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Old 04-12-2013, 02:18 AM   #1
billpaustin
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I read an article in Science News that describes how copper surfaces in an operating room can cut infections down by 50%. Just having copper surfaces, such as doorknobs, bedframes, etc, made a huge difference.

Not sure about the policy here about posting links, but it was a major hospital study.

I'm betting that copper surfaces would help cut down on beer infections too

edit: I used to have to use copper-based paint on my sailboat in the Gulf, to keep the critters off. Copper is somehow toxic.
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Old 04-12-2013, 02:43 AM   #2
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I've never heard that exactly. However, copper is a good yeast nutrient. Some brewers have been known to put a short (1" long or so) piece of copper tube in the boil. A slight amount will be dissolved into the acidic wort and provide some yeast nutrient.
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Old 04-12-2013, 02:48 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tyzippers View Post
I've never heard that exactly. However, copper is a good yeast nutrient. Some brewers have been known to put a short (1" long or so) piece of copper tube in the boil. A slight amount will be dissolved into the acidic wort and provide some yeast nutrient.
I do that with all my beers (two 1" pieces, in fact). Don't actually know if it does anything, but I'm pretty happy with the results so far!
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Old 04-12-2013, 02:20 PM   #4
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My grandfather used to use a coil of copper wire and a coil of some other metal (zinc?) in his swimming pool to keep it clean. Rarely used any chemicals and he had crystal clear water. So I can believe that copper may help in sanitization. Though I definitely would not rely on it over using StarSan and being careful with contamination.

 
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Old 04-13-2013, 01:29 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DrunkleJon View Post
My grandfather used to use a coil of copper wire and a coil of some other metal (zinc?) in his swimming pool to keep it clean. Rarely used any chemicals and he had crystal clear water. So I can believe that copper may help in sanitization. Though I definitely would not rely on it over using StarSan and being careful with contamination.
On a related note, I believe zinc is also a good yeast nutrient. I think.

 
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Old 04-13-2013, 01:46 AM   #6
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Copper dust is used in organic farming as a fungicide
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Old 04-13-2013, 02:25 AM   #7
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Copper dust is used in organic farming as a fungicide
Huh. I did not know that. My wife is all into organic produce and whatnot. I've never heard her mention that. Interesting.

 
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Old 04-13-2013, 02:34 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tyzippers View Post
Huh. I did not know that. My wife is all into organic produce and whatnot. I've never heard her mention that. Interesting.
People think 'organic' means pesticide/chemical free... um, no. Google chemicals approved organic and you will find a list of stuff, some innocuous, some less so. I am not trying to start a huge debate here, but I would also suggest having a look at the Organic episode of Penn and Teller's Bull**** (it can be found on youtube). Some surprising information...
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Old 04-13-2013, 02:47 AM   #9
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I recently discovered that using copper post-fermentation is a big no-no. Evidently it is somewhat toxic to us too.

 
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Old 04-13-2013, 01:57 PM   #10
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Regarding copper being toxic to humans. All metals are toxic to humans in the corrects dosage. The amount dissolved during the boil of copper tubing or dissolution after fermentation will never reach that toxic dose.

 
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