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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Equipment/Sanitation > 15 Gallon Blichmann Boilmaker for 5 gallon batches
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Old 07-09-2011, 11:36 AM   #1
noreaster40s
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Default 15 Gallon Blichmann Boilmaker for 5 gallon batches

I'm considering getting a new boil kettle and have pretty much settled on a Blichmann. I only brew 5 gallon batches but am considering some 10 gallon batches in the future. I was going to get the 10 gallon kettle but am now considering the 15 gallon kettle for the occasional 10 gallon batch. I know Blichmann recommends the 20 gallon kettle for 10 gallon batches but I know someone who does his 10 gallon batches in a 15 gallon kettle so I know it works. So my question is does anyone do 5 gallon batches in a 15 gallon kettle and, if so, how does it work for you? Thanks.


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Old 07-09-2011, 11:42 AM   #2
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I see no problems except the pot will weigh more. You probably should do some test boils to see if time to boil changes and test your evaporation rate. But what do I know.


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Old 07-09-2011, 01:19 PM   #3
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One downside is the thermometer is at the 6.5 gallon mark on the 15 gal kettle. This can be moved lower by simply drilling a new hole and putting a plug in the original. I was in the same boat as you and went with the 15. I'm thankful for that since I now primarily do 10 gallon batches. It worked fine for 5 gal though.
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Old 07-09-2011, 02:22 PM   #4
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It works fine for me, I do 6 gallon batches with an 8 gallon preboil. I can just squeeze a double batch in there if I need to. Thermometers can be lowered if necessary, i've done it.

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Old 07-09-2011, 02:29 PM   #5
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Keggles are only 15.5 gal for 10 gal batches...if all else fails, could use fermcap
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Old 07-09-2011, 02:40 PM   #6
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I use a 15gal Blichmann for 5gal batches. Previous poster is right... a new hole needs to be drilled in order to put the thermometer lower. Blichmann sells a little hole plug to seal off any thermometer holes that aren't being used, and can easily be switched if you ever want to move the thermometer up.

I just bought some step bits though, and plan to widen the original hole in order to put in a stainless elbow on the inside to recirc/whirlpool.

I should add that I actually had a boilover on my most recent beer, at about 6.5gal in a 15gal kettle... ON MY STOVETOP! So it still doesn't make you immune, and I'll be using fermcap from now on.
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Old 07-09-2011, 03:14 PM   #7
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I've been using a 15 gal pot primarily for 5 gallon batches for 12 years with the occasional 10 gallon batch thrown in. Never a problem, just a vigilant eye on the boil.
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Old 07-09-2011, 03:44 PM   #8
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I would do the mash tun as large as you can, so you can buy the biggest pot and move it to the mash tun and then select the best boil size for you when you buy the next one.
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Old 07-09-2011, 04:51 PM   #9
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I have (2) 15 gal blichmanns and a 20 gal.
When I do 10 gal batches, I boil in the 20 gal, when I do 5 gal batches, I boil in the 15 gal kettle.
The mash works fine in the 15 ,except for the temp guage. move it or ignore it. Works fine.
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Old 07-09-2011, 11:13 PM   #10
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I have used a 15 gal boilermaker for many many 5 gallon batches, as well as many 10 gallon batches.

Dont buy the 10 gallon pot, you're limiting your ability to do 10 gallon batches. The 15 gallon pot works perfectly fine. Some have issue with the thermometer....but do you REALLY need a thermometer in your boil kettle?? I mean....its either boiling or it isnt. Not like a mash tun where you need to hit/maintain specific temps...

edit: I should add that I do 13.5 gallon starting volume boils in my 15 gallon boilermaker regularly, and have NEVER had a boilover in it (knock on wood...). Just mind your heat source and you'll be 100% fine.


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