Stainless pot help

Stainless pot help

Post by Joe Potatoe » Sat, 26 May 2007 21:50:34



I am thinking of upgrading to larger stainless brew pots -- 7 to 9 gallon
size.

As I look around I am confused by the 'specifications' for these pots.  Here
are some typical statements:
--   .8mm, 20 guage, 304 stainless steel
--    9 element construction, 304 stainless steel (no declaration of
thickness)
--    18/10 (stainless type declaration), thick 3 ply bottom
--   18/8 (stainless type declaration), 3 ply bottom w/5mm aluminum
--    12mm (thickness declaration), 18/10, thick, heavy 3 ply bottom
--    heavy duty (now there is a declaration)

So the question is which is right.  Too thin and it will dent and not feel
right, too much and you are paying for excess material that is not needed.

Opinions on what is appropriate would be appreciated.

Thanks

***********Quoting from one site below ***************
What is 18/10 stainless steel?

  a.. The 18/10 refers to the proportion of chromium to nickel in the
stainless steel alloy.  To be classified as stainless steel, an iron base
alloy must contain at least 10.5 % of chromium.  The presence of chromium
enables the steel to form an invisible layer of oxide that protects it
against corrosion.
  b.. If this layer is damaged, a new one forms immediately due to the
oxygen content of the air.  Increasing the chromium content to 18% has
further increased this protection.  The addition of nickel to the alloy
increased its corrosion resistance while adding a bright polished
appearance, hardness, and exceptional resistance to all temperatures.  As
the nickel level is increased, the quality of the stainless steel is
increased.  The "top of the line" boast 10% nickel content, the highest
quality available in stainless steel.
  c.. In addition a try ply encapsulated bottom ensures superb heat
conductivity for rapid, even cooking.  A sandwich layer of aluminum between
two layers of 18/10 stainless is best.
  d.. Stainless steel alone is not an effective conductor of heat.  Aluminum
on the other hand, readily absorbs heat.  By absorbing heat faster than the
neighboring stainless steel, it can provide even heat distribution before
heat is transferred to the food, for faster more thorough cooking without
"cold spots" or scorching "hot spots".  In a try-ply based, the aluminum is
completely enclosed in stainless steel creating a finished base.
Gauge? We get lots of question what gauge are these, it would be nice if our
suppliers could come up with this information, but as far as we have been
able to find out this is more of a specification used for pluming, kitchen
sinks etc.  Our best guess:

22 gauge: .027 inch
20 gauge: .033 inch our average pot is .8mm thick which would convert to
.032 inches
18 gauge: .043 inch
16 gauge: .054 inch  our "heavy pot " is about 1.2mm

 
 
 

Stainless pot help

Post by bobdro » Sun, 27 May 2007 10:53:54


hi joe- as a lurking homebrew hobbiest ( not many batches comparative to the
rest of this august NG,) I say shop by price: you can moderate cooking
efficiency with cheap cookware easily by paying attention to what's on the
heat, regulate the flame, & stir to make sure nothing sinks, sticks and
scorches on the bottom of an inexpensive pan. I've spent many hundreds of
dollars on really *** cookware ostensibly  for homebrewing, but i'm a pro
chef & use them for other uses so the $$$ is self-justified  ;^)>   I've
also bought cheap stockpots that do the same basic job for 1/3 the price & a
little more attention during stove time. I say: ignore the marketing
geekspeak blather & buy the appropriate volume size for the best price.
We're simmering wort, not sauteeing shad roe.  regards,  bobdrob


Quote:
>I am thinking of upgrading to larger stainless brew pots -- 7 to 9 gallon
>size.

> As I look around I am confused by the 'specifications' for these pots.
> Here are some typical statements:
> --   .8mm, 20 guage, 304 stainless steel
> --    9 element construction, 304 stainless steel (no declaration of
> thickness)
> --    18/10 (stainless type declaration), thick 3 ply bottom
> --   18/8 (stainless type declaration), 3 ply bottom w/5mm aluminum
> --    12mm (thickness declaration), 18/10, thick, heavy 3 ply bottom
> --    heavy duty (now there is a declaration)

> So the question is which is right.  Too thin and it will dent and not feel
> right, too much and you are paying for excess material that is not needed.

> Opinions on what is appropriate would be appreciated.

> Thanks

> ***********Quoting from one site below ***************
> What is 18/10 stainless steel?

>  a.. The 18/10 refers to the proportion of chromium to nickel in the
> stainless steel alloy.  To be classified as stainless steel, an iron base
> alloy must contain at least 10.5 % of chromium.  The presence of chromium
> enables the steel to form an invisible layer of oxide that protects it
> against corrosion.
>  b.. If this layer is damaged, a new one forms immediately due to the
> oxygen content of the air.  Increasing the chromium content to 18% has
> further increased this protection.  The addition of nickel to the alloy
> increased its corrosion resistance while adding a bright polished
> appearance, hardness, and exceptional resistance to all temperatures.  As
> the nickel level is increased, the quality of the stainless steel is
> increased.  The "top of the line" boast 10% nickel content, the highest
> quality available in stainless steel.
>  c.. In addition a try ply encapsulated bottom ensures superb heat
> conductivity for rapid, even cooking.  A sandwich layer of aluminum
> between two layers of 18/10 stainless is best.
>  d.. Stainless steel alone is not an effective conductor of heat.
> Aluminum on the other hand, readily absorbs heat.  By absorbing heat
> faster than the neighboring stainless steel, it can provide even heat
> distribution before heat is transferred to the food, for faster more
> thorough cooking without "cold spots" or scorching "hot spots".  In a
> try-ply based, the aluminum is completely enclosed in stainless steel
> creating a finished base.
> Gauge? We get lots of question what gauge are these, it would be nice if
> our suppliers could come up with this information, but as far as we have
> been able to find out this is more of a specification used for pluming,
> kitchen sinks etc.  Our best guess:

> 22 gauge: .027 inch
> 20 gauge: .033 inch our average pot is .8mm thick which would convert to
> .032 inches
> 18 gauge: .043 inch
> 16 gauge: .054 inch  our "heavy pot " is about 1.2mm


 
 
 

Stainless pot help

Post by aaron » Sun, 27 May 2007 11:03:44


I agree, ignore the hype. For this purpose, most stainless steels will
function identically. As long as it is a stainless, it should be ok.

Thicker pots will be sturdier, but will take longer to heat up. Get
whichever thickness you like most. Higher gauge number means thinner.
I would think 1mm of steel is plenty, maybe even overkill.