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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Equipment/Sanitation > Tell me why it won't work - aeration with compressor
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Old 04-02-2009, 01:40 PM   #1
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Default Tell me why it won't work - aeration with compressor

We all know there are several ways to aerate wort; 02 bottle and diffusion stone, rocking the fermenter, aquarium air pump and diffusion stone, etc.

So my question is: if aerating with an air pump and a inline filter is OK, why not just use a compressor and inline filter? Isn't a pump just a low-volume/low-pressure compressor? Seems like using a compressor would bring the benefit of quick aeration without the cons of cost and running out of 02.

Discuss!

Michael

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Old 04-02-2009, 01:51 PM   #2
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You DO realize that most compressors have a crankcase with a piston and rings, and that compressor oil leaks past the rings? There are oil-less compressors, but they are not that common and my guess is you don't have one.

It isn't a big thing to get a Bernzomatic O2 tank for 10 bucks and an Oxynator and just do it the accepted way.

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Old 04-02-2009, 01:52 PM   #3
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With a filter and a regulator set really low I see no reason it wouldn't work. You should probably rig up some food safe hose on the end that touches your beer. The aquarium pump and the home depot O2 bottle are both very cheap. A compressor is way overkill for this application in terms of cost and capacity. And there's also that shop air smell - I don't know that a filter would remove that. So I would guess that's probably why you haven't seen it.

Next up: Hot Tub RIMS system

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Old 04-02-2009, 01:54 PM   #4
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I've had the same bottle of O2 now for over 6 batches and i'm pretty heavy with it.

I'm not sure it would be worth trying to find a oil less diaphragm pump just to aerate the beer.

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Old 04-02-2009, 02:10 PM   #5
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I'm sure it would work fine depending on the compressor you intend to use. I would think there is everything from "medical" or breathing air compressors to constuction grade compressors. i wouldn't use a diesel powered 185 cfm ingersol rand!

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Old 04-02-2009, 02:22 PM   #6
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I have a nebulizer that I can sanitize completly that has no oil etc I bought it at a garage sale for $5.00, cause one of my kids needed a spare to leave at Oma's. I never thought of using it for this but I might try it out and let you know.

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Old 04-02-2009, 03:54 PM   #7
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smell the air coming out of your compressor.

One other thing to consider is that the inside of the tank is typically very humid from the moisture being extracted and also there is usually rust in the there as well.

When I worked at a SCUBA shop we had a huge 4 stage compressor that we had to service regularly with a very expensive oil made for compressors that service breathing gas. We also had a bank of super expensive filters for removing that oil and the moisture. There were 6 of them and they were about 2' long X 6" diameter and I seem to remember them being $100 each.

With the economy the way it is I'm sure you could pick one of these babies up for about $5,000 right now.

Yes sir, nothing like aerating your wort with 4,000 psi !

Seriously though, smell the air coming out of your compressor and decide if you want that going in your wort, filter or no filter.

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Old 04-02-2009, 04:31 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Henry Hill View Post
You DO realize that most compressors have a crankcase with a piston and rings, and that compressor oil leaks past the rings? There are oil-less compressors, but they are not that common and my guess is you don't have one.

It isn't a big thing to get a Bernzomatic O2 tank for 10 bucks and an Oxynator and just do it the accepted way.
Oil-less compressors are extremely common. Nearly every pancake compressor sold in the big box stores are oil-less. I have one myself.

However - i would never use it to aerate my wort.
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Old 04-02-2009, 04:45 PM   #9
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The cost of cleaning up the air coming out of the compressor is much greater than the cost of the other options.

I like the nebulizer pump option - that is medical grade air - nomadjanet picked it up at a great price.

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Old 04-02-2009, 05:15 PM   #10
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You could use one of those 12V tire inflator compressors, they're oilless I believe, which is why you can only run them for 10 minutes before they need cooling. with the right air filter, you could lock it into the valve lock and run sterile tubing from there to the stone.

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