Wednesday 30 January 2013

All coming together....

Apologies for the lack of updates recently, but now things are moving well - as you will see!

The steel frame is now installed in Pontyclun and the vessels have been lifted onto the "brewing floor" as we rather grandly call it!  Once this is all completed we can do a thorough clean and then begin brewing!

Obviously there is still a lot to do with regards lagging the conditioning tanks and moving them into place, doing the permanent pipework and so on, but once everything is physically in place at least then we can brew using flexible hoses and begin to get some beers out.

More updates as they happen.


FV4 is lifted onto the brewing floor.

And finally the hot liquor tank makes it's appearance...

Monday 14 January 2013

And the rest is on its way!!!

We've just had confirmation that the rest of the brewery - the steel frame, copper, HLT and various other bits and bobs - is on it's way down to Wales!

And there's the other bits!

So, things are moving even faster now and we'll hopefully soon have it all in place and ready for testing out....

Brewery take-down in Norfolk.

Last week saw us over in deepest Norwichshire to observe (and get roped into) the take-down of our brewery at it's current site.  

Things began well with a relaxed 180-mile drive via the M4 and M11 and thence onto windy roads but, once we'd arrived, it soon transpired that we weren't simply going to take a few photos and then head off into the sunset; no, we'd have to so some work and stop over in a knackered old caravan, too.  Good job, then, that we'd been to Arbor in Bristol and Otley in Pontypridd to stock up on bottled beers for that night!  

Typically, the weather had chosen that night to become freezing cold after weeks of mildness, so the electric fire was cranked up to the max inside the caravan... although the numerous 7%+ bottles we drank probably kept most of the cold away!  We also got to experience a proper Russian restaurant locally which is a new one on me...

By the end of day two we'd got most of the vessels - and aren't they just superbly retro in a 1950's Bakelite kind of way? - loaded onto the flatbed lorry and away to Wales, with the rest of the steelwork and vessels due to follow this week.  

Below are some photos to show what happened!

The brewery floor before we started work.
The Mash Tun is lifted off the brewing floor...
... and out of the door!

Then it was the turn of the FV's, not an easy task with millimetres of clearance between the crane and the roof!

With night drawing in, the last vessel was manoeuvred outside.
The next day, once our lorry had arrived (and blocked the lane!), it was time for the simple matter of loading the vessels onto the flatbed.

It wasn't us driving, by the way, and huge respect to David for not trashing any of them!

FV2 goes onto the lorry.

There was just time for a quick celebratory photo before the truck was off South Wales-bound with our precious cargo!  I imagine the sight of these beauties will cause some confusion on the M4.... 

So, there we go... there should be more updates soon once the rest of the hardware arrives onsite in Pontyclun and we begin to reassemble it all... then clean it... then paint it... then, finally, brew on it!

Saturday 5 January 2013

Old brewery, new start...

Confirmation has come through that we're all set to go and supervise the take-down of our brewery at it's current home in preparation for shipping it down to Wales.

So, rolling with this, it looks like we may be in a position to brew some beer late January to early February, although we fully expect this estimate to be extremely fluid as we need to re-assemble the brewery, pipe it up and give it a bloody good clean before we can even begin thinking about brewing on it...  and that's without getting the casks, malt and hops ready!

But, if everything pans out, we should soon have a brewery... which is the main thing!