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Old 10-18-2007, 04:46 PM   #1
Boston Brewer
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Oct 2007
Boston, MA (Southie)
Posts: 51

Just some newbie questions that I was thinking about before I purchase my gear.

Assuming I am using a 6g Better Bottle as a fermenter, should I be using a blow-off tube, or will a 3-piece airlock suffice (which seems simpler to me)?

Also, it seems that some folks have had difficulties using carboy caps to seal their Better Bottles. Is there a preferred, or recommended way to seal a Better Bottle?

As always, thanks in advance,

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Old 10-18-2007, 04:58 PM   #2
Dec 2006
Somerville, MA
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Orange carboy cap works for me on a bb, I also use a #10 or 11 stopper (I can't recall which) with an airlock and it works fine. Never had a batch that really had blowoff though...

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Old 10-18-2007, 05:04 PM   #3
Kevin Dean
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Jul 2007
Frederick, MD
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I also use Orange carboy caps and a 3-piece airlock. The benefit is that these also work on glass carboys without juggling stoppers and stuff.

I use 5 and 6 gallon BB's, using the 6 gallon as a primary which gives room for krausen. I've not yet had a ferment powerful enough to escape that.

However, I've have blown some 5 gallon BB's if I'd used them as primaries, so I'd suggest using a blow-off tube or buying a 6 gallon to use as a primary.

And as a side note: I use vodka in my airlocks. Better Bottles flex, as do the orange carboy caps. While Star-San won't hurt your brew in an amount that small I like the notion of suckback adding alcohol rather than acid.
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Old 10-18-2007, 05:30 PM   #4
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Apr 2007
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I agree with the vodka, but Starsan turns to yeast nutrient. It will never hurt your beer, even in greater amounts.

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Old 10-19-2007, 12:33 AM   #5
Feb 2007
Port Townsend, Washington
Posts: 608
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I use the 6 gallon BB's for my primary. I have tried the orange carboy hood with a 2 piece airlock and had the airlock launched into outer space and the cap come off the bottle. My best results (no failures) have been with the BB closure (use the small o-ring) and 1/2 inch OD vinyl hose as a blowoff going into a large container of Starsan solution.
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Old 10-19-2007, 12:50 AM   #6
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Aug 2006
Whitehouse Station, NJ
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First, the orange carboy caps fit way too loose for my tastes on the 6g BB. I just switched to #10 stoppers and I like it much better. Since I recently upped my 5 gallon batches to closer to 5.75g, I started using blowoffs. Go to lowes or HD and get a plastic barb to barb coupling meant for connecting two pieces of 1/2" ID tubing. Force one end into the stopper and throw some 1/2" hose on the other end. Easy. I've found that this is big enough not to clog and turn the stopper into a projectile. Once your active ferment subsides, you can swap it out for a 3-piece airlock. You might feel like you can get away with airlocks and you might for a while, but it's not a matter of IF you'll have a CFE (catastrophic fermentation event TM), but when.
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Old 10-19-2007, 01:11 AM   #7
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Jan 2006
Santa Cruz, CA.
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You will be safer and there will be no need for worrying if you use a blowoff tube. I use a #10 stopper that is drilled out for a 1.025 tube.

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Old 10-19-2007, 01:30 AM   #8
Ó Flannagáin
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Jan 2007
Wichita Falls, Tx
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I use a blowoff tube everytime, even when it's not necessary. Cheap, and easy to sterilize and put in.

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Old 10-19-2007, 10:37 AM   #9
Feb 2006
San Antonio, Texas
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I use a number 10 stopper and a 3 piece airlock. I haven't need a blow off tube yet.
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