation.

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