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Old 12-29-2009, 09:07 PM   #1
gtpro
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I made the mistake of leaving my brewing equipment 4 hours away at school while I came home for Xmas break, now reading this forum gets me all excited to brew and I can't do anything about it!

Anyways, I'm jumping right from extract to AG with this (my fourth) brew. The problem: I just picked up what I thought was an awesome new BK, (5.5gal heavy duty stainless steel) before I did enough reading about AG and now I realize that most AG recipes produce pre-boil volumes of over 6 gallons. Is there any obvious solution to this without impacting quality too much? Top off water, adjusting sparge volume etc. Thanks.



 
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Old 12-29-2009, 09:36 PM   #2
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You can still do Partial Mashes with 3 gals and top off in the primary...


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Old 12-29-2009, 09:42 PM   #3
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I hate to say it, but I would sell it. Preboil volumes range from 6.5 to over 7 gallons (for 90 minute boils). I wouldn't go with anything less than 10 gallons, personally. The good news is that for the price of a really nice SS pot that's too small you can get an aluminum one that's more than adequate.

You could work with the pot, of course. You could under sparge, end up with a higher gravity wort, boil, top off, boil, top off, etc... You could also sparge some into a separate vessel and add that lower gravity wort in as it boiled. You could have two separate boils going and add the hops to both. There's lots of ways you could do make beer but they all will be less consistent and more of a hassle than getting the right sized pot and doing it in one BK.

If you got a really good deal on it, keep it. I personally use my smaller 4 gallon pot from my extract days EVERY time I brew AG for heating sparge water, catching the last drips of wort that take forever, etc...

 
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Old 12-29-2009, 09:53 PM   #4
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New pot would be best solution. You want minimum 7.5G pot for 5G AG batches.
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Old 12-29-2009, 09:55 PM   #5
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Or you could do three gallon batches, but you would still be pushing it with a full boil of 4.5 gallons in a 5 gallon kettle. I use an 8 gallong BK for my 3 gallon batches.
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Old 12-29-2009, 10:57 PM   #6
gtpro
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I'm starting to think that a new pot is the best solution.

I found this 32qt. aluminum online and its cheaper than what I paid for my SS.

http://www.waresdirect.com/products/...kURL=shopzilla

 
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Old 12-29-2009, 11:12 PM   #7
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i hate to say this but you need a biger pot. with a small pot its a pain in the @$$ because you going to deal with a different wort gravitys in both pots, there for, you going to figure out and destribute different hopp amounts.
its possible but getting a constant resoults very hard.
most of us AG brewers use a 8-15g pots, 8g for 5g batches, 15g for 10g batches. also i found out that a 5g MLT is little to small for a 5g of big grain bill beer.
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Old 12-29-2009, 11:14 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gtpro View Post
I found this 32qt. aluminum online and its cheaper than what I paid for my SS.
Get the 40 quart. You'll be happier!

 
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Old 12-29-2009, 11:19 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gtpro View Post
I'm starting to think that a new pot is the best solution.

I found this 32qt. aluminum online and its cheaper than what I paid for my SS.

http://www.waresdirect.com/products/...kURL=shopzilla
Do you plan on doing any big beers? If so, that pot may not even be big enough. I've started with 7.75-8 gallon at the beginning of the boil for a big Imperial Stout.

 
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Old 12-29-2009, 11:24 PM   #10
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I would agree with the 40qt, i do 3 gallon batches and with a big beer teh 8 gallon is perfect, but with 5 gallon batches a 40qt would be better.


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