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Old 08-25-2010, 03:32 PM   #1
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Default Fermenting in Growlers?

Does anybody here actually ferment in glass growlers? I have two growlers and I've thought about using them for fermenting small "test batches" of experimental brews. Does anybody here do this?

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Old 08-25-2010, 03:34 PM   #2
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There is no reason you can't as long as you can find a stopper to fit the mouth of the growler. I've never done it, but I wouldn't have any reservations about doing it if I get the urge.

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Old 08-25-2010, 03:38 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by MacGruber View Post
Does anybody here actually ferment in glass growlers? I have two growlers and I've thought about using them for fermenting small "test batches" of experimental brews. Does anybody here do this?
Well we make starters in them all the time. And a lot of us use 1 gallon jugs to make tiny batches of mead or wine in, so that's pretty much the same thing.

One thing to remember, some growlers are thicker than others, don't use one that feels too thin. There shouldn't be too much pressure going in if you have a stopper and airlock on it, but you'd hate for it to go boom if the glass was cheap.
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Old 08-25-2010, 03:41 PM   #4
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In regards to what Norcal said, if you can't find a stopper that fits, and you still have the screw on cap, punch or drill a hole in the top, go get a 5/8" rubber grommet, and line the hole with it just like in your bucket lids, and stick your airlock in that.

I have a couple like that on some of my growlers or wine jug fermenters.

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Old 08-25-2010, 04:18 PM   #5
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I've never used anything smaller than a 1 gallon jug. No reason to not use a growler, but you'd only have 4-5 bottles vs a 8-10 from a gallon.

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Old 08-25-2010, 04:43 PM   #6
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It would be nice to experiment with. make one batch and put it in many different growlers with a different type of yeast in each.

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Old 08-25-2010, 06:25 PM   #7
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What about using a piece of tin foil instead of a stopper?

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Old 08-25-2010, 06:53 PM   #8
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I have a few small stoppers that fit my two thick glass growlers. I'm thinking that I'll try something experiental spiced beer for Christmas using leftover grains from my up coming brown. This will be a small batch that I can brew a little quicker in my kitchen as opposed to doing the entire 6 hour turkey fryer set up out back.

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Old 08-26-2010, 09:41 PM   #9
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What about using a piece of tin foil instead of a stopper?
Your fermentation will probably remain sanitary, but your beer will be oxidized. There's a physics principle called "partial pressures" that allows oxygen to come into the unsealed vessel even though there's a continuous release of CO2 from the fermentation that will likely keep mold spores and bacteria out. By using an air lock, you are pushing most of the oxygen and nitrogen out of the empty space above the fermenting beer, and replacing it with the evolved CO2. That CO2 protects the beer from oxidation. The foil cap technique is good for stepping up yeast cultures, but not good for fermenting beer.
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Old 08-27-2010, 03:05 PM   #10
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Your fermentation will probably remain sanitary, but your beer will be oxidized. There's a physics principle called "partial pressures" that allows oxygen to come into the unsealed vessel even though there's a continuous release of CO2 from the fermentation that will likely keep mold spores and bacteria out. By using an air lock, you are pushing most of the oxygen and nitrogen out of the empty space above the fermenting beer, and replacing it with the evolved CO2. That CO2 protects the beer from oxidation. The foil cap technique is good for stepping up yeast cultures, but not good for fermenting beer.
Thanks for that. Makes sense, and I had never thought of that.
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