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Old 08-08-2007, 05:55 PM   #1
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Default Used Ale Pale Question

I recently had a craiglist score that included an Ale Pale and a Bottling bucket. I don't really need either because I have a new bottling bucket and better bottles. However, I have all my better bottles full or planned to be full but want to whip up a quick batch of Apfelwein. I soaked the Ale Pale and got rid of some discoloration, but it still has a slight residual smell to it, like left of reminisce of hops. Is this normal for an Ale Pale to hold some smells like that? Should I try to use this sucker or just pitch it? I'd hate to ruin a batch of Apfelwein to someone else's funky pale...

As always, thanks in advance for your replies.

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Old 08-08-2007, 06:12 PM   #2
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For the cost of a plastic pail, I would not risk it IMHO. I'd find other uses for them though.

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Old 08-08-2007, 11:48 PM   #3
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i too wouldn't risk it, but I will say that "yes, the food grade plastic used for bucket fermenters does pick up the beer smell, especally the strong hop aromas, and it never really fades.
I have a whole 4 batches done in my bucket, and its already 'tinted' and smells like its still got beer in it...but I clean it thoroughly immediately after racking.

I'd keep it and use it for holding sanitizing solution, like on bottling day. that's what my 'retired' buckets get delegated to.

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Old 08-09-2007, 03:10 AM   #4
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My plastic fermenting buckets have all retained a beer smell. I've soaked them in PBW, bleach, and oxyclean but the smell remains. I haven't noticed any smells or flavors being transferred from batch to batch. As long as the bucket doesn't have any scratches that could harbor bacteria, I say go for it.

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Old 08-09-2007, 03:17 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IowaStateFan
My plastic fermenting buckets have all retained a beer smell. I've soaked them in PBW, bleach, and oxyclean but the smell remains. I haven't noticed any smells or flavors being transferred from batch to batch. As long as the bucket doesn't have any scratches that could harbor bacteria, I say go for it.
Same here. Some of my buckets are over 13 years old, but they're still good.

Just to throw this out, if you have enough buckets why not just label them?
One for dark brews, light brews, Apfelwein/meads (without fruit), meads with fruit?

A waste of time IMO, but something to think about.
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Old 08-09-2007, 03:58 AM   #6
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I'm pretty sure you can reuse them. Granted I'm a noob so take it for what its worth. In my many hours or "research" I've come across people using old cake frosting buckets, stating they cleaned them but they sometimes retained the smells/colors. This has not seemed to cause them problems so I banking that you're good to go. Or at least I hope so because I'm getting so buckets from a local Walmart next week! (their produce manager said the bakery normally throws them away so why not)

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Old 08-09-2007, 11:52 AM   #7
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For the folks who say don't risk it, think about this. Is it worth it to risk the $30+ dollars plus all the TIME invested in creating a batch of beer to save 8 bucks on a used bucket fermenter?

I don't know about ya'll, but my batches cost less than a used bucket, but it's my time that I hate wasting and for 8 bucks, I'd buy a new bucket and sleep much better for those first two weeks knowing my beer is going to turn out OK.

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Old 08-09-2007, 12:39 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EdWort
For the folks who say don't risk it, think about this. Is it worth it to risk the $30+ dollars plus all the TIME invested in creating a batch of beer to save 8 bucks on a used bucket fermenter?

I don't know about ya'll, but my batches cost less than a used bucket, but it's my time that I hate wasting and for 8 bucks, I'd buy a new bucket and sleep much better for those first two weeks knowing my beer is going to turn out OK.
Yeah, I agree with Ed on this one atleast. I am not risking putting sweat and hard work into a brew and then having it skunk in an old bucket. Plus, I'm just a bit snobby and like to see my beer in better bottles so I can watch the action. Also, I honestly don't like working with buckets all that much, the lids are just a pain.

Now, that beings said I was going to use it as a designated Apfelwein bucket because my better bottles will all be full very soon. I also wanted to get this Apfelwein in ASAP so I can start drinking it. I guess I would feel a little less bad if it hurt some Apfelwein because it will be cheaper than a batch of beer and much less sweat and time invested... Not to undercut your Apfelwein though, it's amazingly tasty. But from a cost and work perspective it is much lower than your average extract brew.
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