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Old 03-26-2006, 12:45 AM   #1
ofthebest
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Hi there!

My boyfriend and I are pretty new at brewing, but we're looking into adding to our equipment with a bottling tree. A lot of them give you an option to buy a sanitizer injector to add onto it, and apparently it sprays all the sanitizer right up there into your washed bottles and saves you time. We're not sure we quite believe this, but I can't seem to find much discussion of these doodads online anywhere. Does anyone use them? Like them? Trust them? Hate them?

Thanks!
Amanda

 
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Old 03-26-2006, 05:14 AM   #2
mwessinger
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I have one that I use for wine bottles. It works great for those, but I have not tried it on my beer bottles yet. It sprays a LOT of water into the bottle with each pump. With the wine bottles, I use a sulfite solution. Since you don't want live yeast in a bottle of wine (unless you are making a variation of sparkling wine), then the fact that there is residual sulfite solution in the bottle does not really matter. However, with beer, since you want live yeast in the bottle, you would need to make sure you use a sanitizing solution that is an on-contact, no-rinse sanitizer that would not impact the yeast. I am not sure what the effect of residual sulfite solution would be on beer, so I opt for a hot cycle through the dishwasher for my beer bottles.

 
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Old 03-26-2006, 05:26 AM   #3
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bottle trees are awesome! i dont know about the sanitizer injector thingy, i think sanitizing bottles is superfluous, and dont do it...i heard they work ok though.
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Old 03-26-2006, 09:45 AM   #4
bikebryan
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mwessinger
I have one that I use for wine bottles. It works great for those, but I have not tried it on my beer bottles yet. It sprays a LOT of water into the bottle with each pump. With the wine bottles, I use a sulfite solution. Since you don't want live yeast in a bottle of wine (unless you are making a variation of sparkling wine), then the fact that there is residual sulfite solution in the bottle does not really matter. However, with beer, since you want live yeast in the bottle, you would need to make sure you use a sanitizing solution that is an on-contact, no-rinse sanitizer that would not impact the yeast. I am not sure what the effect of residual sulfite solution would be on beer, so I opt for a hot cycle through the dishwasher for my beer bottles.
You can use any other sanitizer in these bottle sanitizers. Iodophor would work just fine, as would star-san. Hey ,so would bleach, but then you'd have to rinse out the bottle...and as we all were reminded by the master brewer usmccruz not that long ago, no REAL brewer uses bleach anyway.

 
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Old 03-26-2006, 04:59 PM   #5
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I have one and use it on bottling day, I really like it. I usually rinse the bottles with water and put them on the tree then give them a shot of sanitizer with the thingy during bottling. Speeds things up quite a bit. You wouldn't be able to leave a sanitizing solution in it and use it as you put bottles on the tree because most sanitizers loose their effectiveness over a couple days if left exposed to the atmosphere.
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Old 03-26-2006, 05:15 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chairman Cheyco
...use it as you put bottles on the tree...
A bottle sprayer would be much more efficient for bottles alone. That's an excellent way to maximize your sanitizer usage in smaller batches.

If I made a batch of 5 gal Star San it can be used for a really long time and the bottle sprayer solution can be replaced easily.

I usually end up making a 15 gal batch of solution (with Iodophor) in the sink because I can lay down a primary bucket in it. After it's removed I can also place 2 cases of bottles in there.
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Old 03-26-2006, 10:39 PM   #7
Thor
 
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I think it's personal preference. I love my bottle tree, but prefer to soak my bottles in a laundry sink with an iodophor solution, then let them drain on the bottle rack. I like the idea of sanitizing both the inside and outside of bottles just prior to bottling, but that's just me.
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Old 03-26-2006, 10:41 PM   #8
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I too have one initially to be used for wine bottles. I now fill it with no-rinse star-san to spray my cleaned bottles on bottling day. Makes bottling day all that much easier when I do bottle.

 
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Old 03-26-2006, 11:18 PM   #9
rod
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i do the same with star-san
i used to use an funnel and pour some in each bottle, then shake each bottle
then drain
the sprayer saves a lot of time

 
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Old 03-27-2006, 12:23 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thor
I like the idea of sanitizing both the inside and outside of bottles just prior to bottling, but that's just me.
I do the same thing as you, but seeing you say it makes me wonder...why on earth are we concerned about sanitizing the outside of the bottle?
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