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Old 01-18-2013, 12:20 AM   #11
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Is a 15 gallon pot big enough for a 10 gallon full boil? I'm looking to move up to 10 gallon batches, but might still do some 5 gallon batches here and there.

Spike--is the horizontal placement of the thermometer a problem with the heat from the burner?

Thanks!
15 is big enough but you'll have to watch it more carefully. I always recommend a 20gal boil kettle for 10gal batches. The horizontal is just fine even with the burner.

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Wow, those are really nice and awesomely priced! My main is a 20g, and it feels like such a waste when I do 5g batches. My starter was a 7g and was regretted. Right now all I care about is size and ball valve, and yours look beautiful! I'm tempted to pull the trigger, but my god the wife would decapitate me this close to post christmas.

Keep a 10g aside for me until my tax refund comes back, will ya!
Our new sightglass will be out by then! You'll be extra tempted then
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Old 01-18-2013, 01:53 AM   #12
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I have used the megapot (8 gallon), spike kettle (15 gallon), and blichmann (20 gallon). I prefer the blichmann and have been using it for almost two years now. For me the horizontal configuration on the spike kettle was problematic, it caused the thermometer to fog during the boil (when using a bayou classic sp-10). I just ended up plugging that port. The packaging was minimal and the kettle arrived with the bottom dented. The Megapot was nice and more durable than the other two. I do think the boil off rate would be higher on the 20 gallon megapot vs a 20 gallon blichmann. The blichmann dimensions are perfect, and it includes a very nice dip tube, adjustable angle thermometer, and three piece valve. I know you said you don't need a sight glass, but the blichmann sight glass is useful, durable, accurate, and well engineered. I like having a slight glass, its easy to see when to stop the sparge and my volumes are always spot on.

If you are looking at a spike kettle, consider building your own with the same kettle or here is another version.

Also don't forget to check out these guys.

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Old 01-18-2013, 02:26 AM   #13
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I have used the megapot (8 gallon), spike kettle (15 gallon), and blichmann (20 gallon). I prefer the blichmann and have been using it for almost two years now. For me the horizontal configuration on the spike kettle was problematic, it caused the thermometer to fog during the boil (when using a bayou classic sp-10). I just ended up plugging that port. The packaging was minimal and the kettle arrived with the bottom dented. The Megapot was nice and more durable than the other two. I do think the boil off rate would be higher on the 20 gallon megapot vs a 20 gallon blichmann. The blichmann dimensions are perfect, and it includes a very nice dip tube, adjustable angle thermometer, and three piece valve. I know you said you don't need a sight glass, but the blichmann sight glass is useful, durable, accurate, and well engineered. I like having a slight glass, its easy to see when to stop the sparge and my volumes are always spot on.

If you are looking at a spike kettle, consider building your own with the same kettle or here is another version.

Also don't forget to check out these guys.
I don't want this thread to get blown up and way off topic but I need to say something.... (apologies in advance to the OP)

Anytime a kettle discussion gets brought up you list every possible supplier other than us. Which is fine, that's your opinion, can't fault you there. I do take it personally because I think our product is of better quality and value than some of the stuff you post but again that's your opinion.

Where I get upset is when you compare a Concord kettle with a weldless valve slapped on equal to ours. You're neglecting how much time, labor and talent went into the additional welding we do to these kettles. They are great kettles and that's why we were the first vendor to adopt them.

Again sorry to go off topic but I've worked hard to build this company and seeing it undermined rubs me the wrong way. As for your thermometer fogging... They are hermetically sealed so they can't fog. The thermo is defective and if you contact us we'll gladly send another.

-Ben
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Old 01-18-2013, 03:57 AM   #14
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Anytime a kettle discussion gets brought up you list every possible supplier other than us. Which is fine, that's your opinion, can't fault you there. I do take it personally because I think our product is of better quality and value than some of the stuff you post but again that's your opinion.

Where I get upset is when you compare a Concord kettle with a weldless valve slapped on equal to ours.
When installed properly, they are equal. I think the spike kettles are overpriced economy kettles, but that's my opinion. Everything on the spike site can be found cheaper somewhere else. I see spike brewing advertising in nearly every kettle post. I guess paying the vendor fee makes this an acceptable practice on this site, though I see no other vendor behave like this. I guess Ben is upset there are other kettle options that will work just as well for a cheaper price. This discussion is about blichmann vs megapot kettles, which in my experience are both better products than the spike kettles.
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Old 01-18-2013, 04:10 AM   #15
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I don't want this thread to get blown up and way off topic but I need to say something.... (apologies in advance to the OP)

Anytime a kettle discussion gets brought up you list every possible supplier other than us. Which is fine, that's your opinion, can't fault you there. I do take it personally because I think our product is of better quality and value than some of the stuff you post but again that's your opinion.

Where I get upset is when you compare a Concord kettle with a weldless valve slapped on equal to ours. You're neglecting how much time, labor and talent went into the additional welding we do to these kettles. They are great kettles and that's why we were the first vendor to adopt them.

Again sorry to go off topic but I've worked hard to build this company and seeing it undermined rubs me the wrong way. As for your thermometer fogging... They are hermetically sealed so they can't fog. The thermo is defective and if you contact us we'll gladly send another.

-Ben
To be fair he was giving viable alternatives. No offense, but I have routinely watched you call out your competitors (Who don't have a voice here) in the same fashion. I respect your hard work in making a living, and the fact that you help support the site, but facts are facts. Some might take issue with the fact that you jump into any thread that mentions the word kettle, this thread in fact, specifically asks about the Boilermaker and Megapot.
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Old 01-18-2013, 04:19 AM   #16
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I am looking to move up to a 20 gallon kettle so I can start doing 10 gallon batches. I am really torn between the megapot and the blichmann. I'm convinced I don't need a sight glass on the kettle, but the width of the megapot worries me. Thoughts?

In the future, I plan to get a 15 gallon direct fired RIMS MT to replace my cooler.
kman
I was also worried about the short and wide pots, mainly for the additional boil-off rate they lead to, but that can be compensated for. At first I was set on Bayou Classic pots, as they are tall and narrow, but eventually went with the Boilermaker. The cost is up there, but when you compare other kettles equipped with the same options, they aren't that far off, and you won't be disappointed. Now, it's up to you if you really need/want the additional features.

EDIT - Regarding the sight glass, depending on your set up they can be very useful. For example, if you are using a cooler as an HLT and MLT, and you use your kettle for heating strike/sparge water, they are great. If you have an MLT and HLT with sight glasses already, then having one in the boil kettle is probably something you'll find is not all that useful. I like having it in the boil kettle so I can track boil-off in real-time. If you brew enough, you'll get to know how much you boil-off in x amount of time. It's a luxury I enjoy having, but not a necessity by any stretch.
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Old 01-18-2013, 04:42 AM   #17
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When installed properly, they are equal. I think the spike kettles are overpriced economy kettles, but that's my opinion. Everything on the spike site can be found cheaper somewhere else. I see spike brewing advertising in nearly every kettle post. I guess paying the vendor fee makes this an acceptable practice on this site, though I see no other vendor behave like this. I guess Ben is upset there are other kettle options that will work just as well for a cheaper price. This discussion is about blichmann vs megapot kettles, which in my experience are both better products than the spike kettles.
That's why professional equipment uses them . Over priced economy kettles? lol We have a lower margin then the guys using the same kettles going the weldless route. And Blichmann? Don't even get me started on over priced! ha ha Either way we don't see eye to eye and that's fine. Cheers!

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Originally Posted by Markd27 View Post
To be fair he was giving viable alternatives. No offense, but I have routinely watched you call out your competitors (Who don't have a voice here) in the same fashion. I respect your hard work in making a living, and the fact that you help support the site, but facts are facts. Some might take issue with the fact that you jump into any thread that mentions the word kettle, this thread in fact, specifically asks about the Boilermaker and Megapot.
I never push our products. I usually put a link and maybe a reason to check us out. My job is kettles so I think of myself as a pretty knowledgeable source. I try to help out newbies and point them in the right direction. Many people don't know about us yet so I'd be an idiot not to post in threads where people ask about which kettle. I can pull up countless posts of people saying, "Wish I would have found you guys earlier." Just doing my job


I said my piece and I'll leave the thread alone.
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Old 01-21-2013, 04:12 PM   #18
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I personally bought a spike kettle. I loved it. Purchased two more to round out my system. Ben is great to work with. I am the "pain in the arse customer" that poor guys like Ben dread, but he's never been anything but helpful and knowledgeable to me.

Like I said, I personally have all spikes(well once they arrive) and love them. They are quality builds at VERY affordable prices. Anyone that says otherwise is lying. Yes you can go blichmann, another product line I like and support, but simply look at spike as an alternative.

As far as "everything is overpriced", that's simply just rude and offensive to Ben's efforts. Ben is in the kettle business. he sells other items to round out his offering, but he doesn't push them. He will straight up tell you that you can use any ball valve/thermometer, thats why he simply sells welded couplings. but then you can Look at his false bottom and see the value. For $10 more, he includes the hosing, the barb npt fitting and the false bottom. Go build a stainless steel false bottom cheaper.

If you have a problem with the way he promotes his product, move to Russia where free market is dead, but don't sit behind your computer screen and call him out for bullsh**.

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Old 01-22-2013, 02:06 PM   #19
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Hey Spike,
Is the lower third coupler on some of your pots for the new sight glass you mentioned? Do you know when you wills start selling it? In the meantime, do you have plugs for that extra hole?

Thanks,
kman

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Old 01-22-2013, 03:34 PM   #20
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Hey Spike,
Is the lower third coupler on some of your pots for the new sight glass you mentioned? Do you know when you wills start selling it? In the meantime, do you have plugs for that extra hole?

Thanks,
kman
The 3rd coupler is for an aftermarket sight glass like what Bobby_M sells. Our sight glass will have two welded ports. It'll be able to recirculate so there's no chance of it boiling over. With that being said it's a completely different design so buying the 3 coupler kettle won't allow for the sightglass to be attached later.

We're waiting to hear back from our beta testers. I'm hoping to release the new SG in ~3 weeks.
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