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Old 04-01-2013, 12:33 AM   #11
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There is no reason that a beer fermenter needs to be air-tight in the first place.

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Old 04-01-2013, 12:38 AM   #12
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Also if you are that worried about he lid being air tight get a cheap roll of duct tape and seal that sucker up. It's what I did.

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Old 04-01-2013, 12:43 AM   #13
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Originally Posted by ImperialStout View Post
I would think the Lowe's or HD seal on the lid would not be air tight enough to ferment beer in. Saving money is a good thing but, once you realize brewing beer is a hobby you want to stick with, buying the best equipment you can afford at the time is the best way to save money. It will last longer and you may not have to up-grade as soon. A Lowe's bucket for $5 or a brewing bucket for $12, get the brewing bucket.

Like most home brewers I started out making beer from a kit in a 20 qt pot, moved to partial mash and full batch boil in an 8 gal pot and then bought a 10 gal pot to do AG brewing with 20 to 25 pounds of grain. Even then friends told me I should have got a 15 gal pot. I have only been brewing 2 years and am on my third pot. Just got a carboy to ferment a Barleywine in for 3 months. Generally speaking you can spend as little or as much as you want with this hobby but in general it is not a cheap hobby.

My point is to look at the equipment you need and can afford, then look at the next step up. If it's not going to break the bank, go for it. If you plan to stay with this hobby you will save money in the long run. I'll bet most people here who have been brewing awhile can tell you a similar story of the equipment they started with and what they wish they had bought in the beginning, and may offer you similar advice.
So... About this barley wine... It's going to be my next brew, so I ask everybody
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Exactly. And Zuljin was correct.
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Old 04-01-2013, 01:13 AM   #14
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I would think the Lowe's or HD seal on the lid would not be air tight enough to ferment beer in.
Alright, let's stop right there.

I have three of the lids that Home Depot sells for $2 (the white Encore Plastic Corp lids that match the food-safe buckets) and they are indeed air-tight. Lowe's sells identical lids. They're gasketed lids with the pull tab, exactly like the ones you'd find on food service pickle buckets. If you don't want to shred your fingers trying to open them, I suggest you buy a bucket opener tool for $2 or so (no, not a paint key). I've gotten good airlock activity with all three, and I've witnessed backsuck with one, so I know they're air tight.

There's a $1 lid at Walmart that is not gasketed and makes a poor seal. It's very flimsy. A friend brought me over 2 of them when I was in a pinch one day, and I only used them for about 24 hours before replacing them with the Home Depot versions. The $1 ones went in the back yard as doggie chew toys / makeshift frisbies.

If you guys want to go ghetto fab on your fermenters and 5 gallons just isn't big enough...

Brute 20-gallon White (Trash Can) Fermenter $23.40

Brute 32-gallon White (Trash Can) Fermenter $41.20

Two of those 20-gallon containers would make for a sweet aging vessel for your 1-bbl barleywine brew day.
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Old 04-01-2013, 04:29 AM   #15
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Update. I was wrong. My Lowe's lids are Encore Plastics. My Home Depot lid is Arge Corp. Both are extremely similar.

This is what I use these 5 gallon buckets for... brew day organization. I should probably get a second one... this one's rather full and I have other gadgets that don't have home yet. Brewing, cleaning, finings and kegging equipment don't all fit. The lid folds down to make a seat that supports 250# or so.



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Old 04-01-2013, 05:02 AM   #16
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Hey, my advice is before you go to your local home brew shop or Lowe's, check craigslist. 3 days ago I bought three 6.5 gallon buckets with sealing lids from a guy that had given up home brewing for $8 each. For sake of argument, my local home brew shop (Northern Brewer in St. Paul, MN) sells them with a lid for about $16 total. 50% used discount sounds pretty good to me.

Try searching "home brewing, fermentor, wine making, beer making, etc"

Good luck. Also, if nothing is available on craigslist and your budget can afford, support your local home brew shop.

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Old 04-01-2013, 05:21 AM   #17
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Call your local grocery store and talk real sweet to the lady in the bakery. She'll give you all the food safe buckets and lids you want in a variety of sizes. If she is REALLY nice she'll even wash all the icing out first!

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"I cant handle that buddy.. it tastes like Moose Piss", (IPA) - side note.. ive never had moose piss, but im sure it doesnt taste like IPA or I would have a moose.
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Old 04-01-2013, 05:31 AM   #18
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If she is REALLY nice she'll even wash all the icing out first!
Noooooo, there are gravity points in that icing
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Old 04-01-2013, 05:42 AM   #19
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I will NEVER be able to replicate the brews I made in those buckets...

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"I cant handle that buddy.. it tastes like Moose Piss", (IPA) - side note.. ive never had moose piss, but im sure it doesnt taste like IPA or I would have a moose.
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Old 04-01-2013, 05:55 AM   #20
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I got 6 gallon buckets with gasketed lids from a local food manufacturing plant for 50 cents each. It's nice to have connections. :-)

The Lowes buckets are fine. It's just a hassle to convert all the 5 gallon recipes down to 4 gallons. They are great for apfelwein though!

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