Shiny FV

Discussion in 'General Home Brew Equipment Discussion' started by mozza, Jun 26, 2019.

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  1. Jun 26, 2019 #1

    mozza

    mozza

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    I know this has been asked before so I apologise. I’m looking to move over to stainless for my fermenting vessel. While I’ve had no problems using plastic, I don’t really trust it, and I always worry I’ve not cleaned them enough. As the rest of my equipment is stainless it seems silly not to upgrade the most vital part.


    Whilst looking at the options available, my brain is saying the SS Brew Bucket is the way to go as it’s great value for money and will fit in my existing fridge... however temptation is getting the better of me and I’m eyeing up a 26L chronical.


    My justification (how I’m explaining this to my girlfriend), beyond it being a thing of beauty, is that it will allow me to play about with dumping yeast, and even pressure transfers should I want to. In a few years time I plan on setting up commercially so this experience would be valuable.


    So what are your thoughts? Those of you who have the full monty, do you wish you saved your pennies? And owners of the brew bucket, what’s your review of the product?


    Thanks in advance!
     
  2. Jun 26, 2019 #2

    An Ankoù

    An Ankoù

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    Give said girlfriend a break. You just know she's tearing her hair out trying to come up with next birthday or Christmas pressie. A gentle hint and everyone's a winner.

    Haven't got either and just ordered a new Speidal to replace one of my "Hop and Grape" 7-gallon buckets, which is well over 12 years old. I'm more worried about my old plastic hardening and cracking with a brew in it.

    Presumably you won't be able to get the Chronical in the fridge. How important is that?
     
  3. Jun 26, 2019 #3

    foxbat

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    Do it! I went with an SS fermenter (brewbuilder flat bottom FV with triclamp fittings). If it somehow broke, not sure how, I'd buy another.
     
  4. Jun 26, 2019 #4

    mozza

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    I’ve been dropping several hints don’t worry about that!

    It’s essential that I still have temperature control, and I’d rather not have to fork out for a glycol chiller. I’d have to look at the dimensions but maybe a tall fridge would work.
     
  5. Jun 26, 2019 #5

    Norfolk79

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    SS Brewtech as you probably know do a temperature control system. Here’s mine (with my 7gal brew bucket), only water and frozen 2l pop bottles in the cool box, works wonderfully athumb..
     

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  6. Jun 26, 2019 #6

    mozza

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    I’ve seen them but never priced them up. Not a bad price really! I have a chest freezer in the garage. Just thinking I could put a small reservoir inside it and connect up to the temp control.
     
  7. Jun 26, 2019 #7

    MickDundee

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    If it’s just pressure transfers and dumping yeast that is the main lure, then what about a Fermentasaurus or waiting until the Fermzilla gets a UK release later thins year.

    Apart from being plastic, they do everything else you want at a fraction of the price of the Chronical.
     
  8. Jun 26, 2019 #8

    mozza

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    I’ve thought about it but I’m sceptical as to whether or not the plastic would be any more resilient than a standard FV. Small scratches and deterioration over time puts me off. And although cheap, I’d rather buy once and have something last a life time. I realise that might sound a bit snobby but it’s got to be stainless really.
     
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  9. Jun 26, 2019 #9

    An Ankoù

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    Go for it, Mozza. It's been a joy and a lesson to us all to see you talk yourself into it. I'm going to see if I can do the same. Bet you end up with the Chronical. acheers.
     
  10. Jun 26, 2019 #10

    Horners

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    Curse this thread - have just stuck a SS Brewbucket in my basket. Only went online for some yeast.
     
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  11. Jun 26, 2019 #11

    mozza

    mozza

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    I blame this forum for 99% of brewing related purchases!
     
  12. Jun 26, 2019 #12

    stz

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    For me a lot comes down to does it work with my current system? Like I can fit 3x30L in my fermentation freezer so ... it has to compare to that. Most of the SS conical stuff is way too big. So then I've got no temperature control so I've got the think about that. I'd not touch coils inside the vessel, panels etc, another thing to sanitise, takes up space inside, the in/out has to come through the vessel as well so it is another thing that has to hold pressure. I use plastic jerry cans/drums and have modified them to allow for pressure transfers. Really easy to seal them up and give them a shake to resuspend yeast, mix in dry hop and other ingredients too. When they get old or even if I can't be bothered to clean them I just get a new one, we use half a pallet of food grade ones a month at work.

    What I did want to say about conicals though, is having to work with them daily they aren't the be all and end all. For some purposes flat bottoms, dish bottoms, shallow bottoms etc are superior. Different yeast strains, different dry hopping, different pressure levels etc mean they've all got an edge in some way. Like if I've a REALLY dry hopped beer a conical will block solid. You'll have visions of it running off smoothly, but until you put 30+ psi on that tank it isn't moving, especially on port sizes below 2". Conicals are prefect for primary fermentation of lager treated with active silicone and simple ales, secondary conditioning of almost bright beer prior to pack and so on, but depending on the conical angle they can be a right pain as a primary. You'll get yeast flocc on everything if used for primary fermentation and as you drain it'll somewhat come with if it doesn't firm up, especially powdery varieties, but even flocculent strains (it helps a lot if you can get it REALLY cold, like -1C).

    If I had a massive dry hopped beer, I'd actually take an almost flat or slightly slanted bottomed vessel over a conical because once you've run off the initial plug of junk, half a bucket or so when the flow rate is at its highest it can't really draw anything else from around the port as it is all welded to the bottom and not looking to slip towards you. Steep sided conicals make it worse because the volume between the bottom and racking port is quite small now so you think ok, 10g/L dry hop, turns into 100ml/L of slurry, 4,000L conical, 400L of slurry to dump and the volume from the bottom to the racking port is approx 80L. Works great at 2g/L!

    Why do you see so many conicals in professional use? Because the chinese make them cheaply. What would be optimal? Primary fermenter designed for pupose, conical for conditioning and/or carbonation. How do we deal with silly amounts of dry hopping? Peristaltic pumps, hop rockets, multiple tanks, co2 rousing, timing and specific running off schedules, thimbles, adjustable racking arms, physical upstands and so on.
     
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  13. Jun 27, 2019 #13

    mozza

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    Firstly, thank you for taking the time to give such an informative post. So much to think about now!

    On a homebrew level it does seem a hinderance rather than an advantage. Putting so much time and effort into a beer for it to get stuck at when trying to bottle/keg would be a nightmare. And sanitising/pressure testing more components would be a pain. I’m OCD enough as it is with my processashock1
     
  14. Jun 27, 2019 #14

    Druncan

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    "I'd not touch coils inside the vessel, panels etc, another thing to sanitise, takes up space inside, the in/out has to come through the vessel as well so it is another thing that has to hold pressure." Yes!!!!

    I'm trying to source a SS 250L jacketed conditioning tank with a curved base. The ones designed for wine/cider look interesting I need to have bright beer for my ecofass kegs as I plan to supply my beers locally and to events. That is after I convert our house to more brewery space,,,,,,, I just need a building contractoraheadbutt
     
  15. Jun 28, 2019 #15

    MyQul

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    I've bookmarked this, and will be directing forumites to it whenever someone asks about conicals. Personally I defiantley think conicals are overrated for us homebrewer. I wonder if the idea that plastic bucket FV's aren't good because they get scratched is one of those HB myths. I've been using the same plastic bucket FV's for years and never get infections. Perhaps that is because I santise these FV's with boiling water?
     
  16. Jun 29, 2019 #16

    Avo

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    I've heard of brewers using a wall paper stripper with the head removed as a steam sanitiser, any one do this ?
     
  17. Jun 29, 2019 #17

    MyQul

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    I don't use a wall paper stripper but I do use boiling water/steam to sanitise FV's. What I do if fill, the FV to about 1/4 -1/3 with boiling water and cover the top with cling film and a big elastic band. The boiling water sanitises the the first 1/4 - 1/3 of the FV and the steam from the boiling water does the rest. I usually leave it overnight, unless I've forgotten to do the sanitising, then I do it on pitching day (which is different than brew day for me as I no -chill for 24 hours). It only really needs about 15mins but I generally prefer to do it the day before I need the FV
     
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  18. Jul 10, 2019 #18

    James Higgin

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    Do it. I now have two conicals. A 7 gallon brewbuilder one, and a 14 gallon SS Brewtech. I got the latter when I got my brite tank recently, so I can brew around 40L in a go rather than 27-30L (depending on how close to the top you really want to push a 7 gallon fermenter). The brewbuilder is cheaper, but lacks a sampling port and you have to DIY a cooling system or see if Brew Builder can install one for a sensible price.

    Word of advice, just make sure the receipt is well hidden as it reduces the risk of arguments (especially when you start adding cooling and heating extras).
     
  19. Jul 10, 2019 #19

    James Higgin

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    ... oh and I don't have the glycol. Instead I have a £20 cool box with holes drilled in the lid for the tubing and wiring to the FTS pump. The coolbox is then filled with water and ice packs / ice.
     

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