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Old 12-16-2011, 08:42 PM   #1
bigljd
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Default Star San soaking tray

So, I've been using a wallpaper tray for about a year now to soak my wine thief, racking canes, autosiphon, airlocks, etc in to sanitize them. I would leave everything soaking in the tray so if I needed a wine thief to grab a gravity sample, everything would be sanitized and ready to go. It was uncovered, so after a while the starsan would be full of dead gnats and I'd have to replace the starsan regularly.

This worked fine until I abused the wallpaper tray once too often and it sprung a leak, so I headed to Home Depot to find another one to replace it and it turns out Home Depot does not carry wallpaper trays (I knew wallpaper was a dead form of decorating your home, but I thought the trays would still be available for some reason).

I could have gone to Sherwin Williams to get a tray, but I decided to walk around and look for an alternative. While wandering thru the garden area I stumbled across some plastic window box planters that were 24" long and did not have a hole drilled in the bottom. They did have a couple holes that were meant to be knocked out to let water drain out, but they were still sealed. They also come with a drip tray that I discovered fits nicely in the top of the planter and could act as a lid.

I ended up buying two planters so that they would be more stable nested inside each other. Also, the second planter acts as a safety backup in case the inner planter leaks. You'd probably be ok with one, but the planters are much more stable when you nest two of them and I want this to last a long time.

When I got them home, I decided to strengthen bottom areas that were meant to be knocked out by applying some JB weld to them (yes, I have to put JB weld on everything). This should prevent them from leaking in the future.

Below are pics of the finished product - the total cost for the 2 planters and drip tray lid was about $17, but I hope this will last much longer than a wallpaper tray. The only con about using the planters is that they are a couple inches too short to store my autosiphon in. I have to dip the autosiphon in one end at a time to sanitize it.


The two planters nested inside each other, and the drip tray lid


JB weld patches to strength the base


Tray with lid on it


Airlocks, wine thief, and other stuff soaking in a fresh batch of starsan


Sanitizer tray covered up and sitting in it's home on top of the fermentation fridge


Larry

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Old 12-16-2011, 08:49 PM   #2
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You do realize that startsan is a wet contact sanitizer that does not require immersion for the contact time?

A simple spray bottle does the trick.

And for the inside surfaces of objects I usually pour some directly in and then dump it back into the storage solution bottle.

Again, Star San requires 30 seconds wet contact. Not immersion.

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Old 12-16-2011, 08:58 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GilaMinumBeer View Post
You do realize that startsan is a wet contact sanitizer that does not require immersion for the contact time?

A simple spray bottle does the trick.

And for the inside surfaces of objects I usually pour some directly in and then dump it back into the storage solution bottle.

Again, Star San requires 30 seconds wet contact. Not immersion.
Yup, I realize that. I just prefer immersion. I can pull the wine thief out of the starsan bath, pour any excess into the tray and I'm ready to go. No waiting or getting starsan overspray all over the place trying to spray a skinny wine thief tube.
I do have a spray bottle of star san too, that I use to spray my freezer top to sanitize before working with my yeast slants.
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Old 12-16-2011, 09:00 PM   #4
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Good find. My tray bit the dust a long time ago. I don't bother with immersion anymore, but that is a cool idea.

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Old 12-17-2011, 04:05 AM   #5
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I picked up one of those, "under the bed storage" boxes. I have some long blow off tubes that need to sit in some cleaner every now and then. I can also use the container to submerge keg dip tubes etc.

One of my next projects isa small ball valve that will be used to empty the container.

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Old 03-26-2012, 05:24 PM   #6
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When you spray with star sans do you spray more than once? I know it only needs 30 sec contact time but I would think one spray would give you only a 10 sec contact time

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Old 03-26-2012, 06:37 PM   #7
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Nice find..... Picked up several wallpaper trays about a year ago on clearance and still on my first one!

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Old 03-26-2012, 07:36 PM   #8
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How do you ensure spraying covers the entire surface? That's my "fear" with spraying, though I do use a sprayer for quick jobs like a keg post or quick disconnect.

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Old 03-26-2012, 11:39 PM   #9
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Couldn't locate a wallpaper tray.
Instead I got a much more sturdy planter box from the garden section.
Long enough for spoons and tubes.

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Old 03-26-2012, 11:52 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ekjohns View Post
When you spray with star sans do you spray more than once? I know it only needs 30 sec contact time but I would think one spray would give you only a 10 sec contact time
The way I understand it, when you immerse, dip, or spray an object with Star San and the surface remains damp for 30 seconds then the product has done it's job. Also, the foam generated from Star San is supposed to sanitize with the same effectiveness.
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