In the world of home brewing, ingenuity saves time and money. Homebrew gadgets come in all shapes and sizes, and not all are strictly necessary, but most of them make the brewing process a little easier. Here we will outline the benefits of ten homebrew gadgets that have helped brewing operations, as well as a few others we have heard about.
Gadget #1: Racking Cane
Most new brewers brew on bare bones systems for many months, and then finally invest in a racking cane, it really saves a lot of time and hassle. Most brewers never know why they didnít get one when they started Ė donít scrimp on this item, it is really useful.
Gadget #2: Wort Chiller
Beginning brewers sometime think that if they have the patience, they don't need to spend money on a wort chiller. Just leave the wort out overnight to cool naturally, right? Wrong. This practice leds to contamination. Better to chill the beer as quickly as possible and minimize the risk of bacterial contamination.
Gadget #3: Cornelius Keg System
"When I first started brewing, I was cheap." said the new brewer. "I bottled my beer for many months before looking into Cornelius kegs. Now, I almost exclusively keg my beer, and save bottling for special brews only, my private reserve." Kegging your beer will save you a lot of time, as bottling is so labor intensive.
Gadget #4: Homebrew Draft System [External Link]
Kegerators come in many sizes and shapes. A kegerator conversion kit is one of the best investments a home brewer can make to ensure that your home brew has the chance to be the best it can be. The kit allows you to transform a regular old refrigerator into a multi-tap home draft system. This will also spice up the party scene in your home.
Gadget #5: Hydrometer
It is important to know how strong your beer is. A hydrometer is the tool that allows any home brewer to calculate this. With this knowledge, a home brewer can perfect and hone the craft and make beer with exacting accuracy.
Gadget #6: Hop Filter
If you are like most, you like to put a lot of loose leaf hops into your beer during the boil. This makes for a difficult time straining the beer as you put it into the carboy. A hop filter helps greatly with this, but you must understand that you should get the big chunks out with a strainer first. By using the hop filter in the racking process, you can ensure that your beer is clear and beautiful in the finished product.
Gadget #7: Homebrewing Software
For the beginning brewer, the services of programs like homebrew tools or beer tools can give a great starting point. For example, if you want to know how to make a wheat beer with 5.6% alcohol and fruity undertones, these programs can help you do it.
Gadget #8: Keg-meter [External Link]
This little invention keeps track of how much beer is left in your keg, your beer temperature, and even has a lockout function. Ideal for home made kegerators or for factory made kegerators. See www.keg-meter.com for further information.
Gadget #9: Beer Keg Brew Kettle
Getting a hold on a five or six gallon stainless steel brew kettle can be difficult, but making a 15 gallon brew kettle out of a stainless steel beer keg takes only an hour! See our keg conversion project on how this can be done by those proficient in metal fabrication.
Gadget #10: Kegerator Beer Line Cleaners
If you own a kegerator, you will absolutely need a beer line cleaning kit. These kits have everything you need to ensure that your home draft beer system stays in tip top shape and never suffers from bacterial contamination.