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Old 06-20-2014, 10:14 PM   #41
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I just started brewing over the weekend and I use a glass carboy. Fear ensues after these horror stories. Thanks guys!
Don't let all the fear of glass scare you away. In 18 years of brewing I have broken zero carboys. I own one 6.5, two 6's, four 5's, and two 3's. I made my own brew straps for all but the 3's, and never use carboy handles. Are the dangerous? Sure. So are motorcycles. But the first rule of riding motorcycles is that you WILL dump it, it's just a matter of when. I handle my carboys knowing it's just a master of time before I break one, so I'm going to do everything right in handling them to delay it as long as I can.

If I could afford it, I might switch to all stainless fermentors, but then I couldn't watch the process like I like to. Glass works best for me. To each his own!
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Old 06-21-2014, 05:59 PM   #42
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I'm sorry what do those links prove? You posed it as a fact but neither source claims that PET degrades from ethanol exposure or leaches chemicals....
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Seriously your worried about leeching chemicals from a PET bottle?

You do realize what damage that alcohol is doing to your body is infinitely worse than any minuscule of plastic you may get over years of using a PET carboy?

Obviously dont ferment in a lead container or a non food safe bucket, your going to be dead of alcohol poisoning long before you should worry about leeching plastic from a PET carboy.

Also as others have stated, your not posting a scientific document..your posting some guy on a chemistry forum the equivalent of Ask Yahoo.

You're right; maybe I shouldn't have stated it as absolute fact. I guess I've just seen enough evidence to convince myself against using PET. No need to get all defensive.

I wasn't aware that the forum rules warranted posting links to scientific documents when you re-state findings of studies you've read in the past, but here's one: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2854718/

If you think consuming ethanol in the amounts of a few beers a day is "infinitely worse" than consuming trace amounts of plasticizers, which have been found in some studies (go find them yourself this time) to stay in the human body virtually permanently and potentially affect the endocrine system, that's your opinion, but I'd strongly advise you to do some more reading.

Nonetheless, I don't use PET because of the studies I've read, one of which I linked above. That's enough for me. With glass carboys, I'm risking slicing open an artery on my leg. PET carboy users are risking the potentially consuming plasticizers which may or may not be harmful long-term. We're all taking risks just as we do when we cross a street or drive our cars.
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Old 06-21-2014, 06:29 PM   #43
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This. Especially #2. It's also very important to make sure your carboy isn't subject to rapid temperature fluctuations.

While PET carboys are obviously safer in terms of the risk of sustaining some gnarly lacerations, the fact that they degrade and leech harmful chemicals into the beer-- however slightly-- when exposed to things like ethanol, is enough for me to not want to use them.
Scare tactic. You ingest more plasticizer on the street on a windy day from road grime that kicks into the air then Better Bottles leech into an entire batch of beer. We're talking measurements in the PARTS PER TRILLIONS.

I don't know why this is such a common theme here for the plastic haters, but if you use silicon hoses in your system you're getting more plasticizers from that then you'll get in 100 batches of beer fermented in better bottles. If you drink from a straw you're getting more plasticizer then a better bottle puts into an entire batch. If you drink bottled water, if you use a toothbrush with a plastic handle, if you use a plastic lid on your coffee cup....

Please ignore the irrational scare tactics people use to defame better bottles.

That said, I think glass is getting a little bit of irrational treatement lately around here as well. Just BE CAREFUL. Good tips here about using brewhaulers (don't trust them blindly, they can break), milk crates, leather gloves when handling, and not subjecting them to extreme temperature swings.
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Old 06-21-2014, 07:18 PM   #44
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Please ignore the irrational scare tactics people use to defame better bottles.
Indeed, I agree. Glass isn't any more more structurally unsound for one person than it is for the next. However, it's next to impossible to scratch glass in a way that can harbor bacteria. Plastic, not so much. So, if you want to use plastic, then be prepared to spend more money over the long run due to replacing scratched plastic. Simple. I mean, I'd never expect a plastic fermenter bucket to last for 20 years. I am reguarly fermenting in glass that is over 50 years old.
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Old 06-21-2014, 08:29 PM   #45
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Indeed, I agree. Glass isn't any more more structurally unsound for one person than it is for the next. However, it's next to impossible to scratch glass in a way that can harbor bacteria. Plastic, not so much. So, if you want to use plastic, then be prepared to spend more money over the long run due to replacing scratched plastic. Simple. I mean, I'd never expect a plastic fermenter bucket to last for 20 years. I am reguarly fermenting in glass that is over 50 years old.
Totally irrelevant to what I posted. Not sure why you quoted me. Don't scratch it then. You siphon with an auto-siphon? A plastic racking cane? Vinyl tubing?

Making sure your gear is clean is part and parcel of brewing good beer. Doesn't really matter what materials you're using, that remains true.
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Old 06-21-2014, 08:58 PM   #46
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Don't let all the fear of glass scare you away. In 18 years of brewing I have broken zero carboys. I own one 6.5, two 6's, four 5's, and two 3's. I made my own brew straps for all but the 3's, and never use carboy handles. Are the dangerous? Sure. So are motorcycles. But the first rule of riding motorcycles is that you WILL dump it, it's just a matter of when. I handle my carboys knowing it's just a master of time before I break one, so I'm going to do everything right in handling them to delay it as long as I can.

If I could afford it, I might switch to all stainless fermentors, but then I couldn't watch the process like I like to. Glass works best for me. To each his own!
Agreed. I really love glass. Love riding too. I've broken 1 carboy in many years just last year and it was my own fault for being in a unjustified hurry. Still, it broke and was a real bitch to clean up even with no injuries. I still love glass but went Speidel last year. I will still carefully use my glass in milk crates for long term aging only to reduce handling and getting cocky again.

I recommend dropping a bike every 15,000 miles which keeps one humble. Stop lights are very good places to lower one's false pride. Gas pumps are good as are parking lots. Anyone who never dropped a ride never rode. Always avoid crashes, they are way too humbling.
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Old 06-22-2014, 01:24 AM   #47
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I recommend dropping a bike every 15,000 miles which keeps one humble. Stop lights are very good places to lower one's false pride. Gas pumps are good as are parking lots. Anyone who never dropped a ride never rode. Always avoid crashes, they are way too humbling.

Hilarious! I dropped one of my bikes only once... Parked... Late at night.... Drunk.... Sitting on it smoking a cig...
I was the only one who sustained damage. It was humbling


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Old 06-22-2014, 02:03 AM   #48
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All these people who obsess over leaching chemicals out of plastic. I would bet that with a look in their refrigerator you will find plenty of items of plastic or at least items that were once in plastic. Probably some plastic cookware etc. Their fears are not really different than mine of getting sliced to ribbons by a shattered carboy. I do not, and will never own a glass carboy.

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