Author Topic: best bottling equipment  (Read 3131 times)

Offline denny

  • Administrator
  • I must live here
  • *****
  • Posts: 12091
  • Noti OR [1991.4, 287.6deg] AR
    • View Profile
    • Dennybrew
Re: best bottling equipment
« Reply #15 on: January 06, 2013, 02:10:41 PM »
I do something similar, but simpler.  I push a piece of tubing long enough to reach the bottom of a bottle in a #2 one hole stopper.  Put the top end of the tubing in a tap and seat the stopper in a bottle.  Open the tap.  The bottle will fill about 1/3 f the way before pressure builds up and the flow stops.  At that point, use your thumb to very slightly crack the stopper.  The flow will begin again and you can control; the flow rate with your thumb on the stopper.  When the bottle is full, seat the stopper and close the tap.  I get virtually no foam doing it this way.
Life begins at 60.....1.060, that is!

www.dennybrew.com

The best, sharpest, funniest, weirdest and most knowledgable minds in home brewing contribute on the AHA forum. - Alewyfe

Offline ukolowiczd

  • Assistant Brewer
  • ***
  • Posts: 144
  • Burlington, VT
    • View Profile
Re: best bottling equipment
« Reply #16 on: January 06, 2013, 05:17:15 PM »
I do something similar, but simpler.  I push a piece of tubing long enough to reach the bottom of a bottle in a #2 one hole stopper.  Put the top end of the tubing in a tap and seat the stopper in a bottle.  Open the tap.  The bottle will fill about 1/3 f the way before pressure builds up and the flow stops.  At that point, use your thumb to very slightly crack the stopper.  The flow will begin again and you can control; the flow rate with your thumb on the stopper.  When the bottle is full, seat the stopper and close the tap.  I get virtually no foam doing it this way.

This sounds great. Does the beer stay carbonated In the bottle?

Offline Joe Sr.

  • Brewmaster General
  • *******
  • Posts: 2495
  • Chicago - NORTH SIDE
    • View Profile
Re: best bottling equipment
« Reply #17 on: January 07, 2013, 07:52:00 AM »
I do something similar, but simpler.  I push a piece of tubing long enough to reach the bottom of a bottle in a #2 one hole stopper.  Put the top end of the tubing in a tap and seat the stopper in a bottle.  Open the tap.  The bottle will fill about 1/3 f the way before pressure builds up and the flow stops.  At that point, use your thumb to very slightly crack the stopper.  The flow will begin again and you can control; the flow rate with your thumb on the stopper.  When the bottle is full, seat the stopper and close the tap.  I get virtually no foam doing it this way.

This is exactly what I do, but I have a piece of an old racking cane that I jam into the cobra tap.  Fits perfectly.

This sounds great. Does the beer stay carbonated In the bottle?

Yes.  The beer stays carbed.  Depending on how much foaming you get, you may lose some carbonation during bottling.  You can overcarb slightly to compensate.

You could also get some oxygenation that may stale the beers if you are going for long term storage.  This is why I use the oxy caps.  I've also thought about adding some small amount of priming sugar, but that just seems like a PITA.
It's all in the reflexes. - Jack Burton

Offline anje

  • Assistant Brewer
  • ***
  • Posts: 232
  • Lafayette, IN
    • View Profile
Re: best bottling equipment
« Reply #18 on: January 07, 2013, 10:54:53 AM »
I think the vinator, in combination with a bottle tree, is the easiest and fastest way to sanitize a run of bottles. 

http://www.northernbrewer.com/shop/vinator-bottle-rinser.html
+1  The vinator is so much better than soaking/dunking the bottles. Mine doesn't fit on my bottle tree, but I consider that secondary.

I also spritz the tree down with Starsan as a precaution.
<-- microbiologist brewster n00b.

Hops and toothpaste don't mix.

Offline The Professor

  • Brewmaster
  • *****
  • Posts: 775
  • "In the next life, you're on your own"
    • View Profile
Re: best bottling equipment
« Reply #19 on: January 07, 2013, 12:31:52 PM »
I bottled several cases over the holidays using a piece of racking cane and a stopper.  Worked great and actually got me thinking I should bottle more.  I used oxy caps for a little extra insurance.

Definitely the bottle tree makes this process easier...

+1 on all counts.   I've been doing the racking cane/stopper thing to fill bottles from the keg for 2 decades (even for beers intended to cellar in the bottle for 2 years) and it's all you really need...

Very interested in this "don't have to buy a $70 counter pressure filler" method. Does it really work? How's it work? I get everything has to be cold, but the racking cane. Do you open the keg and put the racking cane in the keg? Or are you pushing out beer using CO2 but using the racking cane to fill bottles? Will they hold on to their carbonation for extended periods of time?

No need to open the keg. I'm pushing the beer out with co2.  My method lately is pretty much the same as what Denny describes (I forgot to mention the stopper which, as Denny points out, actually serves as  primitive kind of counter-pressure device).

And  yes, the beer stays well carbonated over time:  I've kept Burton/Old Ale and Scotch Ales bottled this way for years will no ill effects.
AL
New Brunswick, NJ
[499.6, 101.2] Apparent Rennerian
Homebrewer since July 1971

Offline Gribble

  • Assistant Brewer
  • ***
  • Posts: 165
    • View Profile
    • Low Mo Brewing Company
Re: best bottling equipment
« Reply #20 on: January 07, 2013, 09:51:27 PM »
I think if you wanted to make the cheap version of a beer gun is to take a bottle wand and attach it to your liquid side of the keg, basically a beer gun set up.  Keeping your bottles cold before bottling helps reduce foaming as well.  I keep the sanitized cases in my keg freezer before i bottle, when there's room ;)
Low Mo Brewing Company
Industrial Grade Beer Brewed For Professionals

Offline euge

  • I must live here
  • **********
  • Posts: 7396
  • Estilo Casero
    • View Profile
Re: best bottling equipment
« Reply #21 on: January 08, 2013, 06:46:46 AM »
I also use Denny's "Cheap and Easy" method. I still have beer bottled 4 years ago that is carbonated and non-oxidized. Loss of carbonation- that would be a separate issue regardless.

Turn down the keg psi to next to nothing and turn on as needed to keep the beer flowing. Burp the stopper occasionally. My advice is to buy a pre-drilled stopper as drilling a solid one out is a real PITA and hard to get right.
The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool. -Richard P. Feynman

Offline kylekohlmorgen

  • Senior Brewmaster
  • ******
  • Posts: 1205
  • St. Louis, MO
    • View Profile
    • The South House Pilot Brewery
Re: best bottling equipment
« Reply #22 on: January 09, 2013, 07:14:52 AM »
@southhousebrew

Recipes, Brett/Bacteria Experiments:
http://southhousepilotbrewery.blogspot.com/

STLHops Homebrew Club:
http://STLHops.com/

Offline yso191

  • Brewmaster
  • *****
  • Posts: 735
  • Yakima, WA
    • View Profile
Re: best bottling equipment
« Reply #23 on: January 09, 2013, 10:31:44 AM »
Great comparison of a CP filler vs. Beer Gun:

http://www.themadfermentationist.com/2013/01/beer-gun-and-counter-pressure-filler.html

Thanks!  That was good... but now I am even more split-minded as to which one, or neither.  Obviously so much easier when there is clearly a 'best practice.'

Steve
Steve
"The purpose of an open mind is to shut it on something True." G.K. Chesterton

Offline AmandaK

  • Senior Brewmaster
  • ******
  • Posts: 1033
  • Redbird Brewhouse
    • View Profile
Re: best bottling equipment
« Reply #24 on: January 09, 2013, 11:29:58 AM »
I think the vinator, in combination with a bottle tree, is the easiest and fastest way to sanitize a run of bottles. 

http://www.northernbrewer.com/shop/vinator-bottle-rinser.html
+1  The vinator is so much better than soaking/dunking the bottles. Mine doesn't fit on my bottle tree, but I consider that secondary.

I also spritz the tree down with Starsan as a precaution.

I'm a tree spritzer too!
Amanda Kertz
Kansas City Bier Meister
BJCP National

Redbird Brewhouse - Current Project: Full Basement Bar Build