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Kettle Questions

Hey all. I’m looking to buy a new kettle in the near future and had a few question. Right now I’m doing 5gal. partial boil extracts. I’d like to start doing full boils and hopfully in the near future moving to all grain. I don’t see myself doing anything larger than 5 gal batches and if I do I’ll deal with thatwhen the time comes.
I know stainless is $$$ but I’m willing to invest. What size do you recommend?
Any recommendations on where to purchase?

Thanks in advance!

You’ll get lots of opinions on this, all valid - if you’re not going to go bigger than 5-gal batches then a 9-10 gallon kettle is plenty big enough. You’ll likely want a valve and pickup tube and thermometer at some point, so if you can afford them get them now and enjoy the benefits. If you do end up brewing bigger batches in the future, the kettle you buy now will become your HLT, so it won’t be wasted money.

I agree that a 10gal is a good size for 5gal AG, I have an 8gal and it can be a tight fit at times and I have to use fermcap S. I like NB’s Megapot, the triple sandwich bottom is nice for heat distribution and the pot itself is a nice thick gauge steel. Good price for this pot. If you need a valve (I only recently upgraded to one), buy yourself a step bit, drill a hole (takes one minute) and install a weldless ball valve and you’re in business.

Wares Direct has a 10 gallon SS pot with the 3 ply bottom for $85[/url]. They also have an [url=http://www.waresdirect.com/products/Restaurant-Supply/Update-International-/Stock-Pot167553]aluminum 10 gallon pot for just under $31

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I’ve got a couple of aluminum pots and really like them, they’re light weight and heat up fast, though probably no faster than the 3 ply SS pots. They’re not as pretty as SS or as durable, but for brewing a few times a month they should last a lifetime.

Thanks for the responses. I’m glad I asked. I was really thinking I’d need a 12-15gal.

Glug Master. Those kettles are a good price. It looks like they’re the same gauge as N.B.'s Megapot.
I know aluminum is cheaper, lighter etc. I just have some issues with aluminum. I know that there’s no proof of them causing any problems so long and you get an oxidized layer on them. I’ve just had
it drilled into me for years not to trust it.

Tom, I never thought about a step bit. That would make it very easy to do do that myself. Thanks for the tip.

New question…(IF) I ever go to say, a 10 gal batch all grain… What size is recommended.

Sorry for the newb ???'s I’ve done a couple dozen extract batch’s and the bugs hit me hard. I want to buy the equipment right the first time as I expand on my technique.

quote=“eichen323” I ever go to say, a 10 gal batch all grain… What size is recommended.[/quote]A 15-gal kettle, or a half-barrel (15.5-gal) keggle, is a good size for a 10-12 gallon batch of beer.

Prior to moving to ATL and living in a temp place (and therefore not brewing recently) I had just bought a bigger kettle which made a huge difference in terms of doing full volume boils, and I was doing extracts and partial mash extracts.

But the other benefit that made a huge difference for me was drilling the pot out and adding a valve so that I can run off directly to the carboy. It was kinda like angels flew around and there was a choir singing! No more lugging pots around and funnels and the like. It’s kinda like making the move from bottles to kegs and you realize “OMG, this makes it so much easier”.

So - regardless of the size you go, and there have been many suggestions on size that really depend on what kind of brewing you want to do, really consider the notion of drilling the hole and installing the valve. You’ll be glad you did.

i got a 15 gallon SS kettle with a false bottom, and i normally make 5 gal batches. its pretty large, and my boil off rate is pretty high. I got a damaged keg from a friend that I’m in the process of converting into a keggle. then i will use my SS kettle as a mashtun and have an entirely metal system. should look pretty spiffy.

my advice is to go big. the option for a 10gallon batch here and there is worth it IMO

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