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Old 12-30-2007, 12:46 PM   #1
Dec 2007
Posts: 15

I broke my floating thermometer in my wort. About 1/3 of the BB's were lost and 3/4 of that red packing around the BB's. The thermometer itself was not damaged. My question is that red packing material, is it toxic and if so it is enough to affect the whole wort. I racked of the wort so that any glass would stay behind, I think between racking again to secondary and then racking for bottling the little bit of glass should not be an issue.

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Old 12-30-2007, 01:11 PM   #2
EvilTOJ's Avatar
Dec 2005
Portland, OR, Oregon
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The red liquid is most likely alcohol that's been dyed, but the BBs are lead. It also doesn't take much glass to completely shred a digestive tract. I would probably dump it.
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Old 12-30-2007, 01:26 PM   #3
Dec 2007
Posts: 15

How about filtering ??

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Old 12-30-2007, 02:38 PM   #4
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Jun 2007
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no, the red stuff around the BB's? that's some kind of wax to hold the BB's in the bottom. the red clearish liquid in the thermometer tube is alcohol but he said that didn't break.
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Old 12-31-2007, 03:32 PM   #5
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Dec 2006
Newnan, Georgia
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EvilTOJ is wrong on all counts the BB's are almost surely steel and NOT lead.

To test take a magnet and hold it next to the BB's if they are Steel the magnet will attract them if they are lead there will be NO magnetic attraction.

And yes some filtration should elimiate any glass particles which are by and large an overblown concern. While you don't want to shallow larger particles of glass. Very small particles of glass are not considered dangerous according to everything I read.

Look up ground glass on snopes.
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Old 12-31-2007, 03:37 PM   #6
2 4 tripping
Dec 2007
Posts: 12

Even if they are lead they won't breakdown fast enough to make a big difference. I'd be worried about the glass.

There was a day I would say go for it, but those days are long gone.

Cut your losses and throw it out


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Old 12-31-2007, 05:11 PM   #8
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Oct 2006
Royal Oak, MI Michigan
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Originally Posted by ohiobrewtus
I'd pitch it and not even think twice about it.

Order more ingredients to get another batch going and chalk this up as a learning experience.

Not worth it to hurt yourself or someone else.
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Old 12-31-2007, 05:17 PM   #9
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Jan 2007
St. Louis, MO
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Get a digital probe thermometer.

Rack your beer off using a siphon that is 1-1/2 inches off the bottom. Last I checked, glass doesn't float.

If you're not confident, wrap several loose layers of a paint strainer cloth around the end of your racking cane to act as a filter.

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Old 12-31-2007, 05:24 PM   #10
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Jul 2006
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There's an almost identical thread around here somewhere where the OP actually e-mailed the company about the contents of floating thermometers. It turns out that they contain wax and steel shot. No worries there.

As for'll have to make a personal call there. You'll get plenty of responses telling you to dump it. I'm with the Muncher, in that I would just rack will above the trub layer after visible activity ceases since all the glass should settle to the bottom.
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