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How to install a ball valve and thermometer in your brewpot using a weldless fitting…

There are a lot of options out there for brew pots. They range from very inexpensive aluminum turkey fryers up to the Rolls Royce quality Blichmann brew pots. For those of you that have the cash to lay out for the good ones, congratulations! For the rest of us, we may need to get a little crafty. My first brew pot, which I still use, is a 7.5 gallon stainless steel turkey fryer I got from Bass Pro Shops for $99.99, on sale. It even came with a propane burner which, with some modifications, I still use when I’m brewing outside. The existing spigot wasn’t anything I could use for brewing, but it already had the pre-drilled hole which made things easy. With a little work I changed it to a weldless 1/2″ stainless ball valve from Homebrewstuff.com. All I had to do was take a file and enlarge the hole to accommodate the new bulkhead fitting.

After much research and debate about what kind of pot I should get next in order to increase my brewing capacity, I bought a 15.5 gallon Bayou Classic Stainless Steel Pot from Canadian Treasure Seekers for $200 after tax. (they offer free shipping in Canada which is why I went with them, instead of dealing with potential import duties and crazy shipping charges from south of the border) I thought it might be a fairly thin walled pot like my 5 gallon one, but it’s actually not bad. It’s not the optimum, double walled, thick gauged bottom like some of the better brewing pots, but so far it’s worked great, and as long as I give things a stir every once on a while, I haven’t seen any scorching whatsoever. Only thing is, it doesn’t have a spigot installed. So off I go into the workshop to see how I can remedy that. I also received a nice gift from my sister & brother in law for my birthday; a 3” Stainless Thermometer with 2.5” probe! So I’ll be installing that as well. Thanks guys! Continue reading