Author Topic: Fermenter Recommendations  (Read 5560 times)

Offline Ellismr

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Re: Fermenter Recommendations
« Reply #30 on: August 26, 2016, 12:59:55 AM »
I still like the better bottle knock-off made by northern brewer.  They fit a#10 bung and are $25.  I swap them out every 2-3 yrs when I see them looking suspect or when they are BOGO. 

I have a couple bigmouth bubblers first gen. but not happy with their seal.  I hear the the EVO 2 are pretty nice. 


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Offline Indy574

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Re: Fermenter Recommendations
« Reply #31 on: August 26, 2016, 01:04:27 AM »
I have only used buckets for primary fermentation, and then go to either my glass carboy or Better Bottle for secondary. The glass is such a PIA I'm thinking about ditching it and it sure doesn't help my back much.

I also wonder if secondary is really worth the hassle?  I typically brew IPA's the most. What's the consensus on transferring?

Offline HoosierBrew

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Re: Fermenter Recommendations
« Reply #32 on: August 26, 2016, 01:32:17 AM »
What's the consensus on transferring?


If you're not adding fruit or bulk aging, secondary just serves no purpose. It's outdated advice that still persists in brew shops and in ingredient kits. And racking to secondary also gives you another opportunity to introduce infection into your beer. Autolysis from leaving the beer on the yeast too long isn't a concern for over 6 weeks, so I say leave it in primary until you keg/bottle.
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Offline Joe Sr.

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Re: Fermenter Recommendations
« Reply #33 on: August 26, 2016, 01:52:38 AM »
I haven't done a secondary in years.  I was relieved years ago when I came to this forum that I was not the only one.

I still like the better bottle knock-off made by northern brewer.  They fit a#10 bung and are $25.  I swap them out every 2-3 yrs when I see them looking suspect or when they are BOGO. 

I've got BBs that are at least 10 years old.  Treat them right and you won't need to replace them for a long time.  No bottle brushes, only a good soak and a rag when needed.
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Offline Visor

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Re: Fermenter Recommendations
« Reply #34 on: August 26, 2016, 02:53:07 AM »
The last several posts seem to be arguing for a conical, without realizing that they are. You can in essence do a primary and secondary fermentation without racking to a second vessel, which was always a concern for me in the past. The "neck" opening is about 6" which is plenty for anything short of a football which you might desire to stuff in there. And even the faulty ones seal up better than a bucket. I don't think that the cost is all that significant compared to a bucket which is specifically sold as a fermenter, but we all have different financial situations.
   The only serious downside I have encountered is the vertical dimension, a carboy or bucket will fit into a much shorter space than one of those damned tall conicals. Also you can't see what's going on inside the fermenter as well as you could with glass [yes, I too enjoyed the lava lamp comment]. Just so you don't get the impression I'm on the payroll of the manufacturer, there are a number of things I would very much like to see them spend a few bucks improving. A clear viewport in the lid to monitor the process, better seals at the lid to body and the ferm-loc hole, altering the casting mold so the thermometer shaft is parallel to the ground rather than perpendicular to the angle of the fermenter wall, clear trub balls, and an option for a smaller trub ball are the ones I'd most like to see. I'm not holding my breath while waiting for the manufacturer to do the right thing and improve their product. Sooner or later though, if they don't someone else will. 
   One of the other posters mentioned that he had problems with the conical plugging up. I haven't encountered that problem - yet. This morning I finally remembered to dump the trub ball on a batch of stout - about 3 days late. The ball was completely full of yeast sediment [a first] and there was about 3 1/2 " of additional sediment in the bottom of the cone. I removed, dumped, sanitized, and replaced the trub ball, opened the valve at the bottom of the cone, and after a few healthy "glugs" all the yeast sediment in the bottom of the cone moved into it's new quarters in the junk ball.
   I have minor issues with the Fast Ferment units and would go with another brand in a hot second if a better option becomes available, because I think FF has gone low budget on a few things, but at the moment you couldn't pay me enough to go back to buckets or switch to carboys.
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Offline narcout

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Re: Fermenter Recommendations
« Reply #35 on: August 26, 2016, 04:19:28 PM »
But I still think the stainless brew buckets look pretty cool.

They're great.
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Offline Slowbrew

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Re: Fermenter Recommendations
« Reply #36 on: August 26, 2016, 05:38:24 PM »
That's weird...I don't have any trouble wiht the lids on mine.  Must be a different brand.

Or you've just got powerful hands...

Or I've broken too many parts of my hands over the years and/or I'm doing it wrong.  8^(

The buckets I currently have use lids that look like paint bucket or 5 gallon drywall mud buckets.  They seal well but are a bear to remove.

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Offline JJeffers09

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Re: Fermenter Recommendations
« Reply #37 on: August 26, 2016, 05:50:20 PM »
Speidel buckets seem to be holding up better than my regular plastic buckets so far.  The sturdy paint bucket style plastic fermentation vessels seem to get stress cracks.  At my house they do anyway.  The handles are very sturdy, but they are VERY tall
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Offline stevecrawshaw

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Re: Fermenter Recommendations
« Reply #38 on: August 27, 2016, 10:28:12 AM »
I use a plastic jerrycan
I "no chill" so hot wort goes straight from the kettle into this. I then leave it in a bin full of cold water until its cold and then pitch yeast directly into it.

I leave headspace which i fill with O2 and shake like it owes me money.  Cap with a 45mm silicone bung and airlock. ferment, crash, rack with a syphon and clean with hot PBW soak. I store them with a little peracetic acid to keep them bug - free.
Works a treat and costs about 10 bucks in your money.
cheers
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Offline reverseapachemaster

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Re: Fermenter Recommendations
« Reply #39 on: August 28, 2016, 04:43:31 PM »
I still like the better bottle knock-off made by northern brewer.  They fit a#10 bung and are $25.  I swap them out every 2-3 yrs when I see them looking suspect or when they are BOGO. 

I have both Better Bottles and the knockoffs from NB. Both make good beer--I would not hesitate to recommend buying whichever is easiest to acquire.
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Offline beersk

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Re: Fermenter Recommendations
« Reply #40 on: August 28, 2016, 06:49:36 PM »
That's weird...I don't have any trouble wiht the lids on mine.  Must be a different brand.

Or you've just got powerful hands...

Or I've broken too many parts of my hands over the years and/or I'm doing it wrong.  8^(

The buckets I currently have use lids that look like paint bucket or 5 gallon drywall mud buckets.  They seal well but are a bear to remove.

Paul
You guys just need to get a bucket lid opener to pry it open with. I like buckets as well. I frequently ferment with the lid sitting on top, not closed down all the way, and top crop yeast in the first 48-72 hours, skimming the braunhefe starting around 24 hours post pitch (for yeasts that are top cropping strains).
Lately I've been transferring when there's about 2-4 gravity points left (about 7-8 days post pitch) and letting it finish the rest of the way in the keg. Seems to work great and the beer stays fresher longer it seems. And no worries about the permeability of plastic.

Offline majorvices

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Re: Fermenter Recommendations
« Reply #41 on: August 30, 2016, 01:54:17 AM »
Glycol jacketed stainless conical. ;)

Offline erockrph

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Re: Fermenter Recommendations
« Reply #42 on: August 30, 2016, 09:51:26 AM »
I've started fermenting in kegs and I'm quite happy with the results. I really like being able to do a closed transfer to a purged serving keg, and you can easily start the carbonation process by setting your PRV to about 15 PSI at the tail end of primary. I've even rigged up an oxygen tank to a liquid disconnect to be able to oxygenate in the keg.

All that said, this works for me because I brew 3 gallon batches, so I can use cheap 5 gallon kegs as fermenters. And I still use buckets if I don't have a keg available for a batch. But for my purposes, kegs give me pretty much everything I want in a conical (closed transfers, and I can blow out the spent yeast through the liquid out), at a much more attractive price point. Plus, I can still use them as kegs if needed.
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Offline Visor

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Re: Fermenter Recommendations
« Reply #43 on: August 30, 2016, 04:06:25 PM »
Glycol jacketed stainless conical. ;)
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Offline noiz2

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Re: Fermenter Recommendations
« Reply #44 on: September 07, 2016, 08:18:56 PM »
Well I used buckets for years and like Denny have never had a problem.  But I use them a bit differently than most.  I don't use the lids.  What I do is put a few sheets of cling wrap over the top and use the rubber O Ring (that is in the bucket lid) as a big rubber band to hold the plastic in place and generously spray the exterior with StarSan.

It seals very well and you can watch if you like or just take a peak at how much the top as puffed up.  You basically end up fermenting under pressure (not much but a bit).

Because of durability questions and worries because the buckets never seem to loose a slight smell of prior batches, I have switched to 8 gal brew kettles with the same cling wrap and rubber band top.  Works really well and you can get them for a small fraction of any other stainless fermentor.