Being a bit of a tightwad, I use those blue plastic water containers for brewing. These are everywhere in the Philippines as most of us use bottled water for cooking and drinking. I have two round or cylinder ones and two of the rectangular types. For the primary fermentation I always use a cylinder type as it's way easier to clean. Trying to clean the krauzen ring from a rectangular jug is not easy and not recommended.
The problem with being a tightwad is that it comes back to get me later. My brewing vessels are only 5 US gallons and most recipes call for 6 gallons. (6 US gallons is 5 Imperial gallons.) In metric terms, the blue water containers here are only about 20 litres and the standard recipes make 23 litres. So I make some adjustments to the recipes.
The difference between the two gallons is 83%.
5US gallons = 19 litres (5x3.8l)
5 Imperial gallons = 22.7 litres (5x4.54l)
19/22.7 = 0.837 or 83.7%
I round this down to 80% for simplicity and to increase the available headspace. This means that instead of producing 22.7 litres of beer, I make 18 litres a batch.
18 litres is a perfect sized batch for the blue water containers so abundant here. These smaller batches have a few benefits. For all-grainers this means small gear is needed to mash and boil. Smaller batches also means less ingredients and less bottling on bottling day. It also means (booo!) running out of beer sooner, but there is always more in the system.
Dave in Manila?
I heard on a podcast on Basic Brewing Radio archive from September 7, 2006 that Dave in Manila was having carbonation consistency problems. Wow! There is another homebrewer in the Philippines! I posted a message to James asking him to invite any homebrewers in the Philippines to get in touch with me. I hope to hear from you Dave.