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Old 03-15-2011, 10:48 PM   #1
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Default Upgrade too big?

I have brewed 4 batches since I started in January using Extract/Steeping/PM in a 5 gallon (canning) pot. I want to upgrade my pot to accommodate a full 6.5 gallon boil for AG brewing. I spotted a pot on craigslists for cheap, but it is a "Bayou Classic" 82 Qt stainless steel and I am not sure if that would be too big?

Are there downsides to using such a large pot for standard 5 gallon batches? I don't think I am ready yet for 10 gallon batches, but I don't really want to upgrade again. (Could this pot be too big for even 10 gallon batches?)

Any advice is appreciated.

http://www.amazon.com/Bayou-Classic-.../dp/B000FTYKGQ

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Old 03-15-2011, 11:01 PM   #2
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For boiling 6 - 7 gallons it will be fine and if you ever want to move up to 10 gallon batches you won't have to buy another pot.

I've done a 5 gallon batch in my 30 gallon pot without any problem....

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Old 03-15-2011, 11:09 PM   #3
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I really think that a 20 gallon pot is way too big for a 5 gallon full volume boil.....10 gallons I could see but not 5. This is more appropriate for a 15 gallon boil if you ask me. Of course this depends largely on how you plan to chill the wort, etc. Are you using a water bath, immersion chiller, counterflow? If you use this pot for a 5 gallon batch and you plan on using an immersion chiller.....forget it. Most of the chiller will likely remain above the wort becaue it will be spread out thinly at the bottom of the pot. If you plan to use a water bath.....well ok you could do it if you really wanted to. If you plan to use a counter flow chiller and drain through a ball valve....ok you could probably make this work too.

You've only got 4 batches under your belt so you're probably not real shure about your brewing future yet? If there are any thoughts in your head about brewing bigger batches down the road and this is really as good a deal as you say it is.....I would go ahead and buy it......but that's just me. You can always re-sell later.

If you think that 5 gallon batches are for you and there is little chance of ever bumping up batch sizes......I would honestly reccomend finding a smaller pot.

Hope this helps

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Old 03-15-2011, 11:24 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BBL_Brewer View Post
...this is really as good a deal as you say it is.....I would go ahead and buy it......but that's just me. You can always re-sell later.
Now, I have not seen the quality of the pot yet, but how does $40 sound?

Thanks for the advice, I am going to get it and keep it stashed away for when I move to large volumes.
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Old 03-15-2011, 11:28 PM   #5
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I think I will also have to move out of the kitchen before I use at 20 gallon pot or SWMBO will be quite displeased.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Monster Mash View Post
I've done a 5 gallon batch in my 30 gallon pot without any problem....
30 gallons? What is your normal batch size in that monster?
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Old 03-16-2011, 12:00 AM   #6
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40 bones sounds pretty awesome for a 20 gallon pot

Stainless Steel right?

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Old 03-16-2011, 12:07 AM   #7
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For $40 buy it and then resell it and buy yourself a bunch of equipment for smaller batches.

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Old 03-16-2011, 12:09 AM   #8
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I can guarantee that pot from Bayou is Aluminum (Which is what I brew in... there's no problem with it). I just picked up a 13 gallon tamale pot for $30 at Super H Mart (It's an Asian grocery), and I really enjoyed brewing my first 5 gallon AG batch in it - I doubt it will accommodate a 10 gallon batch though.

You'll have more problems than your wife if you do 5 gallons in the kitchen though, you'll have a broken stove that never got your wort to a boil.

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Old 03-16-2011, 12:14 AM   #9
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As long as the pot is in good condition, not beat to hell and back again, and has no leaks, go for it... But it the sides look like the Maine coastline, move on to the next deal... I would also ask to have it filled with water while you're there to check for leaks. Especially where the handles are riveted on... Never know, it could be a flawed pot, and unless you check it out before paying, you could be getting a hunk of scrap metal...

If it does check out as all good, then you have a pot for 10+ gallon batches... Add a decent propane burner and you're one step closer to a solid rig...

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Old 03-16-2011, 01:10 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BBL_Brewer View Post
If you use this pot for a 5 gallon batch and you plan on using an immersion chiller.....forget it. Most of the chiller will likely remain above the wort becaue it will be spread out thinly at the bottom of the pot.
I use a 50' immersion chiller in a 20 gallon Blichmann. It sticks only halfway into the wort for a 5 gallon batch but works perfectly, and it's 3/8ths stainless to boot.
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