So what follows is an instructable on how to build a press and get from apples to scrummy scrumpy with as little cost as possible.
i took a few tips and ideas from the following sources, thanks to all those who published 'ibles already.
Homemade cheese and cider press
hard cider from scratch
Making Your Own Cider
and many more
also before i forget check your local laws for brewing in your area. its usually legal if you're of legal drinking age and you're only brewing a small batch.
Hard cider is of course alcoholic so please drink responsibly homebrew is not just about making bucket loads of cheap booze its enjoying the satisfaction of tasing something youve made yourself.
As with any homebrewing, results can vary wildly! in worst case scenarios you can end up with nasty infections or otherwise spoiled produce. sanitation is key but things can still go wrong, dont come whining to me if your cider gives you the runs !
Step 1: Equipment list.
For the press
- Wood - i used the cheapest 2"x4" for the struts and spare MDF for the plates
- An old plastic tray
- A car jack. scissor jacks work great but the oldschool cartoon style ones work too
- food grade bucket/s to catch juice in
- Tools - tape measure (and set square ideally)
- Power tools - saw, drill
for the juicing
- Apples - i got a gallon of juice from a BIG bucket of apples
- A bucket and spare clean plank to crush apples in
- Muslin bags. mine were a bit loose weave, clean tea towels would work well aswell
- funnels and filters to strain juice
- a demijohn (a carboy to americans) x2 if possible. Other vessels will work so long as its food grade!
- an airlock (better a propper one than a hose and bucket of water)
- sanitiser (some people use diluted bleach but the stuff from the homebrew store is cheap)
- campden tablets (not essential but advised by many)
- Cider yeast (easy enough to get in the UK but champagne yeast is supposed to work well aswell)
- Yeast nutrient, a hydrometer, pH strips and brewing sugar is good too but not essential