4 BBL Brewing Equipment is a medium-sized professional brewery setup capable of producing 120-150 gallons per batch. This size is well-suited for microbreweries looking to scale up production while retaining craft quality and flexibility.
4 BBL Brewing Equipment Guide
This section will provide an equipment guide detailing the key components of 4 BBL Brewing Equipment.
|Equipment Type||Description and Key Functions|
|Brew Kettle||The brew kettle or mash tun is one of the primary vessels where water is combined with malted grains to convert starches to sugar. A 4 BBL system would need a 5 BBL kettle size typically.|
|Lauter Tun||The lauter tun separates the sugary wort from the grains. It contains a false bottom plate and sparge arm to filter the wort.|
|Whirlpool||The whirlpool unit creates a spinning motion to separate trub and hop particles before the wort moves to the fermenter. This helps clarify the wort.|
|Heat Exchanger||A plate heat exchanger quickly cools down the hot wort before it is transferred to the fermenter. This is important to avoid oxidation and evaporation.|
|Fermentation Tanks||The fermenters are temperature and pressure controlled stainless steel vessels where the yeast converts sugar into alcohol and CO2. A 4 BBL setup would need (5x) 4 BBL fermenters typically.|
|Brite Tanks||Brite tanks allow storage and carbonation of finished beer before packaging. 4 BBL brite tanks enable holding 1-2 batches.|
|Filter||A whole house filtration system removes yeast, particles and haze for brilliantly clear beer. Plate and frame filters are commonly used.|
|Transfer Pumps||Centrifugal and sanitary transfer pumps efficiently move liquid between vessels with minimal oxygen uptake.|
|Cleaning and Sanitation||Clean-in-place (CIP) manifolds, reservoirs, pumps and spray balls provide automated cleaning and sanitization of equipment.|
|Glycol Chiller||The glycol chiller unit regulates temperatures of fermentation and brite tanks for optimal yeast activity.|
|Steam Boiler||The gas-fired steam boiler provides hot liquor for mashing grains in the brew kettle and powers the brewing process.|
|Control Panel||The control panel houses computer controls to enable automatic system operation and data capture.|
Customized 4 BBL Brewhouse Design and Layout
This section will cover how to customize and optimize the 4 BBL Brewing Equipment design for your facility size and production goals.
|Space and Dimension||A 4 BBL brewhouse occupies approximately a 800-1200 sq. ft footprint. Ceiling height, placement of tanks and flow between vessels should be optimized.|
|Production Volume||Target batch size, annual beer production and peak output will determine tank capacities and other equipment sizing.|
|Expandability||Consider potential future expansion needs in site layout and buffer space around equipment. modular designs allow for incremental upgrades|
|Budget||Estimate capital expenditure and operating costs. Optimize to match financial projections.|
|Design and Lead Times||Custom or turnkey systems? Choose quality fabricators and secure equipment production slots based on timelines.|
|Safety and Compliance||Ensure designs meet all brewery safety, electrical, plumbing and ventilation guidelines. Secure appropriate licensing.|
Suppliers and Costs
Here is a comparison of equipment costs from leading 4 BBL Brewing Equipment suppliers:
|Rolec Craft Brewing||$100,000 – $250,000||Custom designs|
|Specific Mechanical||$150,000 – $300,000||Turnkey systems|
|Portland Kettleworks||$180,000 – $280,000||Made in USA|
|AAA Metal Fabrication||$120,000 – $220,000||Value equipment|
|Mile Hi Equipment||$250,000 – $350,000||Premium systems|
*Pricing indicative only; gets highly customized
Choosing the Right 4 BBL System Supplier
Here are key criteria to evaluate when selecting a 4 BBL Brewing Equipment supplier:
|Reputation and Track Record||Reviews, client lists, years in business|
|Customization Range||Ability to meet specialized layout or functionality requirements|
|Design Consultation Process||Guidance provided on equipment sizing, capacities, facility considerations|
|Equipment Quality and Craftsmanship||High-grade stainless steel, precise fabrication, durability|
|Lead Times||Production and delivery timelines|
|Options within Budget||System configurations matching capital expenditure budget|
|Local Service and Support||Availability of installations, maintenance and service crews near brewery location|
|Warranties||Equipment defects and performance coverage policies|
Installing and Operating 4 BBL Brewing Equipment
This section covers best practices around 4 BBL Brewing Equipment installation, operation, cleaning and ongoing maintenance.
|Site Prep||Flooring, drainage, electrical, ventilation and ancillary infrastructure should be completed prior to equipment delivery per supplier recommendations|
|Installation||Experienced crews supervise staging of tanks, wiring, piping, glycol and test connections as part of turnkey commissioning|
|Safety||Lock-out tag-out procedures, emergency stops, protective gear and training on safe chemical handling and equipment operation|
|Startup Assistance||Suppliers provide onsite support during initial batch productions to troubleshoot issues|
|Control Systems||Programming and data monitoring enable tracking brewery operations|
|Cleaning and Maintenance||Daily and weekly cleaning protocols per supplier guidelines, with routine inspections, lubrication, replacements of wear parts|
|Service Contracts||Scheduled annual servicing of control systems, pumps, filters, boiler etc. by qualified technicians|
Key Pros and Cons of 4 BBL Brewing Equipment
|Flexible batch sizes||Higher equipment cost per barrel vs larger systems|
|Cann manage multiple beer varieties and experimentation||Takes up more floor space than 1-2 BBL nano setups|
|Cost-effective scaling up from pilot batches||Additional complexity in process piping and controls|
|Produces volume suitable for taprooms and distribution||Requires an advanced brewer’s skill level|
|Quality and consistency improves with automation||Significant start-up effort in design, site prep, installation and licensing|
Q: What size space do you need for a 4 BBL brewhouse?
A: Approximately 800-1200 square feet, with 10ft+ ceiling height. The actual footprint dimensions get custom designed based on your goals.
Q: How many people does it take to operate a 4 BBL system?
A: Realistically you need 1-2 skilled brewers who can handle an automated, medium-volume setup with beer transfers, CIP systems etc. Some additional cellar staff may help with packaging.
Q: What are the annual maintenance costs of 4BBL equipment?
A: Industry benchmarks estimate 4-6% of total equipment cost as yearly maintenance expenses. This covers periodic servicing, parts replacement, cleaning chemicals etc.
Q: Is 4 BBL a good size to distribute kegs or cans?
A: Yes, the roughly 150 gallon per batch output lets you establish tap accounts at bars and fill limited release cans for self-distribution if allowed by state laws.