I need a stainless steel pot of 100 liters or maybe even bigger for cooking. They sell at different wall material strength at the wholesale, varying from 0.8mm to 1.6mm (they all have sandwich bottom of course). The thick-walled ones cost twice as much. This seems like it might be a situation where wall thickness is more than just an aesthetic issue, but they are all made by manufacturers for professional cooking equipment. I don't care about aesthetics, but I don't want to spend several hundred euros on a tin can. Does anyone have experience? If I get the cheaper one and actually cook 100 liters of food in it repeatedly, will it just fall apart or deform or require extreme care to maintain?
Firstly, a pot with thicker walls is, without a doubt, more durable. Thin-walled pots can dent more easily and even warp over time, especially if you're planning to cook large quantities often. You want your culinary equipment to withstand the demands of your kitchen.
Now, onto heat distribution - another key factor that's influenced by your pot's thickness. Thin walls can lead to uneven heating, causing hot spots where your food could stick or even burn. A thicker pot, especially one with a sandwiched bottom made of a heat-conductive material like aluminium or copper, helps to distribute the heat more evenly. You don't want your food to cook unevenly, do you?
Stability is another aspect you need to consider. Imagine this - you're carrying a pot full of delicious stew, but the pot is wobbly and unstable. It's a disaster waiting to happen! A thicker pot is generally more stable, reducing the risk of unfortunate kitchen accidents.
Finally, let's talk about longevity. We all want to get the most out of our kitchen investments, right? A pot with thicker walls may cost more upfront, but it's likely to outlast a thinner one, especially under regular, heavy use.
But remember, this doesn't mean a thinner pot will instantly fall apart or deform. It might serve you well, especially if you're not using it heavily or frequently. However, if the kitchen is your battlefield and you're planning to use this pot as your main weapon, investing in a thicker one could be worthwhile.
If the difference between the two is just the wall thickness, with the bottom thickness being more-or-less the same, then what you're concerned with here is durability, and the ability to move the pot.
A pot that large with < 1mm thick walls is going to be immobile on the stove once filled, and you might even have to worry about it distorting or bloating with the weight. A pot with thicker walls would be theoretically possible to slide around the stove, and for 2-3 strong people to pick it up.