From the HBD Archive
From: lrj@helios.TN.CORNELL.EDU
Subject: mash/lauter-tuns; cylindrical or rectangular?
Date: 1992-06-24 18:57:02 GMT

It's time to have a go at doing all-grain beers. The one
item I still need to come up with is something for mashing and
sparging. I currently plan to brew in 5 gallon batches, and
will probably stay with that for now. I've gone through a lot
of HBD back issues, but couldn't find any concrete information.

I think that my best investment for the moment would be to
purchase either a 5 gallon cylindrical cooler or a rectangular
picnic cooler (~54 qt.). Each would appear to have its
advantages and disadvantages.

A 5 gal. cylindrical cooler would cost approximately $30. I
could build a slotted-pipe setup, or use some sort of vegtable
steamer or collander. The advantage is that I would have a
deeper grain bed while sparging; the disadvantage is that I
would be more limited on how much grain I could use. What do
people find is the limit on the amount of grain in these?

The cheaper route seems like the 48 or 54 qt. rectangular
cooler, as they're available for around $20 or so right now.
I would put together some sort of forked, slotted-pipe
arrangement with this system. Advantage: no problems with
running into space limitations if I want to brew a stronger
brew. The apparent disadvantage is that I'd have a lower
extraction efficiency, especially with smaller quantities of
grains.

I'd appreciate suggestions from people on which would be a
better investment and why. Thanks!

- -- Lew

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