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Old 09-09-2010, 06:15 AM   #1
tech413
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Default Moving to all grain

Hi all, I have been doing extract brewing for quite a while now and have finally made the decision to move to all grain.

I have ordered 2 Rubbermaid 10 gallon coolers to work as a HLT and MLT. I plan to do mostly 5 gal. batches and the occasional 10 gal lower gravity batches.

The reason for this post is I'm looking for some input. I need to purchase a brew kettle and I am leaning toward the Blichmann Kettles. But my problem is I can't decide between the 10 or 15 gallon kettle. I want to do the odd 10 gallon batch, which would require the 15, but I was wondering if it would be too big for 5 gal. batches?

Any input would be great!!!

Thanks in advance,
Adam

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Old 09-09-2010, 06:32 AM   #2
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If you are going to spend the money get the 15 gallon. You will likely be starting off with 6-7 gallons of wort preboil so the kettle will be half full already. Even more so if you do a high gravity brew.

My first AG kettle was 10 gallons and I always had to stay close to turn down the flame if it looked like it was about the boil over. I use a keggle now and the extra room gives me a little more peace of mind.

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Old 09-09-2010, 11:50 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by s0meb0dy View Post
if you are going to spend the money get the 15 gallon. You will likely be starting off with 6-7 gallons of wort preboil so the kettle will be half full already. Even more so if you do a high gravity brew.

My first ag kettle was 10 gallons and i always had to stay close to turn down the flame if it looked like it was about the boil over. I use a keggle now and the extra room gives me a little more peace of mind.

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Old 09-09-2010, 12:05 PM   #4
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It sounds like your are prepared to spend. If so, get that 15g boilermaker and never look back. I'm a cheapskate, so I just purchased 2 20g "megapots" (http://www.foodservicedirect.com/pro...t-Capacity.htm) from a kitchen supply company for $165 each. I will then put about $100 worth of hardware on each pot (thanks to bargainfittings.com).

Those megapots are gonna look sweet on my new top tier.

If you have the ability to drop $400 on a boilermaker pot and not think twice, you're my hero.

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Old 09-09-2010, 02:18 PM   #5
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15 gallon without hesitation. I have a 15g megapot from morebeer.com and I love it. I do about half 10g and half 5g batches and it does fine for both. The blingman's are obviously top-tier, but I don't think you have to spend that much for a kettle. If you have the money, go for it, but it's not necessary.

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Old 09-09-2010, 02:39 PM   #6
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Get a 15 gallon pot. I bought a cheap 10 gal aluminum pot. Nothing wrong with it, but I have experienced boilovers on a 5 gallon batch, and I cannot do 10 gallon batches. I suppose I can still use it for a HLT on a single tier system someday.

I'm asking Santa SWMBO for a 15g for Christmas. Not sure if I'm going the name brand route yet, but those Blichmanns are pretty.

As for $$$, the Blingmann 15 is only about 80 bucks more than the Megapot (not the ones HickoryMike mentions), but the Blinger comes with a sight glass.

If you are handy (and brave) enough to drill your pots (not that hard), you can save a bunch of bucks by going HickoryMike's way.

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Old 09-09-2010, 03:30 PM   #7
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I thought about buying a cheaper pot and doing it myself. I have no fear of doing it, I fabricate as part of my job, but I don't know if I want to be bothered. It may sound stupid, but I am extremely busy and don't want to waste available brew time building my setup. I still may go the cheaper way with a Megapot, but I will be going with a 15g either way, Thanks all.

One more question while I have this thread going, what should I do for a chiller, I like the idea of the plate chillers but I'm not sure. I don't want to have to buy a pump just yet, so I want something that can be gravity fed. Any input?

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Old 09-09-2010, 04:41 PM   #8
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Buy a pump. It will make your life so much better. I was able to do 5g batches gravity fed, but they were a bit of a pain. When I moved to 10g I couldn't do it safely with my setup. I bought a chugger pump for like $100 delivered and can't believe I didn't do it earlier. Buy the megapot and use the left over money for a pump.

Also, I went with the megapot because I didn't want a sightglass. I know some people love them, but it just looks like a cleaning headache to me. I calibrated a piece of wood dowel and it works just fine for me.

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Old 09-09-2010, 05:32 PM   #9
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I have (3) 20 Gallon blichman pots that I use on my stand I I love them!!

Yes they are expensive, however they are also fully decked out.
As far as the sight glass goes, its not hard to clean and takes maybe 2 minutes more than a regular cleaning, and its not required every brew session. It also has graduated markings on it so no more measuring water with a pitcher, or bucket, just fill to the level you want and go.

Dont apologize for not wanting to take the time, or not having the time to do something, this is YOUR hobby, enjoy it as YOU see fit.

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Old 09-10-2010, 04:40 AM   #10
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Thanks everyone for your input. Does anyone have any suggestions on chillers, what is the most efficient/fastest chiller to use?

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