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Old 05-12-2009, 02:14 PM   #1
paradoc
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Mar 2009
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Greetings,

Wondering if a couple of folks who have Better Bottle carboys with the racking adapter can provide some reviews. Are you happy with it? Any problems with leaks, cleaning, or infections?

I'm looking at picking up a 6 gallon better bottle as a second primary, and trying to decide if it is worth it to spring for the racking adapter. I don't mind using a siphon, although they are a bit of a pain to sterilize each time.

Thanks!


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Primary: Pliny the Elder, Smoked Porter
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Old 05-12-2009, 02:45 PM   #2
UncleDave
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Mar 2009
Monroe, North Carolina
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I purchased one a few months ago. It appealed to me because I didn't have to siphon. If I had it to do over, I would have opted for the non-ported model and just purchased an auto-siphon. It is a much more flexible system that allows you to add on equipment at a much lower price.

After two batches, I've had no problems with leakage, but you pay a heavy premium for the convenience. And if you find yourself wanting another secondary vessel (and you will), you will either have to pony up the cash for another BB with racking adapter or siphon.

I've even considered selling my BB. I have the whole outfit with the racking adapter and drylock. Cost me a small fortune for the whole shebang.



 
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Old 05-12-2009, 11:43 PM   #3
johnsma22
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Besides the ease of racking, the racking adapter, ported closure and the other fittings allow for oxygen free transfers from primary to secondary. The primary has a ported closure with a 90˚ barb fitting installed. A length of 1/4" ID tubing from the barb fitting connects to the ID of the inlet of the high flow valve on the secondary. The secondary also has a ported closure, but this is where the dry trap air lock is installed. I put a short length of tubing on the barb of the airlock and insert it into a sandwich bag with sanitizer in it so that I can see the bubble rate.

The CO2 produced during the primary phase is used to purge the air out of the secondary. When it is time to rack, the 1/4" ID tubing simply gets removed from the valve on the secondary to the outlet barb of the air lock. This will allow for equalization during the transfer. Next, I connect a length of 1/2 ID tubing to the OD of both high flow valves. Now the secondary is placed on the floor while the primary is elevated, both valves are opened, and gravity does the rest. No introduction of O2 whatsoever. I even purge the air out of the tubing with CO2 from my tank before connecting it up. Sanitizing the valves and fittings is easy with a spray bottle of Star-San.

I know it seems like a lot of fuss after reading my description, but it really couldn't be simpler once you have done it once. As for the cost, yes it is expensive to purchase all of the Better-Bottle accessories. The racking adapter and high flow valve assembly costs more than the Better-Bottle itself, but I'm OK with that. The convenience far outweighs the cost for me. I didn't get into this hobby because I wanted to save money. As most of you know, the exact opposite is true of this hobby. You can spend a butt load of money in a hurry!

The first photo is a diagram from Better-Bottles website showing the oxygen free transfer procedure. The second photo are mine in action, and the third is the blow off tube setup for Better-Bottles that I found at Hearts Homebrew.





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Old 05-13-2009, 01:19 PM   #4
BruDaddy
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I have 2 BB's that I use for secondary, one with and one without. I had bought the first one with the racking adapter because I was still struggling with siphoning (and having some issues with my auto siphon). The siponing problems are now resolved and I would probably not buy another BB with racking adapter. Overall it works OK, I've never had leakage or cleaning issues, but it is quite a bit slower to rack than using an autosiphon and it's a bit expensive.

 
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Old 05-13-2009, 02:17 PM   #5
paradoc
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Mar 2009
Jackson, WY
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnsma22 View Post
The first photo is a diagram from Better-Bottles website showing the oxygen free transfer procedure. The second photo are mine in action, and the third is the blow off tube setup for Better-Bottles that I found at Hearts Homebrew.
John,

Thanks for sharing pics of your setup. Looks nice and easy. So in the second picture.. are those plastic ziplock baggies filled with starsan, and is that how you do your blow-off tubes?

Also, how long does it take you to remove the racking adapter, clean it, and reassemble?

Jim
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Primary: Pliny the Elder, Smoked Porter
Secondary: Apfelwein
Kegged: Bee Cave Pale Ale, Belgian Dubbel, Apfelwein
Bottled: Vinnie's Blind Pig IPA
Next up: Pliny the Elder, my own IPA, Sake, homemade ginger ale


 
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Old 05-13-2009, 07:31 PM   #6
Buford
 
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I've used buckets, glass carboys, and auto-siphons, and I can say that without a doubt the racking adapter on the BBs I have now makes life a lot easier. I fill the BB through the thing (I use a pump in my system with a plate chiller, the output goes straight to the spigot on the BB) and I fill kegs from the spigot with a hose that has a liquid QD on the end. I really like not having to deal with a siphon anymore and it is just easier to deal with overall.

I just pop the metal clip off and pull the valve piece out when I'm cleaning the BB, but I leave the other part on the bottle.


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