Originally Posted by castermmt
Well, I 'll jump in. 10 gallon batches typically require a boil kettle of twice the batch size. Now you say low gravity beers now you will wish you could brew what ever beer you want in the future just like your migrating to electric from propane. I was going to use 3-15 gallon kettles and after reading I realized I would be limited in the variety of beers I would be able to brew as well as limited to less then ten gallons. I went with 20 HLT, 15 Mash, and 20 Boil and have never looked back. I can make 5 or 10 gallon batches of just about any beer styles I want. Build it once and build it right and you too won't regret it.
As Kal uses the quote "Only the rich can afford to buy cheap stuff".
I couldn't agree more with Kal's quote and I typically follow the buy it once policy when making new purchases. Although, for this project I'm really looking to start by utilizing the gear I already have to cut some start-up costs. Once a control panel is built I can always upgrade my kettles/MLT when I have the need & required funds. If I were doing this from the ground up, I wouldn't hesitate to pickup 20 gallon+ vessels.
I understand the limits that come with not having a 20 gallon system, but when I purchased my 15G Megapot ~2 years ago, I had intentions of being able to brew moderate gravity 10G batches and truthfully have yet to brew a 10G batch & when I do, they will be lower gravity session ales (mostly what I brew anyway) which I should be able to brew with the current gear & a watchful eye.
Not trying to knock your advice by any means as I do appreciate it, but just explaining my current situation and needs. Again, I should have bought the 20gal pot from the get go, but not buying 3 shiny new vessels & using what I've already got will save me $$hundreds$$ for this build and allows me to make the jump to electric and still make plenty of great beer!
On that note, I'm shopping for HLT fittings and SS for my HERMS coil. Does anyone fill the HLT with ice water and use the built in coil to chill post boil? Is it wiser to pickup a counterflow/plate chiller?