Gary Glass: Hi, I'm Gary Glass Director of American Homebrewers Association. Today I am going to show you how to make a mash tun out of a rectangular picnic cooler.
Because all-grain brewing requires soaking malted grains for certain amount of time at a specific temperature, a vessel is needed to hold the temperature of the mash and to separate the liquid wort from the grains, this vessel is called the mash tun or more properly a mash lauter tun since it will be used for both mashing and lautering.
A mash tun can be purchased at your local home brew shop where it can be easily built at home. There are many different types of mash tun designs varying in material, shape and function.
Choosing the best mash tun will depend on your goals, process and current equipment. This mash tun is based on a design by AHA Governing Committee member Denny Conn. Here are the materials you need.
A 48 quart or larger rectangular picnic cooler, rubber mini keg bung, three hose clamps, an inline nylon valve, food grade vinyl tubing however, long it needs to be to get from your mash tun to your kettle plus six inches. Stainless braid steel faucet connector, we're using a 16 inch connector.
Remove plastic spigot from the cooler it will usually screw out fairly easily and replace it with the rubber mini keg bung. Make sure to punch out the plastic piece from the center of the bung. If the fit isn't snug enough, use food safe sealer to ensure your mash tun is water tight.
Run a six inch piece of vinyl tubing through the mini keg bung, leaving a few inches hanging out of each end. Now to prepare the stainless steel braid, first cut off both ends and remove the plastic tubing inside the stainless steel braid. Clamp one of the ends tightly, pliers will help with this and attach the other end to vinyl tubing inside the cooler with a hose clamp.
Attach the nylon valve to the end of the vinyl tubing outside of the cooler with a hose clamp. To the other end of the nylon valve, attach a piece of vinyl tubing long enough to reach your kettle with a hose clamp.
That is how you can easily build a mash tun at home.