How important is it to buy a burner?

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mullimat

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I've seen on a lot of websites they sell those propane burners. How imperative is it to get those? I mean will the kitchen stove work fine or will I really need to get one of those burners? Also have the same question about the wort chillers. I know i have been asking a lot of questions but i just want my first batch to turn out great. :D
 

Revvy

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If you want to do full 5 gallon boils you'll need something stronger and a pot that can handle the full volume of water + the gallon or so that will evaporate off (there are programs that will help calculate the volume that will be lost.)

Full boils whether extract of all grain make for better quality beers, for vairious reasonn, (Hops utilization for one).

Most stoves can't handle that, so that's why a lot of us do smaller boils and dilute with water to make up the 5 gallons.

Some people, like the owner of my lhbs, use kettles that are large enough to straddle the front and back burners and therefore are able to go all grain and full boils in their kitchen.

My electric stove can handle 3 gallons, but it takes nearly an hour to get it to boiling temperature. That's about the max I've tried so far.

I've thought about laying an overturned baking pan over the two burners of my stove to see if I could do a full 5 gallon boil...or using ceramic tiles between the 2 of them to more evenly distribute the heat.

I was talking to someone here yesterday who is going to do full volume boils for his Mr. Beer kit... SInce the final boil volume is 2.5 gallons.

So a lot of people are using propane burners...Turkey Fryers seem to be a cost effective thing to use.
 

Rick_R

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It's tough to get a boil going for a five gallon batch (which requires more than five gallons of wort) on a stove; so if you want to do full boils you'll most likely need the propane burner. If you are going to do partial boils and top off afterwards, the stove should work fine. My boils start at just over three gallons, I do them on the stove.

A wort chiller gets the temperature down from the boiling point to pitching point much faster than putting the brew pot in an ice bath. Prior to my buying a wort chiller I used various methods to speed the process, but the wort chiller is better than those I tried. The faster you get it down to pitching, the less time it spends sitting around waiting for nasties to fall in. Also, chilling faster gives a better cold break which will result in a clearer beer in the end, though that's not as important in dark beers.

Rick
 

Revvy

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Rick, what's the max that you've tried on your stove? And how long does it usually take to get to boiling with your 3 gallon batches? Like I said in my previous post, it takes about 45 minutes to get to boiling...
 

Revvy

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Oh welcome to HBT btw!

Next time you start a thread, put more info into the title, like "Using Propane, how important is it?" You may get a faster response or more people responding, if people know what the topic is about...

Since you
re just starting out, have you read http://www.howtobrew.com/intro.html yet?

Also this thread https://www.homebrewtalk.com/showthread.php?t=54362 will have a lot of answers to any of the questions that may arise during your first few brews.
 
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mullimat

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Thanks for all the info! Just can't wait to start brewing!
 

ChrisS68

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It could be really important if your wife won't let you brew in the kitchen! ;)

Chris
 

Rick_R

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Rick, what's the max that you've tried on your stove? And how long does it usually take to get to boiling with your 3 gallon batches?
The max I've done is about 3.5 gallons in a 5g aluminum pot, stove is gas; as I recall it took about 45 minutes. I've thought about augmenting with a 110V hot stick, but so far have figured I could find something to do while waiting (measuring ingredients out, drinking a beer, etc.).

Rick
 

Chris K

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ChrisS68 said:
It could be really important if your wife won't let you brew in the kitchen! ;)

Chris
and that is the exact reason my wife got me a turkey fryer kit for xmas...to get out of the kitchen! LOL!
 

malkore

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They type of kitchen stove matters. gas and electric will give different results. and electric coils versus a flat ceramic cook top will be different too.

my flat ceramic cooktop cannot handle a 5 gallon pot. its too wide for the burner, and the stove turns off the burner to prevent over heating the cook top.
 

FlyGuy

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I *USED* to think I could only get 3.5 gals to boil on my electric coil stovetop. But with a small equipment upgrade I can EASILY get 6.5 or 7 gals to a monstrous boil (more than my pot can handle, in fact) on the same stove (one burner). So yes, it can definitely be done (at least on some stoves).

See here for my solution:
https://www.homebrewtalk.com/showthread.php?t=53683

Having said this, I greatly prefer my keggle and propane burner, but in the winter it is just not very fun to be brewing outside in Canada. The stovetop is fine then for me.
 

|-|edghog

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I have found that electric stoves will get the job done but unless it's a high end model the element won't last long. Most electric stoves are just not designed for boiling 3.5 gallons of wort.

To get a real Cadillac boil going easily I would suggest a turkey fryer which has the added benefit of keeping you out of the kitchen and messing up the stove.

Just my 2 cents.

Hedghog
 

Revvy

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FlyGuy said:
Having said this, I greatly prefer my keggle and propane burner, but in the winter it is just not very fun to be brewing outside in Canada. The stovetop is fine then for me.
I've lurked on your thread...it's a good idea.

But come one....it doesn't get THAT cold in Calgary does it?:D
You can still brew in -30 c can't you!?!:)
 

FlyGuy

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Revvy said:
I've lurked on your thread...it's a good idea.

But come one....it doesn't get THAT cold in Calgary does it?:D
You can still brew in -30 c can't you!?!:)
Actually, I don't mind the cold one bit. And often we get some gorgeous winter weather (like today).

The problem for me is how to chill. I have to shut off my outdoor faucet each fall so that the lines don't freeze and burst when it does get cold. If I could figure a way around that, it wouldn't be so bad. Some guys just bring their pots indoors to chill, but my keggle doesn't have handles. :(
 

BuffaloSabresBrewer

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This is a great idea.
I only have a 6 gallon pot and a turkey fryer burner that I dont think is big enough. I can get over 5 gallons boiling on a stove for a 4 gallon batch or more. You work with what you have.
 

Skins_Brew

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Revvy said:
I've thought about laying an overturned baking pan over the two burners of my stove to see if I could do a full 5 gallon boil...or using ceramic tiles between the 2 of them to more evenly distribute the heat.
Has anyone ever tried this? I once attempted to lay a baking sheet over two burners so i could make a ghetto griddle so i could make better omlets. Lets just say i had to throw that making sheet away.
 

doubleb

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Revvy said:
Oh welcome to HBT btw!

Next time you start a thread, put more info into the title, like "Using Propane, how important is it?" You may get a faster response or more people responding, if people know what the topic is about...

Since you
re just starting out, have you read http://www.howtobrew.com/intro.html yet?

Also this thread https://www.homebrewtalk.com/showthread.php?t=54362 will have a lot of answers to any of the questions that may arise during your first few brews.
Nice. I didn't know there was a noob tip thread. I'll have to give it a look.

Thanks:)
 

DuPuma

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Count me among the turkey fryer users. About $99 will get you a 30 qt. SS pot, and a[n] (adequate) burner. The only downside -- the turkey fryer pots aren't designed to boil that much water (although they can certainly do it), and are often built with thin layers of metal, which means the sugars near the bottom may scorch.

Meh. Mine isn't very thick, and it's produced some great beers.

Ideally, though, thicker pot=better.
 

Revvy

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Redskins838892 said:
Has anyone ever tried this? I once attempted to lay a baking sheet over two burners so i could make a ghetto griddle so i could make better omlets. Lets just say i had to throw that making sheet away.
Not yet... I've asked about it in other threads, and you're the first one that's even responded...I'm keeping my eye out for the thickest gage one possible...maybe even an old cast iron one. Something like these,



 

Skins_Brew

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I might try this baking sheet thing tonight. I have a 31qt pot and i can boil about 6 gallons of water in it using my large electric burner (As long as the lid is on). I attempted to put the pot over the small burner behind the large burner but i noticed the pot has a small ridge that runs along the outside on the bottom, so when spanned over two burners, only that little ridge was in contact with the heating element.
 

Revvy

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Redskins838892 said:
I might try this baking sheet thing tonight. I have a 31qt pot and i can boil about 6 gallons of water in it using my large electric burner (As long as the lid is on). I attempted to put the pot over the small burner behind the large burner but i noticed the pot has a small ridge that runs along the outside on the bottom, so when spanned over two burners, only that little ridge was in contact with the heating element.
A flat sheet may not work, I think you'd need something thick, and a little higher than the height of the burners, so it would lay flat over them, and the kettle would be level as well...Just remember that the baking sheet will be hot, so watch where your body parts touch.:D

Let me know how it goes!
 

Willy Boner

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:mug: Boil over in the kitchen on your SWMBO's stove and just see how fast you get kicked outside. I decided not to even attempt that fate. I bought a burner for about $50 at the local Bi-Mart and proceeded to get that first boilover out of the way on my first batch. I'm sure I saved myself some grief form SWMBO and just taking a hose to patio is way better than taking apart your stove to clean every little nook and cranny below stove.:mug:
 

Skins_Brew

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I would totally buy a cheap burner if i could. I live in an apartment and its against the law to have open flame cooking devices on the patio. I could get one but then i would have to haul it down stairs to use it. It wouldnt be very fun trying to carry 5 gallons of hot beer up the steps either. Besides, its MY apartment. SWMBO lives in MD and is only here on the weekends.
 
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