Simple Lauter Tun Set Up

Discussion in 'Beginners Brewing Forum' started by BrainYYC, Apr 30, 2020.

  1. BrainYYC

    BrainYYC Member

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    Hi folks, slowly trying to get my process sorted and I am going to next move from 1 gallon to 3.0 gallon batch using Fermonster carboy. Looking for any advice on lautering, to be honest in my first few batches this seems to be where my process kind of turned into a circus show, as I had a small strainer, was trying to incorporate a brew sock, bit of a mess each time, but the beer has tasted fine so far!

    Moving up from 1.0 to 3.0 gallon I am trying to wrap my head around how I can do the lauter tun without soaking my socks in wort. I have two good size pots that hold 4-5 gallons, worried about how I do the grain strain and do the lautering.

    Thanks so much in advance for any guidance for a rookie.
     
  2. Hawkbox

    Hawkbox Well-Known Member

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    Not sure what you have available but I mash in a bag with a Coleman chest cooler. I batch sparge or no sparge so I just drain from it into the kettle to boil.

    [​IMG]
     
  3. thunderwagn

    thunderwagn Well-Known Member

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    #3 thunderwagn, May 1, 2020
    Last edited: May 1, 2020
    Like @Hawkbox hit on above, you could check out BIAB/MIAB options. You can get a bag tailored to fit your pot or mashing vessel. Wilserbrew makes a great bag that will last forever. You could do a full volume mash and a good bag squeeze if you wanted and pass on the lauter altogether. There are lots of options out there and we can make lots of suggestions for you. You'll just have to pick what you think will work best for you.
     
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  4. BOB357

    BOB357 Well-Known Member

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    A 5 gallon round water cooler with a hose braid, bazooka screen or a mesh bag as a filter works well for batch sparging. The 5 gallon cooler will allow you to mash & sparge 5 gallon batches of moderate OGs. The advantage of a cooler over a pot is the coolers hold mash temperatures really well.
     
  5. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    I'd go the BIAB route for the 3gallon intermediate step. You may eventually want to scale up to larger batches, BIAB means less undersized equipment around to sell or trip over.
     
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  6. BOB357

    BOB357 Well-Known Member

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    I should have mentioned that the 5 gallon round cooler works well for 3 gallon batches too.
     
  7. BrainYYC

    BrainYYC Member

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    Thank you gents for the guidance. Intrigued with the cooler for sure.

    So for BIAB I just watched a couple youtubes and it looks like full volume of water, mash in, get it to temp - and hold then simply lift out the bag in let drain.........gotta be more to it than that??
     
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  8. BOB357

    BOB357 Well-Known Member

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    That's pretty much the mash/sparge routine for BIAB, except that you'll want to get the strike water several degrees above mash temperature before adding your bag and grains. After that, the boil, chilling and transfer to the fermenter, just like any other brew.
    The down side is you'll need to find a way to get your kettle to hold mash temperature.
    Also, you'll need to have your grain run through the mill twice or, ideally, get your own mill and crush a lot finer then the suppliers do.
     
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  9. Bubba Wade

    Bubba Wade Well-Known Member

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    I make 2.5 gallon batches. The $20 beverage cooler at Home Depot works well. I replaced the spigot with a ball valve and hose barb for easier draining. image.jpg
     
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  10. BrainYYC

    BrainYYC Member

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    Can you run me through the process using the cooler, do you add a false bottom?

    Get water to temp,mash in and mix, dump in the cooler, drain off for the boil?
     
  11. Hawkbox

    Hawkbox Well-Known Member

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    I use a brew bag. brewinabag.com and has lasted me 2 years or so now with probably 100 batches. A false bottom also works. I leave a bazooka tube on the drain because the bag can get sucked in and then it plugs.
    Makes cleanup really easy.
     
  12. Bubba Wade

    Bubba Wade Well-Known Member

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    I use the grain bag, like @Hawkbox . I usually heat the water to 160-162. After I put the water in the cooler and add the grain bag, the temperature drops to about 152 or so. I put the lid on and leave it for an hour. The temperature drops 2-3 degrees during this time. At the end, I lift the bag with a pulley system and tie it off and let it drain for 5-10 minutes. After it drains, I squeeze the heck out of the bag to get the rest of the wort out. Now the wort is ready to boil.
     
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  13. Mark Farrall

    Mark Farrall Well-Known Member

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    Done a bunch of brews that way. Wonderfully simple. Just chilling and holding temp during the mash left to complicate things.
     
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  14. Herm_brews

    Herm_brews Well-Known Member

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    I BIAB mash in my 3 gallon boil kettle. During the 60 minute mash, I place the kettle on the bottom rack of my oven (it just barely fits), and use the “warm” feature as needed to maintain my mash temperature. I stir the mash, check the temperature and collect a refractometer sample every 15 minutes. This process works for me.
     
  15. Blackmuse

    Blackmuse Well-Known Member

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    BIAB is a great way to brew without too many complications! I would certainly use this method for your 3 gallon batches. It is as simple as it sounds. If your pot is big enough to do full volume mashes and boils then you can simply use it to mash and boil in. Just put a sleeping bag around it while it mashes and you shouldn't drop more than 3-4 degrees. You can add a weldless spigot to your pot too and that would make transfering after cooling easier.
     
  16. Ward Chillington

    Ward Chillington Well-Known Member

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    #16 Ward Chillington, May 3, 2020
    Last edited: May 3, 2020
    Plus one on all the above, Herm takes cake for best out of the box thinking for temp control!.

    If you go with the cooler route, there's tons of You Tube idea seeds out there.

    Rather than a SST bazooka I made a manifold out of CPVC pipe that works great, never had a stuck sparge yet! Easy to clean and no need to use the cement and that stinky purple cleaner stuff! Take a look in the DIY thread posts here for more idea seeds.


    edit....here ya go.....

    https://www.brewersfriend.com/forum/threads/cooler-tun.11662/#post-84676
     
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  17. BrainYYC

    BrainYYC Member

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    #17 BrainYYC, May 3, 2020
    Last edited: May 3, 2020
    Thanks boys. I’m going to try BIAB for my next batch. Super pumped, rest assured Ill ask some more silly questions before brew day.

    Into super juicy NEPA’s right now (I know, how trendy) and I see a few BIAB recipes for this style in recipe list. :)
     
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  18. Craigerrr

    Craigerrr Well-Known Member

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    Ask away, and make some beer!
     
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  19. Hawkbox

    Hawkbox Well-Known Member

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    Get to it. There are many different ways to brew a beer.
     
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  20. BarbarianBrewer

    BarbarianBrewer Well-Known Member

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    The mesh braid from water supply hose (toilet tank, washing machine, etc.) makes an excellent bazooka screen. Just cut off the ends, pull out the inner tube; fold over one of the ends and crimp it. The other end clamps onto the ball valve on the outside of the cooler. Denny Conn describes a cheap-n-easy mash tun build here http://www.dennybrew.com/
    Water Supply Bazooka Screen.jpg
     
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