Home Beer Brewing Setups, Home Breweries, Homebrew Stands and Beer Brewing Rigs!
Home Brewing Stands, Beer Brewing Rigs and Home Brewer Racks
I am starting up a page to view your Home Beer Brewing Stands, Home Brew Rigs, Beer Brewing Racks and Brew Sculpture of West Coast Brewer viewers! So if you have a photo or image of your home brewing setup, extract or all grain, big or small, please email them to me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will get them posted! It is always great to see the different home brewing setups to people have made to inspire others to build their own!
If you are looking to purchase a home brewing stand, I have compiled a list of available units here.
Recently I decided that I would create a temperature controlled RIMS systems for my home brewery. I picked up a Ranco Digital Temperature Controller (model # ETC-111000-000) to manage the temperature regulation. I have not quite completed the entire Recirculating Infusion Mash System, but I just wrapped up the Ranco wiring and thought that I would share what I learned in case it will help out anyone else.
The RIMS heating element that I am using is a stainless steel 120v heating bar, so I have configured the Ranco for 120, but the Ranco thermostat is also capable of handling 240v; it just requires a slight wiring modification. I would like to point out that I am not a professional electrician. Electricity can be extremely dangerous to work with and may result in death. You should always consult with a professional electrician when attempting a project such as this. Manufacturer hardware designs sometimes change and you should refer to your instructions prior to beginning. Here is a wiring diagram that I used for my Ranco Temperature Controller.
Ranco Digital Temperature Controller Wiring Diagram
I cut apart a heavy gauge extension cord to use for my wall power connection and for the wiring I used to connect to my output plug. Inside the extension cord is a ground wire, common wire and hot wire. In the diagram above I use the green wire to represent ground, the white wire to represent common and the dark red wire to represent hot. Please be aware that different cables use different colored wire to represent different things, these colors are just meant to be an example. I ran the grounding cable from my extension cord directly to my output plug ground connection and also grounded it to the metal case that I am using to house my Ranco temperature controller, plug and switches. I spliced the white common cable from the extension cord and connected it to the “COM” port on my Ranco and ran an extension wire to the common connection point on my output plug. Since the RIMS heating element that I am using is 120v, I ran the hot wire from my extension cord to the Ranco “120” port. I then connected a small length of heavy gauge wire from the “120” port on the Ranco to the “C” port on the Ranco Temperature Controller. Lastly, I ran a segment of red wire from the Ranco “NO” port to the hot wire connection on my output plug. I reviewed my work to make sure that all of the wires were connected properly and there was no bare wire exposed. I then connected the device to a GFCI outlet and tested the device with a voltage meter to make sure that everything was working as intended. The Ranco is great because you can select whether you want the power to activate when the temperature drops below a certain point or rises above a certain point which means that it can be used for either a RIMS type device or to control the fermentation temperature in a freezer or refrigerator without having to rewire the device or modify the hardware.
Ranco 120v Thermostat
If you are not comfortable doing electrical work or if you would prefer to avoid the hassle, you can purchase a wired Ranco Digital Temperature controller. You can find several different options available here at a great price via the link below. They also have spare temperature probes and mounting brackets for the Ranco available if needed.
There are a few options out there for turnkey/ready made home brewing stands, brewing sculptures, and home breweries. Depending on the style and materials they can be very expensive, so you will want to make sure that you are making the right choice when it comes time to buy. Here are a few things to consider when you are ready to make your purchase.
1) How much volume do you plan on brewing?
This is important because you can quickly outgrow your brewing rig if you choose brewing kettles that are too small. Some brewers opt to just purchase larger kettles in case they decide to brew larger batches down the road, but that creates problems as well. When you try to brew a 5 gallon batch in a kettle that is 20 gallons or larger, the built-in thermometers can be above the fluid line, which renders them useless. Additionally, some sparge arms are too short to properly sparge a smaller amount of grain, and you will need to find a workaround. So make sure you give careful thought to your brewing capacity before buying.
2) What is your budget?
I don’t know about you, but I have wasted a small fortune buying home brewing gear only to replace it down the road when it either broke, or I decided to upgrade to a superior product. Home brewing stands, home breweries, and brewing sculptures are no different. If you have the money to spend upfront, then purchase the best available home brewing equipment so that you do not end up wanting an upgrade, or worse, needing to replace it down the road. Technology is improving in home brewing, but items such as brewing kettles, pumps, and wort chillers are items that may last a lifetime if they are of high quality and properly maintained. Most quality brewing sculptures are modular in design and can be modified or upgraded if needed.
3) How much space do you have available for home brewing?
This was my most difficult decision when I designed and built my home brewing stand. I do not have a lot of free space available where I live, so for awhile I debated if I was going to go with a single tier beer brewing sculpture or with a multi-tier. Ultimately, I ended up going with a single tier brewing stand. I had to free up a good deal of space in my garage, but the benefits of a single tier design were important enough for me to make the tradeoffs.
Here are some examples of different home brewing stands, beer sculptures, and home breweries. The beer sculptures shown are all made by either MoreBeer or Blichmann and you can click on the image or link to view additional details and prices.
The MoreBeer Tippy Dump is a great sturdy and compact multi-tier home brewery.
This is my top pick: The MoreBeer Single Tier Home Brewing Sculpture. It is all stainless and has two pumps moving the hot liquor and wort. All of the kettles are easily accessible, so you can work with them safely.
The MoreBeer Gravity-Fed home Brewing Stand does not use pumps so it is lower cost than the other brewing stands, and easier to store if you have a limited amount of surface area but height is not an issue.
MoreBeer 3 Tier Gravity Home Brewing Stand picture
Blichmann is one of my favorite names in home brewing, and I use a variety of their products, including their kettles. They make a high quality and affordable multi-tier brewing stand that is very customizable.