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Old 07-17-2008, 01:04 AM   #1
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Default Kettle Capacity?

How do you determine your kettle size? Is it by pure capacity, or how much it will hold for use? If I fill mine with 4 gallons, it's about 1.5 inches from the rim. So, is it considered a 4 or 5 gallon?

Also, for someone who's doing extract for the time being, what size/make kettle would you guys recommend? Thanks!

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Old 07-17-2008, 01:24 AM   #2
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I think kettle size is how much it will hold up to (or almost to) the rim. I would assume yours is a 4 gallon pot. I bought what was sold as a 7.5 gallon pot, and the top marking is like 2 inches from the rim and it says 30qt (7.5 gallons). I can barely get away with 5 gallon boils.

Are you brewing inside on the stove or outside on a cooker? Full or partial boil? Ideally, I'd say go with a pot you can use when you upgrade to bigger and better brewing.

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Old 07-17-2008, 01:48 AM   #3
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So, since mine will hold 5 gallons up to the rim, it's a 4 gallon kettle then? I do my boils in the house right now, but I have the setup for outside boiling, so I can do either. I'm still doing extracts, I started with a full LME kit and then moved to a LME/DME batch.

I'm not sure what the difference between full or partial boil is, can you elaborate? I'm a noob, for sure!

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Old 07-17-2008, 01:54 AM   #4
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Partial is you are boiling 2-3gal, then topping up in the fermenter with water. Full boil means you brew what you've boiled, so you boil ~6gal

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Old 07-17-2008, 02:20 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eskimo Spy View Post
So, since mine will hold 5 gallons up to the rim, it's a 4 gallon kettle then?
No, I must have misunderstood. I thought you said right up to the rim was 4 gallons. If it will hold 5 gallons then chances are that's what it's capacity is rated at. Of course you wouldn't want to boil 5 gallons of wort in there (or even 4 gallons).
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Old 07-17-2008, 02:48 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by damrass View Post
No, I must have misunderstood. I thought you said right up to the rim was 4 gallons. If it will hold 5 gallons then chances are that's what it's capacity is rated at. Of course you wouldn't want to boil 5 gallons of wort in there (or even 4 gallons).
lol, yeah, that would be a mess. I am doing a partial boil. With the LME I was doing a 2 gallon boil, then topping off to 5 gallons. With the LME/DME, I was doing a 2.5 gallon boil, then topping off. So, since I eventually want to move on to bigger and better brewing, I should go with a 7.5 gallon kettle? And is there a certain make or material that is superior? It seems that stainless steel is the way to go, but is an enameled brewpot good too? Thanks!
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Old 07-17-2008, 04:27 AM   #7
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Not sure about the enameled pots, but I wouldn't think so. Maybe someone else can answer that for us.

If I were going to do it all over again, I'd go for a 10 gallon at least. A full boil in a 7.5 gallon is a tight squeeze when you factor in fermentables, hops, and the extra bit of water you lose from evaporation. More than brand, I would shop for the most heavy dutiest and thickest. IMHO, I wouldn't get anything other than stainless.

BTW, if you get a bigger pot you may not even be able to do inside boils with it. I tried that with my 7.5 pot, and it took like 2 hours to bring the water to boil... and I got scorch marks on the stove.

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Old 07-17-2008, 04:38 AM   #8
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I figured as much about the outside boils. I have a two burner setup, so I should be good there. So, a 10 gallon will allow me to do a full boil now, and give me the room I need in the future. Stainless steel and thick is the way. Thanks a bunch!

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Old 07-17-2008, 12:44 PM   #9
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I used an enamel canning pot on the stove when I was doing extract batches. Works just fine for a partial boil. Big thing is to make sure that the enamel isn't chipped or cracked, that can provide off flavors.

Aluminum is also a way to go for the boil kettle. Better heat distribution than stainless and a lower price for a larger pot.

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