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Old 02-20-2010, 12:45 AM   #1
bayboy
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Feb 2010
Canada
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Hey All, new to this and looking forward to my first brew. I have a 5 gal plastic food grade fermentation bucket with lid and want to add a airlock to it. Can i just drll a hole and add the airlock? and do i need a gromet or can i use something else?
Thanks

 
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Old 02-20-2010, 12:53 AM   #2
TipsyDragon
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Mar 2009
California
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i assume you did NOT get this bucket from a LHBS or an online HBS. otherwise the lid would already have the hole. if you make the hole big enough you could use a drilled rubber stopper.

some people use a sheet of Plexiglas with no hole what so ever drilled in it. just sanitize the bottom of the Plexiglas and set it on top. the CO2 makes its own gap when needed then the Plexiglas settles back down and seals. this gives you a nice view of whats going on inside the bucket. you just have to be careful and not put the bucket where it might get bumped, knocked over, or the Plexiglas moved.

 
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Old 02-20-2010, 12:58 AM   #3
bayboy
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Feb 2010
Canada
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I did not. I will try and drill it out for a bung and if that don't work. To the LHBS for me then.
Thanks for the reply

 
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Old 02-20-2010, 01:05 AM   #4
wilserbrewer
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bayboy View Post
Can i just drll a hole and add the airlock? and do i need a gromet or can i use something else?
Thanks
If you drill the hole to get a nice tight fit...IMO you don't need a grommet. Again...IMHO this whole airlock deal is overused...maybe if you are looking to age something longer than a couple weeks...

 
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Old 02-20-2010, 02:52 AM   #5
Mista_Sparkle
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Nov 2009
Sugar Grove, Illinois
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If its easy, you can pick up a grommet at home depot or lowes for about $1, i believe its a 3/8"
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Old 02-20-2010, 02:55 AM   #6
ChshreCat
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Aug 2008
Camano Island, Washington
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I've found grommets are easier to push through into your beer than a drilled stopper is. Get a stopper that'll just fit in with most of it still sticking out and you won't have any troubles with it at all. Doesn't need to be super tight.
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Old 02-20-2010, 03:23 AM   #7
bayboy
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Feb 2010
Canada
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Thanks for the replies, i will give a shot.

 
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Old 02-20-2010, 04:28 AM   #8
PatMac
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Feb 2009
Denton, TX
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If you use an airlock I would get a grommet or a bung. You could also sanitize a blow off tube and drill the hole slightly smaller than that so you can just stick the tube directly into the lid and have it be tight enough to not let air enter.

 
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Old 02-20-2010, 04:31 AM   #9
HomelessWook
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Dec 2009
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wow guys, didnt start the thread but looking to upgrade my stuff real soon (started a thread about it a week or two ago) and i had no idea a normal food grade bucket with plexi glass could work - im can DIY(myself) but dont have the tools and the space needed for most of this stuff so that would save me about 25 bucks.

 
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Old 02-20-2010, 01:11 PM   #10
ILuvIPA
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Dec 2009
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I have several fermenters going right now - all free from the local grocery store bakery dept. Learned the tip from this forum. . .Walmart, grocery, etc. ask if they have any empty icing or donut glaze buckets. The keep a few empties & give em away if you ask.

A 1/2" hole (use a spade bit) fits a standard grommet perfectly (LHBS or on-line for $.25 or so.) Some buckets have lid gaskets, some don't. . .doesn't matter, ferments your beer either way. If you use a freebie bucket without a gasket you won't see much (if any) activity in the air lock. . .doesn't matter, the airlock is just to ensure an active ferment doesn't blow the lid.

Any bakery or deli bucket will work except pickle buckets (you'll never get the pickle/vinegar smell out.) One "drawback" to icing/glaze buckets is they all seem to be 3.5 to 4.5 gallons. Perfect for 2.5 - 3 gallon batch (2.5 gallon = 1 case o' brew.) Works for me as I brew lots of half batches & tweak (recipe development.) But you can also brew a full batch & just use two buckets. . .so the size is not really a drawback afterall. . .it's a benefit! YMMV

PS: I currently have 6 of these freebie fermenters in my rookie bruha-hause. Life is good

PPS: When you score the freebie buckets with lid gaskets don't turn those into fermenters. . .perfect storage bins to keep your bulk DME dry

Thank you homebrewtalk forum for all you've taught me!


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