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dnye 09-09-2012 09:01 PM

Quick Fermenter Size Question
 
Hey guys, I'm looking into getting into wine and had a quick question. I have fermenting buckets for beer and they are I think 6.5 gallons. All the things I have read call for 8 gallon fermenters for a 6 gallon batch. Is it possible to to do 6 gallon batches in the beer fermentor or do I really need an 8 gallon bucket?

Thanks!

RobertRGeorge 09-09-2012 09:07 PM

If you are doing red wines from crushed grapes you will get a "cap" of fruit that will rise up pretty high and you must punch it down. Can be a mess if the fermenter is not deep enough. If you are starting with juice I have found that there is no "kreusen" with wine (big layer of foam) as it ferments and so the headspace does not need to be as great as with beer.

brazedowl 09-09-2012 09:50 PM

+1 for Rob.

If you're not doing fresh fruit, say a concentrate, or juice based wine, you can go straight to a carboy. I've done all my fruit wines in a bucket that is labeled up to 5 gallons but I think it tops out at like 5.5 or 6. You just need to be rather vigilent about punching down the cap every 6 hours or so.

Honda88 09-10-2012 02:29 AM

you may run into problems, you may not, it depends on how fast your fermentation is. I dont like to ferment in carboys because i like to stir my must while primary, you really should look into getting a 8 gallon bucket, they are only like 20 bucks including lid at my brew shop

dnye 09-10-2012 11:14 PM

Thanks for the replies guys!

Just as a follow up....you say I may run into problems. What kind of problems? Are we talking possible lid blow off or could this produce off flavors?

I'm probably just going to order a new bucket but was really trying to avoid it. What is the worst case senario if I use the smaller fermenter?

Thanks again!

brazedowl 09-11-2012 12:03 AM

I almost always put my fresh fruit in nylon bags inside the primary bucket. Then I put on the lid which has an airlock hole. If I put an airlock in it the bags float up, touch it and bubble fluid up and out to make a mess. Same thing if the hole is left empty. BUT if you stick like half a straw in the hole and put a cup on top of the straw to push down the bag it works without a hitch and then you can just pop it open once or twice a day and push down the bags and make sure they're getting equal action in the must.


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