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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Equipment/Sanitation > Fermentation in plastic
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Old 01-13-2006, 12:50 AM   #11
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I prefer glass for two reasons.
1. It's fascinating to watch the fermentation proceeed.
2. The plastic bucket is so useful for sanitizing everything.
Of course, I could always buy an extra plastic bucket. Plastic is within my budget but I'm just too cheap


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Old 01-13-2006, 02:37 PM   #12
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I agree I would be fascinated to watch what is going on. At my workplace we always have empty 5 gal. jugs from the water tank, basically plastic carboys. I have considered taking one, just so I can see what is going on during fermentation, I think I just might.


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Old 01-13-2006, 02:38 PM   #13
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I think it's a question of durability and odds. The permeability factor is really a non issue. Plastic is convenient. The open top makes it really easy to clean. But plastic scratches easily and scratches do not sanitize well (if at all). Glass has some inherent dangers, but they are easily manageable and are no more effort than the care required with plastic to keep from scratching it.

If you ever make a bad batch of beer and are fermenting in plastic, the plastic is always a prime suspect. Not necessarily the root cause, but certainly a potential one. If you ferment in glass and observe a good cleaning regimen, it's not. In other words, the odds are better with glass.

Yes, people make beer in plastic all the time. But I won't. It's too much work to make beer and then have something as simple as a scratch on a plastic bucket trash all your hard work. Any step I can take to stack the odds in my favor is worthwhile. Plus, seeing into the fermenter is really cool.....

For brewers just starting out, plastic is fine for a few batches. But if you plan to stick with the hobby, glass is a very worthwhile upgrade.

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Old 01-14-2006, 02:17 AM   #14
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I haven't heard anything on plastic carboys like they have on water coolers. Seems like they would be lighter and provide a good visual on fermentation...
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Old 01-14-2006, 05:16 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WhatsOnTap
I haven't heard anything on plastic carboys like they have on water coolers. Seems like they would be lighter and provide a good visual on fermentation...
I use them. I have two glass and two water cooler plastic 5 gal carboys. They work fine and seem to be fairly O2 resistant. You need a number 6 or 7 bung. You can see the fermentation too, though glass is clearer.

Just remember the palstic is a bit flexible so pull out the air lock before lifting the carboy as it will inhale through the airlock. ALternativley you can stick your carboys (Glass or plastic) in a milk crate and use that for lifting etc.

The water cooler carboys are easy to aquire for free or cheap though for $20 Can glass isn't that expensive.

If you want more brewing buckets for free, look for a uvin that uses the big kits that come in a 6 gal bucket. They usually throw the buckets out afterword. Depends on the U-Vin though. I manged to get 10 buckets and I can get more any time. They seemed happy to get rid of the pile! I sue them for storing grains, etc. and as fermenters if needed.
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Old 01-14-2006, 06:40 AM   #16
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Using plastic is no problem. I have 7 plastic primaries, 4 carboys and 2 bottling buckets.

It's all about preference.
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Old 01-23-2006, 05:29 PM   #17
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I use 3 plastic buckets for both primary and secondary. same lids and seals they came with 15-20 batches later. I myself use about 3-5 cups of bleach fill it up to the top with cold water getting all inner surface covered. swirl the lid and coat both sides of lid. sit lid on top. swirl lid a few more times as I'm brewing or getting set up (1/2 hour or more). also keep racking cane and tubes filled with bleach water, etc in there as well everything but rubber stoppers, airlocks, bottle caps (one-step sanitizer for them close to work area) I then rinse all well with HOT water good to go. cleaning is the same exact steps but I wipe out sludge with paper towels first and then wipe down with 100% bleach till clean (wear gloves) fill with couple cups of bleach - fill to top, etc. soak 1/2 hour. rinse and just let air dry and put away. they do have some light scratches but have never let me down with this cleaning method as what could possible live with that much bleach. rinse well you have no leftover bleach smell at all. I'd love glass but seams like too much weight and work to clean, etc. whatever works for you like everyone says.
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Old 01-23-2006, 06:11 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by david_42
I have all buckets. Don't care to deal with the extra weight of glass. SS is within my budget, but I can't justify that much money.
The other problem with the conicals is, that they don't fit in the fridge. And if they fit, you can only fit one of them in there. This means you have to get the cooling kit to brew lagers. And now we are talking about a lot of money.

No, I still like my glass carboys. I can fit 3 of them in the firdge and like how I can see what's going on.

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Old 01-24-2006, 03:08 AM   #19
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What is this...

http://www.thegrape.net/browse.cfm/4,10348.htm

I believe it is plastic..
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Old 01-24-2006, 03:15 AM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael_Schaap
What is this...

http://www.thegrape.net/browse.cfm/4,10348.htm

I believe it is plastic..
True, but that's not much less than what I pay for a glass one. They're both heavy when full of brew . Besides, glass is SO much more fun when it rolls off of the kitchen counter onto the hard tile .


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