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Equipment and Batch Sizes

Col Holloway

Jan 12, 2012
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I have been brewing extract for a long time. I have decided to skip the partial mash and go for AG.
I was lucky enough to receive my AG equipment for Xmas - however, Santa only provided a 5G kettle. I also have a 5G Aluminium turkey cooker.
I have converted a 10G rubbermaid cooler into my mash tun, complete with SS braid filter and ball valve.
It is now time to take the plunge and start brewing again - this time AG not extract. I have done alot of research and am getting my head around BS2
I believe I have a few options for brewing, those being:
1. brew a smaller batch with higher grain bill and dilute after boiling (sacrifice some efficiency).
2. brew a smaller (3.5G) batch and be done with it.
3. brew 2 batches and decoct both into the fermenter.

Is there a better, or worse option from these three?
What is the general consensus on Aluminium pots?
Am I better going with a 5G equipment profile (and not including the 10G mash tun) in BS2
Advice/opinions are welcome - thanks
I have the exact same mash tun setup.  Now that you can do big volume mashes, I recommend investing in a large pot. Brew day will be less complicated.  For all the planning and labor needed to brew all-grain, do you really want to end up with 3.5 Gal? You can mash up to 23 pounds of grain!

I have a converted keg and a 25 gal  aluminum pot. I love the aluminum pot because I boil faster and cool faster. Saves time, water, and propane!  Aluminum of course is more affordable especially when you get to these big volumes.
Option 4.
Brew 4.5 gallons of concentrated wort and top up to dilute to the FG in the fermenter. I did this for a couple years, although 5 gallons in a 5.5 gallon pot.

Option 5
Get a 30qt aluminum turkey fryer pot.

No problem with aluminum. Boil it full of water first and don't scrub the oxidation out of it.

Make your own equipment profile.
I've gone the multiple batch off the same mash route and it took all the fun out of the brew day.

Check this place out and see if you can't find a bigger pot.

finding the bigger pot is no problem - just want to show the dearly beloved Santa that I appreciate her gift, despite asking for a 10G....baby steps. Brew a couple of small brews and then maybe a 10G pot for my b'day (along with a grain mill and keg system)

How did the multi batch (decoction) take the fun out of brew day - would be interested to know the adv and disadv of this method

Have checked out the link, many bargains. The birthday wish list grows
Here's what I did. I turned a relaxing brew day into work in an effort to use "wasted" time.

heat strike water for batch 1, mash
heat strike water for batch 2
mash batch 2, sparge batch 1
boil batch 1, sparge batch 2
boil batch 2, chill batch 1
clean up after batch 1, chill batch 2
clean up after batch 2

I was able to do two five gallon batches in one day, but it sucked. Big time.