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I would say 1.5" is plenty high. I have a 7.5 gal kettle that came with a spigot positioned about 2.5" above the bottom and I almost always found that I had to tip the kettle to get all the wort out. Depending on your chilling method, if you can manage to allow the trub to settle out while chilling, or don't 'mind waiting 30 minutes or so after your done ...


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Use the "Can I mash it?" calculator at http://www.rackers.org/calcs.shtml According to that, 8 kg of grain will fit with enough water for 1.25 liters/kg mash thickness with .64 liters of headspace.


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I would just boost the dextrins in the beer knowing that you will have additional oils from the chocolate (and the coffee). While its a good idea, I'm not sure cold-crashing/skimming would get all of the oil as a lot of it may still be dissolved in solution. Add some oats, extra flaked barley and/or dextrin malt to the mash. With respect to the coffee ...


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Based on my own experience, an 8 gal. kettle will barely work for a 5 gal. batch. Even at that, you might have to boil a concentrated wort and add top up water after the boil. Remember that in addition to accounting for trub and evaporation, you also need some headroom in there to start with. I wouldn't recommend anything less than 15 gal. for a 10 gal. ...


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Well, it depends on the losses you assume along the way. For 5 gallons, if you assume a trub loss of 0.5 gallons, and evaporation loss of 1.0 gallon, then you would need 6.5 gallons of wort to get 5 gallons into a fermenter. If you follow the oft-quoted rule of thumb that you want minimum headspace in your kettle equal to one-third of your boil volume, that ...



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