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Old 06-29-2011, 03:23 PM   #1
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Default Full 5 gallon boil

So I have almost all my equipment together to start my first brew. A starter kit from midwest with some additional equipment I purchased to make life easier. Picked up an 8 gallon commercial grade aluminum pot the other day also. Plan on making an copper IC in the next week or two. Don't plan on actually making my first beer for a few weeks yet since I have some weekends coming up where I'll be out of town. My question is if I'm planning on doing extract and having full 60 minute boils how much water should I start out with to end up with about 5 gallons? I'm assuming I'll loose a decent amount of water volume due to evaporation.

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Old 06-29-2011, 03:33 PM   #2
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It really depends on your setup. I tend to boil off about 1/2-3/4 gal on the stovetop. You also have to account for the volume of hops and such, and that depends on the recipe. It took me several brews to figure about how much boil off I'd have. Play on the safe side as you can always add top off water in the fermentor.

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Old 06-29-2011, 04:05 PM   #3
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A good rolling boil on my propane burner evaporates about 1 gallon per hour.

If you are boiling on your stovetop, I would recommend doing a test boil first to make sure it will boil 5 gallons. Some stovetops will not (at least not within any reasonable amount of time).

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Old 06-29-2011, 04:26 PM   #4
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Yeah, that's true. I've heard alot of people say they can't boil much volume on their range top. Glad mine worked the first time, cuz I never thought to test it out.
Testing it out could help you figure out what kinda boil off you're looking at.

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Old 06-29-2011, 05:44 PM   #5
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Also, since you are using a aluminum pot, don't forget that you have to oxidize the inside before you brew your first beer. If you brew your first beer without oxidizing, it is going to taste like aluminum.

To oxidize, just fill with water to the maximum volume you would use it for, and boil the water at 212F for 30-40 minutes. The inside aluminum should turn from shiny to a dull grey, then it is good to go.

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Old 06-29-2011, 05:51 PM   #6
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Thanks for the tip TopherM. I plan to condition my pot this weekend sometime. I'll be using a propane burner from my turkey fryer, so getting a good rolling boil with 5 gallons shouldn't be a prolem. I'll probably start with 5-1/2 to 6 gallons to be sure I don't end up with to much wort at the end. And then top off to a little over 5 in my fermenter if needed. EXCITED to get this thing going!!!

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Old 06-29-2011, 06:22 PM   #7
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To clarify, you also need to dump that first 5-6 gallons that you use to oxidize the pot, then start over with clean water.

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