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Old 08-27-2008, 02:14 PM   #1
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Default carboy question

I just finished reading the thread on the increase in price expected for carboys. My LHBS has some for sale and I am thinking about buying one and starting another batch before the price goes up.

Will there be differences in fermenting in a carboy rather than an Ale Pail? I have read a lot about blow something or another... or can I simply put an airlock on a carboy as with the ale pail?

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Old 08-27-2008, 02:18 PM   #2
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I also use Ale pails but regardless of what you are using you can experience vigorous foaming from fermentation which can blow your airlock out. If this is happening then you can use a blow off hose which is just a hose that replaces your airlock. You stick one end into the opening of the carboy and the other in some sort of sanitary solution. If you search blow off hose you should find more information.

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Old 08-27-2008, 02:21 PM   #3
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Glass Carboy is typcially used as a secondary vessel. The reason that I see this as the typical use is because of the small diameter of the neck of the carboy. Can you imagine trying to clean all the trub out of a carboy that was used for a primary fermenter.

The ale pale being used as the primary is typical because of the ease of clean-up after you are ready to transfer the beer into a secondary vessel.

I don't believe there is any differance between fermentation in an "Ale Pale" or "Carboy" other than the fact that cleanup will be more difficult with the carboy if used as the primary.

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Old 08-27-2008, 02:38 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ksuflash View Post
Can you imagine trying to clean all the trub out of a carboy that was used for a primary fermenter.
.
I do it every batch. I dump the trub out, then spray the areas I can get to with hot water. After that, I fill it with PBW and hot water and let it sit 30 minutes (or longer). Anything left over (usually caked on krausen) is easily scrubbed away with a carboy brush.
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Old 08-27-2008, 02:41 PM   #5
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I use carboys for everything and will be moving to better bottles soon.
Came up from a quick search.
http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f11/plas...-699/#post4954

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Old 08-27-2008, 03:11 PM   #6
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I have a glass 6.5 gal carboy that I do primary in, and I also have an ale pail that I do primary in. Yesterday, I bought a 6 gal better bottle, and I have to say, I'm sold. The price is right, you can still see your fermentation, and cleaning (compared to the glass carboy) made me feel like superman. Plus, the better bottle wont break.

Still on my first go-round, however, so we'll see if I feel this way after several batches in the better bottle.

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Old 08-27-2008, 03:31 PM   #7
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I have all three. I actually prefer the Better Bottles. The buckets would be my second choice.
I clean my BB by filling it with an Oxiclean solution. This completely removes all krausen. You do not want to use a brush on a BB as scratching is possible (don't know how probable though).
It really is just a matter of preference and in the case of glass, for me, an issue of safety.

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Old 08-27-2008, 03:38 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ksuflash View Post
Glass Carboy is typcially used as a secondary vessel. The reason that I see this as the typical use is because of the small diameter of the neck of the carboy. Can you imagine trying to clean all the trub out of a carboy that was used for a primary fermenter.

The ale pale being used as the primary is typical because of the ease of clean-up after you are ready to transfer the beer into a secondary vessel.

I don't believe there is any differance between fermentation in an "Ale Pale" or "Carboy" other than the fact that cleanup will be more difficult with the carboy if used as the primary.
In my carboys and better bottles I use hot water and some PBW and in 1/2 hour risne it out, no scrubbing required.
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Old 08-27-2008, 03:44 PM   #9
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You can use an airlock with a carboy, if you have the proper sized, drilled stopper (your LHBS should carry these).

I always use glass carboys for primaries if I'm brewing a big beer or a beer that is notorious for vigorous fermentation (belgian wheats).

Glass Carboys accommodate a larger blowoff tube than those small tubes designed for buckets or BB's.

A lot of people like the clear fermenters (carboys or BB's) because they like to watch the fermentation in action.

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Old 08-27-2008, 07:02 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ksuflash View Post
Can you imagine trying to clean all the trub out of a carboy that was used for a primary fermenter.
I can imagine, I've done it a couple of times now, it's easy. Pour in some water, swirl it around, dump it out, if needed, repeat. It's harder getting the dried yeast from the blowoff out, and all that requires is soaking it in hot water with some oxi clean for a day.
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