On June 1st I posted Equipment upgrade fortnight – a month and a half later and that fortnight still hasn’t finished yet, but I think the end is finally in sight.

Hopefully.

It’ll happen in two parts. Part 1 looks like this:

Part 1: Cooling (click to enlarge)

Part 1: Cooling (click to enlarge)

Excuse the rather crude drawings – I put these together to work out how many hose connectors I need.

Instead of taking my pot of boiling wort and attempting to cool it in the sink, I’ll instead pump it through a plate chiller, which will use tap water to cool the wort close to pitching temperature.

This will solve two problems I have at the moment. Firstly, I have great difficulty chilling. And secondly, I have to pour the contents of the pot into the primary – which means I can’t leave behind the trub (gunk) in the pot very easily.

I have the pot, pump, and plate chiller already. With a bit of luck, I’ll get the weldless kit, extra ball value, and correct number of connects this Friday night. Assuming I do, then all I need to do is drill the hole in the pot, fit the weldless kit, buying the tubing, and then set the whole lot up.

But that drilling and setting up wont happen immediately because there’s Part 2:

Part 2: Mashing (click to enlarge)

Part 2: Mashing (click to enlarge)

Part 2 will be my new mashing setup – where I extract the fermentable sugar from the grain.

Currently I’m simply using a grain bag in the pot – not dissimilar to the steeping method here. While it works, it is effective only for half batches, and it leaves behind a lot of gunk which becomes trub in the pot.

Instead of building a mash tun from a picnic cooler, I’d got the opportunity to buy a MiniMash Lauter Tun. While this second hand mash tun is more expensive than building one from a picnic cooler, this one is perfectly setup for fly sparging and should be extendable to HERMS. I’m also buy a matching HLT (hot waterliquor tank) which although it isn’t strictly necessary, should make the whole brewing process simpler .

I should get the equipment for Part 2 on Saturday, if I can lug the stuff back from Numazu when I visit there – if not it’ll need to be sent to me a bit later.

Sunday I’ll be at the Japan homebrewers competition ceremony and party. Most likely I’ll spend next week putting everything together and testing it, ready to brew next weekend.

So fingers crossed that by the end of this month, the longest two weeks in history should come to an end! It had better – I’ve got a big bag of grain and I’m itching to make more beer!

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