This is a fairly straightforward calculation, actually.*
First, calculate the total energy needed to heat up your volume of liquid, using the following equation:
E = Cp * M * dT
E = energy required, in kilojoules (kJ)
Cp = specific heat of liquid (kJ/kg/°C)
M = mass of liquid (kg)
dT = temperature change required (°C)
A few assumptions:
Boil off is effected by three main things.
Effected by elevation
For example: I sometimes brew at sea level (212°) and sometimes in the high desert (206°) 3000ft the two areas have a few degree difference in boil temp.
Effected by BTU efficiency, voltage.
As mentioned, voltage especially 220v has a wide range here in the USA. 218-240v....
You can always add one later. I have them on all my kettles and they're helpful, but not a necessity for basic brewing. I'd say the biggest thing mine do for me is allow me to use a pump for recirculated chilling. But you can always go on stages, adding a valve (the weldless kits work great) and pump, etc. as need and finances dictate.
Your best bet is doing a partial boil brew, boiling 2 gallons of concentrated wort then adding 3 gallons sanitary water to the fermentor for 5 gallon batch.
Typically this is done with extracts. Would be challenging to do as BIAB, all grain.
If you want to do full volume boil. I would suggest attempting to boil just water in the volume you want.
16k btu ...
Galvanized steel I would not use. The galvanized plating only has a pH tollerance above 5.5 and will corrode from most wort. The part won't fail any time soon from wort, but those metallic ions stripping off will then be in your beer.
Bronze also has metals you wouldn't want in beer (tin)
Brass is a much better metal to use if stainless isn't an option.
Two main reasons I can think of (only considering boil off, not speculate "you did something else wrong"):
Higher voltage from the grid than at home.
Most EU countries at least you should expect 230V +/- 6% from your mains. This means the actual voltage can be as high as 244, or as low as 216. US and other first world places likely have similar tolarances.
Many people use propane turkey fryer setups, consisting of a large propane burner and kettle. The kettle is usually around 6.5-7 gal. so it's barely big enough for a 5 gal. batch, but it works. I won awards for beer made with one. The kettles are often AL, but don't let that throw you. It's perfectly fine and safe.
I would be concerned about their durability. They are likely not stainless steel under the finish so any exposed metal will rust. If you are planning on drilling holes for spigots, sight glasses, etc., that will definitely be a problem. Also, mash tuns and boils kettles take a beating with exposure to somewhat acidic wort and harsh cleaners. I assume you ...
You should be ok for the 2-3 gallon batch size you're after.
I regularly BIAB 1-2 gallon batches on the large burner of a regular kitchen cooker, the timings you have seem reasonable.
20-30 min to bring your preboil + grain absorption volume up to mash temp
10-15 min to bring your wort up to boil after the mash is complete
The largest batch I've ...
The problem might be a thermocouple this is a hardwired switch that will cut the element out if the temp goes to high. this is a additional safety and is normally wired in series with the thermostat that normally switches of the element when it gets to the set temperature.
this switch might be faulty, your local electrician might be able to fix it or maybe ...
The difference in LP and NG burners is the jet. Propane use a very small small jet compared to NG. The propane jet can be drilled out to the size of the NG very easily.
Propane burners run from 10-30 PSI, NG is only around 2 PSI.
I would definitely get an adjustable regulator. This gives you stable psi and gas adjustments all ...
A good old fashioned hot water soak, a brewing sanitiser and sun bleach to dry will do the trick. Sometimes that plastic smell you describe is impossible to completely get rid of though. At least you can remove any surface residues from the plastic though.
you should have very small or no risk boiling smaller kits in a bigger kettle, it may not be as efficient and it maybe harder to clean. but the result would be same if not similar to using a smaller kettle.
I use a 16 gallon/64L Kettle, and I have not had any issue making smaller batches in it. I have brewed a 2 gallon batch on my system with out issue.
I have a Robobrew and while it will run on 110V, it appears to be less than satisfactory (regardless of what their marketing tells you).
One thing that will help is buying the thermal jacket for it (it has an official thermal jacket) which will help to retain heat. Also as others have said, if your house has 2x110v phases from the main distribution get your ...
1) steam condenses due to temperature change, all the water is doing is cooling the steam off so it condenses....
2) water is just used to cool it, you could use a copper pipe with cold water flowing through it inside the condenser pipe, or wrap cold packs around the condenser pipe, the only principle if you must cool it for steam to condense.
3) Depends ...
I suspect that from brew to brew the effect of contact with a zinc plated washer will be negligible. The zinc would (very, very) slowly dissolve under the effect of acid conditions and, generally speaking, zinc ions in solution are "not optimal" for yeast metabolism. But IMHO the amounts of zinc compared to the amount of yeast would again render the problem ...
I personally would not use an aluminum kettle for a mash tun.
Aluminum transfers heat too well. While that's great for a boil kettle or hlt, a mash tun needs to hold heat. Even if well insulated it will lose much more heat than its stainless steel counter part and way more than a cooler style tun.
Not to go off in another direction, but EZ could you elaborate on your statement that a cooler tun will achieve better results. I brew in a 70 quart crawfish pot with basket. Drop all the grains in a mesh bag and drop it in the correct temp water. Check temp every 15 minutes, depending on outside temperature may relight burner once during the process. ...
A cooler mash tun will get you better results. Thier only limitation is step mashes require decoction or mash infusion.
Going BIAB would be a downgrade imo.
Keggles have their own pros an cons. They lack insulation and need wrapped during rest. With a proper false bottom or some care with BIAB, you can apply flame for step mashes. With only a single ...
The bottom lime is that you're nor going to get a lot of hop aroma out of a 5 minute addition, or even at flameout. I've pretty much stopped doing those additions becasue I found, as you did, that they don't do much. Try whirlpool hopping or dry hopping for the best hop aroma.
How are you cooling the wort?
If you take too long to cool your wort after adding hops at the end of the boil, the high temperature of the wort may still allow isomerization, which would diminish the aroma.
What hops are you using?
Some hops do not make good aroma hops at all, they are bittering only.
How old are they?
The older a hop, the less aroma you'll get from them.
How do you store them?
If they're stored without oxygen, in a freezer, they will be fresher when you use them. The less fresh hops are, the less aroma they produce.
How do you ferment?
I would say the most important thing is a well-drilled hole. Scrappy, poorly-drilled holes make it difficult to fit the component parts in and can make it possible for bacteria to collect between brews.
Often you'll be hooking some kind of hose to the outside of your valve, so gravity will do the work. I think for tightness-of-seal you're right - you ...