Author Topic: Broke a carboy,.... salvage the beer?  (Read 1223 times)

Offline Tristan

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Broke a carboy,.... salvage the beer?
« on: August 04, 2011, 05:33:42 AM »
I hadn't broken a carboy in 9 years and now I've broken 2 in the last 2 months.  There was no significant injury, but in the second case my pyrex had fallen from the edge of the freezerdor and cracked the side of a carboy full of precious IPA.  The break was very clean and didn't appear to generate small shards.  I had just put gelatin in the carboy.  I was able to pour the beer into another carboy in a sanitary manner.

Do you think the beer is safe?  My thought is that any glass particles, if present, will fall to the bottom and become encapsulated in the gelatin.  I am going to bottle that portion and will be racking it to a bottling vessel prior.  It would take terrible luck to get any glass particles through 2 transfers with the final being a bottling wand.

What would you do?
« Last Edit: August 04, 2011, 05:36:18 AM by Tristan »
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Offline corkybstewart

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Re: Broke a carboy,.... salvage the beer?
« Reply #1 on: August 04, 2011, 05:40:35 AM »
I agree that it's probably safe if it's just cracked.  To be safe let it sit a couple of days and don't try yo get every last drop out of the carboy.
I'd really just rather be brewing in sunny Carlsbad New Mexico

Offline mtnrockhopper

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Re: Broke a carboy,.... salvage the beer?
« Reply #2 on: August 04, 2011, 05:41:42 AM »
I agree that it's probably safe if it's just cracked.  To be safe let it sit a couple of days and don't try yo get every last drop out of the carboy.

agreed
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Offline majorvices

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Re: Broke a carboy,.... salvage the beer?
« Reply #3 on: August 04, 2011, 05:53:39 AM »
Do yourself a favor and move away from glass. I was very stubborn about not giving up my carboys - heck, I had 8 of them at one time. But a few months ago I got some better bottles and started using them and not only are they much lighter and easier to move than carboys, they come clean easier too. I won't say I'll never use a carboy again but for most of my homebrew batches I use the better bottles.
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Offline tomsawyer

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Re: Broke a carboy,.... salvage the beer?
« Reply #4 on: August 04, 2011, 06:18:14 AM »
Striking glass will sometimes result in a Hertzian cone breaking out on the inside.  Even so, with the heavy weight of glass and the fact that you're fining anyway, I'd salvage it myself.  If there is no cone that is even better.

+1 to Better Bottles.  The only thing I really use glass carboys for now, is degassing wine with a vacuum pump.
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Offline Tristan

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Re: Broke a carboy,.... salvage the beer?
« Reply #5 on: August 04, 2011, 07:16:39 AM »
Thanks for the advice gentlemen.  I am going to take it in full.  I was just thinking last night that I need to either move to buckets or better bottles.  The better bottles seem the way to go with the recent purchase of carboy caps, stainless racking cane and adapters to c02 connection.
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Re: Broke a carboy,.... salvage the beer?
« Reply #6 on: August 04, 2011, 07:50:12 AM »
Yes, it's delicate to handle, but don't give up entirely on glass. You can't beat it for long term storage.

Offline denny

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Re: Broke a carboy,.... salvage the beer?
« Reply #7 on: August 04, 2011, 08:16:17 AM »
Personally, I'd toss the beer.  To me, it's just not worth the risk.  I'm not necessarily telling you to do that, just saying that's what I'd do.

I really like kegs for long term storage as opposed to carboys.  That way, they're dual purpose.
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Offline jklinck

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Re: Broke a carboy,.... salvage the beer?
« Reply #8 on: August 04, 2011, 10:22:37 AM »
I hadn't broken a carboy in 9 years and now I've broken 2 in the last 2 months.  There was no significant injury, but in the second case my pyrex had fallen from the edge of the freezerdor and cracked the side of a carboy full of precious IPA.  The break was very clean and didn't appear to generate small shards.  I had just put gelatin in the carboy.  I was able to pour the beer into another carboy in a sanitary manner.

Do you think the beer is safe?  My thought is that any glass particles, if present, will fall to the bottom and become encapsulated in the gelatin.  I am going to bottle that portion and will be racking it to a bottling vessel prior.  It would take terrible luck to get any glass particles through 2 transfers with the final being a bottling wand.

What would you do?

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Offline majorvices

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Re: Broke a carboy,.... salvage the beer?
« Reply #9 on: August 04, 2011, 03:36:37 PM »


I really like kegs for long term storage as opposed to carboys.  That way, they're dual purpose.

+1 - you can't beat purgeable/pressurizable stainless for long term storage. You can beat the hell out of glass. In fact, I don't recommend glass for long term storage. Unless maybe it's a capped bottle.
« Last Edit: August 04, 2011, 03:45:26 PM by majorvices »
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ccarlson

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Re: Broke a carboy,.... salvage the beer?
« Reply #10 on: August 04, 2011, 08:43:34 PM »
I agree with tossing this beer, but glass is great for long storage, unless you happen to have an overwhelming supply of kegs.

Offline corkybstewart

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Re: Broke a carboy,.... salvage the beer?
« Reply #11 on: August 04, 2011, 09:17:45 PM »
I had a carboy full of brett hefewiezen(think Jolly Pumpkin Bam Wheat) that was almost ready to drink. Normally it would have been in a keg but it was Oktoberfest and all my kegs were full.  My son was pulling krugs off the shelf and one fell, bounced off a sack of malt and hit the carboy under the shelf on the other side of the room.  While we watched a big crack slowly developed, then the whole side of the carboy gave way spilling 5 gallons of beer onto the garage floor.  Since then I only use glass for sour beer or vinegar, everything else goes in a keg.
I'd really just rather be brewing in sunny Carlsbad New Mexico

Offline majorvices

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Re: Broke a carboy,.... salvage the beer?
« Reply #12 on: August 05, 2011, 12:31:11 PM »
I agree with tossing this beer, but glass is great for long storage, unless you happen to have an overwhelming supply of kegs.

If you don't have kegs, and you can fill close to the neck of the carboy, glass is good for long time storage. That said, I dunno about now, but back when I was buying kegs you could get them for $10 a pop. Carboys were $40. I had way more kegs than carboys.  ;)
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Offline bluesman

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Re: Broke a carboy,.... salvage the beer?
« Reply #13 on: August 05, 2011, 12:56:32 PM »
Personally, I'd toss the beer.  To me, it's just not worth the risk.  I'm not necessarily telling you to do that, just saying that's what I'd do.

I really like kegs for long term storage as opposed to carboys.  That way, they're dual purpose.

My gut feeling is that the beer is probably okay. However weighing the risk vs. reward it's just not worth it. I agree with Denny. Toss it.

The other option is to filter the beer to properly assure glass removal.
Ron Price

Offline jeffy

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Re: Broke a carboy,.... salvage the beer?
« Reply #14 on: August 05, 2011, 02:48:34 PM »
I would not toss the beer.  He said the carboy cracked, not broke, so there may not be any shards.  If there happen to be shards of glass they would all be on the bottom.  It's already in another vessel, so that lessens the chance of shards.  Nut siphon the beer out with your siphon tube an inch off the bottom and you should be safe.  Glass shards won't float.
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