Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Detailed: Equipment for brewing

In detail, here is what you need to brew. This completes my promise, made many years ago, to post Equipment for brewing II. Now, updated and detailed.

Fermenting Fridge:

Get a fridge on which you can successfully install a temperature controller. I get the temp controller from www.shivacontrols.com and they can work only on refrigerators that don’t have a separate door for freezer. (Check with them). Get the temp controller and ask them to set at 1 degree Celsius cut off. Basically, if you set the fridge at 18c, you want the compressor to start at 19c and stop at 17c. Thus giving you good control. If you can do at ½ degree, nothing like it.

Blender / Food Processor:

Preethi brand makes a good blender that gives a nice crush. Else, use one you have at home. Don’t crush too fine like powder. Don’t leave big bits. Check visually. Every grain of malt must be broken up. 10% powder. 20% fine. Rest coarse bits.

Weighing scale for malt:

Any kind that can weigh a minimum of 1 kg at least and has only 5 grams error. Fairly cheap as it is not a very accurate scale. Test with weights before buying.

Small scale for salts / hops & yeast:
This needs to have good accuracy. Perhaps 10 milligrams accuracy. Can be expensive. Test with 1 milligram or 10 milligram weight when you buy.
Three Stainless Steel 10 litre Topias / Pots (1 for boil, 1 for water and 1 for grain):

Make sure they are not too wide nor too tall. Take a shape in between. For 5 litre batches, 10 litres is more than sufficient. Get an 8-9 litre one and that will work as well. You can use pots you have at home as well. Make sure you calibrate volume using a stick or long knife and do a boil off test to see how much gets boiled off in 1 hr after a boil has been achieved.
Salts: Ideally food grade or lab grade with 99% purity:
Chalk CaCO3, Gypsum  CaSO4 *2H2O, Calcium Chloride  CaCl2*2H2O, Epsom Salt  MgSO4 *7H2O, Baking Soda  NaHCO3, Canning Salt NaCl
Mash / Lauter Tun:

Do a search for ‘donos born mash tun’ on google. All instructions are there on the page. Or, if you are in Mumbai, I could get it made for you at cost. You buy the beers!

Pipe for Lauter Tun:
1 meter silicon or rubber tube (food grade) to attach at end of spigot /valve on Lauter Tun.
Thermometer, Refractormeter:
Get an alcohol thermometer of a good quality. Don’t get the one that has mercury as it is difficult to see. Get at least 2. Refractometer should have at least 0 – 30 brix with scale as 0.2,0.4,0.6 etc., all the way to 30. The scale may be labelled only at units rather than decimals. Get one with Automatic Temp Control if you can.
Three, 500ml plastic / glass beakers graduated:
Use for preparing yeast, fermenting a sample etc. Can get glass but easy to break.
Two, 5 litre plastic beakers graduated with handle:

To measure water volume, prepare sanitization solution etc. Make sure it has a handle and is graduated.
One, 2 litre plastic beaker:

Same purpose as the 5 litre ones but since 2 litres is lighter, makes life easier.
Siphon for racking beer:

Don’t take the hard vinyl piping that comes standard with this at many shops. Get 2 meters of silicon / rubber food grade tubes. Cut each into 1 meter and attach a glass tube, 8-10 inches in length, at each end of the rubber tubing to provide rigidness.
Glass tube for whirlpool racking:

Get another meter or more of silicon / rubber tubing with glass tube ends at each side. This is used to siphon hot wort after whirlpool into cooling pot. Alternately, get a valve attached to the side of the boiling pot and use that outlet after whirlpool. Much easier. But make sure you attach the spigot/valve at the lower end of pot so there is not wastage of wort. Also, make sure it sits on your gas even with the valve.
Two or more, 5 litre, glass fermentors and 1 plastic funnel:

Quite cheap but glass quality not the best but I use them. Can also use steel pot with lid or new packaged water (Bisleri, Acquafina) cans. Get a plastic funnel that will help you fill beer into these fermentors.
Bottle capper / Bottles / Caps:

MM Buxhaboy and co. Look for them on the internet. Shop is at Crawford market. Make sure to take a beer bottle and try the capper several times to ensure it works well.
Bleach Liquid:

5% chlorine bleach solution called sodium hypochlorite OR 5% solution of paracetic acid if you can find. Use 100-200 ml in 5 litres of water. Chlorox bleach without any scents also works in the same manner. After soaking vessels / equipment etc. for 20 min, do not wash with water. Just let it drain out or shake excess off. Don’t sanitize everything. Only things that you use on the cooled wort. Don't ever sanitize your refractormeter.
All of the above are available in various shops at Princess Street, Mumbai. Check a few shops first and then buy. Drop me an email to confirm / check and then buy. Don't rush as they may not take things back.

1 comment:

sapan said...

Hi Navin,

I created a post with details of where to get all the needed equipment and ingredients in Pune.