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Old 11-19-2012, 02:17 PM   #11
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I took bottles like that & rinsed them under the tap & shook'em like mad to get the excess gunk out before the soak. I use a homer cheapo 5G bucket with enough PBW to cover them by an inch or two. I can do 12'13 bottles at a time this way. Soak'em overnight,then scrub label gunk off with a dobie & bottle brush the inside well. Rinse & onto the bottle tree to dry.
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Old 11-19-2012, 03:07 PM   #12
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If you have to use the bottle and it is gunked up pretty bad do the oxy soak. If there is still some stuck in there and you MUST use the bottle and have no brush, just dump in a tablespoonful or two of uncooked rice, a few ounces of water and shake.

If that doesn't scrub it clean, TOSS IT..

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Old 11-19-2012, 03:15 PM   #13
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Thanks guys. Very helpful! One more question, After pulling them from the sanitize soak (I bought "star san") can you fill them while a little wet or do they need to be completely dry? I was thinking i'd let them dry in the dishwasher if necessary.

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Old 11-19-2012, 03:18 PM   #14
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Thanks guys. Very helpful! One more question, After pulling them from the sanitize soak (I bought "star san") can you fill them while a little wet or do they need to be completely dry? I was thinking i'd let them dry in the dishwasher if necessary.
Wet.
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Old 11-19-2012, 03:22 PM   #15
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boil them, just like we used to do with old baby bottles (btw... do people still boil baby bottles?)

fill the bottles with water (this part is important, they need water inside them), put them in the pot, half fill your pot with water, and turn on the heat.

the entire pot (bottles and all) will come to temp together. boil for 15 - 20 minutes and turn the flame off.

as soon as you can do it without hurting yourself (and probably using tongs), pull the bottles out of the pot, drain them, and put them upside down in the drainer, or on the bottle tree, or where-ever.

it will take a while for them to cool. DO NOT TRY TO ACCELERATE THE COOLING PROCESS.

at the end of this, your bottles will actually be as close to sterile as they can be. you could also give them a run through the star san if you want, but that would be a touch over the top.

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Old 11-19-2012, 03:45 PM   #16
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dadshomebrewing, you do realize (I hope) how LONG it will take to go through enough bottles for even a 5 gallon batch... Right?? Not to mention energy/fuel used to get the water up to a boil (and hold it) that many times. IMO, far more effort/work than it's worth. Especially when you can use zero energy (stove top) by mixing up some PBW (or oxifree) solution and giving the bottles a good soak.

Thankfully, I no longer bottle (entire batches), so I don't need to deal with this. WHEN I do bottle, it's off of keg/tap, so I have a handful of bottles to go through at any given time. Since I also make sure to rinse them once drained, I don't need to go through all that to clean them. The majority of the bottles I do have were purchased new (by me) so I don't have to worry about things left in them. I have given brew to some friends, that let the bottles sit with the remains in them for a while. Those got a good PBW soak and rinse before being put into rotation.

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Old 11-19-2012, 04:03 PM   #17
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You want them to be wet with Starsan when you bottle. Any incidental funk that blows around and gets in the bottle will be sanitized by the surface coating of Starsan.

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Old 11-19-2012, 04:05 PM   #18
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You want them to be wet with Starsan when you bottle. Any incidental funk that blows around and gets in the bottle will be sanitized by the surface coating of Starsan.
Using a bottle tree really helps there. I would spray it down with Star San as I filled it (after filling the bottles with Star San, then pouring it out). Once inverted like that, it's virtually impossible to have something fall into them. At least until you're actually filling and before you cap them. Another reason I liked the swing-top bottles is you could fill one, close it up, and then grab another, all while bottling.
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Old 11-19-2012, 04:09 PM   #19
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dadshomebrewing, you do realize (I hope) how LONG it will take to go through enough bottles for even a 5 gallon batch... Right?? Not to mention energy/fuel used to get the water up to a boil (and hold it) that many times. IMO, far more effort/work than it's worth. Especially when you can use zero energy (stove top) by mixing up some PBW (or oxifree) solution and giving the bottles a good soak.

Thankfully, I no longer bottle (entire batches), so I don't need to deal with this. WHEN I do bottle, it's off of keg/tap, so I have a handful of bottles to go through at any given time. Since I also make sure to rinse them once drained, I don't need to go through all that to clean them. The majority of the bottles I do have were purchased new (by me) so I don't have to worry about things left in them. I have given brew to some friends, that let the bottles sit with the remains in them for a while. Those got a good PBW soak and rinse before being put into rotation.
yes, i do realize that.

i also realize that the "gunk" in the bottom of old bottles could be nearly any darned thing, and that the best way to know they are clean is to do it yourself.

you only need to boil them once, assuming you can keep them clean after that.

anyway... opinions and suggestions were requested, and i offered one.
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Old 11-19-2012, 04:12 PM   #20
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yes, i do realize that.

i also realize that the "gunk" in the bottom of old bottles could be nearly any darned thing, and that the best way to know they are clean is to do it yourself.

you only need to boil them once, assuming you can keep them clean after that.

anyway... opinions and suggestions were requested, and i offered one.
Just making sure... I have yet to come across anything, in a bottle, that could withstand a good PBW solution soak. I sometimes mix it up a little stronger (1.5-1.75oz/gallon) to cut through more junk. Using hot water with it also helps. Shaking up a bottle, half filled, with PBW solution in it also does wonders.
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K2: Epic mead
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