Mash tun size

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beerguy2009

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I am looking at moving into the world of AG brewing and was wondering if a 5 gallon Igloo drink container was big enough for a guy brewing 5 gallon batches of beer. I wasn't sure if the grain bed would be too thick using this container but I already have 2 of them and was thinking of converting one to a mash tun.
 
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beerguy2009

beerguy2009

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How about brew pot size. What is the recomended minimum size for that. I was looking at getting a turkey fryer which is 7.5 gallon. Is that too small?
 

iijakii

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You could do a 5gal AG batch in a 7.5 with some tinkering, but to spend money on that size would be pointless. Go 10gal boilpot minimum.
 

PHBalanced

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I do 5 gal AG with a 7.5 gallon pot with no issue. Actually have done it in a 7 gal pot too. of course Fermcap-S makes this A LOT easier...
 

itsbeeryo

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I bit the bullet and bought the 10 gallon cooler & a 15 gallon pot when I was in your shoes. You won't regret the larger sizes even for the extra $$.
 

samc

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7.5 gallon pot is limiting if you want to easily do higher OG beers. Agree with poster above, buy big.
 

cockybitz

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I feel no desire to upgrade my MLT from the 5 gallon. Since you already have one, I suggest you save the costs and use one. Any materials you buy can be used when you upgrade to a 10, if you so feel the need, in the future.
 

cclloyd

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I use a 10 gallon pot for 6 gallon batches (7.5 gal start volume) and it works great.
I made my MLT from a 5 gallon round cooler when I was doing partial mash / partial boil, and now that I'm doing full boil AG I am still using the 5 gallon cooler and it works well.... for up to about 11 or 12 lbs of grain. I can't do anything with a larger grainbill than that and will be moving up to the 10 gallon soon. If you can swing it get the bigger one.
 
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beerguy2009

beerguy2009

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Sounds like alot of good advise. I may just look for the end of the season sales and try to get a 10 gallon cooler. Here in the midwest, it's hard to find a cooler in the stores after September so if I am going to do this, now is the time. If I can't find a deal, maybe I'll just upgrade to partial mash brewing and partial boil since it won't take much to do that from the extract equipment I have now. Not having tried any, I assume parial mash and AG brews have better flavor than extract. So far my extract brews have been good but I am thinking about getting a bit more into brewing and want more control in the flavor.
 

SwampassJ

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I have a rectangle 48 quart (12 gallon) and a 32 quart (8 gallon) pot that I use but for the hot break, first hop addition and first half of the boil I have to watch it like a hawk. I haven't tried ferm caps so I can't comment on them in a smaller pot.
 
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beerguy2009

beerguy2009

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Looking at what I have for equipment. I could brew smaller batches (2.5 to 3.5 gallons) with what I have. If I did, is there a problem with using a 6.5 gallon to ferment 2.5 gallons. I figured this would give me a chance to do some AG brewing without spending a bunch of money to get started. Also I recall using the full dry yeast packets for smaller amounts of brew is ok to do. I just want to give AG brew a try but don't have the funds to upgrade much equipment.
 

stevo155

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I just got a 10 gallon kettle ( used to have the 7.5 gallon ) and now I'm kicking myself that I didn't get this in the first place. I also have the Coleman Xtreme 70 qt cooler mash tun setup.
 

iijakii

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Looking at what I have for equipment. I could brew smaller batches (2.5 to 3.5 gallons) with what I have. If I did, is there a problem with using a 6.5 gallon to ferment 2.5 gallons. I figured this would give me a chance to do some AG brewing without spending a bunch of money to get started. Also I recall using the full dry yeast packets for smaller amounts of brew is ok to do. I just want to give AG brew a try but don't have the funds to upgrade much equipment.
http://www.biabrewer.info/viewtopic.php?f=23&t=153

That, plus there's also a 'stovetop AG' thread on these forums. Those mini-brew in a bag techniques are tops until you can afford to jump up to bigger gear.

As for the fermenter: You'll find some mixed statements about oxidation but it's mostly, if not all, hogwash. You can primary in a 6gal without any issues.
 

djcrawfo

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For the pot, go big. Or as big as your burner allows. I wish I was using a keg with the top removed for a cheap stainless pot. Unfortunately I do not think that my stove will allow it.

I often go into my boil with 8 gallons for a 5 gallon batch.
 

iijakii

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For the pot, go big. Or as big as your burner allows. I wish I was using a keg with the top removed for a cheap stainless pot. Unfortunately I do not think that my stove will allow it.

I often go into my boil with 8 gallons for a 5 gallon batch.
Man, I wish my stove would boil 8gal!
Consider yourself lucky.
 

johndeere

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7.5 gallon kettle is enough but 10 would be ideal. I've been doing fine with my 7.5 gallon kettle, but I can't hardly take my eye off it till about 20 minutes into the boil. It would be nice to get a boil going and be able to do other things. Especially for the hot break. It slipped my mind once and before I knew it there was foam and precious wort hitting the floor.
 
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