Where did the time go?

Today someone asked for a link to my blog and I realized I haven’t posted here in long time. I apologize to those of you that follow me. Busy with work and this year…well it has changed almost everything we do. In home brewing we didn’t have a Homebrew Con this year, home brew club meetings were on Zoom, local taprooms closed for months, GABF was streamed online, curbside pickup at the local home brew shop, backyard socially distanced happy hours, PicoBrew went out of business. Hopefully next year we will be in a better place and be able to return to something resembling normal.

Even with everything going on I have managed to squeeze in some brewing and just started some modifications on my electric single vessel brewing system. Some exciting new home brewing equipment out there. Spike Brewing has introduced their single vessel electric systems and just released their 10 gallon small batch system. A Norwegian company called Brewtools has introduced an incredibly flexible single vessel, 40 quart, 120 volt electric system. Definitely worth checking out! Unlike many current single vessel electric systems out there it has replaceable parts, including the heating elements. Slightly expensive but awesome quality, it can do small batches as little as 3 gallons, has a small footprint for small brewing spaces and all tri clamp connections. Check them out at https://www.brewtools.us/

It has actually inspired me to make some changes to my small countertop system I brew on. While I have my brewing pump attached to my cart I wanted something more “all-in-one” for convenience in my small space. I found a nice small 120 volt brewing pump from AliExpress that very similar to the Anvil brewing pump but with a stainless steel head for durability. I had a stainless ring fabricated and welded to the bottom of the kettle to raise it up and to hide the pump and plumbing. I mounted the pump to the bottom of the kettle, the kettle’s triclad bottom was just thick enough to use very short screws to secure the pump without going through the bottom (nervous for a few minutes while drilling holes and tapping them). I installed a weldless bulkhead through the bottom of the kettle, from Brewhardware.com, to feed the pump. I then had a couple tri clamp hose barbs tack welded on the sides of the ring to attach my tri clamp sanitary diaphragm valves to. I am still looking for a three-way valve to mount through the support ring to direct the pump output. A few months ago I also installed a Blichmann whirlpool fitting in the kettle. The goal, with all this over engineering, is something similar to the Brewtools systems….

  • Compact all-in-one system.
  • Pump from bottom of kettle to recirculate during mash.
  • Pump from bottom of kettle to wort chiller and then back through whirlpool inlet.
  • Fewer, shorter hoses for less loss.
  • Flexibility for future growth or different brewing processes.
  • Clean in place capable.

For those that are checking out my site for the first time, yes I tend to over engineer stuff lol. I enjoy the challenge of making a high quality professional system on a small scale myself. Does it make better beer than a stockpot on the stove? Absolutely not but it does add some flexibility and convenience. Another driving factor for my posts is to inspire other home brew DIYers to try new things.

Stay tuned for more updates as I finish the system…will it ever be “finished” ha ha. Also kicking around the idea of doing podcasts and a Youtube channel. Stay safe everyone!


1 thought on “Where did the time go?

  1. Nice to see you back at it…
    I’ve started my 5 Gallon 3 vessel RIMs system evolution and am also getting away from ball valves even though i knew better when I got them. I got tired of having to take them apart and am now going full Tri-Clamp for this next evolution. I noticed that you have some 1/2″ diaphragm valves on your system in which your Aquasyn valves could be pretty expensive and may like an alternative…
    In my searching over the last couple years, I stumbled over the following on eBay…


    These are the same ones that I could technically get from China direct but went with ebay as they were already in the US and was able to haggle the unit price down.

    Granted, you get what you pay for… They are NOT to the same quality as the Aquasyn valves but for a hobby, they are good enough and at a reasonable price point. Especially as you don’t have to take anything apart and can clean in place (CIP). I find my time every few months for not having to take ball valves apart is worth the extra few bucks for diaphragm valves. I see them as an investment in my hobby and have budgeted as such since finding them.

    Hopefully this link helps you and/or the folks who check your site out…

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