Author Topic: Aeration Equipment Question  (Read 1852 times)

Offline philm63

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Aeration Equipment Question
« on: July 13, 2013, 06:14:42 AM »
I'd like to improve my fermentations by changing the way I aerate my wort (normally I just shake the carboy), and I've been looking at pure O2 equipment.

What I'm looking for here is advice from those who have gone through this process so I don't wind up wasting too much $$$. I do want to get "good" equipment for this, nothing cheap that'll fall apart or give inaccurate readings, as I'd like to be able to control the process so I can accurately track changes.

To this end; I've been looking at a 20 CF O2 tank (welding grade, new) and medical-grade regulators and flow meters. Seems a set-up like this is running around $250-300. I don't mind spending the money, but I'd like to do it once and be done with it.

Anyone gone through this before, and what did you wind up with? Do you use medical-grade regulators and flow meters, or industrial-grade regulators?
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Offline denny

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Re: Aeration Equipment Question
« Reply #1 on: July 13, 2013, 06:52:53 AM »
I use a MixStir and a drill.  My unscientific analysis is that I get results equal to O2 for a lot less money.
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Offline klickitat jim

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Re: Aeration Equipment Question
« Reply #2 on: July 13, 2013, 07:11:22 AM »
+1

Drill mixer or splash

Offline bboy9000

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Re: Aeration Equipment Question
« Reply #3 on: July 13, 2013, 07:24:45 AM »
Shaking the fermentation vessel seems pretty effective according to this experiment:

http://www.brewangels.com/Beerformation/AerationMethods.pdf

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Offline durschad

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Re: Aeration Equipment Question
« Reply #4 on: July 13, 2013, 07:54:30 AM »
For those using the mixer are finding any loss of head retention? 

I've been looking at the pure o2 route as well, but haven't pulled the trigger yet.  The medical regulator seems to be the way to go if you want to accurately measure how much o2 you're pumping.  I would think the industrial grade ones and a watch would also work if you're not looking to be super accurate.

Offline denny

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Re: Aeration Equipment Question
« Reply #5 on: July 13, 2013, 08:09:19 AM »
For those using the mixer are finding any loss of head retention? 

I've been looking at the pure o2 route as well, but haven't pulled the trigger yet.  The medical regulator seems to be the way to go if you want to accurately measure how much o2 you're pumping.  I would think the industrial grade ones and a watch would also work if you're not looking to be super accurate.

Absolutely no loss of foam retention.  If there was, I would have stopped doing it several hundred batches ago.
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Offline jeffy

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Re: Aeration Equipment Question
« Reply #6 on: July 13, 2013, 09:44:07 AM »
I use a welding O2 tank and regulator with a sintered stone.  I use about 10psi for maybe 60 to 90 seconds.  A five pound bottle will last a very long time, probably a couple years.
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Offline breweite

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Re: Aeration Equipment Question
« Reply #7 on: July 13, 2013, 10:31:58 AM »
For those using the mixer are finding any loss of head retention? 


Just curious, whats the reason behind this?  I just brewed a saison, and used my drill mixer for the first time and noticed a very thin, quick dissipating head.  I thought it was the grain bill, but now you've got me wondering...
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Offline erockrph

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Re: Aeration Equipment Question
« Reply #8 on: July 13, 2013, 10:57:07 AM »
I use a welding O2 tank and regulator with a sintered stone.  I use about 10psi for maybe 60 to 90 seconds.  A five pound bottle will last a very long time, probably a couple years.

Same here. Probably not needed, but I have an inline HEPA filter for piece of mind. I don't have a pressure gauge on my regulator, either. I just turn it on until I start seeing a lot of bubbles, then back it off until the bubbles are just barely agitating the surface. I go for about a minute. For higher gravity beers I go a bit longer - I use a second per gravity point as a rule of thumb.

On low-moderate gravity beers I still use the tried & true "shake like hell for a while" method when I'm too lazy to bust out (and clean) my O2 setup. And for meads I just use the balloon whisk attachment on my hand mixer to mix and aerate at the same time. Both ways work just fine.
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Offline morticaixavier

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Re: Aeration Equipment Question
« Reply #9 on: July 13, 2013, 12:38:52 PM »
For those using the mixer are finding any loss of head retention? 


Just curious, whats the reason behind this?  I just brewed a saison, and used my drill mixer for the first time and noticed a very thin, quick dissipating head.  I thought it was the grain bill, but now you've got me wondering...

the theoretical concern is that you will destroy too many head forming proteins. The thinking goes like this:

The proteins that form the head only work once therefore if you make foam in your wort and or beer you are using up some of those proteins and they will no longer be available for forming a head on the beer when you serve it.

However there are many many other things that can negativly affect your head retention and this doesn't seem to be a practical problem if you are doing other things right.
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Offline narcout

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Re: Aeration Equipment Question
« Reply #10 on: July 13, 2013, 01:01:51 PM »
I've been using this setup for a couple of years and have been really happy with it.

http://www.williamsbrewing.com/WILLIAMS-OXYGEN-AERATION-SYSTEM-P699.aspx

I can oxygenate around 20 five gallon batches with one of the larger disposable oxygen bottles, which is about a full year's worth of brewing for me.

The only thing you won't get in this setup is a flow meter, but I believe you can add one if you want (I personally don't see the need).

I also use this in-line HEPA filter, though it is likely unneccessary.

http://www.williamsbrewing.com/IN-LINE-2-MICRON-FILTER-P440.aspx


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Re: Aeration Equipment Question
« Reply #11 on: July 13, 2013, 07:13:02 PM »
Yes!

Offline theDarkSide

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Re: Aeration Equipment Question
« Reply #12 on: July 15, 2013, 06:02:23 AM »
I've been using this setup for a couple of years and have been really happy with it.

http://www.williamsbrewing.com/WILLIAMS-OXYGEN-AERATION-SYSTEM-P699.aspx

I can oxygenate around 20 five gallon batches with one of the larger disposable oxygen bottles, which is about a full year's worth of brewing for me.

Same here.  I've been from shaking the carboy, mix stir, aquarium pump and finally to this.  Definitely the best of all the options for me.  I also like that it is a rigid ss tube instead of vinyl hose.  This way I can put the stone exactly where I want it and move it around a bit in the fermenter.
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Offline kylekohlmorgen

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Re: Aeration Equipment Question
« Reply #13 on: July 15, 2013, 08:07:50 AM »
I've been using this setup for a couple of years and have been really happy with it.

http://www.williamsbrewing.com/WILLIAMS-OXYGEN-AERATION-SYSTEM-P699.aspx

I can oxygenate around 20 five gallon batches with one of the larger disposable oxygen bottles, which is about a full year's worth of brewing for me.

Same here.  I've been from shaking the carboy, mix stir, aquarium pump and finally to this.  Definitely the best of all the options for me.  I also like that it is a rigid ss tube instead of vinyl hose.  This way I can put the stone exactly where I want it and move it around a bit in the fermenter.

+1

I use a sintered stone and small, red o2 tank from Lowes (lasts about 10 batches), but I hate that its connected via tubing. Stainless is easier to sanitize and handle.

The O2 stone is the way to go. Its inexpensive, easier/faster than shaking/whipping, and assures you're getting enough o2 dissolved and not shaking/whipping in any other contaminants.
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