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Re: Pot size needed for both 3-gal and 5-gal batches for BIAB?
« Reply #4 on: August 02, 2014, 12:30:00 PM »
I use different kettles for 3.5 and 5.5 gallon batches. Kettle geometry matters when making beer, as it affects evaporation rate, hop utilization, and immersion chiller effective height. Ideally, one wants a kettle with at least a 1:1 height-to-diameter ratio at roughly twice the end of boil volume.
With that said, Northern Brewer is selling a fairly low-cost 10-gallon (actually 9.63-gallon) stainless steel kettle that has a 1.2:1 height-to-diameter ratio at 9.63 gallons and a 1:1 height-to-diameter ratio at 8 gallons. This kettle is sold as their 10-gallon Tall Boy kettle. The price point is a very good for a buy once, cry once kettle with a tri-clad bottom.
I was thinking about buyng an 80 qt. pot made of 2 mm aluminum with a vegetable strainer basket and using it for both 3-gal and 5-gal BIAB batches. If I would just take a moderate hit to my efficiency I wouldn't really care too much. If it would severely affect the quality of one of the batch sizes I might have to rethink it.