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Old 12-02-2008, 01:06 AM   #1
BrianTheBrewer's Avatar
Feb 2008
San Diego CA
Posts: 1,300
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Today was the first time I bottled a batch of beer without my friends. It was fun at first because I wanted to see if I could do it alone (which I did) but wow what a pain. The clean up was the worst. I started at 2:15pm and finally finished at 6:45pm. Not that bad of time. I see now why I love brewing with the people I brew/bottle with.

How many of you bottle alone and hate it/love it???
"Kölsch is the only language one can drink" - Anon

"Good people drink good beer" - Hunter S. Thompson

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Old 12-02-2008, 01:11 AM   #2
Apr 2007
Posts: 1,624
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I occasionally have "help" (if you can call it that) when I'm brewing. Mostly the help eats my food, drinks my beers, smokes my cigars, and distracts me while I'm brewing. Nice.

I always bottle alone. Funny, no one seems to want to help with that.

Lots of people volunteer to help me drink my brew. They know how much I love to brew, so I guess they think they are doing me a favor?
Reality is a crutch for people who can't cope with drugs. -Lily Tomlin

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Old 12-02-2008, 01:16 AM   #3
Mar 2008
Posts: 969
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I have always bottled alone maybe 20 or so 5 gallon batches. its sucks but it shouldnt take more than 2.5hours total. there are cheats, like using bigger bottles and/or fliptops.

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Old 12-02-2008, 02:13 AM   #4
Bernie Brewer
Grouchy Old Fart
Bernie Brewer's Avatar
Feb 2006
Eldorado, WI
Posts: 7,507
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4 1/2 hrs???

Don't worry, you'll get the process streamlined. Then you'll start kegging.
I like to squeeze the nickle until the buffalo craps-mt rob

"Why don't we get drunk and screw?" Jimmy Buffett

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Old 12-02-2008, 02:18 AM   #5
Sastrugi's Avatar
Nov 2008
San Gabriel Valley, CA
Posts: 35

I'm a lone bottler and always have been, but I have my system down and it only takes a couple of hours, max. I don't mind it much because it brings me one big step closer to opening the bottles back up and drinking what's inside...

+1 on bigger bottles!
Two Boxer Brewery

"When the world is too dark and I need the light inside of me
I'll walk into a bar and drink fifteen pints of beer"
-Shane MacGowan

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Old 12-02-2008, 02:34 AM   #6
Malticulous's Avatar
Aug 2008
St. George Utah
Posts: 4,146
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I never timed it but I think I bottle a batch in less than a hour. That is after the dishwasher sanitizes them. I move so fast other people get in my way. With others we talk and drink beer. I don't even have a sip when I'm bottling.
Everything is better with a beer.

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Old 12-02-2008, 04:00 AM   #7
Orangevango's Avatar
Mar 2008
Posts: 596
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Luckily my girlfriend loves to bottle. She actualy doesn't want me to start kegging because she likes to bottle.

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Old 12-02-2008, 04:31 AM   #8
mattmcl's Avatar
Oct 2008
Erie, CO
Posts: 731
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I've got it down to about 30 minutes, but I use bombers.

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Old 12-02-2008, 04:59 AM   #9
Sep 2008
PEI, Canada
Posts: 46

i'm down to about 30 minuts of the botteling process. Dishwasher sanitizes them in 2 runs of 3 dozen 341ml bottles. I usually find one or two with a cracked or chipped mouth.

here is my process:
- After the dish washer cooks them, i put them in 12 packs and cover with a plastic bag.
- Start the second run of 3 dozen bottles in the dishwasher.
- Boil the priming sugar in 500ml of water.
- Sanitize the bucket, lid, cane and hose
- the sugar water should be cooled enough not to make me think it will melt the bucket. so now I rack to the bucket, insert lid and put in the corner for a few minutes.
- I usually have another 5 gallon batch I need to rack, so I sanitize the carboy I just emptied and rack to that
- the first 3 dozen bottls should be cooled now
- Check the dishwasher; should be on the last leg of the 'drying' process.
- if there is time, i clean up the bucket/carboy I just racked from and put it away.
- put he botteling bucket on the counter pull up a chair and get the 3 cases in arms reach.
- fill 12 bottles at a time; I leave them in the case when i do this, makes thing faster.
- cap 12 bottles. I use a bench capper on the floor. I get better leverage this way and my shoulder doesnt hurt.
- dishwasher should click itslef off about now. (about 30 minutes total time). Open it up, wait for the steam to clear and pull out the rack.
- fill and cap the remaining 24 clean and cooled bottles.
- smoke break
- empty dishwasher - put the 3 dozen in cases
- the bottles should be fairly warm to the toch, so sometimes i have to kill some time
- fill 12, cap.. repeat 1.5 times.
- clean bottleing bucket, lid, cane, hose and put away.
- if i am starting anoter batch, I just use the bucket I just bottled from, or the one I racked from, depending if I want to use that yeast or not..
- scrub the spill I always make of the floor and counter.

If no one gets in my way, and if i am not starting another batch, it takes about 2.5-3 hours start to finish including cleanup.

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Old 12-02-2008, 05:22 AM   #10
bsay's Avatar
Jul 2008
Fort Collins
Posts: 572
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Call me crazy, but I bottle while I brew another batch. There's so much down time in brewing, I might as well be doing other beer related activities.
Check out my Homebrewery Virtual Tour!

Who says you can't brew all-grain indoors?
Brewing 2.5 gal batches with a 2gal cooler MLT in my cramped apartment. Pictures coming soon!

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