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Old 02-27-2010, 08:28 PM   #11
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This is going to be a silly question, but do BBs fall into the same category? Is aging mead in a BB bad?

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Old 02-27-2010, 10:02 PM   #12
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The PET plastic used in Better Bottles (that is what you mean by BB, right?) allows very little oxygen to pass through. I have bulk aged in a Better Bottles for up to 1 year without any noticeable sign of oxidation. I think they work just fine, but I hate the racking port, and won't buy another one with that.

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Old 02-28-2010, 12:28 AM   #13
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Ya I meant better bottles. For starting out, they are much more economical than buying the glass carboys which can be $20-30 more than the better bottles.

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Old 02-28-2010, 02:52 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by fatbloke View Post
Just reading through, and while there's comment about the leaching of plasticisers into a brew, there's also the issue that the alcohol itself, is a pretty potent solvent.
I dont know whats got everyone freaked out about their fermenter leaching chemicals...we are totally surrounded by stuff that leaches stuff that we dont really know if it will eventually kill us or not. Canned food is all sitting in a plastic liner that contains BPA. Bottled water, sodies, and Gatorade all packaged in plastics with plasticisers. We microwave our frozen lunch in #7 plastic trays or our leftovers in #6 containers.

And for those of you who enjoy canned beer, there is a good chance the can is lined with #7.

Now, am I saying leached chemicals are as good as vitamins? NO. I hate the whole idea that we accept this as normal. But, am I worried about leaching from my plastic water bottle into my beer? Not so much considering that massive dose of BPA I get from eating a can of canned peaches.
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Old 02-28-2010, 08:13 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by vespa2t View Post
I dont know whats got everyone freaked out about their fermenter leaching chemicals...we are totally surrounded by stuff that leaches stuff that we dont really know if it will eventually kill us or not. Canned food is all sitting in a plastic liner that contains BPA. Bottled water, sodies, and Gatorade all packaged in plastics with plasticisers. We microwave our frozen lunch in #7 plastic trays or our leftovers in #6 containers.

And for those of you who enjoy canned beer, there is a good chance the can is lined with #7.

Now, am I saying leached chemicals are as good as vitamins? NO. I hate the whole idea that we accept this as normal. But, am I worried about leaching from my plastic water bottle into my beer? Not so much considering that massive dose of BPA I get from eating a can of canned peaches.
Of course, you have a valid point. As for plastic liners in cans? don't know. Never worked in the canning industry.

The leaching of plasticisers is a known fact. The principal of being able to sell beers, ciders (hard cider to you chaps in the US) etc in cans or in plastic bottles, well that's about "short term storage" and a quick turn around of product.

The only wines that tend to be sold in plastic are of the "bag in a box" type, and even then they're intended for quick turn around - as they'd have been stored in (most likely) stainless steel. The higher the alcohol content, the more the need to store the product in a non-reactive container. It's why that most wines tend to be sold in glass and why you can't just pop down to the liquor store and get a can of scotch. It's not just the plasticisers, it's other things as well that are likely to affect the taste. Hence glass is still the preferred storage material for long term storage that's designed not to affect the flavour........

So by all means, if you want to use plastic containers, then that's fine, personally, industry uses glass for more reasons than just the obvious aesthetic ones........

S'up to you after all......

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Old 02-28-2010, 08:57 PM   #16
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The food grade plastics are designed not to leach the chemicals into liquid stored in them. My choice is to only use such food grade plastics. For storage long term, the oxygen transmission also becomes an issue and for that, the PET plastic of Better Bottles is the only one readily available that is adequate.

By the way, the other big advantage of Better Bottles is that they don't shatter. Having dropped a carboy, and narrowly missed a trip to the ER, (our term for the casualty unit, fatbloke) I am a believer. I won't purchase another glass carboy - it will be all stainless steel kegs and Better Bottles for me.

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Old 03-03-2010, 03:01 AM   #17
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Just to add a bit to this discussion...

Like a few people have mentioned, I'm not too concerned about the leaching of chemicals. I figure I absorb more pollution from breathing than by using certain types of plastics for fermenting. Having said that, I'd like to share my one experience using plastic #7 to ferment.

I made a half batch of best bitter and I used a #7 bottle (3 gallon) to ferment. While there was no noticeable flavor difference, the beer was very cloudy. I have made this exact recipe before and since, and there was no such cloudiness. Since then, I have used the same bottle to store Star San. It too, got very cloudy. I have determined the acidic nature of both beer and StarSan do, in fact, leach chemicals that cloud up a beer.

I have no idea if anybody else has had the same experience, but I will never use #7 plastic in beer making again. If you care about the clarity of your beer, you may want to consider it as well.

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Old 04-30-2010, 08:16 PM   #18
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Update: I bought a 5 gallon water jug from wal-mart, the empty kind. It smelled like plastic when I bought it and I thought a spray out and shake would cure that. I made some mead in it, and I tested it yesterday and ugh, it tastes like plastic.

The first time I used one, it was a culligan water bottle that was full of water (when I bought it), it didn't have that fresh plastic smell to it and I had no problems. This time I used this empty one and I just wasted $30 worth of honey and yeast...

Live and learn...

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