Category Archives: Kettles

Hands on Review: BrewZilla Gen 4 + OUTSTANDING Deal on 17 Gallon BrewZilla!

This review is by Homebrew Finds Contributor Brad Probert.  Brad is an engineer, expert homebrewer and experienced reviewer.  Grab a link to Brad’s website at the end of this review.


Limited Time DEAL – $300 off 17 Gallon System!

For a limited time MoreBeer has the 17 gallon BrewZilla marked down a whopping $300 to just $349.99. Shipping is also free to many US addresses. This is a great deal!

Gen 4 BrewZilla | All Grain Brewing System | Integrated Pump | Includes Wort Chiller | Wifi | Bluetooth| Rapt | 65L | 17.1G | 220V AG502.US


Hands on Review BrewZilla Gen4

I’ve brewed on several different all-in-one units. Like any brew system, they each have their own strengths and weaknesses. I did a hands-on review of the Robobrew when it first came out in late 2016. It has since changed its name to BrewZilla and is on the 4th generation of the brew unit. As you’d expect with repeated generations, they’ve been able to focus on fixing deficiencies in their previous models and also introduce new features.

The basic premise of an all-in-one brewing system is that your mash and boil kettle are in the

same vessel. So just like Brew In A Bag, after mashing, you pull the grains out and the wort stays behind to be boiled. They use electricity for heat, so they can be used outdoors where you can reach power or indoors where you have a venting system that can take care of all the steam you make during your boil.

BrewZilla Without Jacket

Stamped Volume Markings

Here are some basic stats on the Gen4 BrewZilla. It’s available in a 35-Liter form (for 5-6 gallon batches) with either a 110V setup, or 220V. There is also a larger 65-Liter that is only 220V (targeted to 10-12 gallon batches). The 35L unit holds 9.25 gallons, the mash basket can hold up to 23.5 lbs. of grain, and its electric heating elements can output up to 1500W of power (110V system) or 2400W of power (220V system). The 65L unit holds 17.1 gallons, the mash basket holds 41.5 lbs. of grain, and 3500W of heating power. All the Gen4 units have a pump bolted into the base. The pump can be used not only for wort recirculation during the mash, but also to pump beer through your wort chiller apparatus (should you choose to not use the immersion chiller coil included with the BrewZilla). The pump is more modular and accessible than previous Gen models. To protect the pump from clogging with hop debris during the boil or whirlpool, there is a filter screen (a perforated stainless disc that sits at the bottom of the unit) that sits at the bottom of the kettle. The small magnetic drive pump has a pump head rating of 1.5 – 2.1 m (4.9 – 6.9 ft) and a max flow rate of 11-12 L/min (2.9 – 3.2 gal/min).

Control Panel Notification During Mash Profile

One of the key upgraded features of the Gen4 BrewZilla is the controller. RAPT Is Kegland’s line of wireless connected brewing devices. The BrewZilla now has a RAPT controller so it adds a lot of features that can be monitored and controlled over Wi-Fi. This includes basic things like monitoring temperature from your laptop/cell phone, but also allows you to program complex mash programs online and then download to your BrewZilla. You can also adjust control parameters on the fly such as pump output duty cycle and heater output level. If you get the optional Bluetooth thermometer, you can stick the temperature probe into the middle of your grain bed, and then have the controller use that as its control signal in combination with the built-in temperature sensor that sits on the floor of the unit.

Bluetooth Temp Probe in Middle of Mash

Although All-in-One units are essentially BIAB, they use a stainless steel basket with holes in the bottom of it instead of a bag, and call it a “malt pipe”. These provide functional improvements over a nylon bag. The obvious one is they are way easier to clean. But they also allow you to ensure you get full flow through your grain bed by having holes only on the bottom. This means recirculating wort has no sneak paths out the side. The other benefit is malt pipes have simple brackets/feet welded onto the outside that allow you to lift your wet grains up and prop the malt pipe on the brew rig to drain or sparge. The BrewZilla has 2 sets of feet for this. One set is halfway up, allowing you to do the deadlift of grain & wort halfway and then let the liquid level drain down. Then when you lift it the full height, it’s not as heavy. It’s simple, but makes the process much better.

Welded-on Carry Handle (top) and Tip Handle (bottom)

There is a cool feature in the BrewZilla which normally only comes on much higher end systems, and that’s the central drain. With a concave bottom with a drain at the lowest point in the center, you don’t have to leave wort behind or goof around with tilting it to get the last drops of wort out at the end. This also enables the malt pipe to extend down lower and thus you can hold more grain (30% more than their Gen3). If you compared to other All-in-one units in the “5 gallon batch” size range, the 23.5 lbs. grain capacity is 30 – 50% more. This of course only matters if you’re trying to make high gravity brews. The drain in the floor is plumbed to the inlet of the pump below, and then you can direct pump output either to an external spigot for fast/easy transfer of wort out after brewing, or up the recirculation pipe for wort to get directed down on top of the mash.

Polished Bottom with Center Drain and Built-in Temp Sensor to Side

Bottom Side of Pump Filter Plate

To help with mash efficiency and mash temperature uniformity, they offer a Heat Exchanger Dish, which is just a stainless dish/plate that sits below your malt pipe and above the central drain. Without this dish in place, the flow of recirculating wort tends to go through the center of your grain bed, and straight out the drain. With the dish there, it directs the flow around the full circumference before it gets to the drain, which helps ensure a broader portion of the grist sees the flow.


Compare Prices, Review Continues Below:


This article contains affiliate links. We may make a small percentage if you use our links to make a purchase. You won’t pay more and you’ll be supporting Homebrew Finds and more content like this. Thank you for your support!


Another helpful option is the neoprene insulation jacket. This helps keep mash temperatures more consistent by cutting down heat loss through the walls of the unit. The jacket on BrewZilla also smartly covers the recirculation pipe to minimize heat loss during wort recirculation. The overall mash temperature response with a multi-step mash was impressive, with more detail provided in the Hands On section, below.

Hands on Trials

First off, all of the different parts were well made with good quality manufacturing. As I’ve found with all Kegland gear, it’s of good quality- but nothing flashy. The one exception was probably the smooth and highly polished dished bottom. That was flashy. And being a previous owner of a 1st Gen Robobrew, I was very happy to see the camlock fitting on the recirculation pipe and see that Kegland was obviously tuned in to customer feedback on their products.

Mashing-in Sequence

Sparging

I brewed three different batches before writing this review. Two of them followed a simple single temperature mash, and the third one I exercised the RAPT Controller more with a multi-step mash profile, with lots of monitoring via my smartphone. I was impressed with the mash efficiency I achieved. There can be a misconception that BIAB = lower mash efficiency, but really, it’s “full volume mash = lower efficiency”. I had previously done experiments with an Anvil Foundry that showed a sparge step can get you mash efficiencies > 80%. Therefore, my batches in the BrewZilla were all done with a sparge step. I rested the malt pipe at the top while pouring heated sparge water through it with a 1-gallon pitcher. The perforated plate sitting on top of the grain bed made it super simple to sparge like this and get a good water distribution pattern. The perforated plate also allowed me to push down very easily and squeeze out remaining liquid in the grains. If you’re in the school of thought that squeezing the grains is bad for your beer, this isn’t relevant for you. For the rest of us, being able to easily squeeze that out without making a mess was awesome. And it meant when I picked up the basket of spent grain, I didn’t have a trail of sugary malt drippings to clean up after. My first batch achieved 77% mash efficiency, the second one 80%, and the third 81%.

Recirc Flow Rate After CFC

I experimented a bit with the Bluetooth RAPT wireless thermometer, but I didn’t properly understand it at first. I thought the concept was I could choose whether to use the built-in sensor at the bottom of the unit or the Bluetooth thermometer, but that wasn’t the case. When you add the Bluetooth thermometer, it will then control to that temperature, but it still uses the built-in sensor as part of your heating in a way that lets you fine tune how the system as a whole responds to temperature steps in your mash. After tinkering with it a bit, I realized it has some really powerful potential, but requires a deeper dive and some experimentation to back it up. So I’ll save that for a future write-up.

Bluetooth RAPT Thermometer

My typical brew system uses a 10-gallon kettle with a pump recirculating wort through a 240V RIMS with a 3500W heating element. With that set-up, I get about 3.1 degrees/minute temperature rise when doing multi-step mash profiles. I was therefore expecting this 120V/1500W system to be slow but was shocked to find similar performance that averaged around 2.5 degrees/minute. I attributed this capability to the neoprene jacket. On the plus side, that means you can do multi-step mashes even on only a 120V outlet and not take all day. But leaving the lid on as you heat to a boil is still a must. With the large opening in its domed top, it still can allow any volatized compounds to flow out.

BrewZilla Mashing by Itself in Basement

I found the RAPT software a bit non-intuitive and as such, had a learning curve to it. Luckily, I did a trial run just with water in it so I could get a feel for where various controls were located and how it worked. I definitely recommend this before you try to do any multi-step mash program, or live monitoring of things from the App. Way less stressful when it’s just water! After I got the hang of it, I was able to monitor my mash well and know what was going on as it chugged away in the basement and I worked at my day job one floor above. One key thing I learned was the in-flight plotting of mash temperature isn’t a continuously updating graph, you have to hit refresh in the App to get the updated data that it is recording and holding. I assume this is for computing efficiency and Wi-Fi bandwidth load management. It was perfectly fine once I figured out how it worked.

Screenshot of RAPT Controller Interface

The RAPT Controller allows you to program in multi-step mashes. But it’s a bit clunky as you figure it out. When you build the profile up using the App or Web interface, that profile sits on the RAPT server. My brain kept wanting to think I was programming the controller directly on the unit, but that’s not how it works. So after you program in the profile, you have to download it to the controller on your unit for it to work. You do all of this through the RAPT portal, and it only requires your BrewZilla to be powered on to let you download to it. This would be cool if you could just export something from Brewfather and then import it in RAPT, but you can’t. However, when you think about it, you probably don’t have that many different mash profiles, so it’s not really a big deal.

Malt Pipe

Draining Malt Pipe

One super cool feature of the mash profile programming is Kegland finally did what many have wanted these controllers to do for a long time. Rather than open loop programming a temperature and a time and guesstimating how long it will take for your mash to reach that temperature, you can tell it to not start counting down your mash step timer until it reaches the temperature. So if you want a 45-minute rest at 150F, you don’t have to think about how long it will take to get to 150F, it just heats up, and then starts the 45-minute timer when you hit 150F. I really liked this. You are also able to set up notifications at either the beginning or end of a particular mash step. I had it send an alert to my phone once it had reached mashout temperature and thus had 10 minutes left in my mash. That was cool, too. This isn’t quite as simple as it sounds, though. What I found was if the PID controller didn’t overshoot my target temp, I spent several minutes closing in on the target, but didn’t hit the temperature to start your countdown timer. So I’d end up with long mash times. I did some experiments with PID gains and the Bluetooth probe that got this working as I wanted, but I’ll detail that in a later write-up.

Rolling Boil at 75-percent Power

There wasn’t a boil timer interface, the controller was really just geared to controlling & monitoring mash temperatures. Not a big deal, as my Brewfather boil timer works great for this, so it isn’t a feature RAPT needs to spend time making. I could easily maintain a robust boil if I wanted to, but I like to keep it at just a good rolling circulation, so I dialed down the heating element power to 75% and maintained a constant churn of the wort and allowed boil-off of 0.4 – 0.5 gallons per hour. And the filter dish at the bottom of the kettle worked great to keep hop debris out of the pump, but not restrict flow. I had a thick cake of hop mush at the end when it was time to clean. Cleaning was fast and easy with parts light and easy to pull out, come apart, and rinse. And with the built-in pump, it was also easy to fill the unit up with cleaning solution at the end, circulate it through the unit & my Counter Flow Chiller to get everything clean.

Chilling Wort Using CFC and Built-in Pump

For wort cooling at the end of the boil, I used the built-in pump and circulated wort through my CFC. With the camlock fitting on the BrewZilla, I could easily hook up my typical ½” silicone tubing hoses. I was unsure if the pump would be up to the job, but it handled it easily. I could get a good volume flow rate with the recirc valve wide open on the BrewZilla and could easily restrict it when I wanted a slower flow.

A couple of pro tips to wrap things up. First, is to make sure you add your grains to the malt pipe BEFORE you lower it into the vessel. This ensures the weight of the grain keeps the bottom plate in place, so that as you lower it down, the water doesn’t push the bottom plate out of position and create a sneak path for whole grains to get through. Second is to make sure you have the plug fully seated in your brew unit. This might sound stupidly logical, but with a 6-foot power cord, you might end up pushing the limits of where you want the unit to sit vs. where the outlet is you’re plugged into. I had the cable become partially unseated and I wasn’t aware- until I went to remove the cord at the end of a long session of PID controller experiments. If the cord isn’t fully seated, you get less electrical contact on the pins and less contact means higher heat as electricity flows through it. I ended up damaging the cord and the receptacle from overheating.

Conclusions

The BrewZilla Gen4 delivered. The controller worked great, and I absolutely loved the step mash ability to start the mash step timer using actual mash temperatures. The RAPT interface wasn’t quite as slick as I would’ve liked but overall worked flawlessly, with no glitches. And I was definitely surprised how well a mere 120V/1500W system could handle mash steps and boil intensity. The well-thought-out little pieces of the malt pipe and various recirculation designs showed to me a system that was engineered with actual brewing hours spent on the unit, which is great. I feel with all of this, I won’t have compromises on my brew day using an all-in-one system versus my bigger 2-vessel system. And that says a lot.

Special thanks to Kegland for providing the unit used for evaluation in this review.

Compare Prices, Review Continues Below:


This article contains affiliate links. We may make a small percentage if you use our links to make a purchase. You won’t pay more and you’ll be supporting Homebrew Finds and more content like this. Thank you for your support!


Data Plots

Related: Hands on Review: Robobrew (BrewZilla v1) All Grain Brewing System

More Photos

Included Immersion Chiller (Fittings Sold Separately)

Collecting Wort for Gravity Check

Control Panel and Cord

Easy Access Pump and Hose Routing Underneath

Glass Lid with Handles

Hanger Plate for Control Panel

Heat Exchanger Dish

Holes in Malt Pipe to Help Flow

Malt Pipe Fits Perfectly in 8 Gallon Bucket

Malt Pipe Sitting at Halfway Point to Drain

Malt Pipe Screen Bottom (Left) and Top (Right)

Hop Debris on Filter Screen At End

Neoprene Jacket

Power Connection for 110V Cord and Multi-pin Connector for Control Panel

Recirc Pipe with Valve and Camlock Fitting

Recirc Pipe, Drain Spigot, and Malt Pipe Lift Handle

Robust Hard Rubber Feet

Convert RoboBrew to BrewZilla

If you’re looking to convert your Robobrew to a BrewZilla an upgrade board is available

robobrew upgrade board

Robobrew Gen 3.1.1 Upgrade Board Set 110 volt via William’s Brewing

More Kegland Gear Reviews!

More Homebrew Finds!

Recent Deals!

We are Homebrew Review HQ!  See Our 10 Most Recent Reviews

This post may contain affiliate links. We may make a commission when you use our links. This will never cost you extra. Thank you for supporting Homebrew Finds!

By Brad Probert.  Check out Brad’s website – beersnobby.com

Special Thanks to Keg King with the help of MoreBeer for providing the unit used for evaluation in this review

Price, promotions and availability can change quickly. Check the product page for current price, description and availability.

Make sure the components you use are compatible and rated for your intended application.  Contact manufacturer with questions about suitability or a specific application.  Always read and follow manufacturer directions. tag:lnksfxd review:bprobobrew rs:7 #tag:tpru tag:watch

Hands on Review: BrewZilla Gen 4 + OUTSTANDING Deal on 17 Gallon BrewZilla!

This review is by Homebrew Finds Contributor Brad Probert.  Brad is an engineer, expert homebrewer and experienced reviewer.  Grab a link to Brad’s website at the end of this review.


Limited Time DEAL – $300 off 17 Gallon System!

For a limited time MoreBeer has the 17 gallon BrewZilla marked down a whopping $300 to just $349.99. Shipping is also free to many US addresses. This is a great deal!

Gen 4 BrewZilla | All Grain Brewing System | Integrated Pump | Includes Wort Chiller | Wifi | Bluetooth| Rapt | 65L | 17.1G | 220V AG502.US


Hands on Review BrewZilla Gen4

I’ve brewed on several different all-in-one units. Like any brew system, they each have their own strengths and weaknesses. I did a hands-on review of the Robobrew when it first came out in late 2016. It has since changed its name to BrewZilla and is on the 4th generation of the brew unit. As you’d expect with repeated generations, they’ve been able to focus on fixing deficiencies in their previous models and also introduce new features.

The basic premise of an all-in-one brewing system is that your mash and boil kettle are in the

same vessel. So just like Brew In A Bag, after mashing, you pull the grains out and the wort stays behind to be boiled. They use electricity for heat, so they can be used outdoors where you can reach power or indoors where you have a venting system that can take care of all the steam you make during your boil.

BrewZilla Without Jacket

Stamped Volume Markings

Here are some basic stats on the Gen4 BrewZilla. It’s available in a 35-Liter form (for 5-6 gallon batches) with either a 110V setup, or 220V. There is also a larger 65-Liter that is only 220V (targeted to 10-12 gallon batches). The 35L unit holds 9.25 gallons, the mash basket can hold up to 23.5 lbs. of grain, and its electric heating elements can output up to 1500W of power (110V system) or 2400W of power (220V system). The 65L unit holds 17.1 gallons, the mash basket holds 41.5 lbs. of grain, and 3500W of heating power. All the Gen4 units have a pump bolted into the base. The pump can be used not only for wort recirculation during the mash, but also to pump beer through your wort chiller apparatus (should you choose to not use the immersion chiller coil included with the BrewZilla). The pump is more modular and accessible than previous Gen models. To protect the pump from clogging with hop debris during the boil or whirlpool, there is a filter screen (a perforated stainless disc that sits at the bottom of the unit) that sits at the bottom of the kettle. The small magnetic drive pump has a pump head rating of 1.5 – 2.1 m (4.9 – 6.9 ft) and a max flow rate of 11-12 L/min (2.9 – 3.2 gal/min).

Control Panel Notification During Mash Profile

One of the key upgraded features of the Gen4 BrewZilla is the controller. RAPT Is Kegland’s line of wireless connected brewing devices. The BrewZilla now has a RAPT controller so it adds a lot of features that can be monitored and controlled over Wi-Fi. This includes basic things like monitoring temperature from your laptop/cell phone, but also allows you to program complex mash programs online and then download to your BrewZilla. You can also adjust control parameters on the fly such as pump output duty cycle and heater output level. If you get the optional Bluetooth thermometer, you can stick the temperature probe into the middle of your grain bed, and then have the controller use that as its control signal in combination with the built-in temperature sensor that sits on the floor of the unit.

Bluetooth Temp Probe in Middle of Mash

Although All-in-One units are essentially BIAB, they use a stainless steel basket with holes in the bottom of it instead of a bag, and call it a “malt pipe”. These provide functional improvements over a nylon bag. The obvious one is they are way easier to clean. But they also allow you to ensure you get full flow through your grain bed by having holes only on the bottom. This means recirculating wort has no sneak paths out the side. The other benefit is malt pipes have simple brackets/feet welded onto the outside that allow you to lift your wet grains up and prop the malt pipe on the brew rig to drain or sparge. The BrewZilla has 2 sets of feet for this. One set is halfway up, allowing you to do the deadlift of grain & wort halfway and then let the liquid level drain down. Then when you lift it the full height, it’s not as heavy. It’s simple, but makes the process much better.

Welded-on Carry Handle (top) and Tip Handle (bottom)

There is a cool feature in the BrewZilla which normally only comes on much higher end systems, and that’s the central drain. With a concave bottom with a drain at the lowest point in the center, you don’t have to leave wort behind or goof around with tilting it to get the last drops of wort out at the end. This also enables the malt pipe to extend down lower and thus you can hold more grain (30% more than their Gen3). If you compared to other All-in-one units in the “5 gallon batch” size range, the 23.5 lbs. grain capacity is 30 – 50% more. This of course only matters if you’re trying to make high gravity brews. The drain in the floor is plumbed to the inlet of the pump below, and then you can direct pump output either to an external spigot for fast/easy transfer of wort out after brewing, or up the recirculation pipe for wort to get directed down on top of the mash.

Polished Bottom with Center Drain and Built-in Temp Sensor to Side

Bottom Side of Pump Filter Plate

To help with mash efficiency and mash temperature uniformity, they offer a Heat Exchanger Dish, which is just a stainless dish/plate that sits below your malt pipe and above the central drain. Without this dish in place, the flow of recirculating wort tends to go through the center of your grain bed, and straight out the drain. With the dish there, it directs the flow around the full circumference before it gets to the drain, which helps ensure a broader portion of the grist sees the flow.


Compare Prices, Review Continues Below:


This article contains affiliate links. We may make a small percentage if you use our links to make a purchase. You won’t pay more and you’ll be supporting Homebrew Finds and more content like this. Thank you for your support!


Another helpful option is the neoprene insulation jacket. This helps keep mash temperatures more consistent by cutting down heat loss through the walls of the unit. The jacket on BrewZilla also smartly covers the recirculation pipe to minimize heat loss during wort recirculation. The overall mash temperature response with a multi-step mash was impressive, with more detail provided in the Hands On section, below.

Hands on Trials

First off, all of the different parts were well made with good quality manufacturing. As I’ve found with all Kegland gear, it’s of good quality- but nothing flashy. The one exception was probably the smooth and highly polished dished bottom. That was flashy. And being a previous owner of a 1st Gen Robobrew, I was very happy to see the camlock fitting on the recirculation pipe and see that Kegland was obviously tuned in to customer feedback on their products.

Mashing-in Sequence

Sparging

I brewed three different batches before writing this review. Two of them followed a simple single temperature mash, and the third one I exercised the RAPT Controller more with a multi-step mash profile, with lots of monitoring via my smartphone. I was impressed with the mash efficiency I achieved. There can be a misconception that BIAB = lower mash efficiency, but really, it’s “full volume mash = lower efficiency”. I had previously done experiments with an Anvil Foundry that showed a sparge step can get you mash efficiencies > 80%. Therefore, my batches in the BrewZilla were all done with a sparge step. I rested the malt pipe at the top while pouring heated sparge water through it with a 1-gallon pitcher. The perforated plate sitting on top of the grain bed made it super simple to sparge like this and get a good water distribution pattern. The perforated plate also allowed me to push down very easily and squeeze out remaining liquid in the grains. If you’re in the school of thought that squeezing the grains is bad for your beer, this isn’t relevant for you. For the rest of us, being able to easily squeeze that out without making a mess was awesome. And it meant when I picked up the basket of spent grain, I didn’t have a trail of sugary malt drippings to clean up after. My first batch achieved 77% mash efficiency, the second one 80%, and the third 81%.

Recirc Flow Rate After CFC

I experimented a bit with the Bluetooth RAPT wireless thermometer, but I didn’t properly understand it at first. I thought the concept was I could choose whether to use the built-in sensor at the bottom of the unit or the Bluetooth thermometer, but that wasn’t the case. When you add the Bluetooth thermometer, it will then control to that temperature, but it still uses the built-in sensor as part of your heating in a way that lets you fine tune how the system as a whole responds to temperature steps in your mash. After tinkering with it a bit, I realized it has some really powerful potential, but requires a deeper dive and some experimentation to back it up. So I’ll save that for a future write-up.

Bluetooth RAPT Thermometer

My typical brew system uses a 10-gallon kettle with a pump recirculating wort through a 240V RIMS with a 3500W heating element. With that set-up, I get about 3.1 degrees/minute temperature rise when doing multi-step mash profiles. I was therefore expecting this 120V/1500W system to be slow but was shocked to find similar performance that averaged around 2.5 degrees/minute. I attributed this capability to the neoprene jacket. On the plus side, that means you can do multi-step mashes even on only a 120V outlet and not take all day. But leaving the lid on as you heat to a boil is still a must. With the large opening in its domed top, it still can allow any volatized compounds to flow out.

BrewZilla Mashing by Itself in Basement

I found the RAPT software a bit non-intuitive and as such, had a learning curve to it. Luckily, I did a trial run just with water in it so I could get a feel for where various controls were located and how it worked. I definitely recommend this before you try to do any multi-step mash program, or live monitoring of things from the App. Way less stressful when it’s just water! After I got the hang of it, I was able to monitor my mash well and know what was going on as it chugged away in the basement and I worked at my day job one floor above. One key thing I learned was the in-flight plotting of mash temperature isn’t a continuously updating graph, you have to hit refresh in the App to get the updated data that it is recording and holding. I assume this is for computing efficiency and Wi-Fi bandwidth load management. It was perfectly fine once I figured out how it worked.

Screenshot of RAPT Controller Interface

The RAPT Controller allows you to program in multi-step mashes. But it’s a bit clunky as you figure it out. When you build the profile up using the App or Web interface, that profile sits on the RAPT server. My brain kept wanting to think I was programming the controller directly on the unit, but that’s not how it works. So after you program in the profile, you have to download it to the controller on your unit for it to work. You do all of this through the RAPT portal, and it only requires your BrewZilla to be powered on to let you download to it. This would be cool if you could just export something from Brewfather and then import it in RAPT, but you can’t. However, when you think about it, you probably don’t have that many different mash profiles, so it’s not really a big deal.

Malt Pipe

Draining Malt Pipe

One super cool feature of the mash profile programming is Kegland finally did what many have wanted these controllers to do for a long time. Rather than open loop programming a temperature and a time and guesstimating how long it will take for your mash to reach that temperature, you can tell it to not start counting down your mash step timer until it reaches the temperature. So if you want a 45-minute rest at 150F, you don’t have to think about how long it will take to get to 150F, it just heats up, and then starts the 45-minute timer when you hit 150F. I really liked this. You are also able to set up notifications at either the beginning or end of a particular mash step. I had it send an alert to my phone once it had reached mashout temperature and thus had 10 minutes left in my mash. That was cool, too. This isn’t quite as simple as it sounds, though. What I found was if the PID controller didn’t overshoot my target temp, I spent several minutes closing in on the target, but didn’t hit the temperature to start your countdown timer. So I’d end up with long mash times. I did some experiments with PID gains and the Bluetooth probe that got this working as I wanted, but I’ll detail that in a later write-up.

Rolling Boil at 75-percent Power

There wasn’t a boil timer interface, the controller was really just geared to controlling & monitoring mash temperatures. Not a big deal, as my Brewfather boil timer works great for this, so it isn’t a feature RAPT needs to spend time making. I could easily maintain a robust boil if I wanted to, but I like to keep it at just a good rolling circulation, so I dialed down the heating element power to 75% and maintained a constant churn of the wort and allowed boil-off of 0.4 – 0.5 gallons per hour. And the filter dish at the bottom of the kettle worked great to keep hop debris out of the pump, but not restrict flow. I had a thick cake of hop mush at the end when it was time to clean. Cleaning was fast and easy with parts light and easy to pull out, come apart, and rinse. And with the built-in pump, it was also easy to fill the unit up with cleaning solution at the end, circulate it through the unit & my Counter Flow Chiller to get everything clean.

Chilling Wort Using CFC and Built-in Pump

For wort cooling at the end of the boil, I used the built-in pump and circulated wort through my CFC. With the camlock fitting on the BrewZilla, I could easily hook up my typical ½” silicone tubing hoses. I was unsure if the pump would be up to the job, but it handled it easily. I could get a good volume flow rate with the recirc valve wide open on the BrewZilla and could easily restrict it when I wanted a slower flow.

A couple of pro tips to wrap things up. First, is to make sure you add your grains to the malt pipe BEFORE you lower it into the vessel. This ensures the weight of the grain keeps the bottom plate in place, so that as you lower it down, the water doesn’t push the bottom plate out of position and create a sneak path for whole grains to get through. Second is to make sure you have the plug fully seated in your brew unit. This might sound stupidly logical, but with a 6-foot power cord, you might end up pushing the limits of where you want the unit to sit vs. where the outlet is you’re plugged into. I had the cable become partially unseated and I wasn’t aware- until I went to remove the cord at the end of a long session of PID controller experiments. If the cord isn’t fully seated, you get less electrical contact on the pins and less contact means higher heat as electricity flows through it. I ended up damaging the cord and the receptacle from overheating.

Conclusions

The BrewZilla Gen4 delivered. The controller worked great, and I absolutely loved the step mash ability to start the mash step timer using actual mash temperatures. The RAPT interface wasn’t quite as slick as I would’ve liked but overall worked flawlessly, with no glitches. And I was definitely surprised how well a mere 120V/1500W system could handle mash steps and boil intensity. The well-thought-out little pieces of the malt pipe and various recirculation designs showed to me a system that was engineered with actual brewing hours spent on the unit, which is great. I feel with all of this, I won’t have compromises on my brew day using an all-in-one system versus my bigger 2-vessel system. And that says a lot.

Special thanks to Kegland for providing the unit used for evaluation in this review.

Compare Prices, Review Continues Below:


This article contains affiliate links. We may make a small percentage if you use our links to make a purchase. You won’t pay more and you’ll be supporting Homebrew Finds and more content like this. Thank you for your support!


Data Plots

Related: Hands on Review: Robobrew (BrewZilla v1) All Grain Brewing System

More Photos

Included Immersion Chiller (Fittings Sold Separately)

Collecting Wort for Gravity Check

Control Panel and Cord

Easy Access Pump and Hose Routing Underneath

Glass Lid with Handles

Hanger Plate for Control Panel

Heat Exchanger Dish

Holes in Malt Pipe to Help Flow

Malt Pipe Fits Perfectly in 8 Gallon Bucket

Malt Pipe Sitting at Halfway Point to Drain

Malt Pipe Screen Bottom (Left) and Top (Right)

Hop Debris on Filter Screen At End

Neoprene Jacket

Power Connection for 110V Cord and Multi-pin Connector for Control Panel

Recirc Pipe with Valve and Camlock Fitting

Recirc Pipe, Drain Spigot, and Malt Pipe Lift Handle

Robust Hard Rubber Feet

Convert RoboBrew to BrewZilla

If you’re looking to convert your Robobrew to a BrewZilla an upgrade board is available

robobrew upgrade board

Robobrew Gen 3.1.1 Upgrade Board Set 110 volt via William’s Brewing

More Kegland Gear Reviews!

More Homebrew Finds!

Recent Deals!

We are Homebrew Review HQ!  See Our 10 Most Recent Reviews

This post may contain affiliate links. We may make a commission when you use our links. This will never cost you extra. Thank you for supporting Homebrew Finds!

By Brad Probert.  Check out Brad’s website – beersnobby.com

Special Thanks to Keg King with the help of MoreBeer for providing the unit used for evaluation in this review

Price, promotions and availability can change quickly. Check the product page for current price, description and availability.

Make sure the components you use are compatible and rated for your intended application.  Contact manufacturer with questions about suitability or a specific application.  Always read and follow manufacturer directions. tag:lnksfxd review:bprobobrew rs:7 #tag:tpru tag:watch

15.5 Gallon Keggle with TWO Welded Ports – now… $99.95, OVER 50% Off Closeout

Homebrew Kettle With Two Horizontal 1/2" Couplings - 15.5 Gallons

Homebrew Kettle With Two Horizontal 1/2″ Couplings – 15.5 Gallons

More Info

From the product description, check product page for current description, price and availability:

Inline Half Barrel Brew Kettle With Two Welded 1/2″ Couplings.
These are brand new half barrels that we’ve had the top removed and 2 full 1/2″ female couplings welded next to each other. This allows you to put your kettles as close as you want to each other and still be able to read the Thermometer.
It is highly recommended that you use a heat shield with this type of kettle to protect your thermometer.
Choose from optional stainless steel and brass ball valve and pickup tube accessories.


 

12″ diameter opening and full 1/2″ female coupling.  Optional add-ons include lid, ball valve (choose from brass or stainless) and a pickup tube.

The full 1/2″ welded coupling means no messing around with weldless kits. “Full” means it’s threaded on the inside and out

These are on closeout for just $99.95. That’s MORE THAN HALF OFF list.

Homebrew Kettle With Two Horizontal 1/2″ Couplings – 15.5 Gallons

homebrewing.org sale

This post contains affiliate links. We may make a commission when you use our links. This will never cost you extra. Thank you for supporting Homebrew Finds!

More: Recent AIH Finds

Price, promotions and availability can change quickly. Check the product page for current price, description and availability.

15.5 Gallon Keggle with TWO Welded Ports – $109.95, OVER 50% Off Closeout

Homebrew Kettle With Two Horizontal 1/2" Couplings - 15.5 Gallons

Homebrew Kettle With Two Horizontal 1/2″ Couplings – 15.5 Gallons

More Info

From the product description, check product page for current description, price and availability:

Inline Half Barrel Brew Kettle With Two Welded 1/2″ Couplings.
These are brand new half barrels that we’ve had the top removed and 2 full 1/2″ female couplings welded next to each other. This allows you to put your kettles as close as you want to each other and still be able to read the Thermometer.
It is highly recommended that you use a heat shield with this type of kettle to protect your thermometer.
Choose from optional stainless steel and brass ball valve and pickup tube accessories.


 

12″ diameter opening and full 1/2″ female coupling.  Optional add-ons include lid, ball valve (choose from brass or stainless) and a pickup tube.

The full 1/2″ welded coupling means no messing around with weldless kits. “Full” means it’s threaded on the inside and out

These are on closeout for just $109.95. That’s MORE THAN HALF OFF list.

Homebrew Kettle With Two Horizontal 1/2″ Couplings – 15.5 Gallons

homebrewing.org sale

This post contains affiliate links. We may make a commission when you use our links. This will never cost you extra. Thank you for supporting Homebrew Finds!

More: Recent AIH Finds

Price, promotions and availability can change quickly. Check the product page for current price, description and availability.

Last Call, Almost Sold Out… 15 Gallon Stainless Kettle w/Welded Port & Volume Markings…. $47.93! on closeout

15 Gallon 1 Weld Volume Marked Brew Pot
15 gallon stainless steel kettle from Adventures in Homebrewing

More Info

From the product description, check product page for current description, price and availability:

15 gal Marked Pot with One weld

18 gauge with one 1/2″ NPT welded female coupling. Perfect for a 1/2″ ball valve assembly on the outside and a bazooka screen on the inside.

Pot measures approximately 16″ (diameter) by 19″ (height) and weighs just under 10 lbs

Inner Dimensions are 15 3/4″ wide x 18 3/4″ high

The inside of the pot features 1/4 gallon markings from 1/4 gallon to 14 gallons


 

Features a welded full 1/2″ NPT port.  That means no drilling your kettle and no messing with weldless kits.  Full port means you can install a ball valve on the outside and a pickup tube or screen on the inside.

As of this posting AIH has this on clearance for just $41.93. That’s a whopping $98.06 off list. Get it while you can.

This is one of the final closeout brew pot models AIH has in stock…. get it while you can.

15 Gallon 1 Weld Volume Marked Brew Pot

homebrewing.org sale

This post contains affiliate links. We may make a commission when you use our links. This will never cost you extra. Thank you for supporting Homebrew Finds!

More: Recent AIH Finds

Deal subject to change.  Check product page for current price & availability.  prod:aihkettle1port15gal

20% Off New MegaPot Brew Kettles Now Feature 304 Stainless Steel

Every size kettle in the MegaPot collection is now made with 304 stainless steel! Available in 2, 8, 10, 15, 20, and 30-gallon sizes, with or without ball valve and thermometer, these kettles are scientifically designed to promote a vigorous boil and reduce off-flavors. The 4mm thick tri-clad bottom helps maximize heat distribution and speed up boil times and the interior features graduated volume markings in gallons to make your brew day smoother. Get yours now or check out all the impressive features below.

304 SS MegaPot Kettles at AIH

Save 20% Off MegaPot Kettles

  • Adventures in Homebrewing is discounting any qualifying single item by 20%.
  • Some restrictions apply, order must use coupon code FRESH20 must be applied to cart at checkout.
  • The highest price qualified item will automatically receive the discount in the cart when the code is applied.

20% Off at Adventures in Homebrewing! – use coupon code FRESH20

This DOES work with MegaPot kettles, at least as of this posting. Use coupon code FRESH20 to save on new MegaPot kettles.

homebrewing.org sale

This post contains affiliate links. We may make a commission when you use our links. This will never cost you extra. Thank you for supporting Homebrew Finds!

More: Recent AIH Finds

Price, promotions and availability can change quickly. Check the product page for current price, description and availability tag:aihperoff

Brewmaster Purpose Built 8.5 Gallon Stainless Steel Homebrew Kettle – $74.99 + free shipping, limited availability

8.5 Gallon Brewmaster Stainless Steel Brew Kettle BE303

8.5 Gallon BrewMaster’s Kettle via MoreBeer

More Info

From the product description, check product page for current description, price and availability:

If you’re searching for a fully featured brew kettle but don’t want to break the bank, the Brewmaster 8.5 Gallon Stainless Brew Kettle will certainly do the trick. Made of 100 percent stainless steel and available for a truly amazing price, this reliable brew kettle is perfect for first-time brewers and experienced home brewers alike. Two ½-inch couplers are welded to the side of the kettle, and the bottom coupler can even be threaded on the inside of the kettle to use with a diverter or a kettle tube screen. These kettles are upgraded with Silicone Grip Handles and Stamped volume markers on the inside, making brew day that much easier.

Add an AG405 (domed false bottom) to this stainless brew kettle and you can even use it as a mash tun. Includes a ball valve and a threaded adpator to 3/8″ barb for easily attaching transfer tubing. Also included is a thread 1/2″ plug for the thermometer port. Thermometer is not included and can be added at any time.

Features:

  • 8.5 Gallon Stainless Steel Brewmaster Brewing Kettle
  • Two Welded 1/2″ Full Couplers allow for internal and external attachments
  • Stainless 1/2″ Full Port Ball Valve & nipple included for bottom Coupler
  • Stainless 1/2″ Plug included for top coupler
  • Stamped Volume Markers
  • Silicone Handle Grips
  • Internal Threading allows for conversion to Mash Tun or addition of whole hop filters
  • Internal Dimensions: 13.75″ Tall x 13.75″ Ø
  • 1 mm thick walls
  • Made from 201 Stainless Steel

 

Limited Availability Deal of the Day: As of this posting, this is marked down to $74.99 as a MoreBeer Deal of the DayShipping is also free to addresses in the contiguous US with most $59 Orders. Availability: This is available today only, while supplies last. Quantities are limited. Check the MoreBeer’s Deal of the Day to check today’s offering.

Product Description – Here – Use coupon code BEERDEAL to get this discount.

8.5 Gallon Brewmaster Stainless Steel Brew Kettle BE303

MORE MoreBeer Deals!…This post contains affiliate links. We may make a commission when you use our links. This will never cost you extra. Thank you for supporting Homebrew Finds!

Price, promotions and availability can change quickly. Check the product page for current price, description and availability. tag:b3peroff

15 Gallon Stainless Steel Kettle with Welded Port – $41.93 on Clearance, Save… $98

15 Gallon 1 Weld Volume Marked Brew Pot
15 gallon stainless steel kettle from Adventures in Homebrewing

More Info

From the product description, check product page for current description, price and availability:

15 gal Marked Pot with One weld

18 gauge with one 1/2″ NPT welded female coupling. Perfect for a 1/2″ ball valve assembly on the outside and a bazooka screen on the inside.

Pot measures approximately 16″ (diameter) by 19″ (height) and weighs just under 10 lbs

Inner Dimensions are 15 3/4″ wide x 18 3/4″ high

The inside of the pot features 1/4 gallon markings from 1/4 gallon to 14 gallons


 

Features a welded full 1/2″ NPT port.  That means no drilling your kettle and no messing with weldless kits.  Full port means you can install a ball valve on the outside and a pickup tube or screen on the inside.

As of this posting AIH has this on clearance for just $41.93. That’s a whopping $98.06 off list. Get it while you can.

15 Gallon 1 Weld Volume Marked Brew Pot

homebrewing.org sale

This post contains affiliate links. We may make a commission when you use our links. This will never cost you extra. Thank you for supporting Homebrew Finds!

More: Recent AIH Finds

Deal subject to change.  Check product page for current price & availability.  prod:aihkettle1port15gal

CO-Z Step Drill Bit Set [Add a Weldless Bulkhead to Your Kettle]

CO-Z 10 Sizes Titanium Step Drill Bit, 1/4 to 1-3/8 Inches High Speed Steel Drill Cone Bit

CO-Z 10 Sizes Titanium Step Drill Bit, 1/4 to 1-3/8 Inches High Speed Steel Drill Cone Bit

More Info
Highlighted Features
  • Durable HSS Drill Bit ----- High-speed steel makes it last longer than others, titanium coating ensure easily cut through iron sheets, aluminum sheets, copper & plastic & wood board and many other types of sheet metal with ease, and it can automatically deburr holes while drilling to keep the drill bit clean.
  • Titanium Coating ----- Coated with titanium, this step drill set performs well in heat, corrosion and rust resistance.
  • Revolutionary Design ----- Tri-flatted shank fits into power tools chuck securely and eliminates slip; two-flute design clears chips faster and allows particles to escape easily.
  • Includes 10 Step Sizes ----- 1/4", 3/8", 1/2", 5/8", 3/4", 7/8", 1", 1-1/8", 1-1/4", 1-3/8".
  • A Must-Have for Handyman or Professionals ----- Perfect for home repairs and light jobs such as drilling holes in plastic, aluminum, copper, iron and many other types of sheet metal (excluding steel or any other harder metal).

From HBF: Make sure the components you use are compatible and rated for your intended application.  Contact manufacturer with questions about suitability or a specific application.  Always read and follow manufacturer directions.

 

Possible Uses: Drill a hole in your kettle based brew kettle, mlt or hlt so that you can add a weldless bulkhead, ball valve or thermometer.

What are Other’s Saying?   Search this product’s Amazon reviews for “brew” – affiliate link, note that multiple variations of this product may be available, as such a different version may appear at this link

CO-Z 10 Sizes Titanium Step Drill Bit, 1/4 to 1-3/8 Inches High Speed Steel Drill Cone Bits for Sheet Metal Hole Drilling Cutting, HSS Multi Size Hole Stepped Up Unibit for DIY Lovers Electrician – affiliate link, note that multiple variations of this product may be available, as such a different version may appear at this link

This post contains affiliate links. We may make a commission when you use our Amazon links. This will never cost you extra. Thank you for supporting Homebrew Finds!

15 Gallon Stainless Steel Kettle with Welded Port… $41.93 on Clearance

15 Gallon 1 Weld Volume Marked Brew Pot
15 gallon stainless steel kettle from Adventures in Homebrewing

More Info

From the product description, check product page for current description, price and availability:

15 gal Marked Pot with One weld

18 gauge with one 1/2″ NPT welded female coupling. Perfect for a 1/2″ ball valve assembly on the outside and a bazooka screen on the inside.

Pot measures approximately 16″ (diameter) by 19″ (height) and weighs just under 10 lbs

Inner Dimensions are 15 3/4″ wide x 18 3/4″ high

The inside of the pot features 1/4 gallon markings from 1/4 gallon to 14 gallons


 

Features a welded full 1/2″ NPT port.  That means no drilling your kettle and no messing with weldless kits.  Full port means you can install a ball valve on the outside and a pickup tube or screen on the inside.

As of this posting AIH has this on clearance for just $41.93. That’s a whopping $98.06 off list. Get it while you can.

15 Gallon 1 Weld Volume Marked Brew Pot

homebrewing.org sale

This post contains affiliate links. We may make a commission when you use our links. This will never cost you extra. Thank you for supporting Homebrew Finds!

More: Recent AIH Finds

Deal subject to change.  Check product page for current price & availability.  prod:aihkettle1port15gal

Hands on Review: Brewer’s Edge Mash & Boil Electric Brewery + Limited Time DEAL

This review is by Homebrew Finds Contributor Brad Probert.  Brad is an engineer, expert homebrewer and experienced reviewer.  Grab a link to Brad’s website at the end of this review.

Brewer’s Edge Mash & Boil

I reviewed a number of electric all-in-one brewing systems a little over a year ago. As a collective group, these systems offer a lot to the homebrewer. They provide the flexibility and control of brewing process of all-grain, and the equipment simplicity of brew-in-a-bag. The fact that they’re electric gives you the ability to brew inside and convenience of not having to chase propane tank fill-ups. The electric systems also have the ability to set a target temperature and control to it, giving you better control of your brew day. All of these combine to create a more streamlined and less stressful brew day.

Each system has its own strengths and they all span a wide price range. The units I tried last year ranged from $470 at the low end to $2,500 at the high end. When I saw the Brewer’s Edge Mash & Boil coming in at $300, I was intrigued to see how this unit would work and if you really could go all-grain with an electric system at such an affordable price point.

Continue reading

ARC 64 Quart Stainless Steel Kettle and False Bottom – on sale for $117, near best price

ARC 64-Quart Stainless Steel Stockpot

ARC 64-Quart Stainless Steel Kettle

More Info
Highlighted Features
  • 🦞UPGRADE BASKET & HANDLE: The seafood boiler basket has three elevated feet, about 3 inches. It helps to prevent burnt pot and allows heat flow in the bottom. The clip-drain handle allows hand-free draining and easy pouring. It is an excellent tool for any low-country boil party
  • 🦞PREMIUM STAINLESS STEEL: ARC crab pot is made of food-grade stainless steel, has no harmful coating, and is safe to cook any acidic food. This stainless steel stockpot is built to last
  • 🦞DESIGN FOR BULK COOKING: Three large sizes, 64QT/84QT/100QT. Due to the large size of the pots, they only can use on outdoor cooking stoves and CANNOT be used on indoor stovetops.
  • 🦞MULTIFUNCTIONAL STOCK-POT: No matter from seafood boil crawfish, crab, fry turkey, home brewing, or steam tamale. With this pot, you can enjoy this pot all year long.
  • 🦞DURABLE & STABLE: Heavy-duty seafood boil pot with well constructed and sturdy design, it won't be deformed easily when you use it, more durable and secure to use outdoors.

 

This has a steaming basket that could prove handy to assist with Brew in a Bag/BIAB style brews.

What are Other’s Saying?   Search this product’s Amazon reviews for “brew” – affiliate link, note that multiple variations of this product may be available, as such a different version may appear at this link

2/21 10 PM Central: This is on sale for $116.99. That’s just $1 shy of the best historical third party Amazon price I found, notwithstanding Lightning Deals or coupons. Shipping is also free to many US addresses. Prices and availability can change quickly.  Check product page for current info – More About Prices

ARC 64-Quart Stainless Steel Seafood Boil Pot with Basket and Two Brown Paper, Crawfish, Crab, Lobster, Shrimp Boil Stock Pot with Strainer, Turkey Fryer Pot, 16 Gallon – affiliate link, note that multiple variations of this product may be available, as such a different version may appear at this link

More BIAB-Related!

This post contains affiliate links. We may make a commission when you use our Amazon links. This will never cost you extra. Thank you for supporting Homebrew Finds!

IMUSA 52 Quart Kettle and False Bottom…. $49.99!

IMUSA 52 Quart Tamale Steamer and False Bottom

IMUSA 52 Quart Kettle and False Bottom

More Info
Highlighted Features
  • Made of Aluminum
  • Removable Steamer Insert
  • Can be used as a Stock pot without insert
  • Heavy duty, durable and easy to use
  • Ideal for Tamales, Lobster, Mussels, Corn on the Cob and More

 

This has a steamer insert/false bottom that could potentially be handy for Brew in a Bag/BIAB style brews.

2/9 10:30 PM Central: This is selling for just $49.99. In my opinion, that’s a bargain. Shipping is also free to many US addresses. Prices and availability can change quickly.  Check product page for current info – More About Prices

IMUSA USA Jumbo Tamale/Seafood Steamer 52-Quart, Silver– affiliate link, note that multiple variations of this product may be available, as such a different version may appear at this link

More BIAB-Related!

This post contains affiliate links. We may make a commission when you use our Amazon links. This will never cost you extra. Thank you for supporting Homebrew Finds!

Hands on Review: Wort Hog Turnkey Electric e-BIAB System

highgravitybrew.com wort hog review

This review is by Homebrew Finds Contributor Brad Probert.  Brad is an engineer, expert homebrewer and experienced reviewer.  Grab a link to Brad’s website at the end of this review.

Wort Hog 120V eBIAB System

When it comes to electric Brew In A Bag (eBIAB) systems, there are several choices out there. I’ve tried both 240 Volt and 120 Volt systems. While I love the speed of heating water/wort on the 240V systems, I don’t love the constraints/expense of wiring a 240V plug in a convenient place. The 1500 Watt and 1600 Watt eBIAB units out there are good, but they do lack when it comes to speed of heating strike water or getting a really vigorous boil. The Wort Hog 120V system slides into this niche with the convenience of a 120V system, but using a 2250W Blichmann heating element to give a notable boost.



Also Consider… BrewZilla!

BrewZilla and DigiBoil at MoreBeer

Hands on Review: BrewZilla Gen 4 All Grain Brewing System

System Overview

The Wort Hog Turn Key System via High Gravity Fermentations Supplies uses a Bayou Classic 11-gallon kettle. I’d never seen a Bayou Classic kettle in person before, and I’ll admit I had a pre-conceived opinion of them. I thought of them as “cheap turkey fryers” based on their low price and marketing, but I found my baseless opinion was completely off. This 11-gallon kettle has a super shiny, polished exterior, but most importantly it was made of a very robust thick gauge stainless steel. With high quality, clean welds, this baby is certainly going to live up to wear and tear for a long time, and cleaned up very easily.


Continue reading

Jarhill 49 Quart Stainless Steel Brew Kettle with Thermometer and Valve – $95 + Free Shipping

Jarhill 49 QT STAINLESS HOME BREW BOILING KETTLE STOCKPOT w/ VALVE & THERMOMETER

44 Qt Kettle with thermometer and valve

More Info

From the product description, check product page for current description, price and availability:

New Jarhill 18/0 Stainless Steel Brewing Kettles with Jarhill Thermometer, Valve and Lid in 4 Sizes.

Thickness = 1 mm.
18/0 Stainless Steel. Can be used on induction top.
Free Shipping to continental US only.

Due to the size of the pot, and free shipping, buyer pays return shipping for full refund if buyer decided not to keep the item.


 

As if this posting, this is eBay offering is selling for $95. Shipping is also free to many US addresses.

Jarhill 49 QT STAINLESS HOME BREW BOILING KETTLE STOCKPOT w/ VALVE & THERMOMETER

See Seller’s Other Items for Additional Sizes

This post may contain affiliate links. We may make a commission when you use our links. This will never cost you extra. Thank you for supporting Homebrew Finds!

Price, promotions and availability can change quickly. Check the product page for current price, description and availability tag:updtd rpu:jarhill49

Winware 80 Quart Kettle

Winware ALST-80 Stockpot, 80 quarts, Silver

Winware ALST-80 Stockpot, 80 quarts

More Info
Highlighted Features
  • Winware Professional Aluminum 80 Quart Stockpot

 

Winware ALST-80 Stockpot, 80 quarts – affiliate link, note that multiple variations of this product may be available, as such a different version may appear at this link

This post contains affiliate links. We may make a commission when you use our Amazon links. This will never cost you extra. Thank you for supporting Homebrew Finds!

Hands on Review: BrewZilla Gen 4

 

This review is by Homebrew Finds Contributor Brad Probert.  Brad is an engineer, expert homebrewer and experienced reviewer.  Grab a link to Brad’s website at the end of this review.

Hands on Review BrewZilla Gen4

I’ve brewed on several different all-in-one units. Like any brew system, they each have their own strengths and weaknesses. I did a hands-on review of the Robobrew when it first came out in late 2016. It has since changed its name to BrewZilla and is on the 4th generation of the brew unit. As you’d expect with repeated generations, they’ve been able to focus on fixing deficiencies in their previous models and also introduce new features.

The basic premise of an all-in-one brewing system is that your mash and boil kettle are in the

same vessel. So just like Brew In A Bag, after mashing, you pull the grains out and the wort stays behind to be boiled. They use electricity for heat, so they can be used outdoors where you can reach power or indoors where you have a venting system that can take care of all the steam you make during your boil.

BrewZilla Without Jacket

Stamped Volume Markings

Here are some basic stats on the Gen4 BrewZilla. It’s available in a 35-Liter form (for 5-6 gallon batches) with either a 110V setup, or 220V. There is also a larger 65-Liter that is only 220V (targeted to 10-12 gallon batches). The 35L unit holds 9.25 gallons, the mash basket can hold up to 23.5 lbs. of grain, and its electric heating elements can output up to 1500W of power (110V system) or 2400W of power (220V system). The 65L unit holds 17.1 gallons, the mash basket holds 41.5 lbs. of grain, and 3500W of heating power. All the Gen4 units have a pump bolted into the base. The pump can be used not only for wort recirculation during the mash, but also to pump beer through your wort chiller apparatus (should you choose to not use the immersion chiller coil included with the BrewZilla). The pump is more modular and accessible than previous Gen models. To protect the pump from clogging with hop debris during the boil or whirlpool, there is a filter screen (a perforated stainless disc that sits at the bottom of the unit) that sits at the bottom of the kettle. The small magnetic drive pump has a pump head rating of 1.5 – 2.1 m (4.9 – 6.9 ft) and a max flow rate of 11-12 L/min (2.9 – 3.2 gal/min).

Control Panel Notification During Mash Profile

One of the key upgraded features of the Gen4 BrewZilla is the controller. RAPT Is Kegland’s line of wireless connected brewing devices. The BrewZilla now has a RAPT controller so it adds a lot of features that can be monitored and controlled over Wi-Fi. This includes basic things like monitoring temperature from your laptop/cell phone, but also allows you to program complex mash programs online and then download to your BrewZilla. You can also adjust control parameters on the fly such as pump output duty cycle and heater output level. If you get the optional Bluetooth thermometer, you can stick the temperature probe into the middle of your grain bed, and then have the controller use that as its control signal in combination with the built-in temperature sensor that sits on the floor of the unit.

Bluetooth Temp Probe in Middle of Mash

Although All-in-One units are essentially BIAB, they use a stainless steel basket with holes in the bottom of it instead of a bag, and call it a “malt pipe”. These provide functional improvements over a nylon bag. The obvious one is they are way easier to clean. But they also allow you to ensure you get full flow through your grain bed by having holes only on the bottom. This means recirculating wort has no sneak paths out the side. The other benefit is malt pipes have simple brackets/feet welded onto the outside that allow you to lift your wet grains up and prop the malt pipe on the brew rig to drain or sparge. The BrewZilla has 2 sets of feet for this. One set is halfway up, allowing you to do the deadlift of grain & wort halfway and then let the liquid level drain down. Then when you lift it the full height, it’s not as heavy. It’s simple, but makes the process much better.

Welded-on Carry Handle (top) and Tip Handle (bottom)

There is a cool feature in the BrewZilla which normally only comes on much higher end systems, and that’s the central drain. With a concave bottom with a drain at the lowest point in the center, you don’t have to leave wort behind or goof around with tilting it to get the last drops of wort out at the end. This also enables the malt pipe to extend down lower and thus you can hold more grain (30% more than their Gen3). If you compared to other All-in-one units in the “5 gallon batch” size range, the 23.5 lbs. grain capacity is 30 – 50% more. This of course only matters if you’re trying to make high gravity brews. The drain in the floor is plumbed to the inlet of the pump below, and then you can direct pump output either to an external spigot for fast/easy transfer of wort out after brewing, or up the recirculation pipe for wort to get directed down on top of the mash.

Polished Bottom with Center Drain and Built-in Temp Sensor to Side

Bottom Side of Pump Filter Plate

To help with mash efficiency and mash temperature uniformity, they offer a Heat Exchanger Dish, which is just a stainless dish/plate that sits below your malt pipe and above the central drain. Without this dish in place, the flow of recirculating wort tends to go through the center of your grain bed, and straight out the drain. With the dish there, it directs the flow around the full circumference before it gets to the drain, which helps ensure a broader portion of the grist sees the flow.


Compare Prices, Review Continues Below:


This article contains affiliate links. We may make a small percentage if you use our links to make a purchase. You won’t pay more and you’ll be supporting Homebrew Finds and more content like this. Thank you for your support!


Another helpful option is the neoprene insulation jacket. This helps keep mash temperatures more consistent by cutting down heat loss through the walls of the unit. The jacket on BrewZilla also smartly covers the recirculation pipe to minimize heat loss during wort recirculation. The overall mash temperature response with a multi-step mash was impressive, with more detail provided in the Hands On section, below.

Hands on Trials

First off, all of the different parts were well made with good quality manufacturing. As I’ve found with all Kegland gear, it’s of good quality- but nothing flashy. The one exception was probably the smooth and highly polished dished bottom. That was flashy. And being a previous owner of a 1st Gen Robobrew, I was very happy to see the camlock fitting on the recirculation pipe and see that Kegland was obviously tuned in to customer feedback on their products.

Mashing-in Sequence

Sparging

I brewed three different batches before writing this review. Two of them followed a simple single temperature mash, and the third one I exercised the RAPT Controller more with a multi-step mash profile, with lots of monitoring via my smartphone. I was impressed with the mash efficiency I achieved. There can be a misconception that BIAB = lower mash efficiency, but really, it’s “full volume mash = lower efficiency”. I had previously done experiments with an Anvil Foundry that showed a sparge step can get you mash efficiencies > 80%. Therefore, my batches in the BrewZilla were all done with a sparge step. I rested the malt pipe at the top while pouring heated sparge water through it with a 1-gallon pitcher. The perforated plate sitting on top of the grain bed made it super simple to sparge like this and get a good water distribution pattern. The perforated plate also allowed me to push down very easily and squeeze out remaining liquid in the grains. If you’re in the school of thought that squeezing the grains is bad for your beer, this isn’t relevant for you. For the rest of us, being able to easily squeeze that out without making a mess was awesome. And it meant when I picked up the basket of spent grain, I didn’t have a trail of sugary malt drippings to clean up after. My first batch achieved 77% mash efficiency, the second one 80%, and the third 81%.

Recirc Flow Rate After CFC

I experimented a bit with the Bluetooth RAPT wireless thermometer, but I didn’t properly understand it at first. I thought the concept was I could choose whether to use the built-in sensor at the bottom of the unit or the Bluetooth thermometer, but that wasn’t the case. When you add the Bluetooth thermometer, it will then control to that temperature, but it still uses the built-in sensor as part of your heating in a way that lets you fine tune how the system as a whole responds to temperature steps in your mash. After tinkering with it a bit, I realized it has some really powerful potential, but requires a deeper dive and some experimentation to back it up. So I’ll save that for a future write-up.

Bluetooth RAPT Thermometer

My typical brew system uses a 10-gallon kettle with a pump recirculating wort through a 240V RIMS with a 3500W heating element. With that set-up, I get about 3.1 degrees/minute temperature rise when doing multi-step mash profiles. I was therefore expecting this 120V/1500W system to be slow but was shocked to find similar performance that averaged around 2.5 degrees/minute. I attributed this capability to the neoprene jacket. On the plus side, that means you can do multi-step mashes even on only a 120V outlet and not take all day. But leaving the lid on as you heat to a boil is still a must. With the large opening in its domed top, it still can allow any volatized compounds to flow out.

BrewZilla Mashing by Itself in Basement

I found the RAPT software a bit non-intuitive and as such, had a learning curve to it. Luckily, I did a trial run just with water in it so I could get a feel for where various controls were located and how it worked. I definitely recommend this before you try to do any multi-step mash program, or live monitoring of things from the App. Way less stressful when it’s just water! After I got the hang of it, I was able to monitor my mash well and know what was going on as it chugged away in the basement and I worked at my day job one floor above. One key thing I learned was the in-flight plotting of mash temperature isn’t a continuously updating graph, you have to hit refresh in the App to get the updated data that it is recording and holding. I assume this is for computing efficiency and Wi-Fi bandwidth load management. It was perfectly fine once I figured out how it worked.

Screenshot of RAPT Controller Interface

The RAPT Controller allows you to program in multi-step mashes. But it’s a bit clunky as you figure it out. When you build the profile up using the App or Web interface, that profile sits on the RAPT server. My brain kept wanting to think I was programming the controller directly on the unit, but that’s not how it works. So after you program in the profile, you have to download it to the controller on your unit for it to work. You do all of this through the RAPT portal, and it only requires your BrewZilla to be powered on to let you download to it. This would be cool if you could just export something from Brewfather and then import it in RAPT, but you can’t. However, when you think about it, you probably don’t have that many different mash profiles, so it’s not really a big deal.

Malt Pipe

Draining Malt Pipe

One super cool feature of the mash profile programming is Kegland finally did what many have wanted these controllers to do for a long time. Rather than open loop programming a temperature and a time and guesstimating how long it will take for your mash to reach that temperature, you can tell it to not start counting down your mash step timer until it reaches the temperature. So if you want a 45-minute rest at 150F, you don’t have to think about how long it will take to get to 150F, it just heats up, and then starts the 45-minute timer when you hit 150F. I really liked this. You are also able to set up notifications at either the beginning or end of a particular mash step. I had it send an alert to my phone once it had reached mashout temperature and thus had 10 minutes left in my mash. That was cool, too. This isn’t quite as simple as it sounds, though. What I found was if the PID controller didn’t overshoot my target temp, I spent several minutes closing in on the target, but didn’t hit the temperature to start your countdown timer. So I’d end up with long mash times. I did some experiments with PID gains and the Bluetooth probe that got this working as I wanted, but I’ll detail that in a later write-up.

Rolling Boil at 75-percent Power

There wasn’t a boil timer interface, the controller was really just geared to controlling & monitoring mash temperatures. Not a big deal, as my Brewfather boil timer works great for this, so it isn’t a feature RAPT needs to spend time making. I could easily maintain a robust boil if I wanted to, but I like to keep it at just a good rolling circulation, so I dialed down the heating element power to 75% and maintained a constant churn of the wort and allowed boil-off of 0.4 – 0.5 gallons per hour. And the filter dish at the bottom of the kettle worked great to keep hop debris out of the pump, but not restrict flow. I had a thick cake of hop mush at the end when it was time to clean. Cleaning was fast and easy with parts light and easy to pull out, come apart, and rinse. And with the built-in pump, it was also easy to fill the unit up with cleaning solution at the end, circulate it through the unit & my Counter Flow Chiller to get everything clean.

Chilling Wort Using CFC and Built-in Pump

For wort cooling at the end of the boil, I used the built-in pump and circulated wort through my CFC. With the camlock fitting on the BrewZilla, I could easily hook up my typical ½” silicone tubing hoses. I was unsure if the pump would be up to the job, but it handled it easily. I could get a good volume flow rate with the recirc valve wide open on the BrewZilla and could easily restrict it when I wanted a slower flow.

A couple of pro tips to wrap things up. First, is to make sure you add your grains to the malt pipe BEFORE you lower it into the vessel. This ensures the weight of the grain keeps the bottom plate in place, so that as you lower it down, the water doesn’t push the bottom plate out of position and create a sneak path for whole grains to get through. Second is to make sure you have the plug fully seated in your brew unit. This might sound stupidly logical, but with a 6-foot power cord, you might end up pushing the limits of where you want the unit to sit vs. where the outlet is you’re plugged into. I had the cable become partially unseated and I wasn’t aware- until I went to remove the cord at the end of a long session of PID controller experiments. If the cord isn’t fully seated, you get less electrical contact on the pins and less contact means higher heat as electricity flows through it. I ended up damaging the cord and the receptacle from overheating.

Conclusions

The BrewZilla Gen4 delivered. The controller worked great, and I absolutely loved the step mash ability to start the mash step timer using actual mash temperatures. The RAPT interface wasn’t quite as slick as I would’ve liked but overall worked flawlessly, with no glitches. And I was definitely surprised how well a mere 120V/1500W system could handle mash steps and boil intensity. The well-thought-out little pieces of the malt pipe and various recirculation designs showed to me a system that was engineered with actual brewing hours spent on the unit, which is great. I feel with all of this, I won’t have compromises on my brew day using an all-in-one system versus my bigger 2-vessel system. And that says a lot.

Special thanks to Kegland for providing the unit used for evaluation in this review.

Compare Prices, Review Continues Below:


This article contains affiliate links. We may make a small percentage if you use our links to make a purchase. You won’t pay more and you’ll be supporting Homebrew Finds and more content like this. Thank you for your support!


Data Plots

Related: Hands on Review: Robobrew (BrewZilla v1) All Grain Brewing System

More Photos

Included Immersion Chiller (Fittings Sold Separately)

Collecting Wort for Gravity Check

Control Panel and Cord

Easy Access Pump and Hose Routing Underneath

Glass Lid with Handles

Hanger Plate for Control Panel

Heat Exchanger Dish

Holes in Malt Pipe to Help Flow

Malt Pipe Fits Perfectly in 8 Gallon Bucket

Malt Pipe Sitting at Halfway Point to Drain

Malt Pipe Screen Bottom (Left) and Top (Right)

Hop Debris on Filter Screen At End

Neoprene Jacket

Power Connection for 110V Cord and Multi-pin Connector for Control Panel

Recirc Pipe with Valve and Camlock Fitting

Recirc Pipe, Drain Spigot, and Malt Pipe Lift Handle

Robust Hard Rubber Feet

Convert RoboBrew to BrewZilla

If you’re looking to convert your Robobrew to a BrewZilla an upgrade board is available

robobrew upgrade board

Robobrew Gen 3.1.1 Upgrade Board Set 110 volt via William’s Brewing

More Kegland Gear Reviews!

More Homebrew Finds!

Recent Deals!

We are Homebrew Review HQ!  See Our 10 Most Recent Reviews

This post may contain affiliate links. We may make a commission when you use our links. This will never cost you extra. Thank you for supporting Homebrew Finds!

By Brad Probert.  Check out Brad’s website – beersnobby.com

Special Thanks to Keg King with the help of MoreBeer for providing the unit used for evaluation in this review

Price, promotions and availability can change quickly. Check the product page for current price, description and availability.

Make sure the components you use are compatible and rated for your intended application.  Contact manufacturer with questions about suitability or a specific application.  Always read and follow manufacturer directions. tag:lnksfxd review:bprobobrew rs:7 #tag:tpru

 

Brewer’s Edge 76 Quart Ported, Stainless Steel Brew Kettle… $99.99, Save $70 via Black Friday Sale!

Brewer's Edge® 76 Quart Brewkettle

Brewer’s Edge® 76 Quart Brewkettle via William’s Brewing

More Info

From the product description, check product page for current description, price and availability:

This Brewer’s Edge pot features organ welded construction, .031” thickness 210 grade welded stainless construction, and a ½” female NPT port for a thermometer that comes plugged with a stainless plug. The handles are welded on.

These are a great value for the money. This pot is too large to use on a home stove, an outdoor burner is recommended. Not recommended for use on an induction stove. 19½” tall, 18″ wide.


 

76 quarts = 19 gallons.   Includes a ball valve and a plugged 1/2″ NPT port that could be used to easily add a thermometer.

Brewer’s Edge® 76 Quart BrewkettleBlack Friday Specials at William’s Brewing

This post may contain affiliate links. We may make a commission when you use our links. This will never cost you extra. Thank you for supporting Homebrew Finds!

Visit William’s Brewing – Web Only Clearance Sale

Price, promotions and availability can change quickly. Check the product page for current price, description and availability

KegLand DigiBoil 65L Electric Brew Kettle, 220v – on sale for $194.99 AND up to $50 Off

KegLand 65 Liter Digiboil (220 volts)

KegLand 65 Liter Digiboil (220 volts) from William’s Brewing

More Info

From the product description, check product page for current description, price and availability:

The 65 Liter KegLand Digiboil is an 17 gallon electric boiling pot with precise digital control. It requires a 220 volt plug, and features 3500 watts of total power, selectable with two switches. Perfect for brewing, distilling, sous vide cooking, and more. Keep in mind that although it has an 17 gallon capacity, we recommend you boil no more than 11 gallons, to allow head space to prevent damaging boil overs.

The digital display can be set to any temperature between 32° and 212° F, and hold that temperature to plus or minus 5 degrees. The valve features standard 1/2″ threads, so you can fit female NPT 1/2″ accessories such as cam lock fittings to the spigot for attaching chillers and other accessories. The rim features clamps, and standard Robobrew and Grainfather distilling lids will fit perfectly.

This unit must be plugged into a dedicated 220 volt outlet to operate. The unit should not be submersed in water. 30″ tall, 19″ wide. The 220 volt power cord is 5′ long.

When brewing with malt extract, you will need to get your water boiling, then shut off the heat momentarily while you stir the extract in to dissolve. This eliminates the extract from burning on the bottom, and prevents the thermostat protective circuit from throwing an error. As soon as the extract is dissolved, turn back on the heat and brew.

Note: The Digiboil is primarily designed for boiling, distilling, and heating sparge water. It is not designed for Brew In Bag or mashing directly in the unit. If you suspend a large grain bag in the unit or add mash directly to the unit, it will throw a thermal protection error, because the grain or the grain bag will cover the thermostat, which will then shut off the heating element.

Compatible with 65 Liter Brewzilla accessories like our J78 Distilling Lid, and X96 Brewzilla Jacket.


 

KegLand 65 Liter Digiboil (220 volts)

AND Get up to $50 off!

William’s Brewing is discounting most orders by up to $50 based on order size. Excludes grain, sugar, gift certificates, Blichmann and Behmor. Coupons in graphic above.

William’s Brewing Holiday Coupon Sale

This post may contain affiliate links. We may make a commission when you use our links. This will never cost you extra. Thank you for supporting Homebrew Finds!

Visit William’s Brewing – Web Only Clearance Sale

Price, promotions and availability can change quickly. Check the product page for current price, description and availability.