I’ve been thinking about trying to make a fermenter out of a cheap 6-7 gallon ss brew pot. I’d basically like it to be like a brew bucket, http://www.ssbrewtech.com/products/brewbucket but flat on the bottom. Anyone see anything like this already done or have any ideas on the latching mechanism to seal the lid?
I was kicking around a similar idea, but with an SS milk can … was even thinking about using a 15 gallon milk can for a kettle since they’re significantly less expensive than the typical brew kettle with similar quality all-SS. The milk can I was looking at has a sanitary lid (8" lid that reduces to a 3" tri-clamp) so it’ll lock down tight as a fermentor … it was going for about $200 new with the option of having custom NPT fittings welded in for a heating element and/or valve. I’m not sure how the taper would play during a boil though when used as a kettle … but figured it probably wouldn’t be a big deal.
Then I saw a few half-barrel sanke kegs on ebay with 2" sanitary fittings (perfect for a big drilled bung) for about $90 & sometimes for less. Those kegs look like a pretty big bang-for-the-buck for a durable SS fermenting bucket. But might be a pain to clean. I’m looking for someone local who could TIG weld an NPT fitting on the bottom for a drain … no luck yet. I suppose I could try a bulkhead valve.
Anyway, that’s what I’ve been thinking about … just haven’t pulled the trigger yet … still mulling things over.
I use a couple 8 gallon SS pots for fermenters, they’re kind of heavy but they work well. I got on Amazon and ordered a couple large O-rings to fit around the lids and use a tight bungee to hold them down. A 1/2" hole in the lid will fit the grommets that NB sells with their buckets.