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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Equipment/Sanitation > Which brew kettle should I buy?
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Old 09-30-2010, 03:41 AM   #1
Iceman6409
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Default Which brew kettle should I buy?

Hello all. I am about to get into brewing beer going the route of all grain. My good friend has convinced me to use 2 five gallon pots. I know, I should use one but he has good purposes and he has been doing it for 15 years. Anyways I would like to get some opinions on the best 5 gallon pot to use. I am looking for the best value overall. I would like to start out with the right equipment. I will also be using a King Kooker double burner (54000 BTUs each burner). If the price is the cheapest but the best value, so be it. Oh yes, I will obviously need a kettle valve as well. Thank you


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Old 09-30-2010, 04:05 AM   #2
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If you are going all-grain you will be doing full boils. Therefore a 5 gallon pot would be no good. You need a 10 gallon at least.


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Old 09-30-2010, 04:09 AM   #3
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start with the equipment to do 10 gallon boils. then when you're ready to do 10g's, you don't have to buy more equipment
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Old 09-30-2010, 04:16 AM   #4
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I seriously doubt I will move to ten gallon batches. I don't drink that much. My friend only does five gallon batches and has always used 2 five gallon kettles. As he explained it to me his method is quicker overall which saves money in the end. I do understand about using a ten gallon pot though but would like to explore the 5 gallon pots for now. No offense intended to anyone. BUT. Let's say I do change my mind and go for a 10 gallon kettle. I would be happy to take suggestions on these as well but please keep in mind I am more interested in the five gallon kettles for now.
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Old 09-30-2010, 04:25 AM   #5
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you might want to go for a 40 quart pot, then, aluminum should work just fine. once you start brewing, you'll find friends you never knew you had, though
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Old 09-30-2010, 05:33 AM   #6
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You will need a kettle considerably larger than 5 gallons even for a five gallon batch. You will want to have room for the gallon or so boiled off plus some free board above that. A 10 gallon kettle would not at all be too big. You could, however, do a concentrated boil in a 5 gallon kettle and top it up with water near the end of the boil. This is not the best approach, but it will work. It would be very difficult to point you to the "best" kettle for your needs. Pretty much any kettle with sufficient volume will get you going and you can add a valve to any of them fairly easily. Any of the online suppliers will have suitable kettles at reasonable prices, but you might get even better deals through Amazon etc. A kettle is a kettle pretty much if you are only using it for boiling wort. I like Polarware kettles, but they are pricey. So are Blichman's kettles. Megapots are a little better deal, but not a whole lot. I'd go for a cheap one at this point and see how it goes from there. You will always find a use for whatever it is you wind up with even if it is no longer your main boil kettle somewhere down the road.
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Old 09-30-2010, 06:22 AM   #7
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You are torn between your friends 15 years of brewing experience and the advice that almost everyone here is going to give you. A 5 gallon pot ain't big enough for a normal full boil 5 gallon AG batch. Just because someone is doing something for 15 years doesn't make it right, correct, easy or best.

What ever size you decide to go with I have found that Update International SS pots are a good mid priced choice. They are similar or the same as the Megapots mentioned by Catt, usually a bit cheaper online.
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Old 09-30-2010, 06:38 AM   #8
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Sorry dude. You can't use a 5 gallon pot to do a 5 gallon all grain batch.

To boil down to 5 gallons, you have to start with 6 gallons. Most even start with 6.5 gallons and end up with around 5.5 gallons to factor in the trub and yeast loss you'll get when racking from primary to secondary or straight into keg.

Get, at least, a 32 quart boil kettle. If you are set on using a 5 gallon pot, that's cool. You just wont be doing all grain full boil.
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Old 09-30-2010, 06:39 AM   #9
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If you try to do a 5 gallon batch in a 5 gallon pot you won't be able to boil it without overflows, even if you're doing extract brewing. 10 gallon would be best, but 7 or 8 would work, too.
You don't necessarily need a beer-specific pot. Call around to your local restaurant supply stores for prices. Some may have used pots. If you want to add thermometers, valves, or a sightglass you can do that later fairly inexpensively.
It's important to remember that just because someone's been doing something for a long time doesn't mean that their method's the best.
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Old 09-30-2010, 07:11 AM   #10
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I boiled in a 7.5 gallon turkey fryer pot for a long time before going any bigger. I would say 7.5 is the minimum for 5/5.5 gallon batches.


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