I've been a big fan of what Kal has done with The Electric Brewery for several years, and I've been reading all the great input he and all you forum users have been posting. Thanks for all the fantastic discussions!
A few years ago we moved into a house that has a room that I picked out to work specifically as a brewery. Like other fans of the electric brewing model I really wanted to brew indoors, and I wanted to make a professional grade brewery that would be a show piece and last indefinitely. It took a lot of blood, sweat, and tears...(and a couple dollars), but other than some finish work to complete - It's ready to show! I followed Kal's free advice on setting up the pots, did 95% of the work myself (some friends lent a hand and equipment with sheetrock and welding), and I sourced Kal/ Spike for the control panel/ SS coil/ temp probe sets and the like, and used a local metal fabricator for the hood.
Link Posted: Thu Oct 29, 2015 9:54 pm Post subject: light fixture
I knew that lighting in the hood wouldn't be very good, and I didn't want to pay for a pre-lit commercial hood. I decided to install something on the backsplash that would give some ambiance and provide a light source. Since I couldn't find anything that fit my needs, I built my own. I really wanted an industrial look, but something that balanced the modern design of the room. The caged Edison bulbs looked attractive, so after a fair amount of trial and error I mounted them to 1/2" galvanized pipe and hooked them up to a dimmer. I really like how they show off the "Electric" component of the the brewery.
Link Posted: Thu Oct 29, 2015 10:23 pm Post subject:
Wow! Nice job - Thanks for sharing! So what was the inaugural brew?
Thanks, Kal! My first brew was a Wanderlust IPA clone (Breakside Brewing, Portland OR). I don't know how to link to it, but I have a thread on this forum in YEAST on what happens when your buddy pitches 10x the amount of yeast nutrient into the boil.
My second beer was your Blonde Ale recipe. They both turned out awesome! I served them both on keg at a get together at my house. 10 gallons of IPA was gone that night, and the Blonde only made it 5 days (the party and a few growlers that went out on requests after).
P.S. I see 4 kettles - what's the 4th for?
The 4th kettle is a whirlpool. It's a 160 qt aluminum stock pot, which is a little ridiculous given that 11 gallons of wort only fills it less than a 1/4 full. I wanted a wider bottom at a lower cost than the Blichmann's. I had thought about having the height cut down about halfway, but I'm going to leave it for now. I wasn't impressed with the whirlpool speed on a wet test - it was fairly lazy. As an aside, does anyone know if it's possible to run the pumps in series? I'm thinking about trying it to see if I can increase whirlpool speed.
Link Posted: Thu Oct 29, 2015 10:53 pm Post subject:
I'll see if I can get you a better picture, maybe facing the panel.
That's a picture of the Blonde, and I had it in the keg for only 5 days. I had to rush it to be ready for the party, so I put gelatin solution in it, shook it around every 12 hours or so, and drained it. Gelatin-ed it twice, while force carbonating and cold crashing it best I could in a fridge.
Link Posted: Fri Oct 30, 2015 2:55 am Post subject:
Use a nozzle on the output into the whirlpool. That will increase the water velocity .
Even though the pressure is reduced! _________________ Kal Clone (30amp),Mash Re-Circulation Manifold, Custom BK Hop Filter.
Link Posted: Fri Oct 30, 2015 5:50 am Post subject:
Thanks, Kal and Tennessee, I'll run some flow tests. I'm thinking a wine cork floating in water will help me count revolutions per minute. I have the items I need to reduce the input diameter in the whirlpool, I was just trying to reduce the amount of cracks/ threads/ joints where wort comes in contact with post-hot side hardware. I'll try a few things and get back.
Last edited by McGruber on Fri Oct 30, 2015 8:21 am; edited 1 time in total
Link Posted: Fri Oct 30, 2015 6:04 am Post subject:
I had a few other projects I thought I would share. I think they all turned out pretty well, but if anyone has questions or suggestions I'm happy to respond.
This is my wort chiller. You may have noticed I used tri-clamp fittings instead of quick connects in my build. I got used to using tri-clamps when I "worked" (volunteered) in a microbrewery, and I wanted to carry that over to my homebrew set up. It has its own headaches (including cost), but I like them. My friend Ryan welded both of these frames for me using square tubing I bought from Home Depot. Not visible in the "first version" picture is an oxygen stone attached via a "T" behind the thermometer for in-line oxygenation and the oxygen tank with sanitary filter.
Updated version - water chilled CFC, glycol chilled plate chiller with filter and inline oxygenation.
Last edited by McGruber on Mon Jan 22, 2018 4:33 am; edited 3 times in total
Link Posted: Fri Oct 30, 2015 6:11 am Post subject:
Here are the pumps. They're basically as Kal designed, except I also had my friend weld a square tubing frame for these. I found they are very "front heavy". They want to fall forward toward the openings/ valve and are prone to slipping around on the stainless shelf, especially when hooked up to tubing.
To combat that effect I filled the base with concrete, screwed rubber foot pads at the back, and hinged the front. In theory the back will weigh enough to balance the weight of the hoses, the pumps will remain stationary on the table, but I will still be able to tilt them forward to drain. Brew day is approaching, and I'll see if it works out...
Link Posted: Fri Oct 30, 2015 6:22 am Post subject: mash paddle
My neighbor makes fly fishing nets. I like fly fishing. I also like brewing! Put them together, and I got the idea to do a fly fishing mash paddle!
With his expertise and tools, and a similar design I found online (will find it again as reference if needed) we created this. It's birdseye maple with Brazilian cherry at the handle and toasted walnut inlays. I lacquered the handle, but not the part that contacts the mash.
Last edited by McGruber on Fri Oct 30, 2015 8:22 am; edited 1 time in total
Link Posted: Fri Oct 30, 2015 6:32 am Post subject:
To serve my beer outside the brewery I built a SS jockey box. I sourced all the parts on Amazon.com (please use Kal's link for Amazon purchases!), and put it together. I can give more specifics on parts and assembly if requested. It works amazing, by the way.
Link Posted: Fri Oct 30, 2015 6:50 am Post subject:
I live in an appropriate latitude for growing hops, and was given a growing bine as a gift - not sure which varietal (though I assume it's a C hop of some kind). This is the first year I've harvested them, and ended up with a little under 10 gallons. I had plans to build a modular tower around a box fan to dry hops, but I got rushed on harvesting season. Turns out I had an old, semi-busted bookshelf that didn't sell at a garage sale. I figured I could strip the back off it, and use the wire mesh I was going to use for the tower, and come up with something similar. I screwed on some 2x4's for legs and put a standing fan aimed at it, tossed it occasionally, and it was dry in a little over a day. The garage smelled AWESOME!! I vacuum sealed them and stuck them in my freezer. It's amazing how little they weigh.
Last edited by McGruber on Fri Oct 30, 2015 7:47 am; edited 1 time in total
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