Author Topic: Restoring a very old barrel -- feasible?  (Read 9305 times)

Offline tschmidlin

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Re: Restoring a very old barrel -- feasible?
« Reply #15 on: November 30, 2011, 12:25:26 PM »
Yeah, it can be messy.  Another way to do it is to stand it on end and fill the butt end with water - it absorbs down the staves easier that way, with the grain.  After a couple of days of that (topping up the end as needed), flip it and do the other side for a couple of days.  Then I might try filling it, after it's had a chance to swell for a while.

I haven't tried it this way, it's just an idea.

Maybe sit it in a kiddie pool and soak both ends at once?
Tom Schmidlin

Offline davidgzach

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Re: Restoring a very old barrel -- feasible?
« Reply #16 on: November 30, 2011, 01:00:31 PM »
The barrel is sitting in my garage now.  I'm going to fill it with water tonight.  Is garden hose water ok to use?  That's a lot of trips from the sink with a pitcher...
I don't see why not.  Even if your hose has that rubbery taste, like mine, sounds like you have a lot more to worry about than that at the moment......
Dave Zach

Offline tomsawyer

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Re: Restoring a very old barrel -- feasible?
« Reply #17 on: November 30, 2011, 01:34:28 PM »
Here's a link to a method for rehydrating a barrel, I've done this on a few of his barrels and it works fine.  Personally I seriously doubt you'll get anything but vinegar for your troubles, especially since it still smells of vinegar.  But you never know, if you take it apart and recooper (yes this is a real term) and then toast the heck out of it, plus maybe let it sit with Barrolkleen for some time, you have a small chance of it being clean.

http://www.vadaiwinebarrels.com/index.asp?action=page&name=23
Lennie
Hannibal, MO

Online jeffy

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Re: Restoring a very old barrel -- feasible?
« Reply #18 on: November 30, 2011, 03:07:33 PM »
The method Tom wrote about two posts up is how I've seen it done at a distillery when they wanted to keep the barrel hydrated, but that may not work for an old dried out bbl.
I once revived an old barrel that had been sitting outside for several years by keeping it filled it with a garden hose.  At first it was leaking out at the rate of a gallon every 20 seconds, but it was almost completely sealed after 12 hours.  I was amazed at how much the wood expanded.
Jeff Gladish, Tampa (989.3, 175.1 Apparent Rennarian)
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Offline tubercle

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Re: Restoring a very old barrel -- feasible?
« Reply #19 on: November 30, 2011, 04:46:04 PM »
You are going to need to re-hydrate it anyway and you mentioned taking it apart and "re-coopering".

 A perfect time to boil the crap (literally) out of the staves and lids. Get a 55 gal metal drum and build a fire under it.
I'd give it a try. The worst thing that could happen would be a batch of malt vinegar.

I love projects like this.

I woud hate to die never knowing.
Sweet Caroline where the Sun rises over the deep blue sea and sets somewhere beyond Tennessee

Offline mtnrockhopper

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Re: Restoring a very old barrel -- feasible?
« Reply #20 on: November 30, 2011, 06:27:09 PM »
That would be a great reason to make a bunch of fries.
Jimmy K

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