Author Topic: Should I be worried about this? (Calling all chemists)  (Read 3497 times)

Offline mpietropaoli

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Should I be worried about this? (Calling all chemists)
« on: October 02, 2012, 03:18:36 PM »
So I've been messing with IPA recipes and techniques.  I have never bothered with trying to weight down hop bags for dry-hopping, but I thought I'd give it a try this time.  As I am not a 19th-century British schoolchild, I do not have marbles on hand, which I know are the recommended weight of choice.  I was racking my brain for something to use, then I saw my tool box.  Why not use the attachments for a socket wrench?  Stainless steel, able to be sanitized...boom, I have http://www.google.com/imgres?q=socket+wrench+set&um=1&hl=en&safe=off&client=safari&sa=N&rls=en&biw=1272&bih=605&tbm=isch&tbnid=lQ0dxi-EuUQfCM:&imgrefurl=http://www.cdsct.com/products/show-2666.html&docid=vFcwxC5ThScm5M&imgurl=http://www.cdsct.com/uploads/201008/Socket%252520Wrench%252520Set.jpg&w=350&h=262&ei=JmZrUJihMMTz0gGuqIDwAQ&zoom=1&iact=rc&dur=263&sig=103855574045057058693&page=1&tbnh=115&tbnw=154&start=0&ndsp=21&ved=1t:429,r:2,s:0,i:119&tx=84&ty=80 weights. 

Then after muscling them into the carboy neck (they bunched up in the bag and it was harder than I thought), and racking the beer, I noticed that despite the weight, the hop bags were still on top of the solution.  Fantastic.  Well the hops were wet, and hopefully it didn't matter.  Later found out that weighting down the hop bag really isn't worth the trouble. 

THEN I found out that the socket wrench attachments weren't stainless steel.  They were chrome/chromium-plated steel.  Usually for socket wrenches, they use cheap chrome.  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chromium_toxicityChrome is toxic.

So I ran home, racked the beer out of the carboy, and it does smell fantastic.  It seemed to taste good, but I haven't been feeling great and I'm not sure my palette is the sharpest. 

The attachments did not appear to have any corrosion.  There were some flecks on the inside of them, but then I looked at the attachmenets I didn't use, and they had the flecks as well.  However, I do know that beer pH is usually well below 5, and could likely corrode something like this. 

As I do not want to poison myself, my wife, friends, or family, should I dump this beer?  Its one of my better IPAs, and would sting like hell to dump it. 

Anyone familiar with corrosion of chromium on steel?

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Offline tygo

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Re: Should I be worried about this? (Calling all chemists)
« Reply #1 on: October 02, 2012, 03:37:04 PM »
I made the exact same mistake once.  I wasn't aware that it might be poisonous but I dumped it because it tasted like metal.
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Offline tomsawyer

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Re: Should I be worried about this? (Calling all chemists)
« Reply #2 on: October 02, 2012, 04:08:31 PM »
Don't worry, the chrome is in metallic form and unless you see corrosion there shouldn't be any significant chromium dissolving.  Theres chrome in stainless steel too for that matter.  Chromium is actually an essential nutrient, albeit at low levels.
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Offline mpietropaoli

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Re: Should I be worried about this? (Calling all chemists)
« Reply #3 on: October 02, 2012, 04:24:55 PM »
Don't worry, the chrome is in metallic form and unless you see corrosion there shouldn't be any significant chromium dissolving.  Theres chrome in stainless steel too for that matter.  Chromium is actually an essential nutrient, albeit at low levels.

Thanks!

So is that metallic taste I'm now perceiving just in my mind?!
Primary: Common Cider; Xmas FauxCAP
Kegged: Pliny Clone; Rodney's Weizenbock; RIS
Bottled: Putain Biere de Garde; 51 RIS; Glutang Clan Roggenbier
Cellaring: Biere de Mars; Flanders
Planned: Schwarz

Offline punatic

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Re: Should I be worried about this? (Calling all chemists)
« Reply #4 on: October 02, 2012, 04:58:04 PM »
There is only one success: to be able to spend your life in your own way.


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Offline mpietropaoli

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Re: Should I be worried about this? (Calling all chemists)
« Reply #5 on: October 02, 2012, 05:19:22 PM »
Hexavalent Chromium

I'm having a tough time finding the subsection and/or appendices on "Dissolved ppm of Chromium VI when exposed to home-fermented alcoholic beverages in quantities under 5 gallons and its potential to cause renal failure or off-flavors that may cause the moron who exposed them in the first place to get points deducted in a BJCP-sanctioned competition"

Primary: Common Cider; Xmas FauxCAP
Kegged: Pliny Clone; Rodney's Weizenbock; RIS
Bottled: Putain Biere de Garde; 51 RIS; Glutang Clan Roggenbier
Cellaring: Biere de Mars; Flanders
Planned: Schwarz

Offline Joe Sr.

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Re: Should I be worried about this? (Calling all chemists)
« Reply #6 on: October 02, 2012, 05:48:45 PM »
"Occupational exposure to hexavalent chromium can occur from inhalation of dusts, mists, or fumes containing hexavalent chromium, or from eye or skin contact with hexavalent chromium. "

Of course, soaking and drinking it is not necessarily occupational exposure.

Perhaps it is not a worry unless you vaporize and inhale your beer?

I dunno.  If it tastes funny I'd dump it.

As far as toxicity, I doubt you're looking at dissolved amounts of any significance.  But, IANAD.  And my municipal water comes through lead pipes.
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Offline kramerog

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Re: Should I be worried about this? (Calling all chemists)
« Reply #7 on: October 02, 2012, 06:02:07 PM »
Don't worry, the chrome is in metallic form and unless you see corrosion there shouldn't be any significant chromium dissolving.  Theres chrome in stainless steel too for that matter.  Chromium is actually an essential nutrient, albeit at low levels.

Hexavalent chromium ions are the bad stuff.  The most common form is trivalent chromium.  I have not attempted to strain my brain, but I don't see why metallic chromium would be converted into the most oxidized form of chromium (hexavalent) in a reducing solution, beer.  If you haven't packaged it yet, I would bottle condition so the yeast can eat it and also make the beer even more reductive as an additional safety measure.
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Offline guido

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Re: Should I be worried about this? (Calling all chemists)
« Reply #8 on: October 02, 2012, 06:29:57 PM »
I use the glass "rocks" for aquariums as weights.  I put them inside a hopsock inside the mesh bag of hops.
Well...I woke up this morning and I got myself a beer

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Offline mpietropaoli

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Re: Should I be worried about this? (Calling all chemists)
« Reply #9 on: October 02, 2012, 06:48:12 PM »
Don't worry, the chrome is in metallic form and unless you see corrosion there shouldn't be any significant chromium dissolving.  Theres chrome in stainless steel too for that matter.  Chromium is actually an essential nutrient, albeit at low levels.

Hexavalent chromium ions are the bad stuff.  The most common form is trivalent chromium.  I have not attempted to strain my brain, but I don't see why metallic chromium would be converted into the most oxidized form of chromium (hexavalent) in a reducing solution, beer.  If you haven't packaged it yet, I would bottle condition so the yeast can eat it and also make the beer even more reductive as an additional safety measure.

Have not packaged, but was planning on bottling.  Right now its sitting in a bottling bucket that has been purged with CO2 at room temp.  I introduced about 2 packs of gelatin, most of which will precipitate out, but maybe I will bottle this saturday/sunday and leave them for a few weeks.  So you think by bottling, the yeast consuming the additional sugars will cause any 'leeched' metallic chromium will precipitate to the bottom (your word, "reductive")?  Will gelatin help, or will that only cling to proteins?
Primary: Common Cider; Xmas FauxCAP
Kegged: Pliny Clone; Rodney's Weizenbock; RIS
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Offline kramerog

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Re: Should I be worried about this? (Calling all chemists)
« Reply #10 on: October 02, 2012, 08:39:07 PM »
By keeping a reducing environment, there shouldn't be any hexavalent chromium as opposed to the relatively inocuous trivalent chromium.  Gelatin might or might not pull out some chromium; it might help and I don't see how it would hurt.
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Offline punatic

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Re: Should I be worried about this? (Calling all chemists)
« Reply #11 on: October 02, 2012, 10:56:54 PM »
Know the risk, and then determine your risk tolerance.

Me?  I'd bottle it and drink it without giving it a second thought.

But, next time I'd invest in some marbles (they've made it into the 21st century - see eBay).
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Offline rjharper

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Re: Should I be worried about this? (Calling all chemists)
« Reply #12 on: October 02, 2012, 11:01:47 PM »
But, next time I'd invest in some marbles (they've made it into the 21st century - see eBay).

Or just throw the hops loose into the carboy. They'll settle out ok without a bag, and its less hassle than trying to wiggle something in of out of the carboy neck.

Offline punatic

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Re: Should I be worried about this? (Calling all chemists)
« Reply #13 on: October 02, 2012, 11:22:21 PM »
Or you could dry-hop in a C-keg.
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Offline tschmidlin

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Re: Should I be worried about this? (Calling all chemists)
« Reply #14 on: October 03, 2012, 01:54:17 AM »
Well the hops were wet,
Finally, some actual wet hops!

Or you could dry-hop in a C-keg.
Or a bucket.  Or use pellets and skip the bag.
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