Basic Beer Brewing Equipment

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 13,582
    Gary Glass from the American Homebrewers Association discusses beer brewing equipment.

    Gary Glass: Hi! My name is Gary Glass. I'm the Director of the American Homebrewers Association. I'm teaching you how to brew beer at home.

    In this segment, we'll cover the basic equipment that you'll need to brew beer, starting out with lots of things that you probably already have around your house including a stove, running water, can opener. You'll need a fairly sizable pot anywhere from one-and-a-half to five gallons will work just fine. A sizable spoon, metal is best, less risk of contamination with stainless steel, need a measuring cup, a strainer for straining out your grains and then you have some equipment that you will probably need to purchase from your local homebrew supply shop. We have right here a basic equipment kit that runs about $80. It's going to include this fermentor, which is our food grade plastic bucket, a bottling bucket, another food grade plastic bucket; an airlock, what this does is it goes on top of the fermentor while the beer is fermenting. The yeast is going to be producing carbon dioxide and you need to let that out. So what this does is it's got a little pot in there. You fill this up with water; any contaminants in the air can't get into the beer itself. So it keeps the beer sanitary and it allows the carbon dioxide to escape. We have a floating thermometer. This will go into your fermentor once you have added to wort to the fermentor. I'll tell you when you get to the proper temperature for adding your yeast. We have what's called a racking cane. Racking is just brewers' term for siphoning and transfer your beer from the fermentor into your bottling bucket. And then for bottling, we have a bottlebrush which you can used to clean the inside of your bottles. It's a very important piece of equipment. A bottle filler, it's spring loaded, stick it into the bottle and then when you pressed down on that, it allows the beer to flow into the bottles. You also need a bottle capper, and the way this works is it's got a magnet on the bottom there, the cap goes on there, you place this on top of the bottle, swing it down and it will seal your bottles with your cap. There are some optional equipment that you might want to invest in, maybe not for your first brew, but things to consider for future brewing. Here is a glass carboy and you use this for secondary fermentation. It's a little more advanced than what we'll do in today's brewing segment, but this is something that a lot of homebrewers used; big glass jug, we called it a carboy. This is a hydrometer, this will likely come with your basic brewing equipment, but it's not necessary. What it does is it measures the density of the beer. This is a handy piece of equipment. It's a bottle washer. It just screws onto the end of your kitchen sink faucet and then it's also spring loaded, so you just push down your bottle onto it and it will spray a jet of water into the back of your bottles. A very handy piece of equipment, not necessary, but it makes cleaning bottles a lot easier. You can also use it on your carboys. And then over here we have a longer carboy brush for getting in there and cleaning your carboy. So that covers the basic equipment. Next up, we'll talk about cleaning and sanitizing that equipment.