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Old 06-05-2013, 07:46 PM   #1
nolabrew85
 
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Ok. I have 3 true brew plastic 6.5 gal and 2 PET 5 gal carboys. In 18 batches, I have only had 1 infection and have made some really good beers. should I really trade them in for some glass carboys or stainless fermenters? Are there any steel fermenters that are not out of the park expensive.

 
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Old 06-05-2013, 07:51 PM   #2
LandoLincoln
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I'm not sure why you're dissatisfied with plastic fermentors.

No, there's no SS fermentors that aren't crazy expensive compared to plastic ones.
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Old 06-05-2013, 07:52 PM   #3
rossi46
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I started with glass carboys, when I switched to 11 gallon batches, I started using a sanke keg. I still use my carboys if I'm doing a 5.5 gallon batch. If you get a 1/4 barrel you could do 5-6 gallon batches in it.

 
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Old 06-05-2013, 08:01 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LandoLincoln View Post
I'm not sure why you're dissatisfied with plastic fermentors.

No, there's no SS fermentors that aren't crazy expensive compared to plastic ones.
I am not dissatisfied. I have just heard a bunch of stuff about how glass is great, the best, etc. I was just wondering if it would really make my beers taste better and if my infection percentage would really drop from 1/18 if I switched to glass or SS>

 
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Old 06-05-2013, 08:04 PM   #5
Denny
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LandoLincoln View Post
I'm not sure why you're dissatisfied with plastic fermentors.

No, there's no SS fermentors that aren't crazy expensive compared to plastic ones.
You can ferment in SS kegs.
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Old 06-05-2013, 08:06 PM   #6
Denny
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nolabrew85 View Post
I am not dissatisfied. I have just heard a bunch of stuff about how glass is great, the best, etc. I was just wondering if it would really make my beers taste better and if my infection percentage would really drop from 1/18 if I switched to glass or SS>
I started with glass carboys for maybe 6 years and after breaking several (I was sober and being VERY careful) I switched to plastic buckets. I'd never go back to glass.
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Old 06-05-2013, 08:08 PM   #7
hunter_la5
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Nothing wrong with plastic. I have 2 plastic bucket fermenters and a SS conical, and both plastic buckets make just as good a beer as the SS conical.

Any SS fermenter is going to be crazy expensive because the price of SS is sky high right now.

Each type of fermenter (plastic, glass, or SS) has its own set of pros and cons, but none is superior to the other IMHO. If you are satisfied with the beer your buckets are making, I see no reason to switch.
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Old 06-05-2013, 08:09 PM   #8
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Everything has its pros and cons. The plastic fermenter is cheapest, blocks light completely and is lightweight. The biggest con is it is easy to scratch which could lead to infection, even with careful sanitation.

Glass is scratch resistant (although if you're persistent you can do it.) Obviously with glass you need to cover it to protect against the light, but the biggest con is they are fragile. One bad move and you could slice yourself very badly (plenty of threads in here showing and telling those tales.)

Stainless is will block light, resist scratching and is pretty shatterproof However, you it will be heavier and will cost a bit more.

It's mostly personal preference and what you can afford. Remember, they all will make great beer in the end!
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Old 06-05-2013, 08:11 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rossi46
I started with glass carboys, when I switched to 11 gallon batches, I started using a sanke keg. I still use my carboys if I'm doing a 5.5 gallon batch. If you get a 1/4 barrel you could do 5-6 gallon batches in it.
Care to elaborate? I got those crappy dog food bins, and are near impossible to rinse and clean below the collar. Impossible to move when full as well. Sankes sound intriguing.

Down side to SS is that cannot see the beer level, or what's going on inside, weight and cost.

Glass fragile, cleaning challenges when used as primary especially, but easily overcome with patience.

Plastic "better bottle" or bucket fermentators can scratch.

Infection can happen. I've only had one and it happened while in the kegerator from probable pediococcus colonization and improper sanitation of the kegerator I assume. Under pitching combined with poor sanitation is probably one of the biggest unappreciated sources of infection in my opinion.

I wouldn't immediately run to buy new fermentation vessels from having a single infected batch. I might consider replacing any vessel with deep scratches, or give it a good old bleach soak and scrub. I use only the soft nylon scrubbers on my SS and plastic vessels to avoid scratching. Kettles I will scrub outside with more abrasive materials as necessary.

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Old 06-05-2013, 08:16 PM   #10
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I use corny kegs to ferment. Use one for a 4 gallon batch. 4.5 for a lager. Its a good option to co2 transfer the finish product

 
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