My quick, easy, free bottle dryer

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spitfire

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I needed a bottle dryer and being new to brewing wanted to put my money into other things besides a bottle tree so I came with this. It is simply MDF with holes drilled in it. I know MDF is not a fan of water but I sealed it very well and figure even after many many uses if I have to make another no big deal as I always have it around the shop. It holds 72 bottles. It is also easier to store in the brew closet than a bottle tree would be.
 

jrstren

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I've been thinking about putting together some sort of DIY bottle drying system. I think I now have a winner. Something like this seems like it would take up much less storage space than a stand or tree. Good idea!
 
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spitfire

spitfire

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I used spray sanding sealer then hit it with spray poly. The next one I will I will use hinges on the sides so I can fold it flat for storage.
 

perkins98

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I was thinking of doing the same thing and hinging it over my sink, just wondering what size holes you drilled. I couldn't decide what size hole to drill for both long necks and SN stubby's.
 

njnear76

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Wow. I really like that a lot. One of the things I never liked about bottle trees is that you have to sanitize them. This seems like a better design.
 
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spitfire

spitfire

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I used a 1.5" forstner bit. In the pic there are regular bottles and SN bottles as well. They all fit good in that size hole.
 

eanmcnulty

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I am going to make one of these. Thanks for the pic. I will probably make a smaller one; maybe 10 holes by 2 holes.

I usually wash 12-18 bottles at a time and let them dry. When they are dry I tear aluminum foil into small squares, about 3"x3" to 4"x4", and cover each bottle. Then I feel better about storing them for a while. When I want to sanitize I just fill the dishwasher with bottles. I don't use any soap, and I turn the heat-dry on. I checked the dishwasher with my probe thermometer, and it reaches over 170F, which I believe is enough to sanitize. I haven't had one problem, yet. When the bottles are cool I just sit next to the dishwasher and bottle right from there. Works like a charm.
 

JetSmooth

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Now THAT is sweet engineering! Definitely making one of these. My equipment is limited by what I can stuff in the crawlspacw under the stairs. No room for a big bottle tree. I have an idea for a tweak. Will try it and report back. :D
 

hlumbard

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That's a great idea. I lost a dishwasher in my last move and have no solution for drying bottles. Now I do. I love this place....
 

TheBroonery

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That's great! I wish I would have seen this a few months ago before I built a bottle tree out of solid oak - it takes up about 15 cubic feet to store!
 

gicts

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You need leg extensions so you can slip a fan underneath!
 

tomije87

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You need leg extensions so you can slip a fan underneath!
In my experience, the bottles dry fast enough without a fan, so long as they are upright like this. I'm not sure how much time a fan would save.
 

starsailor

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Hey all, you can make an even cheaper version of a bottle dryer from an empty wine bottle box. I just went to the local liquor store and picked up an empty wine box that they'd cut the top off of. Around here they're happy to let you take a few every time you visit the store.

To make it into a bottle dryer I cut holes in the bottom of the box, similar in size and spacing to this MDF version, with a hole saw in the middle of each bottle location. The key is the partitions in the box that keep the wine bottles separated during shipping keep the box from collapsing from the drying bottles on top. Mine holds 12 bottles at a time, but that will depend on the actual box you get. Need more just grab some more boxes and repeat.

Been using it to wash bottles about once a month for over a year now and it's still usable albeit a little tired from getting wet. Probably will get another one in a month or two and throw this one out in the recycle bin.

Works great and you can't beat the price! :rockin:
 

eanmcnulty

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I think the fan is a good idea to keep air moving in and around the bottle, thus drying it more quickly. Nothing is going to grow on the dry bottle. Then, when you are ready to bottle, use some Star-San or idophor or the dishwasher with the heat setting on.
 

CDbrews

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I made one like this a while ago only not as pretty as yours:) for the legs I just pull the srews that hold them on out and it stores flat... much better at tstoring than a bottle tree
 

bf514921

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I read this thread and was inspired, and felt delusionaly stupid at the same time. I have crates that i bought at walmart i use for storing beer that look like this


Then after reading this thread i realized i had plastic drying racks for bottles

figured this is just another option, and you have a crate when not in use
 

ReeseAllen

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I read this thread and was inspired, and felt delusionaly stupid at the same time. I have crates that i bought at walmart i use for storing beer that look like this


Then after reading this thread i realized i had plastic drying racks for bottles

figured this is just another option, and you have a crate when not in use
And conveniently, it looks like there are 30 holes in the bottom, to match the 30 bottles you've managed to fit into the crate. Take an empty crate, wash 30 bottles, use it to dry them, and then use it to store them after drying. Very cool.
 

ReeseAllen

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Hell, I'd be inclined to actually store empties upside-down like that. You might even be able to stack them.
 

KevinW

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Hell, I'd be inclined to actually store empties upside-down like that. You might even be able to stack them.
Yeah, that's a great idea to cut the crates just short enough so the tops of the bottles don't touch the surface they are sitting on. then you could stack several layers of crates on top of that!

I wonder if you could put two or four of the "upside-down" crates in a plastic storage bin for long term storage?

Do 24oz'ers fit good in the crates? I have a large number of 24's that I use as well as 12'ers?
 

bf514921

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22,24s do fit i think its 15 of them, as for drying the 22's there is a little of problem geting them to sit just fight but its not bad. i use these crates for both and they seem to fit well. the 22s are to tall to stack though
 

vicegrip

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I’m bottling today and don’t have a bottle tree so I got on here to see how I could make one and I found out how thank u for the post helps a lot and it looks good :tank:
 

msujack

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I use a regular milk crate as they hold 25 bottles and you can set it on an angle inside another crate and stack the bottles upsidedown for drying. Once they are all in there, the crate is easy to transport and stackable.
 

ShanghaiKnight

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LOVE the Walmart crate idea -- Know this thread is very old, but I just went out to Walmart and they still sell this crate. Bought two, and will probably buy more. I LOVE dual purpose items - saves space and keeps SWMBO happy - which means more opportunity to do my hobby.

/sk
 
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