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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Equipment/Sanitation > FAQ: Aluminum Pots for Boil Kettles?
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Old 10-07-2010, 07:23 PM   #211
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So this $57 pot is now $67. Anyone know of any other deals?
Sams Club - $43.88
I have this kettle, I'm happy with it.
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Old 10-07-2010, 09:10 PM   #212
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I just emailed Charlie Papazian about this as I'm about to move to all grain. Here is what he told me:


Like good quality stuff, a stainless steel pot won’t wear out nor lose its value.

Aluminum comes in different grades and I personally don’t like the idea of it being in contact with beer.

I have never ever seen aluminum used in a professional brewery. There might be a good reason, other than cost.

Aluminum also won’t stand the extremes of heat which might happen on occasion or when you use jet propane burners.

Hope this helps
Charlie

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Old 10-08-2010, 03:02 AM   #213
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I don't want to be the guy who contradicts Charlie, but the idea that Aluminum won't handle heat is not exactly true. A pot does not get significantly hotter than its contents. Aluminum is used in commercial applications from 33,000 BTU range burners to 90,000 BTU stock pot ranges with no ill effect. Running it dry is an entirely different story.
Obviously a cheap pot is a cheap pot so let that be your guide.

And I am not sure what he meant by "other than cost" as Aluminum is cheaper than SS.

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Old 10-08-2010, 12:03 PM   #214
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I have this kettle, I'm happy with it.
The specs on the Sam's Club website are pretty poor. Will you tell me the dimensions of your pot? Diameter, height and most important, wall thickness?

I just ordered a Royal aluminum pot because it has a 6mm (.236) wall. My old pot was 4mm (.157) thick for about the top 2 inches, but then stepped down to less than half of that. I’m hoping that the thicker wall will transmit heat better.



Edit:
Haven't used the new one yet and the Sam Club price is better. Might be worth swapping if the specs are the same.
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Old 10-08-2010, 03:20 PM   #215
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The specs on the Sam's Club website are pretty poor. Will you tell me the dimensions of your pot? Diameter, height and most important, wall thickness?

I just ordered a Royal aluminum pot because it has a 6mm (.236) wall. My old pot was 4mm (.157) thick for about the top 2 inches, but then stepped down to less than half of that. I’m hoping that the thicker wall will transmit heat better.



Edit:
Haven't used the new one yet and the Sam Club price is better. Might be worth swapping if the specs are the same.
It's 17.25 inch deep with an outside diameter of 16.25 inch (at the top) The wall thickness at the top is about 1/8 inch so just under 4mm so the inside diameter is about 16 inches. It might get a little thinner as you go down, it's hard for me to tell, but after using it for almost two years now It looks like it did when it first came out of the box. When I first got it I did boil water in it to build up the oxide layer inside.
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Old 10-10-2010, 06:57 PM   #216
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It's 17.25 inch deep.
Thanks for the information. The one I'm looking to get is a little lower profile so it will fit under the microwave on my kitchen stove. Boiled 9 gallons in a 10 gallon pot last night.

I need a bigger pot! Can't wait til it gets here. 10 gallon batches . . .

You can see what I mean about the wall getting thinner a couple of inches down from the top. I didn't really notice until drilling the hole for a ball valve.
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Old 11-14-2010, 03:37 AM   #217
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How did that last post last so long

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Old 11-14-2010, 01:11 PM   #218
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Just picked up a new Brinkman 60quart pot from Home Depot ($39) last night. Going to test boil in it today to see what kind of boil off I get, plus I need to build up my oxide layer.

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Old 11-14-2010, 09:12 PM   #219
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I have never ever seen aluminum used in a professional brewery. There might be a good reason, other than cost.
They don't use aluminum in breweries for one simple reason: you can't use caustic cleaners with it.

On a commercial scale, aluminum is tougher to clean. Plenty of commercial kitchens cook in aluminum
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Old 11-15-2010, 03:19 AM   #220
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Default Aluminum is fine

40gallon $130 new

I've been using it now for a few months.



Best investment yet. Now I gotta get me one of them low presure big BTU buners.

All you gotta do to put an oxide layer on is boil water in it for an hour.

Very easy to drill for taps, and thermowells, etc.

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