Kettle Port Locations

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Jul 5, 2016
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I'm in the process of designing a custom 15 gallon Spike Brewing kettle. I'll initially be using it for BIAB, but want to have the flexibility to develop a more complex brew in a basket or three vessel system in the future. I also want to have the option to use a ULWD element.

My kettle is going to have four tri clamp ports. Three will be 1.5" ports, and one will be a 2.0" port for a ULWD element should I go that route.

I'm looking for recommendations as to where I should place the ports. One of the 1.5" ports will be for the drain valve, in the standard location. Do I want the ULWD port at the same height as the outlet port or a little higher? What about the thermometer port, and finally the whirlpool port? I've seen some systems with the whirlpool port near the top, and others place it near the bottom.

I'll only be using the drain port at first. The other ports I'll put to use after I get some more brewing experience. I'm really liking the looks of the brew in a basket systems, so I might move toward that in the future over a three vessel system. If I go with a ULWD element, I'd like to use a thermocouple in one of the ports to integrate with a controller for the element.