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Old 01-14-2013, 08:30 PM   #1
Leighton
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Jan 2013
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I've been bartending for years, and it's finally time for me to start doing some brewing for myself. This forum has been great for lurking until this point, but now I to get some input.

I'm going to build my set up over the next few months, buying one nice piece of equipment at a time. I'd eventually like to upgrade to all grain, so I want to make sure that what I buy now will be usable when I reach that point.

I'm considering buying this kettle. I've read elsewhere that I should just go straight for a Blichmann, and a 15 gallon at that. This makes me think I should get an economy 10 gallon that I can easily upgrade, because that is such a daunting purchase for my first kettle.

I'm also planning to buy this starter kit. Thoughts?

Thanks in advance for the help, guys. I'm looking forward to talking to all of you.

 
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Old 01-15-2013, 01:22 AM   #2
eastoak
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Jan 2011
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for less than the price of that kettle you could convert a sanke keg but if you don't want to go that route the midwest kettle is fine. the starter kit is too expensive in my view, you do get a beer kit with it but no hydrometer.

 
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Old 01-15-2013, 01:44 AM   #3
johnturner9
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Nov 2012
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I can't speak about the kettle but the starter kit is top notch. It's what I have, and started with the Caribou slobber, which was awesome!

 
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Old 01-15-2013, 01:51 AM   #4
Mtn_Brewer
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Oct 2012
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If it's in your means, I'd recommend going with the 10 gal Blichmann. With a false bottom and hopblock, the system is unbeatable and you are unlikely to grow out if it anytime soon. With a cheap 5-7 gal basic pot for sparge water and a couple of food grade plastic buckets, you are set for all grain 5 gal batches. After a few years I got a 20 gal for 10 gal batches but I still mostly use the 10 gal. I like to brew and love variety, so I prefer 5 gal batches.

Here are a few shots of my Blichmann 10 and brewing evolution from stove-top extract to garage turkey fryer to RIMS:
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Old 01-15-2013, 04:04 PM   #5
Leighton
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Jan 2013
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I've been told that if I'm going to go with Blichmann that I should buy the 15 gallon and be done with it. I just worry this a ballsy set up for my first kit, but to be fair those kettles retain value unbelievably well.

Does your thermometer work at 5 gallons?

 
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Old 01-15-2013, 04:35 PM   #6
iijakii
 
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It's common group-think on HBT to coerce people into buying the 15 gallons because everyone assumes the natural progression is to go bigger. If you ever think there's a chance you'll want to do 10 gallons then yes, go for the 15g pot. If you're fairly positive you won't be doing 10 gal batches then just get the 10s.

 
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Old 01-15-2013, 04:53 PM   #7
Leighton
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Jan 2013
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I think 10 gallons would be reasonable to assume I would want to do at some point. I just don't want to have to dump a ton of money in to an upgrade to all grain after spending $400 on a kettle.

 
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Old 01-15-2013, 04:56 PM   #8
iijakii
 
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Just read around on the forums. There are much cheaper ways to get brewing. You don't need a Blingman.

You could get a 15gal kettle and cooler mash tun for the same price, probably less even. That's basically all you need for all grain.

 
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Old 01-15-2013, 05:09 PM   #9
stevehaun
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Dec 2006
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I would get the 55 gallon Blinger. I am on my 5th boil kettle, a 55 gallon SS drum.
I went from 5 gal to 7.5 gal to 15 gal keggle to 25 gal megapot to 55 gal SS drum.

Seriously, I would buy a pot big enough to do 10 gallon batches as I think this is where most homebrewers end up. You can still do 5 gallon batches in the bigger pot. So, I would recommend somewhere in the 15-20 gallon range.

 
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Old 01-15-2013, 05:14 PM   #10
eastoak
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iijakii View Post
Just read around on the forums. There are much cheaper ways to get brewing. You don't need a Blingman.

You could get a 15gal kettle and cooler mash tun for the same price, probably less even. That's basically all you need for all grain.
this is very true. i'm not a blichmann hater, the top tier stand and mash module are in my brew house right now. when i started out i bought a used 10 gallon boilermaker for $300 which i loved but when i discovered keggles i switched over to them and the blichmann just sat around doing nothing until i sold it to buy the tower of power mash module. the 15 gallon kettle sold at morebeer and other places is a great value and it's every bit as good as the blichmann.

 
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