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should i get a propane burner?

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bcryan

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hey there. i'm sick of cleaning up from boil overs and getting in trouble from the wife. this beer making thing is new to me so where i am at now is making extract kits with specilaty grains (last one caribou slobber). what if i did everything i do in the kitchen outside with a burner? is that gonna make life easier? or is there something i'm missing? any suggestions would be appreciated. cheers
 

lazarus0530

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I brew all my beer outside...just the brewing part. When I'm done brewing I bring it inside. With the lid on so no lil bugs or anything can get in there. Then let it chill in my sink and then transfer the wort to my fermentor all inside. Then clean up is always the worst. There's no way around that ;)
 

Shaneoco1981

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I would say yes, get a propane burner, but if your rolling with a 3 gallon pot, it wouldn't work to well. I would recommend having ATLEAST a 5 gallon pot, if not an 8 or 10 gallon.
 

jonmohno

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Yes, and if i was doing 5 gallons i would. I can get a good 2-3 gallon boil wich is what i need.I doubt i would get a boil on 5 gallons on my elec.
 

Rogue14

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I brew in the garage or outside with a Bayou burner. I really like it. It is really easy to control the intensity of the boil.

+1 on the bigger pot. I have an 8 gallon pot and do a full 6 gallon boil as an extract brewer.
 

cvstrat

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The burner will get your wort boiling faster, and if you boil over it's all good.
 
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bcryan

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thanks so much for quick reply guys. burner sounding like a great idea. so even if i'm only doing a partial boil, 3 gallons, burner is still good idea?
 

Shaneoco1981

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No. I personally wouldn't because of the fact that propane burners put out high amounts of heat. My SQ14 does 55000 BTU's. You would not be able to get near the pot to put the hops in, and if the pot has plastic handles, say good bye to your handles. If your pot is coated with non-stick coating, it's going to destroy the pot. Like I said before, ATLEAST a 5 gallon SS or aluminum pot, with 8-10 gallons being optimal.
 

Tall_Yotie

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If you have no issues buying a burner (cost) or storing it (space), then even for a partial boil it would be a good idea, especially if your hobby is causing issues with the wife. I want to lady in my life to be happy with my hobbies, so if a burner makes sense, then do it.

Secondly, if/when you move to full boils, you really will want a burner. I can't use one at my apartment, and getting 6 1/2 g of wort up to boiling is a pain on an old electric stove. I use a propane burner when brewing with my friends and family (got the father in law into brewing).

For the propane burner, depending on where you set it up I would suggest having a heavy canvas tarp (fire resistant) under the burner. In case of a boil over, only a tarp to clean, not a deck or the like. If it is a driveway or sacrificial garage floor, then don't worry.
 
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bcryan

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No. I personally wouldn't because of the fact that propane burners put out high amounts of heat. My SQ14 does 55000 BTU's. You would not be able to get near the pot to put the hops in, and if the pot has plastic handles, say good bye to your handles. If your pot is coated with non-stick coating, it's going to destroy the pot. Like I said before, ATLEAST a 5 gallon SS or aluminum pot, with 8-10 gallons being optimal.
damn. cant buy another pot just yet. guess i better learn to control my boil overs. thanks so much for the help
 

janivar123

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I had the misfortune to find a 20gal hot water tank outside a local plumber
I mean its no point in making 5gal batches(wich i actually have space to bottle condition)
when i can do 10
 

haussparker

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Shaneoco1981 said:
No. I personally wouldn't because of the fact that propane burners put out high amounts of heat. My SQ14 does 55000 BTU's. You would not be able to get near the pot to put the hops in, and if the pot has plastic handles, say good bye to your handles. If your pot is coated with non-stick coating, it's going to destroy the pot. Like I said before, ATLEAST a 5 gallon SS or aluminum pot, with 8-10 gallons being optimal.
Why on earth not use a propane burner? Of course they put out plenty of heat it's a flame, but they do not get so hot you can't get close to add hops or stir. My jet burner has the capacity to put out 330,000btu and I can stand inches from my pot with a nice rolling boil stirring and adding ingredients with no problem I've never heard that before. Never use anything but stainless an experienced and knowledgable brewer will tell you. Aluminum is NOT a viable option oxidation from the aluminum pots surface can react with many ingredients used in the brewing process imparting off flavors. Also never use an enameled pot or non stick coated pot the coating can crack off exposing the bare steal or aluminum below and also think about the flakes, where do they go, in your beer!

Pick up a couple of books from your local homebrew shop, I highly recommend any literature written by Charles Papazian like his Complete Homebrew Bible, also pick up a book called Radical Brewing. Northern Brewer has a long list of great books all of which I have and have read they really helped me when I started and will give a beginner a firm knowledge base to start from. Good luck!
 

Schumed

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bcryan said:
hey there. i'm sick of cleaning up from boil overs and getting in trouble from the wife. this beer making thing is new to me so where i am at now is making extract kits with specilaty grains (last one caribou slobber). what if i did everything i do in the kitchen outside with a burner? is that gonna make life easier? or is there something i'm missing? any suggestions would be appreciated. cheers
Buy a turkey fryer.... I got mine with a burner and pot for $20 on craigslist. Take care of both your problems
 

jbharris88

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I got the Bayou Classic SP10 off Amazon for about $50. 185,000 BTUs and sounds like a jet taking off (insert Tim the Toolman grunt). I haven't looked back.

Not sure about the other poster but I can sit right next to the thing during full-boil and it's not that hot. I also use it on a wood rooftop deck. The ground underneath gets warm, but not dangerously hot, although it did melt the sap in one of the knots of wood once.
 

brewmcq

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+50 Burner
+50 Bigger pot

I have an 8 gallon pot and really REALLY wish I'd held out for a 10 gallon for my 5 gallon batches.

However, with a spray bottle of cold water and easy access to the gas flow, I've only had one boil over... but I'm only getting 4.5-5 gallons in the fermenter.. I'd like to have at least 5.5 to go in, but my pot just isn't big enough.
 

haussparker

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The bayou burner is a good idea it is what I started with but again you do not want to use aluminum. Boiling water in the aluminum pot is one thing but it is never a good idea to use aluminum for boiling wort. I do use a 15gal US Navy pot that is aluminum to occasionally boil water for my beer but that's the extent of use for that pot. The bayou burners usually burn between 120,000 and 180,000btu I believe, if you cook with it outside be careful in windy conditions it takes a long time to boil more than 5gal. I made myself a large beer tree and around my hot liquor burner I built a small stainless windshield and I can boil 15gal in 45 and 50 minutes. Good luck!
 

Tall_Yotie

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Regarding the aluminum pot: this is a debate that has gone back and forth a great deal on many other threads. I have always used an aluminum pot for all f my batches, and never had any weird flavors or the like caused by it.

So, Aluminum or SS will do fine. For the myths and true concerns with aluminum, see this post:

https://www.homebrewtalk.com/f11/faq-aluminum-pots-boil-kettles-49449/
 

brewmcq

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Regarding the aluminum pot: this is a debate that has gone back and forth a great deal on many other threads. I have always used an aluminum pot for all f my batches, and never had any weird flavors or the like caused by it.

So, Aluminum or SS will do fine. For the myths and true concerns with aluminum, see this post:

https://www.homebrewtalk.com/f11/faq-aluminum-pots-boil-kettles-49449/
+1

I've never had an issue with aluminum pots. Neither have the thousands and thousands of restaurants worldwide that use aluminum pots. :ban:
 

haussparker

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Restaurants don't use them for beer either, they use them to cook food. As far as the debates on the forums I don't base judgment on it via those. I took a number of semesters in chemistry and engineering of building materials I also have a number of family members that are chemist or biologist so that's where I've based my opinion from but i am not judging those that use them by any means. If you use the aluminum pot and never experience issues, awesome!
 

JWest

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haussparker said:
The bayou burner is a good idea it is what I started with but again you do not want to use aluminum. Boiling water in the aluminum pot is one thing but it is never a good idea to use aluminum for boiling wort.!
False. Definitely false. Nothing wrong with using aluminum for anything in the entire brewing process.
 

haussparker

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To each there own, believe what, you will. Research and experience, look at the microbreweries and large breweries...they don't use aluminum for a plethora of reasons.
 

avidhomebrewer

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I brew all outside as well with propane. It has shortened my brew day quite a bit, so yes, pick up a burner or two. With brewing, always get more than you think you will need now.
 

CompassBrewing

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I love brewing outside. I tried inside once and it just didn't do it for me. I use the bayou classic off of northern brewer and it's done a good job thus far.

Like someone else mentioned I move indoors once it's time to cool the wort. I suppose once I get an immersion chiller I'll do that out doors too though
 

cyclonite

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+1 for turkey fryer propane burner + turkey fryer pot

I got one from Craigslist for $30 w/propane tank and love it. The pot itself is aluminum (no issues, love it). The other benefit is that you now have two pots! I use that setup (the 8 gallon pot + my old 5 gallon pot) to do BIAB with a dunk sparge for AG. I do the main mash in 5 gallons of water in the big pot on the propane burner in the garage or outside. After heating to mash temp, I cut the flame and wrap a couple towels around it and one over the top and maintain mash temp for an hour and only lose 1 degree in 65 degree weather. I then heat the sparge water in the kitchen in the smaller pot (2-3 gallons), and use that pot for the dunk sparge with the bag. Get excellent (80-90+) efficiency this way.

Just keep checking Craigslist, or you can buy a new one off of Amazon for about $60 (a little more if you want the steamer pot, which is useful for BIAB). :D
 

KurtB

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To each there own, believe what, you will. Research and experience, look at the microbreweries and large breweries...they don't use aluminum for a plethora of reasons.
I suggest you either post your "research and experience" in the appropriate thread, or quit spreading FUD.

As for the micro & large breweries, I would guess their use of SS has more to do with cleaning, sanitation, and durability. I don't think aluminum will hold up very well to some of the chemicals that they use as part of their CIP cleaning regiment, not to mention SS is simply more durable than Aluminum. Next time I am touring a brewery, I will try to remember to ask them why they did not go with aluminum instead of SS.

As to the OP's original question - YES buy a burner, for all the good reasons already posted.
 

drathbone

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I took a number of semesters in chemistry and engineering of building materials I also have a number of family members that are chemist or biologist
A quick google search found me the following:

John Palmer: "Aluminum pots usually won't cause metallic flavors unless the brewing water is alkaline with a pH level greater than 9."

MoreBeer: "Aluminum pots will generally only cause
metallic flavors when using alkaline water with a pH over 9. If using an aluminum
pot, you can “bake” the pot in an oven at 250ºF for 6 hours to increase the protective
oxides"

Why didn't you just say this haussparker? It would certainly give you alot more credibility. I even recall from high school chemistry that exposing aluminum to alkaline conditions (Ph about 8.5+) may cause corrosion. I found all this without taking several courses in chemistry/industrial engineering and I didn't have to consult any scientists. Clearly it's situational on the Ph level of your boil and oxides present in your pot. I've backed this by quoting what I consider 2 reputable sources.
 

JWest

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If you boil a pot full of water for about an hour before you ever use the aluminum pot for beer, it builds up a passive oxide layer (turns the pot a darker color of silver), and you don't have to worry about metallic flavors or any of the other side effects.
 

BrewMedic

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If you boil a pot full of water for about an hour before you ever use the aluminum pot for beer, it builds up a passive oxide layer (turns the pot a darker color of silver), and you don't have to worry about metallic flavors or any of the other side effects.
+1 Been using an aluminum pot for 5 yrs with no problems. I read somewhere that there’s more aluminum in a TUMS then in 5 gallons of wort after a 90 minute boil. I'll have to wait till I'm 70 or so and if I get Alzheimer’s then I’ll know I was wrong… Wait, what was I saying????
 
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