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Old 09-27-2012, 05:28 AM   #11
Pratzie's Avatar
Sep 2012
Northeastern Pennsylvania
Posts: 1,621
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I use better bottles, received the deluxe kit from NB as a birthday gift back in May. Actually came with two bottles, the person who bought it for me put down for an extra secondary and NB (prob unk to them) sent not one but two extra 6.5 gal better bottles leaving me with not two, not three but four carboys. They are nice and light weight, however if you go with that kit, i highly recommend buying some milk crates ( for 6 bucks a piece, maybe less locally if u know someone) for moving the filled carboys. problem with better bottles is that they aren't firm like glass and they aren't flat/flush... they have a slight bubble or curve that goes up from the ground towards the opening of the carboy. When you pick up a better bottle, the weight of the wort inside will push the bottom bubble down ever so slightly. If your airlock or blow off hose are already in place, u run the risk of sucking sanitizing solution into the beer because when that bubble dips, it acts as a vacuum the opposite way. Happened on my very first batch and i almost lost my marbles when the all the sanitizer in the airlock shot into the wort after i pitched the yeast. Depending on what u use as a sanitizer, it prob wont affect your beer but if you go to move it after fermentation and anything got inside the airlock, such as fruit flies, u run the risk of infecting the batch.

The only con I see from Better bottles other then that back suck are the cleaning methods. U can't use a carboy brush, but need to buy powders like that PBV stuff northern brewer sells. It works great, just make sure u use hot water and slosh it around a bit and all the krausen will go, but the PBV can get expensive if your brewing alot of beer.

Either way congrats on investing in a new kit, I hope u find it as addicting as I do!
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Old 09-27-2012, 06:05 AM   #12
Nov 2009
Petersburg, AK
Posts: 1,034
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I use glass. I like that I can clean it with a bottle brush and see for sure that it's really clean. I also have one 5 gal better bottle, but when I move it the airlock sucks in and can pull sanitizer into the beer and I don't like that. Be careful when moving glass especially when they're full, and don't put hot water into it when it's cold, or vise versa - there's risk but that's life.

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Old 09-27-2012, 12:00 PM   #13
Nov 2010
Solway, MN
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i have a plastic secondary. I've used it twice in 4 years. Can you explain why you want the deluxe kit with carboy?

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Old 09-27-2012, 12:05 PM   #14
Sep 2012
Posts: 71
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I'm going to get the deluxe kit because it seems to have everything I need and it comes with two carboys with a choice of plastic or glass. I'm also getting the mad brewer upgrade kit as well.

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Old 09-27-2012, 12:05 PM   #15
oakbarn's Avatar
Jun 2011
Argyle, Texas
Posts: 827
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We have had several glass ones and most have broke. We had one slip out of the harness and into a million pieces. We have moved to conicals or do it in corny kegs. I would never buy glass again.

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Old 09-27-2012, 12:31 PM   #16
Aug 2012
Posts: 449
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I have a 6.5 glass and a vino bucket. the glass is nice because it cleans up nicely, and it looks cool... But the vino bucket is easy to move around, can be fermented in a minifridge (if you have 21.5" of clearance, the glass ones are taller) and the bucket is easier to clean since it has a large opening.

I'm still a noob too, so I'm sure I'll develop more of a preference after s few more brews.

Originally Posted by oakbarn
We have had several glass ones and most have broke. We had one slip out of the harness and into a million pieces. We have moved to conicals or do it in corny kegs. I would never buy glass again.
But yeah^ conicals would be nice..... unfortunately, i can't find a beginner kit that comes with a 14.5 gal stainless conical....

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Old 09-27-2012, 12:53 PM   #17
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Feb 2011
Sheffield, Ohio
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The better bottles are safer,but you still have that narrow openning to deal with. I like my BB ale pale & cooper's micro brew FV's,as they have wide opennings that make life easier when cleaning,dry hopping,etc. Built in handle & lighter/safer than glass.
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Old 09-27-2012, 12:56 PM   #18
Ale's What Cures You!
Yooper's Avatar
Jun 2006
UP of Michigan, Winter Texan
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I'd get the kit without the carboy, whether plastic or glass!

I'd buy the kit that comes with the bucket, and the bottling bucket, and then buy another bucket ("ale pail") and lid and airlock.

5 gallon carboys have very limited usefulness, and I rarely use them.
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Old 09-27-2012, 01:03 PM   #19
J187's Avatar
Jan 2012
, MA
Posts: 851
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One: I prefer buckets. I just do. Lighter, safer, cheaper, easier to clean, carry, aerate, etc. My glass carboy sits in a corner. I have not tried BB.

Two: I'm partially teasing you here in good fun, but you could not have tried to search for this. This has to be THE most covered topic on the forum. There are TONS of information on here illustrating the strengths and weaknesses of both.

Three: I have never used BB, but I do know that the earlier models were small, 5.5 gallons I think? Does anyone know if they addressed this? I wouldn't even consider them if they were not at least 6 gallon capacity and it seems so, so silly to me that they didn't make them the same size as glass carboys from the gate.

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Old 09-27-2012, 01:28 PM   #20
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Aug 2012
Stratford, PE
Posts: 139
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I have only been at it for a couple of months but recently decided on glass. When I clean stainless and glass there is no lingering odour, when I clean any of the plastics to the same degree I can still smell the beer or cheese or whatever was in it last. That tells me it is not as clean.

To address breakage I started to make boxes to hold the bottles and will make similar shorter units to hold the carboys with thick foam on the bottom and rope handles. I brew on a tile floor and it is a question of when, no if. I would make a dolly for the carboys but think it might cause problems on the stairs to the cooler storage area.

Unfinished box for 32 bottles:
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