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ecd4105

5 gal Kits

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I have stocked up on MB recipes and will keep brewing them for while. I am would like to move up to 5 gal kits. Looking on-line there are so many choices and I am not sure what is the best deal. I looked at Midwest, Northern and a couple here in PA. Can anyone recommend an on line company that is good to deal with and have good recipe kits. Thanks

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I purchased my buckets from Midwest, along with ingredients. Quick shipping, and no issues with them. I have also purchased ingredients from Northern Brewer and Morebeer. Good stuff there too. Since I like to come up with my own recipes, I don't buy the pre-made recipe kits so I can't give you direct feedback there. However, I do know quite a few who purchase the recipes and like them.

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I have had good luck with both Northern Brewer and Midwestsupplies. I haven't tried any of Morebeers kits. But they have free shipping on anything over $59. When buying kits I would always order 3 or 4 at a time to defray shipping costs.

I have since started just stocking up on a variety of grains to work with.

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I've completed 2 kits from Midwest. The Irish stout is simple and good (but not until 5 weeks). The Pale Ale is just ok but it's not my type of beer.
I just ordered the Hop Head Double IPA from MIdwest since I had a $25 coupon. I didn't get the grain crushed as I may not be able to do this for a few weeks.
A great majority of what I brew is all grain and custom made by my LHBS.

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Only kit I've ever made was the PTE extract kit from MoreBeer. Turned out VERY good. Not PTE good, but good nonetheless.

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First, let me admit I haven't tried any of the 5-gallon kits out there, although this may change since I'm not using Mr. Beer's Homebrew Club anymore. I might start buying 5-gallon kits and splitting them between 2 LBKs.

But my advice (and what I plan on doing) is to look up the kits online and try the ones that sound interesting to you. Maybe keep it simple at first; rather than going with a Double Chocolate Over-The-Moon Stout, start with a simple Blonde Ale, or an IPA. Order from a couple of suppliers and see if you favor one over the other. Factor in the price and the quality, and whatever other details are important to you.

It seems like a long process, and it may take some time, but I think that's the only way you're really going to find out who you prefer doing business with.

The selections from Midwest and Northern Brewer are varied, seem high-quality, and are probably competitively priced. And these are two suppliers with outstanding reputations, also.

I know I'll be dealing with Northern Brewer, since I've ordered equipment from them, and am pleased with them. I'll also be checking out what my LHBS has available, since it's the most convenient.

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Dave, I've found the reviews to be pretty honest for the most part but, since you have such a good relationship with your LHBS, just ask them to put together the same or very similar kit.
However, a good many of the kits I've found have been tried and tested so it's simply a matter of matching one to your tastes.
I think Midwest, NB and AHS do a better job of clearly showing what you're paying for.

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Got home and my Hop Head Double IPA came in. Bravely, I decided to get the grains whole and use my new mill. When brew day comes, I have 14.5 lbs of grain to mill. That might take 2 beers to get thru!

But, to add to this thread, I got the kit for $26.99 (10% off) plus I used my $25 coupon. Forgetting the coupon and the 10% discount, just look at what I'm getting for 5 gallons.
14.5 lbs of grain, 4 oz pellet hops, 2 oz leaf, 5 oz priming sugar and 05 yeast (I may opt for #1056 yeast). Again, forget the shipping, if I opted for the new recipe, LBK IPA which is $39, I'm in for $10 more for only 2 gallons!!!!
If I opted for doubling a standard refill, that's $36 and still wouldn't make a strong, 4 gallon batch for $6 more.
The other side is it will take me 4-5 hours plus I have to lift 14 lbs of hot and wet grain by myself. :lol:

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Beer-lord wrote: The other side is it will take me 4-5 hours plus I have to lift 14 lbs of hot and wet grain by myself.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Nothing wrong with hot and wet.

I see a whole lot more grain brewers in my crystal ball.

Hey, let me know how you like that new grain mill. I got one too, but still using up the crushed grain I already bought locally. Thanks.

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I was perusing Northern Brewer's site for extract kits, and it occurred to me that I'd better make my decision carefully. After all, I'm going to have five gallons of this stuff. But another consideration is to make a style I don't currently have in my rotation or my repertoire. I could get a brown ale kit (and the Caribou Slobber DOES sound very appealing). But I want to continue to work on my AG version of my own Trilby Brown Ale and get that the way I want it.

There are a couple of potentials so far, but I'm kind of leaning toward the Cream Ale. I've wanted to try making one, and eventually I'd like to develop an original AG recipe for a Cream Ale, but I think getting an extract kit first will help me get an idea of what I should be pursuing.

I only mention this because it may give others who read this thread an idea of where to start and what kind of criteria they may want to pursue.

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Just to plug the home team, Rebel Brewer (and their sister site 50 Pound Sack) are quite good. I don't do a lot of premade kits, but I did their Fat Tire clone, and it was spot on.

As a side note, I've never tried these, but Leener's offers Mr. Beer sized kits. I'm unclear if they are extract and grain steep (my assumption) or something else, but they run from $15-20. They also have a few PDFs (here, here, and here) on improving your Mr. B process.

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Good recommendations, Swen. It's all grist for the mill, as they say. The more information you have, the better an informed decision you can make.

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"genotype" post=262879 said:

Only kit I've ever made was the PTE extract kit from MoreBeer. Turned out VERY good. Not PTE good, but good nonetheless.


I agree with this. I have done both the PTE and the Blind Pig, and they were both really good. Also the prices were at least $20 cheaper than other clone versions.

Also, I have brewed up some really good kits from Austin HBS. I'm probably gonna go with rebel brewer more often, because they are fast with the delivery. I ordered a keg kit, and it arrived at my door at 11 AM two days later. Midwest, and AHS take at least a week. MoreBeer takes a week, but it's coming all the way from California with free shipping.

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T8r is a big fan of Austin Homebrew Store: http://www.austinhomebrew.com/index.php?cPath=178
as T8r drives all the way from Arizona thru Austin specifically for purchasing from AHS, the help rocks, the prices are great, and they have never failed T8r whatever T8r has purchased. T8r also likes MoreBeer.com and have never ordered from any of the other web dealers. Good luck & happy brewing.
[attachment=8031]drinking.jpg[/attachment]

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"losman26" post=262960 said:

I'm probably gonna go with rebel brewer more often, because they are fast with the delivery. I ordered a keg kit, and it arrived at my door at 11 AM two days later.

Dang, that's slow... They usually deliver to me in about, ohh, 2 minutes. The time it takes Tyler to walk to the back and grab what I order out of the storeroom... ;)

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"swenocha" post=262962 said:

"losman26" post=262960 said:

I'm probably gonna go with rebel brewer more often, because they are fast with the delivery. I ordered a keg kit, and it arrived at my door at 11 AM two days later.

Dang, that's slow... They usually deliver to me in about, ohh, 2 minutes. The time it takes Tyler to walk to the back and grab what I order out of the storeroom... ;)


Well I'm on the NE coast, and 2 days is pretty fast. Midwest used to be like this, but now they take a week, even though it is almost the same distance as rebel brewer. Also, I've gotta say that I'm impressed with the quality of their kegs. I'm torn between ordering another 2.5 gal one or a used 5 gal. What do you think of their used 5 gal kegs?

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I know a lot of people who buy used kegs from them and have no issues. They are generally in good shape and cleaned up nice...

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Dave take a look at the Emma's Ale. All proceeds go to a children's cancer clinic and the stuff is really good.

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I agree with T8r, Austin Homebrew is great. I've ordered from them and Midwest Supplies. Austin usually will beat them by a few bucks including shipping, plus it's easy to setup a custom grainbill when creating your own recipes.

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I also was able to grab 4 more oz of Simcoe before it disappears for months.

Dave, let me know if you go with a cream ale. I've been thinking of doing a 2.5 gallon batch in a few weeks for late summer drinking. Just like the black IPA's, there's so many recipes out there and I don't know which way to go. I'm not a huge fan of adding things such as spices or fruit so I'd be inclined to keep it simple.

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"jaydubwill" post=262968 said:

I agree with T8r, Austin Homebrew is great. I've ordered from them and Midwest Supplies. Austin usually will beat them by a few bucks including shipping, plus it's easy to setup a custom grainbill when creating your own recipes.


Which recipes have you done by AHS? I'm thinking of getting one of their Kolsch kits. I wish that they would suggest in their recipes to do a yeast starter. I have had some really great brews from them, and others that turned out a little two sweet. I've found though that Midwest has slightly better prices on equipment for me.

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My LHBS carries most of the kits, so I prefer to go in and ask them about each of them and maybe what they know about them. I only did 1 kit and it was my first time using steeping grains...I botched it miserably but that was my own doing.

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Thanks for all the feedback. I am still looking at the Austin site and it seems to have a lot. Went lhbs today and bought 5 gallon brewing kit and American ale/lager recipe kit. Bought some extra stuff for MB stuff I bought from sears. The kit I bought said ale but has lager yeast. Yeast packet says 65-72degrees but recipe says 50-62 degrees. I am hoping I can keep down in basement.

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I just ordered a 5 gallon brew setup from Midwest. Took advantage of the military discount. Very nice on the phone,set up my account for me too. Just faxed them a copy of my I.D. card and got 10% off and will get 5% off all future purchases. Cant wait to get started with the 5 gallon batches.

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"FedoraDave" post=262910 said:

First, let me admit I haven't tried any of the 5-gallon kits out there, although this may change since I'm not using Mr. Beer's Homebrew Club anymore.

May I ask why you're not using the Homebrew Club anymore?

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"SteveInNC" post=264251 said:

"FedoraDave" post=262910 said:

First, let me admit I haven't tried any of the 5-gallon kits out there, although this may change since I'm not using Mr. Beer's Homebrew Club anymore.

May I ask why you're not using the Homebrew Club anymore?

Cost of new Mr. Beer not worth it in many long term Mr. Beer brewers.

Especially since for $3 you can get a Coopers 5-6 gallon kit from a LHBS of the same HME kit but with 3.75# malt

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"Trollby" post=264258 said:

"SteveInNC" post=264251 said:

"FedoraDave" post=262910 said:

First, let me admit I haven't tried any of the 5-gallon kits out there, although this may change since I'm not using Mr. Beer's Homebrew Club anymore.

May I ask why you're not using the Homebrew Club anymore?

Cost of new Mr. Beer not worth it in many long term Mr. Beer brewers.

Especially since for $3 you can get a Coopers 5-6 gallon kit from a LHBS of the same HME kit but with 3.75# malt

Whet can you get a 5 gallon kit for $3? That's a great price. Even the TBM kits on clearance were more than that and those are supposed to make 2.6 gallons.

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Guest System Admin

"bpgreen" post=264321 said:

"Trollby" post=264258 said:

"SteveInNC" post=264251 said:

"FedoraDave" post=262910 said:

First, let me admit I haven't tried any of the 5-gallon kits out there, although this may change since I'm not using Mr. Beer's Homebrew Club anymore.

May I ask why you're not using the Homebrew Club anymore?

Cost of new Mr. Beer not worth it in many long term Mr. Beer brewers.

Especially since for $3 you can get a Coopers 5-6 gallon kit from a LHBS of the same HME kit but with 3.75# malt

Whet can you get a 5 gallon kit for $3? That's a great price. Even the TBM kits on clearance were more than that and those are supposed to make 2.6 gallons.

Smarty pants :gulp:

I ment for $3 MORE that the $17.95 Mr. beer price

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"Trollby" post=264325 said:

"bpgreen" post=264321 said:

"Trollby" post=264258 said:

"SteveInNC" post=264251 said:

"FedoraDave" post=262910 said:

First, let me admit I haven't tried any of the 5-gallon kits out there, although this may change since I'm not using Mr. Beer's Homebrew Club anymore.

May I ask why you're not using the Homebrew Club anymore?

Cost of new Mr. Beer not worth it in many long term Mr. Beer brewers.

Especially since for $3 you can get a Coopers 5-6 gallon kit from a LHBS of the same HME kit but with 3.75# malt

Whet can you get a 5 gallon kit for $3? That's a great price. Even the TBM kits on clearance were more than that and those are supposed to make 2.6 gallons.

Smarty pants :gulp:

I ment for $3 MORE that the $17.95 Mr. beer price

Darn I was hoping you had a source for phenomenal deals.

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Midwest has a Mil discount... buggar! I didn't know that...does it count for retarded military?

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I`m retired also. Just faxed them a copy of my ID and they said fine. Site said 10% all week for military plus 5 % on everything there after. Will let you know when I order my first kit

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