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Old 06-10-2011, 02:31 AM   #1
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Default mason jars?

I'd been using a couple of cases of flip top bottles for years now and the heavy glass has held up great. Recently I'd been setting aside growlers and using those also. The other day I had one explode but I think it's probably because it was a hot day i didn't have the ac in and it had been filled up with a rochefort 10 clone that i was doing the whole bottle conditioning thing with. so I tossed the remaining into the fridge to keep them chill and bring down the pressure a little. so far so good.

And tonight I noticed at a dollar store that they had cases of 16oz wide mouth mason jars with lids for like $8. The glass seems pretty thick but after having a growler go off I'm a little worried that the mason jars might not hold up.

Has any one tried them and run into any problems?

thanks.

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Old 06-10-2011, 02:34 AM   #2
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Mason jars are meant to hold a vaccum, not the outward pressure of carbonation pressing on the screw ring.

Drink out of them, but don't bottle in them.

They work by creating a vacuum when you can under pressure... WHen you put your food in the jar, seal the jar and stick it inside the boiling water bath, the vacuum draws the seal downward or inward that's why the dimple on a can is supposed to be pushed inward, and if you ever come a cross a can where it is bulging outward you are in trouble...

When you bottle, the gas builds up til it maxes out the head room (held in place by the crimped cap or the cork with wire or the gasket on a grolh bottle.....The co2 hits the barrier, maxes it and then goes back into solution/

With a mason jar you would either blow the seal and all the co2 would escape or if you were lucky enough that the seal held, more than likely the glass of the jar would explode and you would have a nice bottle grenade....

The tops for a mason jar typically is a thin metal lid with a rubberized "grommet" attached to is, really just a silicon band around the edge of the lid, and a retaining ring.





When you can, the cooling of the once heated container and it's goodies creates a vaccuum, it sucks inward. It pulls the flat tightly Downward.

In fact many of the lids actually has a small indentation in the center of it, that when the vacuum occurs it is pulled inward on the top and leaves a little dimple. That's a sign that there is a vacuum pulling the lid down and keeping the veggies or jam sealed up nicely and protected from infection.

And usually after you remove the retaining ring, if everything is OK with the jar, you usually can feel/hear the the vaccum break, with a little *POP*

However any of you who have ACTUALLY canned before, probably knows that one of the ways you can tell if your food in the can spoiled is if the little dimple is pushed outword. In jars without the dimple it is really hard, usually the lid might feel loose or there might actually be wetness around the lid when you unscrew the retaining

Because usually the rotting food give of a gas which expands to push up the dimple OR it breaks the seal where the little lid gasket meets the rim of the glass.

There is considerably MORE pressure in the carbonation process of beer, often enough pressure to cause a BOTTLE BOMB, in bottles specifically made to handle the OUTWARD pressure of carbonation.

Now if you managed to find one of these older style, thick walled jars with big gaskets and flip tops...We MIGHT be having a different discussion.



But your typical jars from the grocery store...NOT.

A crown bottles cap is designed to contain the Outward and upward pressure of a beer bottle, we crimp it down, we don't create a vacuum that seats it on the bottle.

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Old 06-10-2011, 02:38 AM   #3
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Also your growler didn't explode because it was a hot day, but because [i]growlers are meant to hold CARBONATED beer, not contain the pressures of CARBONATING beer, there is a difference.

Growlers are often NOT recommended for bottling as the glass can sometimes be thinner than your standard bottles...they are meant for transporting beer, not for carbing-up and conditioning...


Carbed beer and carbonating beer are 2 seperate things.

To carb a beer whether or not is is done naturally or with co2 you are forcing the gas into the solution. The pressure builds up, then there's a point where either the bottle fails or the co2, seeking the path of least resistance, forces itself into solution. You could call it a peak point, where there is a lot of pressure in the bottle, both already in solution and in the headspace trying to go into the solution, eventually it balances out and the beer is carbed.

Beer bottles, champagne bottles and kegs are rated with a higher psi/volume of co2 than wine bottles and growlers.

Already carbed and kegged beer is at a stable volume of co2 which is below the volume that growlers and winebottles are rated at. The FORCING of the co2 already happened. Why do you think kegs are made of metal and very very strong? To handle the pressure.

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Originally Posted by RukusDM View Post
This is because during carbing, the pressure can go above 30 or 40 PSI. I have a thread in the cider forum where I did several tests bottle carbing sweet hard cider. There is allot of data there if your interested.

I have a bottle with a pressure gauge on it. I recorded pressures during the carbing process. This is how the data was generated. I also recorded pressures while pasteurizing the cider.

I recently bottled some lager I made. I also filled my gauge bottle and my lower pressure gauge bottle pegged at 35 PSI as that was the limit of the gauge. It probably ended up in the 40's, but no way to tell for sure.


When we bottle condition beer, we are really simulating force carbing like the keg folks do. We cause a ferment by adding sugar. This creates a high pressure in the bottle. CO2 doesn't like to dissolve in a warm liquid. We then put some bottles in the fridge. The temperature of the liquid drops and the CO2 then begins to dissolve in the liquid.

It seems to take several days at fridge temperatures for the CO2 to fully saturate the liquid for a maximum saturation for that liquid temperature.

While the CO2 is moving into the liquid, the pressure slowly drops. I've monitored this process as well with the pressure gauge.

Pressures go way higher than folks think while bottle conditioning. In the following data, I carbed sweet hard cider and stopped the carbing and then pasteurized the cider when the bottle was at 22 PSI. My Lager went above 35 PSI. The data doesn't show the extremes the pressure rises with beer as I stopped the cider at 22 PSI, but it would have continued if i hadn't stopped it.

The gauge bottle has a nice side effect, it tells you when your bottles are conditioned as the pressure rise stops. I then throw them in the Fridge to cold condition for several days before I open. The gauge also tells you when they are carbed as the pressure drop stops. Pretty basic really.

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f32/bott...review-205862/

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No, when you bottle condition, the slight fermentation we cause by adding priming sugar just builds pressure up in the bottle. The pressures seem to go up into the 30's and 40's PSI from what I've seen.

The CO2 doesn't really move into the liquid until the temperature drops. Some CO2 may, but not the majority of it. CO2 doesn't dissolve into solution until a lower temperature.

This is really what we do when we force carb in a keg. We raise the pressure up when the beer is cold. The CO2 moves into the solution. The tap pressure is lowered for proper delivery and the beer either sets for cold aging, or it is consumed at that time.

What you would see with the pressure gauge (if you use one bigger than my first bottle had. Should use a 100 PSI Gauge) is that the pressure climbs over time and will level off.

Once the pressure levels off, that means all of the priming sugar has been used up by the yeast. Next, you put them into the fridge. You will see the pressure drop over several days. Eventually, it also will level off. I like to let them sit for a few more days after that, but really if the pressure stops dropping, all of the CO2 that can be dissolved at that temperature has been achieved.
.
I think it goes down to this.....is it worth playing Russian Roulette with your money and the time you spent bringing your brew along from grain to bottling day???

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Old 06-10-2011, 02:56 AM   #4
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wow, epic post, but thank you. I hadn't even considered most of that. The growlers I'll just have to keep my fingers crossed as I'm saving them till the 4th but not use them again.

I think this just pushes me one step closer to just buying a keg system

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Old 06-10-2011, 05:07 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Revvy View Post
Also your growler didn't explode because it was a hot day, but because [i]growlers are meant to hold CARBONATED beer, not contain the pressures of CARBONATING beer, there is a difference.

Growlers are often NOT recommended for bottling as the glass can sometimes be thinner than your standard bottles...they are meant for transporting beer, not for carbing-up and conditioning...


Carbed beer and carbonating beer are 2 seperate things.

To carb a beer whether or not is is done naturally or with co2 you are forcing the gas into the solution. The pressure builds up, then there's a point where either the bottle fails or the co2, seeking the path of least resistance, forces itself into solution. You could call it a peak point, where there is a lot of pressure in the bottle, both already in solution and in the headspace trying to go into the solution, eventually it balances out and the beer is carbed.

Beer bottles, champagne bottles and kegs are rated with a higher psi/volume of co2 than wine bottles and growlers.

Already carbed and kegged beer is at a stable volume of co2 which is below the volume that growlers and winebottles are rated at. The FORCING of the co2 already happened. Why do you think kegs are made of metal and very very strong? To handle the pressure.
i call BS, ive carbed various growlers without any problems. they are fine for bottling.
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Old 06-10-2011, 06:02 AM   #6
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i call BS, ive carbed various growlers without any problems. they are fine for bottling.
If you have run around in a lightning storm holding a long pointy metal rod in your hand, and didn't get struck by lightning, does that mean it is an effective lightning prevention device?
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Old 06-10-2011, 09:30 AM   #7
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i call BS, ive carbed various growlers without any problems. they are fine for bottling.
And others haven't been as lucky as you, we have plenty of "growler goes boom" threads on here (including the op). As well as the the data provided by Rukus. Did you bother to read the entire post? I said it's a game of Russian Roullete you're playing with your beer doing so. It's kinda like having unprotected sex, you can be lucky and have plenty of it without causing pregnancy or getting aids, but that doesn't mean it's safe, just that you've dodged a bullet.

It's your beer you can do what you want with it....but there's plenty of info and stories on here that backs up what I posted.
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Old 06-10-2011, 08:52 PM   #8
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+3 I was lucky only broke the cap and first thread of growler.

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Old 06-11-2011, 12:41 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Revvy View Post
And others haven't been as lucky as you, we have plenty of "growler goes boom" threads on here (including the op). As well as the the data provided by Rukus. Did you bother to read the entire post? I said it's a game of Russian Roullete you're playing with your beer doing so. It's kinda like having unprotected sex, you can be lucky and have plenty of it without causing pregnancy or getting aids, but that doesn't mean it's safe, just that you've dodged a bullet.

It's your beer you can do what you want with it....but there's plenty of info and stories on here that backs up what I posted.
i continually bottled with growlers (whiskey jugs) for 1.5 years. never ever had a problem, that doesnt sound like russian roullete odds?? ive had 22 oz's go boom a few times. anytime you put pressure in glass its a risk even 12 and 22's. maybe i got extremely lucky i now fill those growlers up from taps so i dont have to worry about it anymore.
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Old 06-11-2011, 03:32 AM   #10
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whiskey jugs?

not sure what you mean by that but the growlers were of a style of glass that was thinner like a commercial 12oz bottle.

for me personally it all comes down to the fact that I loath bottle time so that is what prompted me to move towards the growlers. I did have a batch that was a wheat\spelt but it was a smaller beer. The break of the 1/2 of the rochfort clone was slightly painful as it was one of the more expensive batches id' done and I bottled them back in feb.

per my understanding of the whole pressure thing my hope is the cold fridge will take some stress off the glass and get me to the fourth and it will be a non issue at that point.

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