Posts Tagged ‘boiler’

It’s been a heckuver long time since my last post, and even longer since our last brewday. Our kegs are all in use (I’m still drinking Landlubber!) and there’s been no need or capacity for another brew to keep beer levels up.

Nevertheless, we’ve put some of the time to good use, and have finally expanded the brew length of the Boxshed Brewery by creating a boiler/copper with twice the volume of the old boiler! Great stuff.

The mashtun I made last year was built with the extended brew length in mind so will fit perfectly into the new setup. The old boiler, now complete with sight tube, will make a perfect HLT. All that was then required was a big pot to convert into a boiler, and now that’s complete too.

I remembered to take a few photos during the build. Sadly I missed several stages and most of the pictures aren’t great, but hey, I’m uploading them all anyway as a handy record (and because I’ll never move on with this blog otherwise!)

Really can’t wait to use this new vessel in anger – it looks so cool compared to the old one!

I’ll post future updates if I remember any more details of the build, but for now photos and captions will have to do the job:

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To the layman it’s just a big cooking pot and a load of plumbing spares. But this little lot could soon become an extremely exciting new addition to the Boxshed Brewery. Not only will it allow us to boil 50L+ brewlengths sufficient to fill proper pub kegs, it will also free up the old 32L stainless boiler to become a proper HLT.

So far the brewpot (thanks Nadine), immersion elements, stainless ball valve and sight tube bits (thanks Garth) have all arrived here in a postage dripfeed, but the 64mm/20mm holesaws have yet to arrive (yeah, cheers Tool Shop Direct). The whole project will take a while to complete as time and money allows (need a new tiered stand thingy too), and we’re going to need someone to help out with the mains leccy, but it’s all VERY shiny and VERY exciting nevertheless. Woohoo!

Here’s a rapid snap. It’s quite hard to tell in this photo, because the sheer shine of the thing is obliterating the bottom half of the vessel in the sunlight, but this new copper is mahoosive. It’s half a metre in all dimensions. To give you an idea, it happily covers all four hobs if you sit it on an electric cooker. Probably not such a bad idea actually… …just kidding!

The new boiler equipment is so shiny you need to wear shades even to walk into the same room

The new boiler equipment is so shiny you need to wear shades even to walk into the same room

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Hmmm,  ‘Winter Hiatus’ – not a bad name for a nice brew actually – maybe a ruby porter? Must think on…

Hopefully I’m nearing the end of my self-imposed brewing hibernation. A combination of factors ganged up and stopped me posting for several weeks. Chief amongst these was of course laziness, but there was more to it than that. I think.

Before Christmas we filled all our kegs and went on a  brewing break. After Christmas the whole credit crunch malarkey really hit home, resulting in me spending every waking hour (and some not quite so awake) sitting in front of this here screen, typing for the man. Of course I’d rather be messing around with grain, hops, yeast and various bits of shiny stainless steel, but needs must, and money’s been too tight to mention.

However, I do hope to get back in the swing of things soon. I have grain, plenty of hops in the freezer and no mild on tap, for a start!

We’ve had snow then floods here in East Anglia, but this weekend I’m hoping to get into the garden to clear up the havoc and pile some compost on the hop bines. I may even buy a new plant this week – the year is rolling on and plenty of rhyzomes are back in stock.

As far as equipment goes, my immediate plans are to replace my boiler with a slightly larger capacity vessel and move my current boiler to become a heated HLT rather than the current insulated job. I’m looking forward to this project, but again it’s a question of getting money together here and there which isn’t needed for more pressing matters. Like food. And beer from the local.

Aaaanyway – expect to hear from the Boxshed a little more frequently from now on, at least. More frequently than not at all, anyway, eh?


ps. If you’re at a loose end between 13th and 22nd February and you happen to be in the area, why not visit the Edwardstone White Horse Winter Ale Festival?  The tied Mill Green Brewery is serving up five ales (including the excellent Good Ship Arbella APA) and there will be a further 16 ales on stillage over the week, plus the usual Adnams Bitter and Crouch Vale Brewers Gold on tap. Well worth checking out – you might even catch some live blues and folk while you’re sinking a few.

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