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Old 01-25-2011, 05:24 PM   #1
Rev2010
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Default Need a Brew Pot - can really use some advice

My houseware pots are too small so I need a real brew pot. I don't mind spending a decent amount of money, but am not sure if I need to or not. I'm still doing extract brewing since I'm still new, only three brews in so far, but know I would like:

1. A pot that has some visual indicator of the amount of gallons in the pot
2. An easy way to pour or drain the wort into my primary
3. Temperature reading. I have a 12" lab thermometer that I've been using fine, so I guess it's optional but would be nice to have one set on the pot.

I see some of these pots with ball valves which I'm guessing is exactly for draining the pot? Anyhow, some day I plan to progress to all grain, but I don't plan that for some time, want to get all these basics downpacked first. Any advice on what type of pot to get? All my batches will be 5 gallons primarily with nothing larger than 6 gallon batches. Sorry to have to ask this and thanks to anyone that can lend some direction.


Rev.

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Old 01-25-2011, 05:37 PM   #2
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Here is the one I purchased locally.

http://amzn.to/ejpIw4

It has the quart amounts pressed into the metal so you can see the numbers from inside and out. No special way to transfer, I pour the wort into the carboy with a large funnel and take a temp with a standard cooking thermometer. Works great for extract and from what I'm told 30qt is large enough for all grain in the future.

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Old 01-25-2011, 05:41 PM   #3
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Blichmann Boilermaker is a really good choice.

I used to brew w/a 10gal Megapot brand kettle, and it worked well too. Both have the stainless ball valve, although the Blichmann is 3 piece, so it's easy to disassemble and clean. The Megapots kettle didn't have a thermometer, or gauge built in.

I still end up using my Thermapen to measure temps, even w/the built in thermometer.

And yeah you'll connect a hose from the end of the ball valve and put the other end in the carboy. Open the valve and it'll drain down into the carboy. Just elevate the kettle above the carboy.
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Old 01-25-2011, 05:45 PM   #4
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I used a turkey frier! It comes with everything, just make sure you get a good stainless one.

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Old 01-25-2011, 05:45 PM   #5
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Ideally you want to make 6 gallon batches if you want to end up with 5. You'll lose half a gallon in the kettle by leaving the gunk behind in the bottom, and you'll lose half a gallon kegging/bottling by leaving the yeast cake behind. So to end up w/5 gal you should make a 6 gal batch.

If your boiloff rate is 1.5gal/hr, and you do a 6 gal batch, you'll need 7.5 gal in the kettle to start, or exactly 30quarts. This obviously leaves you no room to boil. Even if you only boiled off 1gal/hr you're cutting it too close, it will boil over every time. What if you do a 90 min boil? You're gonna need 8 gallons or so in the pot.

So for these reasons I'm always recommending 10gal (40q) kettles to anyone doing 5 gal batches.

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Old 01-25-2011, 05:49 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rev2010 View Post
My houseware pots are too small so I need a real brew pot. I don't mind spending a decent amount of money, but am not sure if I need to or not. I'm still doing extract brewing since I'm still new, only three brews in so far, but know I would like:

1. A pot that has some visual indicator of the amount of gallons in the pot
2. An easy way to pour or drain the wort into my primary
3. Temperature reading. I have a 12" lab thermometer that I've been using fine, so I guess it's optional but would be nice to have one set on the pot.

I see some of these pots with ball valves which I'm guessing is exactly for draining the pot? Anyhow, some day I plan to progress to all grain, but I don't plan that for some time, want to get all these basics downpacked first. Any advice on what type of pot to get? All my batches will be 5 gallons primarily with nothing larger than 6 gallon batches. Sorry to have to ask this and thanks to anyone that can lend some direction.



Rev.
if you don't mind spending a little coin, the megapots are on the lower end of the price scale as far as pots with a ball valve and thermometer. for 5 and 6 gallon batches I'd go with a 10 gallon pot but another thing to consider is your heat source. if your using propain outside, go big cause sooner or later you'll wish you got a bigger kettle
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Old 01-25-2011, 05:50 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dgremark View Post
I used a turkey frier! It comes with everything, just make sure you get a good stainless one.
Now I'm kicking myself for not seeing this first:

http://bit.ly/f5zap0
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Old 01-25-2011, 05:50 PM   #8
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Build a keggle. I wish I had gone that route. Fairly cheap and a fun build. Everything you need to know can be found around here. Just need to find a keg to cut.

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Old 01-25-2011, 05:52 PM   #9
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This is the one I got and it works great:

http://www.northernbrewer.com/brewin...n-megapot.html

I opted for the ball valve and brewometer. Thee only thing it doesn't have that you specify is the sight glass, but I measured the volume with water 1 gallon at a time and made marks on my spoon.

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Old 01-25-2011, 06:00 PM   #10
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I got a 50 qt turkey frier and it has the stainless spicket, all covers and burner. I'm new to this but from what I've seen it measures up and works great so far. paid under $100.

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Last edited by dgremark; 01-25-2011 at 06:35 PM. Reason: And it a Blichmann, thick walls!
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