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Old 02-17-2009, 12:08 AM   #1
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Default Quick newbie question

I have been reading through the FAQs and the online book that was listed, and I figure I will learn best if I just dive right in, so here is my dilemma. Can you recommend an online brewing kit that just has the basics for my first batch? I don't want really poor equipment, but I also want to be as economical as possible. I have seen several online for ~$100 US, and was looking to spend a little less than that.

Alternatively, I can't find a list of what exactly needs to be used. For instance:

5-gallon Brewing Pot - is this just any large-enough pot or is it special in some way?

Also, I don't know if there is anything like a home-brewery store in town, hence the reason I am looking online. Can any of these items be purchased at WalMart, for instance?

Thanks in advance!

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Old 02-17-2009, 12:14 AM   #2
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I've never seen any appropriate brewing equipment from Wal-Mart or any other chain store. I buy most of my stuff online, because I live in the middle of no-where.

You can find the basic brewing kits at any online homebrew store. I like austinhomebrew.com, and northernbrewer.com because they have good ingredients and flat rate shipping. I've been trying some new stores, like Williams brewing (in CA) and brewmasterswarehouse.com and been happy with their websites and customer service.

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Old 02-17-2009, 12:19 AM   #3
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Ok, I had already seen Northern Brewer, and they have a basic starter kit for $75 with:

Six gallon fermenting bucket with lid
Six gallon bottling bucket with spigot
Fermentation lock
Siphon tubing
Bottle filler
Bottle brush
AutoSiphon
Bottle capper
144 bottle caps
Hydrometer
8 oz. One-Step Sanitizer
Complete instructions

All I can think of that I need is the brew kettle, right? And can I just go to WalMart and buy a big stainless steel pot, or is there something special about it?

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Old 02-17-2009, 12:24 AM   #4
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yeah basic or deluxe kits northernbrewer.com or austinhomebrew.com mine came with the beginners book.

let the obsession begin! yes a pot from walmart will work. or you can order one from one of these sites.

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Old 02-17-2009, 12:29 AM   #5
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Big pot = full boil, so I would try for the 5-7 gal range. 7-8 would be great for AG, but might have headspace in the kettle with a 5 gal batch, not bad, but I guess I live on the edge of boil over. (insert bad Aerosmith song)

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Old 02-17-2009, 12:29 AM   #6
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Ok thanks! How much of a difference does the pot make? I mean these sites sell them for like $50+ but I can buy a cheap Walmart pot for like $20. What should I avoid when buying one of these pots?

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Old 02-17-2009, 12:36 AM   #7
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depends on what kind of quality of pot you want. my first brew pot was a 50 dollar 5 gallon stainless steel pot. get a 7 gallon pot if you want to do full boils and a 5 gallon if your going to be adding water to the carboy after the boil. i'd make sure it's stainless steel.

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Old 02-17-2009, 12:38 AM   #8
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you might have a hard time doing a full boil on a stove top, Stove is great for a partial boil, and mini-mash in a 24 qt pot. But if you planning on doing a full boil you'll need an outdoor burner... Austin Homebrew Supply has some great prices on stainless steel pots too. I personally don't like aluminum. Heavy gauge Stainless Steel is best for cooking up anything. IMHO

caution, once you start brewing it's hard to stop!

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Old 02-17-2009, 12:46 AM   #9
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here is what i decided when I bought my kit. I knew that once i started i would not stop, so I figured that I might as well pony up the cash now and save a but of money. Rather that wish I had got the big kit and then buy everything else I need later down the line. I have already bought many more things than I started, and I went for the big kit. GO BIG!!!!!!!

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Old 02-17-2009, 02:01 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aaronbeer View Post
here is what i decided when I bought my kit. I knew that once i started i would not stop, so I figured that I might as well pony up the cash now and save a but of money. Rather that wish I had got the big kit and then buy everything else I need later down the line. I have already bought many more things than I started, and I went for the big kit. GO BIG!!!!!!!
I get what you are saying, but for me, I would prefer to get started as soon as possible, then just upgrade as my finances allow.
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