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Pot Choice

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BlackRat

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Ok so for my next brew (2nd) i have decided that i need a bigger pot.

Not wanting to spend $150+ on a 70L pot from one of the sponsors, as i havent decided if i want to go bit pot or hot water urn long for BIAB next step.

In the short term, I want to progress my brewing and purchase a larger pot so I can continue kit brewing whilst i continue learning. I know that the first investment needs to be a fridge and temp control to ensure the best possible fermentation environment regardless of the brew method.

So, i have narrowed my selection of temp pots down to 3 units:

  • 11.5L stainless pot - $30 from Kmart
  • 15L pot (not stainless) - $15 from Kmart (worried about heat retention here)
  • other - please specify

My goal here is to buy a pot big enough to be able to brew kit beers to an acceptable level (reference here to Dr. Smurto Golden Ale Kit recipe).

Its also worth noting that for my first batch i used my girlfriends Royal Doulton Gordon Ramsey stock pot, which lets just say didnt go down very well, hence the need to purchase!

What do you think is a good entry level type pot?

Cheers,
BlackRat.
 

J Grimmer

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Dont forget about the Big W units $20 for 19L SS stock Pot, I would go bigger rather than smaller as you will more space to avoid a boil over (and this will give you more flexiblity in the future my 2c) other than that go the 15L one thing i have found a larger volume will be slower to loss heat than a smaller volume 15L should give you enough space to boil 10L but the 11.5L prob about 7L. also have a look online and don't be afraid of aliminum pots as well.
 

Rowy

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+1 on the 20litre pot. I started AG with one and still use it in the brewery for heaps of things.
 

troopa

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Does Kmart have the 20L stockpot for 20 bucks still?
Thats what i started with and it was awesome and still use it for sparging BIAB and use the lid to screeze the last of the liquor out of the bag afterwards :)

Fridge and temp no matter what is probably the best investment in brewing imho and your on the right track there

P.S. if she can have a Royal Doultan Gordon Ramsey stock pot then you can have a 70L stainless Beerbelly pot... fairs fair :p
 

Midnight Brew

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As mentioned, the big w 19ss is a good choice as it is cheap and will be suited to what your purposes are. If you're planning on dowing partials or all grain anytime soon then I would buy something now. But the big w 19L is a cheap investment and you can even do stove top BIAB in them.
 

freezkat

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As mentioned, the big w 19ss is a good choice as it is cheap and will be suited to what your purposes are. If you're planning on dowing partials or all grain anytime soon then I would buy something now. But the big w 19L is a cheap investment and you can even do stove top BIAB in them.
Thai stick

oh you mean boil pot

I have a huge canning pot for full boils.
 

Cocko

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CB's 70L pot is the best value for money on the market IMO... especially at the big dive in to AG/Full boil situation.

I am not pashing Ross' bits, I am talking about value for money.

The pot itself is not finished amazingly well, hole for tap drilled way off centre [And I have seen 4 now] also the drilled hole is not filed... You can see the seam weld and polish and other little things BUT nothing that effects its function.

It is not Robinox but it is thick enough and HARD [Fucked my hole saw in about 30 seconds] enough to be good for many years...

This is from experience only.

If you can afford better, eg. Robinox than go, but is money is a question, CB's pots are extremely good value for the dollar and size.

3c.
 

seemax

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I've got two aluminium pots surplus to my needs - an older 35L with glass lid and a nice 40L with lid. $30 and $50 respectively.

Both have holes and I can rig a pickup and basic tap system... even got a big sheet of swiss voile to suit either pot for BIAB.

All you need is a burner (or install an element), some tube and a cube and you're set.

Pm if you're interested... might even be able to do a BIAB demo if the timing works out.
 

DJR

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Don't forget Aluminium (har har, get it, forget). I bought a 40L Robinox Al pot a few years ago, still going strong after 50+ batches, was about $80 or $90.
 

BlackRat

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Thanks guys, looks like the Big W ss19L is the best option at this stage.

Whilst we are on the topic of future BIAB options, why dont more people invest in urns?

Am i missing something here? It seams the ability to perform BIAB and have persistent temp control would be of huge benefit.

CB have a 40L Crown Urn for $274, which would seam like good value.

Once again, im only new but am i overlooking something here?

Thanks once again for your help guys.

BlackRat.
 

Deebo

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Many people do have urns. These are great as with electric you can use an electrical timer and an stc-1000 temp controller to heat up your strike water while you sleep. Shaves a fair bit of time off the brew day.
An stc-1000 will also come in handy for reading mash temps or doing a mashout/stepped mash etc.

You could also get a 70l craftbrewer pot, an element and a ball valve to do the same thing pretty much which may work out cheaper and give you more room for expansion? (would have to drill a hole for the element though)
 

Edak

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Many people do have urns. These are great as with electric you can use an electrical timer and an stc-1000 temp controller to heat up your strike water while you sleep. Shaves a fair bit of time off the brew day.
An stc-1000 will also come in handy for reading mash temps or doing a mashout/stepped mash etc.

You could also get a 70l craftbrewer pot, an element and a ball valve to do the same thing pretty much which may work out cheaper and give you more room for expansion? (would have to drill a hole for the element though)
And you would want to drill a hole for your thermowell, unless you have a better method for temp measurement.

I totally agree that the DIY method sounds like better value. If you want better control of your temps then I would recommend that you use a PID controller (ebay type REXC700 about the same price as STC1000)
 

Deebo

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I just drop the probe through the urn lid into the mash, I'm too worried a thermowell would catch on the bag or immersion chiller.

Would really like to find a nice long SS probe to suite the stc-1000.
 

bignath

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Would really like to find a nice long SS probe to suite the stc-1000.
So would i....

Anyone, anyone, beuller, anyone......?

Edit: shhhhpellinnnng
 

bignath

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I thought it had to be a certain type of ntc sensor....

Any sort will do?

EDIT: second post in a row with spelling.......kegs turned off as of now...
 

stux

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Would really like to find a nice long SS probe to suite the stc-1000.
Not a probe... but its really long... and suits the STC sensor ;)

I reckon you could insert it in the lid for mashing. You don't need it when you're boiling ;)

And then you could use it in your fermenter later too ;)

Stainless Fermentor Thermowell 3/8th diameter 400mm long

http://www.beerbelly.com.au/ferment.html
 

Deebo

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Do you think getting a keg dip tube and folding over the end and clamping it shut would work?
If not that long thermowell might be the go.

Edit: with those 200mm sensors, would just the end being in the mash suffice? Or does the whole thing need to be immersed to give an accurate reading? Are the ones one craftbrewer suitable for the stc-1000?
 
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