Many of the cooler all grain system systems on the market include two coolers. One functions as a Hot Liquor Tank (HLT) the other as a Mash Tun (MLT). If you’re a batch sparger, you can usually get by with one cooler if you by using a kettle for your hot liquor tank (HLT). When I first went to all grain, I used my 5 gallon extract kettle to piggy back the first runnings. Doing this allowed me to temporarily use my boil kettle as a HLT.
It worked something like this…
- Heat strike water in boil kettle
- Drain strike water into cooler mash tun and mash
- Heat sparge water in boil kettle
- Recirculate and drain first runnings into 5 gallon extract kettle
- Empty sparge water into cooler mash tun
- Dump first runnings from 5 gallon kettle into boil kettle
- Recirculate and drain second runnings into boil kettle
Obviously, I batch sparge. This method would not work with fly/continuous sparging.
Having a large enough kettle to function as a dedicated HLT is preferable, but this piggy back method got me started in all grain at a reasonable cost until I could pick up another kettle.
Also: All Grain Tips & Gear | 10 Gallon Mash Tun Conversion Kit [Review] | Cereal Killer Grain MIll | 10 Gallon Cooler for HLT or Mash Tun | My Brewing Spreadsheet [Designed with Batch Sparge in Mind]
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