Weizgei's Brew Cave

A place to show off, exchange ideas about, & seek assistance with our toys.

Weizgei's Brew Cave

Postby weizgei » Sunday Sep 22, 2013 12:41 pm

Ok, excited to be first! Unless someone else is posting faster than me on this delightful Sunday afternoon...

Now this is nothing terribly exciting, as CrookedFingers has seen first-hand, my setup is pretty ghetto, but I bloody love it! This area used to be a triple carport, open to the weather and a real mess. Once I got full on into homebrewing, I realised I needed a dedicated space....especially once I started full extract with my own hopping...my missus and the kids can't stand the smell of boiling hops, whereas it makes me drool. So I got a good buddy of mine over who's a builder, and we converted the carport into a weather-proof brew cave. Anyway, a picture's worth a thousand words right? So here's a few thousand:

The Brew Cave: https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B9zdUsr9umgXX04xN2FjTjZxMTg/
I warned you it was ghetto! Still doubling as a storage space at the back, with my golf clubs and a few other items. The entire space is about 5.5m long, by just over 3m wide. Left/Right photo's below;

Right Side: https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B9zdUsr ... 1NV2RxRU0/
Starting at the front, we have my beer fridge, containing not just finished beer, but my hops in the freezer, some rhizomes still in the fridge, along with yeast, irish moss etc. On the door of my fridge are some unit conversions (oz to gm, fl oz to ml, depth measurements for my 40l boil kettle/ruler etc), as well as a "Beer & Food pairing chart" and the STC-1000 instruction pamphlet.
Next to that is my fermenting fridge (inside pic later), it's a bit small so I'm thinking of swapping the two one day.
Next along are my home-brew equipment storage racks, with starsan, sodium perc, storage cubes full of base/spec grain/dex etc.
That white thing on the floor is my convection heater for when I'm out there in winter, leaning against it is a fridge shelf that I use to balance my by BIAB bag on while squeezing the crap out of it post-mash.

Left Side: https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B9zdUsr ... hTMXNwU1U/
Again from the front, we have my workbench, with scales, mash paddle and some tools. Oh, and a radio of course, I always listen to SEN when I'm brewing/bottling/hiding from my family...You can see some of the usual suspects under the bench, such as a fermenter and gas bottle. You might also be able to make out that block of pine on top with a test tube on it, that's my experimental yeast storage rack for storing liquid yeast splits. Still working on the design....
In between the two benches is a 44 gallon drum I bought from UBrewIT, they sell them empty for $5. It now acts as a stand for my 4 ring burner...I move it out a few feet on brew day and shuffle it back afterwards.
The next bench along is where I bottle my beer, you can see the bottling tree, and beyond that is a few boxes with my eclectic mix of stubbies, I use a combo of 330/500/750ml bottles for most of my brews. Under that bench are some esky's, full boxes of empty bottles and some empty bottle boxes.
At the end of that bench is my 40l brew pot, it has a recently-installed stainless ball valve, cam lock/hose barb that you can't see in the pic, but I've posted a pic of my equipment further down.
At the very back you can see a light blue hose, that's 15m of food grade hose that I use to get water into my brew cave on brew day.

Inside the fermenting fridge: https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B9zdUsr ... xuUEFhNXM/
This is the small fridge in the pic, as you can see I can fit a regular 30l fermenter, and for the first time since I started brewing I've squeezed a 2nd fermenter in next to it...a little 10l jobbie with a hefeweizen fermenting at 17C. It's using wb-06, with a blow-off tube rigged to a bottle with star-san..I was being careful 'coz I'm fermenting 8 litres in a 10l container. I realised the other day I had 2 packs of wb-06 left over from when I used to use dry yeast for weizens instead of the 3068 I mostly use these days. I have never done a weizen with wb-06 as low as 17C before...I used to use it at anywhere between 19-23C, and never really enjoyed the results. So I figured I'd try a small batch of hefe with it at 17C to see how it compares to 3068 (I do all my 3068 weizens at 17C these days, LOVE IT).
Oh, the big fermenter has my very first at-home AG beer in it...it's been in the primary for about 9 days now, it's an American Pale Ale using JW Trade Ale grain (and some spec), with Citra, Cascade, Centennial & Mosaic. It's already at 1012, will probably bottle it Wednesday.
At the bottom of the fridge is a 100w flood light, with power running up to the STC-1000 sitting atop the fridge. My temp probe is currently taped to the side of the hefe fermenter, with some cut-out stubby holder over the top.

I reckon that's about it for now, any questions/suggestions please let me know!

EDIT: Actually here's a pic I just spotted of my latest equipment upgrade, that enabled my move to all grain. My 40l pot, with crab cooker insert, the immersion chiller in the foreground, and the stainless ball valve bling that I've recently put onto that pot: https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B9zdUsr ... swWmg3N2c/
Last edited by weizgei on Sunday Sep 22, 2013 3:41 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Weizgei's Brew Cave

Postby CrookedFingers » Sunday Sep 22, 2013 3:27 pm

It is as you say, a little bit ghetto.
But your brews are great !

I wish I had the space you have.
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Re: Weizgei's Brew Cave

Postby emnpaul » Sunday Sep 22, 2013 6:58 pm

weizgei wrote:Ok, excited to be first! Unless someone else is posting faster than me on this delightful Sunday afternoon...


You do realise that by being first you're putting your hand up for last in scroll mode? :P

Stoked to see tha mash paddle has pride of place on the peg board. It's as it should be. Brew on brother. Brew on.
2000 light beers from home.
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Re: Weizgei's Brew Cave

Postby warra48 » Monday Sep 23, 2013 6:44 am

Nothing like a dedicated brew space. Well done.

Two questions:
1. How do you chill 44 gallons of quality beer?
2. How long does it take you to get through it?

I'm lucky with my brew cave, because we have a 4 car garage, but only 2 cars, so I have lots of space for my needs.
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Re: Weizgei's Brew Cave

Postby Oliver » Monday Sep 23, 2013 10:44 am

Very jealous, Weizgei, both of your equipment and the amount of space you have to brew. I am relegated to brewing outside, because we don't have a shed and don't have room for a fermentation fridge.

One day, maybe.

Cheers,

Oliver
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Re: Weizgei's Brew Cave

Postby weizgei » Monday Sep 23, 2013 1:32 pm

warra48 wrote:Two questions:
1. How do you chill 44 gallons of quality beer?
2. How long does it take you to get through it?

Ha! Actually I'm too scared to open the drum at all...it used to contain malt extract, and they don't clean 'em before they sell 'em. God knows what's growing in there after 12 months or so sitting around. If it ever starts to swell I better get the hell outa there...
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Re: Weizgei's Brew Cave

Postby weizgei » Friday Jan 24, 2014 2:34 pm

Special delivery to Weizgei's Brew cave today!!

Image

Image
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Re: Weizgei's Brew Cave

Postby CrookedFingers » Friday Jan 24, 2014 2:42 pm

Showoff !!!!! :)~
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Re: Weizgei's Brew Cave

Postby Guru » Friday Jan 24, 2014 3:39 pm

Nice!
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Re: Weizgei's Brew Cave

Postby Tipsy » Sunday Jan 26, 2014 7:17 pm

Ya going to drink a hell of a lot more once you get those kegs set up.

The first month you'll pour a beer everytime you walk past it just to check if it's still working. :lol:
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Re: Weizgei's Brew Cave

Postby weizgei » Monday Jan 27, 2014 10:29 am

I most certainly will. I'm trying to get all the kegs ready for my fantasy footy league's draft day in early March, I'm thinking 50 odd litres of 3 different types of beer, along with some ribs and pork shoulder in my smoker should keep 10 "coaches" happy!
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Re: Weizgei's Brew Cave

Postby Pogierob » Monday Jan 27, 2014 4:19 pm

You never mentioned you had a smoker!!!
How portable is it?
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Re: Weizgei's Brew Cave

Postby weizgei » Sunday Feb 09, 2014 10:04 pm

Oops sorry Rob, missed your reply above. It's very portable, what are you plotting??
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Re: Weizgei's Brew Cave

Postby weizgei » Sunday Feb 09, 2014 10:07 pm

Oh, and the Weizgei brewery has just kegged its very first beer! My Kolsch has been crash chilling for a couple of days, tonight I starsan'd the keg, mixed up some gelatin, poured that into the sanitised keg, and racked onto it. I've purged the headspace (not that there was very much to purge), and have hooked my keg up at 30 psi. I assume without any shaking it'll be carbed up maybe Tuesday morning? Might give it a try tomorrow night just for kicks eh? First pour's gonna be full of gelatine clumped goo anyway!
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Re: Weizgei's Brew Cave

Postby weizgei » Friday Mar 07, 2014 6:04 pm

Update: Kegged my 3rd and final beer last Sunday night, ahead of draft day next Monday. It's an IPA with hop hog style numbers, 5.8% abv and 50-odd IBU. Had a sample tonight, very happy with it. So I now have my Kolsch, Hefeweizen and IPA all ready to go. If anyone's going to be nearby to Thornbury over the long weekend, let me know and drop over for a sample, I'd appreciate the feedback!
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Re: Weizgei's Brew Cave

Postby Guru » Friday Mar 07, 2014 6:38 pm

If only I lived in Melbourne, I'd be there in a flash.
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Re: Weizgei's Brew Cave

Postby weizgei » Saturday Mar 08, 2014 12:33 pm

It does seem quite wrong to have 50 odd litres of delicious homebrew sitting in kegs and only me to drink it! The Kolsch has lagered really well, the hefe tastes exactly like Schoffer, and the IPA is hop head heaven right now.

Will be interesting to see how much of it all is left after draft day is run and done on Monday night.
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Re: Weizgei's Brew Cave

Postby CrookedFingers » Saturday Mar 08, 2014 2:37 pm

Would if I could man !!! Just enjoyed quite a few pints while brewing and cubing a pale ale with a mate.
Brewing with someone else is heaps more enjoyable than by myself.
Usually it's just little old me !
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Re: Weizgei's Brew Cave

Postby rotten » Sunday May 18, 2014 12:01 am

weizgei wrote:Oh, and the Weizgei brewery has just kegged its very first beer! My Kolsch has been crash chilling for a couple of days, tonight I starsan'd the keg, mixed up some gelatin, poured that into the sanitised keg, and racked onto it. I've purged the headspace (not that there was very much to purge), and have hooked my keg up at 30 psi. I assume without any shaking it'll be carbed up maybe Tuesday morning? Might give it a try tomorrow night just for kicks eh? First pour's gonna be full of gelatine clumped goo anyway!


Sorry for late reply mate. Why are you using gelatine after ccing? No need whatsover after that as the job is already done. (Gel not required after my numerous experiments if ccing)

Also if you want quick carbed beer here's a little tip. Keg, hook up to 350 kpa through usual co2 inlet, disconnect. Then wait 15 mins, purge keg a fair bit, not completely, hook up co2 again, adjust to serve pressure and enjoy flowing carbed beer. Obviously it gets better after time but I do this all the time.

Someone (sorry drsmurto) recommended to hook gas line to beer disconnect and bring to 350 kpa that way. NOT NECCASARY. I get the same result with a lot less Farkin around just going through normal connections.

My 2c, + inflation and the other unknow bs taxes that Abbott wasn't going to give us
Beer numbs all zombies !!!
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Re: Weizgei's Brew Cave

Postby weizgei » Sunday May 18, 2014 9:54 pm

Cheers rotten. Have to disagree a bit on the gelatin call...I just kegged a Pilsner yesterday morning that I'd crashed chilled at 1C for a while. Racked it onto gelatin in the keg, and just to give a mate a taster when he dropped round today I pulled the first 100ml or so out through the tap, put it aside, and then pulled another 2 x 50ml as tasters. After a few minutes that first 100ml had a heap of yeast settling into a nice fluffy bottom of the cup. So while it's probably not necessary, using gelatin as a further way of fining does step things up a notch, especially for beers like Kolsch and Pilsners, where you want as much of that out as possible.

And I have "super force carbed" a couple of kegs like that before...quickest way I've found is to hook up the gas at 40psi, purge any oxygen, then lie the keg on the ground with the gas post at the top, then rock the keg back and forth under my foot for 10 minutes. Beer's completely carbed and ready to pour. However, for my Kolsch I wanted to lager it for a month, so no need to get it carbed up so quick.
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