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CascadesBrewer

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The only issue I’ve had was last winter with a German Pilsner - I’m not sure if it was the short boil of pils malt or some issues with the lager yeast (the yeast got stuck in the pandemic shipping issues) there was some DMS in this beer and I dumped a bunch.
My most recent 1-gallon batches were 30 minute boils for SMaSH beers comparing Weyermann Floor Malted Bohemian Pils with Avangard Pils. I am not sure how sensitive I am to DMS, but the beers turned out very crisp and clean.

Just an anecdote about glass Little Big Mouth Bubblers:
Good info and something to watch out for. The PET LBMB do look like a nice option, if a little pricey. I originally wanted a pair of those, but they seemed to be out of stock for quite a while so I got a pair of the glass ones.
 

shoreman

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I’ve been brewing with Avangard Pilsner for the past 4 years with no issues on short boils - great malt. I buy a sack each year.
 
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I may give the 20/20 or 15/15 a shot ...
From what I've read over the years, for many people, it may take 20 to 30 minutes for the mash to "do it's thing" and that a longer (45 to 60 min) mash is a time proven way to know that the mash is done without measuring it. A starch conversion test of some time may be helpful when looking for the minimum mash time for a recipe or style.
 
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Recently brewed a session-ish APA (OG 44) using a concentrated boil (OG 88) and pilsen DME. Color was appropriate to style. For a 1st attempt, I'm happy with the result and may 'dial in' the recipe over time.

Also recently brewed a BIAB session-ish (OG 44) Amber Ale using a concentrated (OG 88) boil. Color also came out as expected. Another recipe that I may 'dial in' over time.

Revisited a couple of presentations over at Briess's Resource Library (link). There's an AHA 2005 presentation, "Wort and Malt Extract Color Development" that has more 'science-y' information than the BBR podcasts (Aug 25, 2005; Nov 17, 2005).

Might buy some pilsen/light LME and revisit "Light IPA Color Challenge (link)" 🤔.
 

satchelkits

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Hey all. I am new on the forum and excited to be here as it has answered 100's of my questions over the years since I started brewing.

I recently started a company focusing on 1 gallon recipe kits because I was tired of the batch size being stigmatized. I found there to be limited options and the price points of those options to be too high. I also didn't like that most 1 gallon companies either focus on all grain or extract and that their instructions are often meh.

So here I am!

Above all, I am here to learn all I can and spread the knowledge I have. Power to the small batch brewer!
 
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Light colored APA challenge: concentrated boil
The "Light colored IPA challenge" reformulated to use all the DME from a single three pound package.

Purpose: Visually observe how much wort darkens during the boil

Approach: Collect three wort samples to observe color of wort before / after boil.
  1. Standard boil wort at flame-on
  2. Standard boil wort in fermenter
  3. Concentrated boil wort in fermenter
All color samples are at OG 44.

Ingredients / special equipment
  • 3 lb package pilsen DME (44 PPG)
  • 1 oz Magnum (AA 15)
  • 3 small containers for color samples
Assume
Batch 1: 30 min boil @ OG 44
  • Collect color sample #1 before flame-on:
    • Add 1 lb DME to 1 gal water;
    • collect sample #1
    • Add 1 qt water to get to "start of boil" volume
  • 30 min boil, level 1 intensity
    • @30: 4 g Magnum (AA 15)
    • @5 (optional): Yeast Nutrient, Irish Moss
  • Chill, confirm OG;
  • collect sample #2 after any trub has settled
  • Pitch yeast
Batch 2: 30 min boil 2 @ OG 88
  • Add 2 lb DME & water, bring to boil, no need for color sample
  • 30 min boil, level 1 intensity
    • @30: 11 g Magnum (AA 15)
    • @5 (optional): Yeast Nutrient, Irish Moss
  • Chill, adjust wort to OG 44
  • collect sample #3 after any trub has settled
  • Pitch yeast
Compare the three color samples.

Ideas for the wort / beer
Ferment with different strains of yeast. Dry hop, add a hop tea, hop extracts, specialty honey; . Carbonate some bottles at a different volume. Experiment with adding CaCl and/or CaS04 in the serving glass.
 
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and that their instructions are often meh.
There seems to be a consensus here at HomebrewTalk that kit instructions are bad. Other discussion sites don't seem to talk about kit instructions. In 2021, there are a couple of online stores with good (my opinion) kit instructions. Some online stores still haven't changed - meh instructions, still in business.

[1 gal] batch size being stigmatized
A 1 gal batch in a 1 gal carboy expecting 10 bottles with fiddly process steps (e.g. add/remove blow off tube) may deserve to be stigmatized.

the small batch brewer
Batch sizes, seem to come in three different volumes:
  • 5 gal (standard),
  • 2.5 gal (small), and
  • 1 gal (stigmatized)
Over the last couple of years, discussion in "1-gal brewers unite" has started to include slightly larger fermentation vessels (1.5 gal / 2 gal) which support scaling down from 2.5 gal batches without becoming fiddly.

Viewing batch size, based on packaging volume, may yield some interesting insights into home brewing:
  • standard: 48 bottles (roughly 5 gal)
  • small: 24 bottles (roughly 2.5 gal)
  • "12-pack" brewing: 12 bottles
  • "6-pack" brewing: 6 bottles
FWIW, Basic Brewing Radio brews many of their experimental batches (hop samplers, malt samplers, 'water chemistry' samplers) as a six pack. And there are additional good uses for 1 gal carboys (storing StarSan, fermenting extra wort from a five gal batch, split wort experiments, ...).

One of the strengths of "12-pack" brewing vs "1 gal carboy" brewing is that mash temperatures are easier to control.
  • Heat water to strike temp, add the grains, measure the mash temperature (to confirm the math that estimated the temperature), wrap the kettle, walk away.
  • Early on, I found that measuring mash temperature caused an additional 1-2F drop in mash temperature over the next 15 minutes.
eta: With regard to making quality kit instructions for a new brewer, I wonder if the minimum size for those instructions is roughly a chapter in a book (c.f. How to Brew, 4e, chapter 1; Speed Brewing, Simple Homebrewing).
 
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satchelkits

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Some online stores still haven't changed - meh instructions, still in business.
Makes sense. I focused on making clean and in depth PDF instructions in additional to static pages. We also put together some 10 min videos and put instructions such as hop addition times on the hop packaging.

A 1 gal batch in a 1 gal carboy expecting 10 bottles with fiddly process steps (e.g. add/remove blow off tube) may deserve to be stigmatized.
I get where you are coming from, but ultimately disagree. Having lived in Boston and NYC for majority of the past 10 years, I have seen too many people never try brewing at all due to space constraints rather than try a 1 gallon batch because the everyone told them 5 gallon or nothing. Also, when developing recipes, I have found it much easier to bang out a bunch of 1 gallon batches to test variations in grain bills, hop quantities, yeast types, etc.
has started to include slightly larger fermentation vessels
This is interesting. We have started to develop and sell 5 gallon kits, but catering to the 2.5 gallon brewer is an interesting prospect.
And there are additional good uses for 1 gal carboys
Totally agree on that front.
Early on, I found that measuring mash temperature
Very interesting. I have personally used a sous vide wand that I use for cooking with exceptional results. A handful of our brewers have reported similar successes. This method has worked for me up to 5 gallon batches and keeps mash temperature to within a tenth of a degree.
I wonder if the minimum size for those instructions is roughly a chapter in a book
So funny, when putting together the instructions for our kits, I found that the number of pages needed to sufficiently explain the information pertinent to brewing for the first time would equate to a chapter. I instead created crash course instructions in one part along with a separate set called "Deep Dive" that goes much further into the fundamentals from an overview of the malting process to the science behind bottle conditioning vs forced carbonation.

Overall, thank you for the insight. Very helpful to hear from other perspectives.
 
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never try brewing at all due to space constraints rather than try a 1 gallon batch
Back in 2010, the homebrewing stack exchange forum had a series of posts on small batch / apartment brewing. Since then, there have been a number of articles that slightly advance the those posts. AHA (Zymurgy magazine) had an article in the mid 2010s on 5 gal apartment brewing. Both here and in /r/homebrewing, Brooklyn Brew Shop is mentioned as a good source of condo/apartment brewing resources.

In a different hobby (night time astronomy), there are people who share how they enjoy the hobby in bortle 7, 8, or 9 conditions. Given the context, the photos are impressive.

If there's a will, there's a way. Maybe there's a business opportunity to help, maybe there isn't.

eta - postscript: I started brewing 1 gal kits (with a 1 gal carboy) back in the mid-2010s. The kit was a gift from a local homebrew store (RIP). They also offered advice on how to scale up to 2.5 gal.

So when I suggest that the problem with 1 gal batches is the constraint(s) of 1 gal carboys, it's based on my real world personal experiences. YMMV.
 
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satchelkits

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Brooklyn Brew Shop is mentioned as a good source of condo/apartment brewing resources
My kits are comparable to theirs. I made their kits a few times in my early years and the bottles would be 5x over carbonated because the instructions would call for 3 tbsp honey (total overkill and varying density makes it hard to consistently weigh by volume). A key difference is that I include grain bags, Irish moss, and pre-measured priming sugar to have better control over all variables.
5 gal apartment brewing
Many people live in 500 SF (often less) apartments in the cities I mentioned and they simply don't have room for an 8 gallon kettle, 5.5-6 gallon fermenter, and a worth chiller. But I get what you mean - if there is a will, there is a way. My goal is the get to the people who have less will with a better way.
 

CascadesBrewer

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I wanted to share this recent article I found on the Kegland 2.5 Liter "Growlers" (that is 84 fluid ounces):

Hands on Review: Kegland 2.5 Liter Growlers

I am not sure they have a massive benefit over using a 2 liter (or 3 liter if you can find them) soda bottle. They do look to be higher quality/thicker. With some accessories from Kegland like carb caps, tee adaptor, and spunding valve, there is a lot of flexibility in fermenting, carbonating and serving small batches. I wish they had jacked up the size a little more to get closer to 4L or 1 gallon size.

A pic from the article:

1637089638512.png
 

Stas StoLat

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I'm tired of hearing all you big boy 5-Gallon brewers telling us 1-Gallon brewers to step up. :D A lot of us brew 1-Gallon batches because that's all we have room for right now, not because we're afraid of stepping up our game. Trust me, if I could, I would, but in the meantime I'm actually really feeling the 1-Gallon game. Here's why:

Brew Day takes me about 3-4 hours, which includes cleanup.

I know one of the main points from 5-Gallon brewers is that "if you brew something amazing, you only have 10 bottles of it." My response- "Yea? So?" If I brew something amazing, chances are I'll brew something else amazing, and then perhaps I'll go back and brew that amazing beer again. And again.

5-Gallon brewers are always so quick to tell me- "Why put all that work in for just 10 beers." I'm not sure about you guys, but I don't consider my brew days as "work." I'm an insurance underwriter by day, but thoroughly enjoy cooking and now, brewing. I love the processes, and feel that it actually calms me. So work? I think not...

And lastly, I love the fact that I always have new things coming out of my pipeline. Yea, I just finished up drinking a really great IPA kit, but as sad as I may be to see it go, I can't wait to crack open my Weinstephaner Dunkel clone next! I'd rather have a few of LOTS of things than 50 of the same thing for 3 weeks.

So to all you big boy 5-Gallon + brewers out there, don't be so quick to hate on us 1-Gallon brewers. While eventually we'll graduate to your status, in the meantime, we're totally feeling what we've got going right now, and it's just as enjoyable for us, as it is for you. :rockin:

*Disclaimer*
This thread is not meant to pick a fight or evoke negativity. It is simply in jest, although, steeped in believed truths
I don't know why anyone would criticize the effort. Heck, make 5 1-gallon batches and modify them during a secondary fermentation.

Personally, I no longer brew 5-gallon batches, but I always troll for discount 5 gallon batch kits. I use the entirety of the kit on 3.5 to 4 gallon batches. The result is a higher ABV which I used to accomplish by adding to the kits or jacking up the grain bill. Now I get through more different kinds of beer, brew more often, and have less beer waiting to be shared.
 

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Just an anecdote about glass Little Big Mouth Bubblers:

I had one break the other day. I was lifting it out of the chest freezer, super carefully, and there were no bumps or even sudden movements. The thing just came apart in my hands. Minor cuts on my hands, and broken glass and a gallon of beer on the floor. It had seen two or three fermentations, max. I'll be retiring my other three, as of now, and replacing them with corny kegs and plastic LBMBs. (I'd go all corny keg, but four won't fit side-by-side in my chest freezer.)
Great to know - I'm using the plastic version, which rocks, and I had considered glass for extra microbial protection, but this is the nail in the coffin for that plan
 

AlexKay

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Great to know - I'm using the plastic version, which rocks, and I had considered glass for extra microbial protection, but this is the nail in the coffin for that plan
On a related note, I'm giving away 3 more glass little big mouth bubblers, if anyone out there doesn't mind the risk of handfuls of broken glass. See this thread.
 
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I've always done the "standard" 5 gallon batches, but you know what? The 1 gallon brew day is so stupid fast and allows for test batches, which in turn allows tweaks to the process or the grain bill or whatever and not have to do a full scale day. It allows me to do lagers during the summer or special brews that take ages to finish. Planning on doing a barley wine or old ale that will be ready to rock come late summer :rock::mug:🤙
 

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I wanted to share this recent article I found on the Kegland 2.5 Liter "Growlers" (that is 84 fluid ounces):
...
A pic from the article:

View attachment 749177
I've tried spunding in bottles like these in the past, but not one bottle I tried (granted, mostly not sold for homebrewing, but with appropriate threadings) held the pressure - have any of y'all had luck with that? It seems like an obvious 1 gallon boon to be able to do that - true cask variants of draft beers, e.g.
 

HardyFool

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On a related note, I'm giving away 3 more glass little big mouth bubblers, if anyone out there doesn't mind the risk of handfuls of broken glass. See this thread.
Indiana, rad! If on some off chance I'm in the area soon, I'll be sure to snag one
 

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I just brewed my 5th 0.25-gallon batch -- that's 0.75 gallons of water initially, ~0.4 into the fermenter, and then enough to fill a single EZ-Cap bottle when it's done. Here are some pictures of my (very short) brew day.

Here's what 1 g of brewing salts looks like. It was easier to measure out because for a red rye IPA, I'm using (proportionally) rather a lot of gypsum.

IMG_1899.JPG


BIAB in an asparagus steamer. When the pot gets small, surface-are-to-volume goes up and boil-off goes up with it. My solution is to use a very small, tall-and-thin pot. Pint glass is for scale; it's filled with iced tea, not beer (because it was 6 AM.)

IMG_1900.JPG


When I ordered from Wilserbrewer, my bag game with a Post-It note saying "You win! Smallest bag ever." So here is the smallest BIAB bag to date:

IMG_1901.JPG


Mashing on the stove. Have to use a small burner. Still not going to be a problem getting this batch to temperature.

IMG_1902.JPG


Just under a pound of mashed grain. It is really, really easy to squeeze the bag when it practically fits in your hand.

IMG_1903.JPG


I'm tempted to wind the world's smallest immersion chiller, but -- surface-area-to-volume ratio again -- it cools off quickly in a water bath.

IMG_1904.JPG


And here's the wort in the fermentation vessel, a half-gallon wide-mouth Mason jar.

IMG_1905.JPG


And that's that, for two weeks. Thanks for listening!
 

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Hey there, beginner brewer on batch #4. A small victory, but I came up with a simple (and free for me) solution for a LBMB swamp cooler.

My 16qt cooler bag from Target perfectly fits the LBMB. Filled it with tap water and added some fake ice cubes. I can cover it completely if I use the standard airlock that came with the fermenter (topped with Star-san around the lid.)
cooler1.jpg
cooler2.jpg
cooler3.jpg


A dozen cubes keeps beer temp around 63-65F for about 6-8 hours. I also tried a larger frozen ice pack which lowered it to 59F.
 

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A dozen cubes keeps beer temp around 63-65F for about 6-8 hours. I also tried a larger frozen ice pack which lowered it to 59F.
That's pretty sick. I've thought about using peltier chips and a heat exchanger like this dude, like a psuedo-glycol jacket, but I haven't built that and you've done this far simpler thing, so yeah, I dig it
 

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I just brewed my 5th 0.25-gallon batch -- that's 0.75 gallons of water initially, ~0.4 into the fermenter, and then enough to fill a single EZ-Cap bottle when it's done. Here are some pictures of my (very short) brew day.

Here's what 1 g of brewing salts looks like. It was easier to measure out because for a red rye IPA, I'm using (proportionally) rather a lot of gypsum.

View attachment 750039

BIAB in an asparagus steamer. When the pot gets small, surface-are-to-volume goes up and boil-off goes up with it. My solution is to use a very small, tall-and-thin pot. Pint glass is for scale; it's filled with iced tea, not beer (because it was 6 AM.)

View attachment 750040

When I ordered from Wilserbrewer, my bag game with a Post-It note saying "You win! Smallest bag ever." So here is the smallest BIAB bag to date:

View attachment 750041

Mashing on the stove. Have to use a small burner. Still not going to be a problem getting this batch to temperature.

View attachment 750042

Just under a pound of mashed grain. It is really, really easy to squeeze the bag when it practically fits in your hand.

View attachment 750043

I'm tempted to wind the world's smallest immersion chiller, but -- surface-area-to-volume ratio again -- it cools off quickly in a water bath.

View attachment 750045

And here's the wort in the fermentation vessel, a half-gallon wide-mouth Mason jar.

View attachment 750046

And that's that, for two weeks. Thanks for listening!
Sweet. Did you have to make a tiny starter for this batch ?
 

AlexKay

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Sweet. Did you have to make a tiny starter for this batch ?
Ha! I hadn’t planned on brewing at all, and then I decided I wanted to anyway. So I rummaged around for ingredients … which means dry yeast. 2.3 g of Safale K-97, for this batch, and even that’s probably an overpitch.

I’m guessing most of us in this thread know that one of the nice things about small batches is you never need to build a starter! Maybe Chris White is secretly a 1-gallon brewer.
 

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Question for the fine folks of the 1GBU thread. I'm doing a 1 gallon extract Cascade SMaSH blonde ale (for learning purposes, brew #5). I'm trying a late addition for the first time. As I review 'How To Brew' I'm also considering a partial boil as well to keep boil gravity consistent and for hop utilization.

But, at 0.75 gallons for a 60 minute boil using a 2 gallon pot.. would that just be too little water for the boil? Would that increase maillard reactions given the volume-to-surface area of the bottom of the pot (on an electric stovetop)?

Hoping to get as light a brew as I can with my Briess Golden Light DME (4 Lovibond). Thinking a partial boil might actually create a darker coloring and flavor for the first 1/2 of the DME?
 
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Hoping to get as light a brew as I can with my Briess Golden Light DME
I'll suggest the following approach
  • 30 minute full volume boil
  • 1/4 to 1/2 of the DME at start of boil
  • rest at end of boil
Basic Brewing Radio (Aug 25, 2005 and/or Nov 17, 2005) has a number as to how much extract darkens during the boil.

Briess Golden Light DME (4 Lovibond)
4L is at OG 30 (and the number goes up as OG goes up).
 

bdg0223

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I'll suggest the following approach
  • 30 minute full volume boil
Thank you for the feedback! Probably right to keep it simple with a 30 min boil. I'll also listen to Basic Brewing Radio. Haven't used that resource yet.

4L is at OG 30 (and the number goes up as OG goes up).
This is a new concept for me, but of course it makes a lot of sense. I'm aiming for session-ish beers (3.5 to 5%) so I'll keep this info in mind when I'm thinking about color contributions in the future.
 

CascadesBrewer

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This is a new concept for me, but of course it makes a lot of sense. I'm aiming for session-ish beers (3.5 to 5%) so I'll keep this info in mind when I'm thinking about color contributions in the future.
Briess publishes lots of very useful info on their grains and extract. If you click through to the product sheet for their extract, they have a table showing the color by gravity: LME & DME - Briess Brewer's Grade Malt Extracts

Note that they list the same color impact from both the Dry and Liquid versions. Maybe that is correct with LME fresh off the line, but my experience is that even fresh LME produces a darker beer than DME. Old LME produces a much darker beer than old DME.
 

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I do not judge. I think it's sensible to brew to a size that feels appropriate, be it 1 gallon or 100.

I brew 10 liter batches (~ 2.5-3 US gallons) because this is the amount that our household (=me and my girlfriend) can drink up over time without getting bored of it. Since COVID happened we get next to none visitors so I do not factor them in.

Also, I am a beginner still. I want to brew often. If I was to brew huge batches for two people, I wouldn't brew as often.

EDIT: this was a response to OP ;)
 
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AlexKay

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Wow, congrats! That's a huge turnaround. I am about to brew my 5th batch :D
Thanks to the pandemic. I was brewing every day, as small as 1/4-gallon batches (which get bottled very easily in 1-L EZ-Caps.) I still make more beer than I can reasonably drink, so sometimes I drink unreasonably. (And also thanks to the pandemic and unreasonable beer for the increase in my waistline.)
 

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Basic Brewing Radio (Aug 25, 2005 and/or Nov 17, 2005) has a number as to how much extract darkens during the boil.
Reporting back on this -in the Nov. 17, 2005 episode, Bob Hansen of Briess says, to paraphrase, you'll get about 0.75 to 1 degree Lovibond darkening after a 45-minute extract boil. With "reduced volume" brewing, the color darkening happens faster.

Timestamp 48:50: http://www.basicbrewing.com/radio/mp3/bbr11-17-05.mp3

So, BrewnWKopperKat was correct to suggest a full volume boil vs partial boil, if the goal was to keep the beer as light as possible.

Also - the short brew day went just fine. Cautiously optimistic that a light DME SMaSH could be tasty.
 

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Someone want to help me with a non DIY fermenter option.

Looking at the Fastferment 3 gallon conical

Pros- Conical
Looks cool
Trub containment
All in one, wouldn't need bottling bucket

Cons - probably wouldn't fit in mini Fridge
2 gallons of headspace
Costs more than say buckets or glass jugs.

1 gallon Fermonster

Pros - I have a 6.5 fermonster and love it
See through
Comes with spigot
Would fit in minifridge for lagering/cold crashing.

Cons - plastic is thin
Would have to use blow off tube or use less volume
Would probably need bottling bucket. Have a 5 gallon bucket which I could make work with what someone else said on this thread with a wedge under bucket to bottle with.

Anybody any other suggestions I also looked at brewdemon but it doesn't seem to have great reviews.

I'm going down to 1 gallon over 5 gallons because the new house doesn't have enough room for a 5 gallon run, and SWMBO doesn't want me to spend money on EBIAB or Propane system, so limited to stove top brewing.

I love this thread I've been reading about it alot. I have more questions too.
 

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I like the little big mouth bubbler. I have one w a spigot. it’s closer to 1.5G I believe so there’s room for krausen, but I usually shoot a bit larger than 1g and use a blow off.
I love fermonsters. My 3g is my main and I fill it to where it starts to taper at the top and again use a blow off until it starts to slow. Then switch to an airlock. Also you can prime bottles individually and bottle straight from the fermenter.
 
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