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First timer brewing kit, help needed

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FruityJ

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Hello Wine making forum,

I am here today because I want to brew my first batch of real red wine. When I was younger I got a grape juice carton, sugar and yeast mixed it all togeather and left it for about 3 months to create a fruity/tangy red wine. I think you guys call this hillbilly brewing, haha but it did the job. Now I'm a little older I would like to brew some red wine but the proper way by sterilizing everything, using real grapes etc.

I have done some research online and there are loads of wine brewing videos on YouTube so that should be enough to get me started in terms of the procedures I will try. but, when it comes to the brewing kits I'm not sure which one will suit me best. I will be needing something that is as simple as possible to get me started off. Then when I have a feel for brewing wine I will get one of the bigger kits.

So what where would you guys suggest I should start? I have found kits here http://www.used.forsale/australia/melbourne/home-brewing-kit but what kind of kit should I go for? and If there are any tips that you guys can pass on to save me time and money it would be greatly appreciated!!

Really looking forward to speaking with you all and getting my fruity red wine on the table!

Thanks
 
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hounddawg

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hi and welcome.
many on here are masters I only do country wines from scratch, ok K-META or passtasum medisulfate , spelled wrong but both are the same thing you sanitize with it, ans you put occording to directions add to must to kill off wild yeasts, peptic sorbet, used to stop reformation after you backsweeten your finished wine, peptic enzyme used to turn your fruits, berries, grapes to juice, if using fresh whole grapes always freeze your grapes, fruits, berries, helps break them down, yeast whew, read and use what your looking for, EC KRAUSS GREAT PLASE TO LEARN , WMT here is best though, ok you need a ferment barrel, I get mine from e-bay 14 gallon, open top with lid, a paint or joint compound mixer for your drill the first 10 days more or less oxygen is your friend after that oxygen uis your very bad enemy, you'll need a carboy, people use both plastic or glass, I have uised both , but I like glasse, check out labelpleeres.com if using glass make sure you go with Italian glass no Chinese glass to thin, air locks, most glass carboys use a #7 bung drilled with a 3/8 hole for airloce, hydrometer, you'll use this to check your starting specific gravity , get one with tripe scale, it will tell potential ABV% and how sweet or dry, when your must gets to .999 it is ready to move to carboy, filter out you must, rack every 3 months, ok depending on available funds you can get a racking cane to tack and bottle, if you can afford it check out vacuumpumpman on here, he sells a vacuum pump system that racks filters degasses bottles , cant be beat, in my filter housing I use a 5 micron for reds and a 1 micron for whites, I use both 28mm screw top bottles, and cork finish bottles, with the corks I use a Italian floor corker, you can also checkout homewinery.com look in their concentrates, A+. ,, labelpeelers.com good price on bottles, heat shrink capsules, on bottles it is cheaper to buy 3 cases at a time more or lees shipping makes cost per bottle go up,
since I use fresh fruit I use 6 gallon carboys, or 23ltr, as a transfer or backsweentening carboy Iuse a 6.5 gallon carboy, I keep 3 gall, 5 gal, 6 gal, and 6.5 gal, i'm sure I ::
 

pip

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You might consider starting small, but really it depends on your budget. You need basic equipment, measuring tools and a few chemicals. If you are using actual fruit, fresh or frozen, just read some recipes, watch youtube and read through this forum, same i guess for juice.

But as i said, its really about your budget. A food grade bucket, a small demijohn, a thermometre and a hydrometer, some k-meta and maybe sorbate, yeast and yeast nutrient - so maybe $50-100? But you could spend a $1000 and set up a really good kit, its up to you really. My advice would be to start small and build up but to be sure of producing a nice wine you may need to spend a bit.
 

Ajmassa

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The starter equipment kit like the picture you included is probably perfect for ya. And takes all the legwork out of it for ya.
If you decide to choose to make kit wine (wine juice and chems and instructions all boxed up available all year round) you should check out labelpeelers.com or homebrew kit site that's always offering deals on this forum. Though I believe starting with kits gets people hung up on kit instructions details when venturing into juice batches.
Good timing to start if you go juice batch. My opinion is this would be the way to go. Easy process of you choose. And spring harvest (chili, South Africa) is just starting to come in to US. And I think you get better wine for your value as well.
Can be as easy as:
- buying a 6 gal bucket of juice from
a local shop
- sprinkling in provided yeast
-after about a week rack from
bucket to glass
-rack in another week or 2
-rack and add 1/4 tsp sulfite every 3
months
-9-12 months your bottling some
decent wine.
Can't go wrong whatever you decide to do Good luck
 

sour_grapes

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For the most part, the starter kit you pictured will suit you well, with one possible exception: the corker. Many here have reported that the two-handed corker pictured above is difficult to use. Instead, consider spending a few more bucks for a "floor corker," like the one pictured below.

 

Scooter68

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I'll second the comment about the floor cooker over the two handled corker.
But I will also say that the super simple hand corker (Two pieces of plastic that telescope together to push the cork in) will work for starting out. For less than $10.00 it will get the job done. I used one my first year and half (About 25 gallons = 125 bottles ) until my torn up shoulder couldn't get the job done.

Keep it simple until you know you want to get into this. One more thing - acid test kit. Titration kits are not expensive but are very difficult to use on red or dark wines (Blackberry, Blueberry etc) So I invested a big $20.00 (Less actually) for a electonic pH meter. Measuring pH is slightly different than titration but the both help you keep you wine balanced. Two most important measurements SG and pH (TA)
 

CabSauv

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FruityJ, coming from a fellow newbie, I did a lot of reading and watched the videos online like you did. I took the plunge just a few weeks ago and my first batch just went into bulk aging. Don't let all the equipment and process overwhelm you. The basic items you need (and what you will get in a kit) are a food grade bucket, airlock, syphon and hose (preferably an auto-syphon), a glass carboy, hydrometer, bottle corker, and a drilled rubber bung. Later you'll need corks and bottles unless you get a kit that comes with corks (many do). Bottles you can buy new and some shops sell used, or you can start saving from your own consumption. The rest you can get by with from items in your kitchen (stirring spoon and turkey baster may be a few you end up using) As others have said, find a local home brewing store or buy a kit online and get a wine kit such as WineXpert (which at least for me seems to be the easiest to find). Choose your favorite wine and follow the instructions.

I recommend reading them all the way through so you can properly document, date, and keep a log of when you start, your starting measurements, etc.,. You'll learn the basic chemicals and their purpose through each step of the process and it all comes together. Soon enough you'll be testing pH and scrounging for empty bottles with batch #2 sitting by your primary fermenter waiting to be started.
 
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richmke

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Kraffty

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Welcome FruityJ, I'm a fan of starting with a simple kit like the picture you included. It's a bit more money than buying all the individual pieces BUT you have everything you need for that first try included. Roughly 129.00 for a wine making kit and another 70 or 80 for wine kit and you have about everything you need to make a drinkable batch of wine. I still use many of the items from my kit to this day. About the only thing you'll need to buy separate is 30 bottles and you can use used ones for that if you like. I'm sure you can find deals and lower the getting started cost even more.

Might also consider a white wine to start, they are drinkable earlier and we're all eager to test that first batch.
Best of luck
Mike
 

WAC4504

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Wine kits

When it comes ti wine kits I would look at Southern Homebrew, they have their kits on sale, at very reasonable. here's the link: won't let me post a link, just find it on the web.
I would also recommend that you make sure when you buy a primary fermenter you get a 7+ gal. bucket. Most all your wine kits are 6 gallon. And have fun!
 
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FruityJ

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Wow, guys, loads of information here. I am going to have a read through everything and check out the links then get back to you all.

Thanks guys! Great bunch
 

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