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Stainless fermenter... yes or no?

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apache_brew

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Not sure if it was shot down somewhere in the thread, but have you considered sanke kegs? A slim quarter holds 7.75 gallons and would be great for 5 gallon batches. Get fancy and get a dip tube attachment from NorCal Brewing solutions. I ferment in a modified 1/2 bbl for 10 gallon batches.
 

RePete

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Not sure if it was shot down somewhere in the thread, but have you considered sanke kegs? A slim quarter holds 7.75 gallons and would be great for 5 gallon batches. Get fancy and get a dip tube attachment from NorCal Brewing solutions. I ferment in a modified 1/2 bbl for 10 gallon batches.
Not another option! Lol. I was about settled on the Kegmenter, and will probably order one in the next few days. Unless there is something about this I need to look into.
 

ChiknNutz

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In my limited knowledge, so take it accordingly, I'd say this is very similar to the Kegmenter, but could be a cheaper alternative if you can find a free or cheap keg.
 

apache_brew

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I had one of these made with a 4” tri clamp for a custom Sanke keg (just like the kegmenter) and it’s great. The only pain are all the npt threads that I insist on taking apart and sanitizing between brews. That being said, its a realitivly cheap price if you don’t want a cone to drop yeast.

 

RePete

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Ok. It looks a little more involved than I want to get with this. Plus, cost. If I already had the keg, maybe. Thanks though.
 

Knightshade

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That doesn't have to be the case when you use kegs for aging. Do a normal closed, oxygen-free transfer in 100% liquid pre-purged kegs as if they are serving kegs. Then age them for however long you want. Also easy to push out small samples along the way or infuse with tinctures. Even adding wood cubes or chips can be done under CO2 with minimal or no O2 invasion.
I don’t want to deviate from the topic, but I’ve been seriously wondering how this is done.

I have a recipe that calls for rum soaked oak chips and a vanilla bean. I have one of those filter cages you can hang from a tab on the underside of a corny keg lid, but...

Putting that into a keg filled with StarSan to then purge doesn’t make much sense. So would you:
  • Rack from fermenter into the keg,
  • Do a slow flow of CO2 with the PRV open
  • Pop the lid
  • Spray star San all to hell over everything
  • Attach the cage
  • Pop the lid back on
  • Let the CO2 continue to push out of keg PRV for awhile
  • Close PRV
  • Pressurize and then let it age?
 

IslandLizard

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I don’t want to deviate from the topic, but I’ve been seriously wondering how this is done.

I have a recipe that calls for rum soaked oak chips and a vanilla bean. I have one of those filter cages you can hang from a tab on the underside of a corny keg lid, but...

Putting that into a keg filled with StarSan to then purge doesn’t make much sense. So would you:
  • Rack from fermenter into the keg,
  • Do a slow flow of CO2 with the PRV open
  • Pop the lid
  • Spray star San all to hell over everything
  • Attach the cage
  • Pop the lid back on
  • Let the CO2 continue to push out of keg PRV for awhile
  • Close PRV
  • Pressurize and then let it age?
Yes, that's the general idea.
The headspace, as long as it's small, say a pint to a quart, is very purgeable after it's been opened to add stuff, while streaming CO2 into it.
Now if the headspace is half the keg, not so.
  • Rack from fermenter into the keg ==> Through the liquid out post, keg remains closed
  • Attach the cage ==> There's gonna be air in there, so that's not the most ideal, but I have no alternative for it
  • Let the CO2 continue to push out of keg PRV for awhile ==> Yes, keep flushing. Or probably more efficient is purging under pressure. Say to 30 psi, 5-10 times or so. The law of diminishing returns starts kicking in quickly after 5 times or so.
I'm not aware of any threads where this is discussed with conclusive solutions or more suitable answers.

Instead of having to remove the lid, which is cumbersome in itself, leaving a huge opening, a smaller 1/2 - 1" (tri-clover) access port in the keg lid would be more advantageous. Or use another, more suitable vessel.
 

Golddiggie

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I've been using converted commercial beer kegs (of different sizes) to ferment in for ages now (or it just seems that way). Most of the current batch have a ball lock base TIG welded into the top and then I use a TC cap that I made for the liquid out post as well as a thermowell. Gen2 of the caps/kegs will have both ball lock fittings on the cap as well as the thermowell. I just need to make the first one and confirm my spacing for the ball lock bases.

I do that setup for all but the 50L keg that I converted. That had a 4" TC ferrule welded into the top and the matching cap has both fittings and thermowell.

The gas fitting makes it easy to ferment under pressure. Which I did for the first time with the latest batch. I'll also be doing that for the batches we're brewing on Sunday. That will be a SMaSH (9 gallon into kegs) and hard cider.

I've also used this setup to transfer via CO2 push. Makes things a hell of a lot easier to shift finished fermentation into either serving/carbonating kegs, into an aging vessel or even bottles. I also don't move the fermenter an inch from when the yeast goes in until it's getting transferred.

I've seen vids of those plastic pressure fermenters and will pass. Clear plastic for something to brew in doesn't do a thing for me. If anything, it means you have to keep them in complete darkness until going to bottle/keg. Not to mention they have a limited use lifespan. Stainless will last longer than I will.

I'm hoping/planning to move sometime next year (hopefully before summer). It's also my hope that I'll be able to setup a larger brew system (currently three 1/2 barrel keggles) or at least make it so that I can easily/safely brew inside.

I did make a fermentation chamber for the brewing reboot. Only because the basement where I currently live went up about 20F for this summer compared with past years. I sized it so that my stainless fermenters will easily fit even with the extra items install on top. Including the spunding valve setup.

So, I would say "HELL YES!" to using a stainless fermenter. Which one you use depends on you, really. I would avoid going with a corny keg though, since you're get lower finished product volumes from it. Get a tall pony keg and you can easily get 6 gallons of finished beer (which I do). There are options for other fermenters that will give you solid results. I would advise going with something rated to 15psi if you ever think you'll want to try fermenting under pressure. Having something that's limited to <5 PSI will suck for that aspect. Which means you won't be able to skinflint on the fermenter.
 

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I was facing the same question and bought a hdpe speidel. I fill it directly with the hot wort and had no problems until now. The thing is air tight and easy to clean and relatively cheap. All thumbs up!
 

wsmith1625

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+1
Fermonster or speidel.
Those options are obviously not SS, but when I considered upgrading to SS I chose a Fermonster with no regrets. Here are the plusses...

- Clear
- Lightweight
- Shatter proof
- Cheap
- Easy to clean
- Lots of head space
- Holds pressure
- With a little modification, can do closed transfers

 

wsmith1625

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Scratches inside PET fermenters happen during cleaning. If you have an appropriate cleaning procedure the inside is not going to get scratched, and the "scratch prone" issue just goes away.
I clean my PET Fermonster with hot water and OxyClean. Shake it up, soak if for 30 minutes, and then rinse. It never touches a sponge or any other scrubbing materials.
 

apache_brew

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I clean my PET Fermonster with hot water and OxyClean. Shake it up, soak if for 30 minutes, and then rinse. It never touches a sponge or any other scrubbing materials.
I did this too, up until batch 3 when the fermonster deformed permanently from hot tap water. Ditched the plastic and went to sankey kegs.
 
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ILMSTMF

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Your tap water is dangerously hot. REALLY! Tap water should be set to 120 degrees. A fermonster is rated to handle up to 140 degrees.
Which is why I'm careful about using my stupidly hot tap water to clean my Fermzilla***.

I'd like to know how much total water / Oxi you fill your FV with? I do similar except, I'm using about 1 gallon of hot (safe temp) Oxi solution. The problem is, with your half hour contact time, how can all surfaces of the vessel get cleaned? My assumption - you fill at least half the total space of the FV with hot Oxi solution. Shake it. 15 minutes upright, 15 minutes upside down. Rinse water with similar method. Done. Did I get it right?
With my small volume of cleaning solution, I still get in there with a soft sponge. It's kind of annoying, I'd be glad to eliminate that step. I also charge it with CO2 and blow the Oxi out of both posts using a jumper hose or picnic tap hose.

*** OP here. Not sure if I ever updated the thread. I wound up getting the Fermzilla All Rounder. So far, so great! Of course, every vessel has unique pro's and cons. Not counting out SS as an option for down the road.
 

Golddiggie

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Your tap water is dangerously hot. REALLY! Tap water should be set to 120 degrees. A fermonster is rated to handle up to 140 degrees.
Stainless steel can easily handle 250F+. The only real limit is if you have weldless fittings, what the o-ring/gasket material can handle for temperatures. I use a red silicone (high temp) o-ring under the TC cap in for my 7.75 gallon (and smaller) fermenters. For the 50L fermenter, it's a white silicone gasket that can handle above boiling (IIRC). Which means, IF I ever get an infected fermenter, I can simply steam sterilize it and move on.

As for your earlier point about the fermonster being clear. That's a case of "WGAF?" I don't watch airlocks to see if things are still fermenting (haven't for years). I watch the temperature sensor down the thermowell. I only look at the bubbles coming out of the spunding valve setup to make sure it's set correctly.

You can clean out the sanke kegs the same as your fermonster, with a bucket blaster rig. Or use a CIP ball for a conical type fermenter. Both options makes cleaning easy (no scrubbing).

I've also heard (think it was on a tuber vid) against using PBW with the plastic fermonsters. NOT an issue with stainless fermenters. PBW and StarSan are my 'go to' cleaning and sanitizing solutions since they simply work every time.

If you like the fermonster, then good for you. Keep using it. Just know that it has a limited use life span. That's also been documented/mentioned. It WILL reach a point where the plastics start to show being compromised and you WILL need to replace it. Stainless, not so much. ;)
 

wsmith1625

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Which is why I'm careful about using my stupidly hot tap water to clean my Fermzilla***.

I'd like to know how much total water / Oxi you fill your FV with? I do similar except, I'm using about 1 gallon of hot (safe temp) Oxi solution. The problem is, with your half hour contact time, how can all surfaces of the vessel get cleaned? My assumption - you fill at least half the total space of the FV with hot Oxi solution. Shake it. 15 minutes upright, 15 minutes upside down. Rinse water with similar method. Done. Did I get it right?
With my small volume of cleaning solution, I still get in there with a soft sponge. It's kind of annoying, I'd be glad to eliminate that step. I also charge it with CO2 and blow the Oxi out of both posts using a jumper hose or picnic tap hose.

*** OP here. Not sure if I ever updated the thread. I wound up getting the Fermzilla All Rounder. So far, so great! Of course, every vessel has unique pro's and cons. Not counting out SS as an option for down the road.
The Fermonster holds 7 gallons so I fill it with 4 gallons how water and 4 Tbsp of OxyClean. You're right about the contact time being off. I do 30 minutes, flip it over, and then another 30 minutes so I have contact with all surfaces.

I've never blown out the posts on my converted Fermonster lid. I usually just soak the entire lid so it has contact inside and out. I guess that may leave room for some nasties hiding in there, but so far I haven't had any problem with it.
 

wsmith1625

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Stainless steel can easily handle 250F+. The only real limit is if you have weldless fittings, what the o-ring/gasket material can handle for temperatures. I use a red silicone (high temp) o-ring under the TC cap in for my 7.75 gallon (and smaller) fermenters. For the 50L fermenter, it's a white silicone gasket that can handle above boiling (IIRC). Which means, IF I ever get an infected fermenter, I can simply steam sterilize it and move on.

As for your earlier point about the fermonster being clear. That's a case of "WGAF?" I don't watch airlocks to see if things are still fermenting (haven't for years). I watch the temperature sensor down the thermowell. I only look at the bubbles coming out of the spunding valve setup to make sure it's set correctly.

You can clean out the sanke kegs the same as your fermonster, with a bucket blaster rig. Or use a CIP ball for a conical type fermenter. Both options makes cleaning easy (no scrubbing).

I've also heard (think it was on a tuber vid) against using PBW with the plastic fermonsters. NOT an issue with stainless fermenters. PBW and StarSan are my 'go to' cleaning and sanitizing solutions since they simply work every time.

If you like the fermonster, then good for you. Keep using it. Just know that it has a limited use life span. That's also been documented/mentioned. It WILL reach a point where the plastics start to show being compromised and you WILL need to replace it. Stainless, not so much. ;)
I have nothing against SS, it was actually my first choice before I got a Fermonster. I was considering the Ss Brewtech 7 gal Brew Bucket and the Anvil 7.5 gal SS Bucket Fermenter. I found faults in both and when I read @Dgallo thread on a turning a Fermonster into a closed transfer system, I was sold.

I do like the clear fermenter though. I know better than to rely on the bubbles to see when fermentation is complete, but it's still cool to watch it. I never got to see if with my old bucket fermenter. I'm still calling it a PLUS! BTW, what does WGAF mean?
 
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ILMSTMF

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I do like the clear fermenter though. I know better than to rely on the bubbles to see when fermentation is complete, but it's still cool to watch it. I never got to see if with my old bucket fermenter. I'm still calling it a PLUS! BTW, what does WGAF mean?
Same, I didn't know I wanted a clear FV until I had one. Lol The benefits to that are a bonus, not a necessity.

WGAF = who gives a FK LMAO
 

Golddiggie

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I have nothing against SS, it was actually my first choice before I got a Fermonster. I was considering the Ss Brewtech 7 gal Brew Bucket and the Anvil 7.5 gal SS Bucket Fermenter. I found faults in both and when I read @Dgallo thread on a turning a Fermonster into a closed transfer system, I was sold.

I do like the clear fermenter though. I know better than to rely on the bubbles to see when fermentation is complete, but it's still cool to watch it. I never got to see if with my old bucket fermenter. I'm still calling it a PLUS! BTW, what does WGAF mean?
It means "Who Gives a F***"...

This will probably be my first conical fermenter.
With a listed price of $650, it's actually reasonable IMO. Depending on other factors, I'll probably pick up the additional hardware to use a glycol chiller at that same time (or close to it) and not really need to use the fermentation chamber.

We'll be sampling the first batch fermented under pressure on Sunday ( a week after it went to serving/carbonating kegs). I expect it to be either fully carbonated, or damned close to it, by then.

Before I built the fermentation chamber, I never had an area that was 100% light free 24x7. So using something with solid walls, with zero light penetration, made perfect sense. Not to mention something could slam into it and it wouldn't care. I also age in the converted kegs. I recently pulled samples of several batches of mead, and a barley wine, I started 6-8 years ago. No issues at all with them. I had purged the head space with CO2 before they went down for their slumber, and they've done very well.

I don't think I'd trust any plastic vessel to do the same thing, for the same amount of time, without significant issues.

Same, I didn't know I wanted a clear FV until I had one. Lol The benefits to that are a bonus, not a necessity.

WGAF = who gives a FK LMAO
Yeah, I'm not neurotic enough to sit there and stare at the beer (or anything else) fermenting like a voyeur. :O At most, I'll pull up the temperature on the Inkbird sensor that's in the thermowell to see what it's doing. I know (from multiple batches) that once it goes back to ambient temperature, the beer is done fermenting. Then let it sit for a while (a week or more) so the yeast can flocculate out, and it's good to go to keg.
 

wsmith1625

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It means "Who Gives a F***"...

This will probably be my first conical fermenter.
With a listed price of $650, it's actually reasonable IMO. Depending on other factors, I'll probably pick up the additional hardware to use a glycol chiller at that same time (or close to it) and not really need to use the fermentation chamber.

We'll be sampling the first batch fermented under pressure on Sunday ( a week after it went to serving/carbonating kegs). I expect it to be either fully carbonated, or damned close to it, by then.

Before I built the fermentation chamber, I never had an area that was 100% light free 24x7. So using something with solid walls, with zero light penetration, made perfect sense. Not to mention something could slam into it and it wouldn't care. I also age in the converted kegs. I recently pulled samples of several batches of mead, and a barley wine, I started 6-8 years ago. No issues at all with them. I had purged the head space with CO2 before they went down for their slumber, and they've done very well.

I don't think I'd trust any plastic vessel to do the same thing, for the same amount of time, without significant issues.


Yeah, I'm not neurotic enough to sit there and stare at the beer (or anything else) fermenting like a voyeur. :O At most, I'll pull up the temperature on the Inkbird sensor that's in the thermowell to see what it's doing. I know (from multiple batches) that once it goes back to ambient temperature, the beer is done fermenting. Then let it sit for a while (a week or more) so the yeast can flocculate out, and it's good to go to keg.
That's CF10 is a serious fermenter for sure. What size batches are you doing? I looked at the Spike Flex, but honestly was intimidated by all the hardware to clean and the upgrade costs.
 

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Right now we're doing 6 or 9 gallons into kegs. Which is why I use the 7.75 gallon and 13.3 gallon keg fermenters.

I'm going to explore going deeper into brewing once I've moved into my own house (try to get it going as a business). Which means I'll probably end up getting a larger system as well as larger fermenters. Plus the mentioned glycol chiller. Right now my completed brew stand supports the three keggles, with two burners installed, two pumps (with dedicated switches) and the spot for my plate chiller. I recently added a sheet of stainless to the top (since the last brew day) to act as both a heat shield for items on the vessels and an even/smooth top surface to make moving vessels easier. I'm going to make one, or two, minor tweaks to the process for Sunday's batch.

I also have the Cannular machine to can my brew. We plan to can a full 3 gallon keg of the batch that was fermented under pressure (once it's sampled of course). It's my honey ale recipe. The mocha porter is on nitro/CO2 mix currently, and should be ready for the weekend of the 7th to sample some. Freezer should be delivered on the 4th that will be converted into a keezer since I have more kegs than the current fridge can handle coming up.

It's ALWAYS something.
 

Knightshade

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The width of my FC has always been a limiting factor vs. height. I can fit anything up to 29.5" inches high into it...which gives me quite a few options, more if I forgot a traditional bubbler type airlock. The width is where I run into issues with it only being 16.25". Even the slimmest SS fermenter that I was able to research, which is that 7G SS Brewtech @wsmith1625 mentions is 12.5". Fermonster is only 11.25" which gives me the ability to have 2 in there.
 

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I went the stupid cheap route. I got a 14 gallon Chapman fermenter. I think I paid $109 for it. It's basically just stainless steel pot with a clamp down lid. After busting a glass carboy, I'll never use glass again. I wish it had more bells and whistles but it works.
 

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a real conical bottom fermenter with a dump valve would give you more benefit than a stainless bucket which mainly has durability advantages over plastic buckets.
a unitank has more advantage depending on process and other equipment used.
 

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I have SS and plastic conicals. It was a waste of money. Better to spend it for a BrewJacket+'wide mouth' fermenter in my opinion.
 

videojunkie1208

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That's CF10 is a serious fermenter for sure. What size batches are you doing? I looked at the Spike Flex, but honestly was intimidated by all the hardware to clean and the upgrade costs.
I have both a FLex+ and a CF10. Here is my opinion. If you are doing 5 gallon batches, and don't plan on anything larger, or occasionally do smaller batches I would get the Flex+. It holds 7 gallons of wort easily, and bottom dump valves are overrated. With the "+" you can also treat it like a unitank (get the PRV setup) and ferment and carbonate in the same vessel.
If you are consistently doing larger than 6 gallon batches, the CF10 is hard to beat. You'll have plenty of room for trub to collect in the dump valve, the options are almost endless. I would get the PRV valve if you plan on treating it like a unitank, and the cooling setup is fantastic.

Cleaning the hardware is super easy. When you're done with a batch, dump all the gunk out of the fermenter, rinse it out with a hose (I use a kitchen sprayer) fill it full of water and oxyclean, and let it set overnight. pump the water out, take the whole thing apart, rinsing all the pieces, and then set them in a bucket of sanitizer for a few minutes and then let dry.

Same thing with the fermenter, rinse it thoroughly, and then spray and wipe down with sanitizer, and then let it dry.

As far as hardware goes, TC hardware is cheapest through either Amazon or Brewhardware
 
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RePete

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I was facing the same question and bought a hdpe speidel. I fill it directly with the hot wort and had no problems until now. The thing is air tight and easy to clean and relatively cheap. All thumbs up!
I went with the 30L Speidel also. So far it is working great.
 

WNKbrew

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a real conical bottom fermenter with a dump valve would give you more benefit than a stainless bucket which mainly has durability advantages over plastic buckets.
a unitank has more advantage depending on process and other equipment used.
my issue with conicals is cost. I ferment in sankes, have 2 1/4 tall and 3 1/2 barrel fermenters. I brew 10 or 20 gallon batches. glycol chiller has 4 pumps run by rancos. 5 conicals would cost $$$$$? SWMBO would flip at the second one.
 

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I've got a Mangrove Jack's SS Fermenter that takes 25l (7gal apparently). It's 12" across the barrel, 15" across the handles which you fit in the corners and 20" high excluding the airlock. It comes with a plastic urn tap (maybe a stainless steel one these days) which I replaced with a 1.5" TC bulkhead port. The plastic base is attached with three screws to tack-welded brackets, taking that off gains about 2.5".

products-20181204131102-0177154-a.jpg


It's similar to the Chapman UniVessel which seems more available in the US. That one describes itself as 12" diameter, 14" at widest point (ball valve) and 20" with airlock (16" without airlock). The ball valve is optional.

Ferment-CB8_2477_1024x1024.png
 

OakIslandBrewery

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Whatever works is the best option. I used a modified 1/2 barrel for years, kicking around the idea for a conical for about the same amount of time, then decided a year ago to make the purchase. For what I wanted in a fermenter the CF10 had it for a smaller cost. There's a lot of fermenting options out there. A guy in our club has been brewing for thirty years and still uses plastic buckets and his brews taste great.
 

mabrungard

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You’ve already made the right move to avoid glass carboys for brewing. Moving to a stainless vessel just makes it easier to keep your vessel sanitary. I have a stainless 12 gal Blichmann conical, that was purchased before stainless brew buckets were available. I would now go with a stainless brew bucket as a sanitary and less expensive fermenter for any brewer.
 

augiedoggy

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my issue with conicals is cost. I ferment in sankes, have 2 1/4 tall and 3 1/2 barrel fermenters. I brew 10 or 20 gallon batches. glycol chiller has 4 pumps run by rancos. 5 conicals would cost $$$$$? SWMBO would flip at the second one.
I completely understand but as I saw it, at the same time this thread was about opinions on best over all performing fermenters not cheapest, most expensive or even most cost effective.
So im commenting on the fermenter and its performance capabilites which are up to the brewer to see or take advantage of or not.
I'm just chiming in as a homebrewer and small brewpub owner with my 2 cents backed up by the fact that breweries both big and small almost always use real conical fermenters with a dump valve. Having the ablity to use them as unitanks and pressurize them is yet another plus (Obviously everyone's needs and process on the homebrewing scale varies so some or even all of the features may not be used or beneficial..) Like someone else pointed out, you can still make the same quality beer with a plastic bucket. but there are other factors such as shelf life of that beer before oxidation takes effect due to exposure and the amount of additional labor needed vs other equipment. Ive used carboys both glass and plastic (and have had one explode) as well as buckets and both plastic and stainless conical fermenters. I prefer stainless unitanks with both heat and cooling temp control for the possible enviromental control of the wort/beer.
 
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I've settled on some "big mouth bubblers". I have no concerns about sanitizing them even if there are scratches. I like that I can get my arm in them for cleaning. Mostly like that they are clear and I can see what is going on - how much beer is in there, has the yeast flocculated, am I about to suck a bunch of trub out when I transfer to keg, and so on.

Haven't tried a closed / pressurized transfer yet but I know that if I am careful, and have a barb sticking into a stopper with just a couple psi, I'm not going to blow the thing apart the barb or stopper will simply pop out first. No pressurized fermentation, but the ability to see inside outweighs that for me. Deal breaker for some folks perhaps.

I warm it with a seed heater, and cool it with an aquarium chiller.

This goes around the carboy: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0001WV010/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1

And this goes through a 1-1/8" hole in the side of it: Amazon.com

And I've got everything I need.

Plus a 2nd one for secondary uses on that rare occasion.
 

augiedoggy

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I've settled on some "big mouth bubblers". I have no concerns about sanitizing them even if there are scratches. I like that I can get my arm in them for cleaning. Mostly like that they are clear and I can see what is going on - how much beer is in there, has the yeast flocculated, am I about to suck a bunch of trub out when I transfer to keg, and so on.

Haven't tried a closed / pressurized transfer yet but I know that if I am careful, and have a barb sticking into a stopper with just a couple psi, I'm not going to blow the thing apart the barb or stopper will simply pop out first. No pressurized fermentation, but the ability to see inside outweighs that for me. Deal breaker for some folks perhaps.

I warm it with a seed heater, and cool it with an aquarium chiller.

This goes around the carboy: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0001WV010/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1

And this goes through a 1-1/8" hole in the side of it: Amazon.com

And I've got everything I need.

Plus a 2nd one for secondary uses on that rare occasion.
when My glass carboy exploded it had a rubber stopper and plugged airlock in place.... even after it exploded from the built up pressure. I realise this is less likely to happen with plastic but its worth mentioning.
 

WNKbrew

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I completely understand but as I saw it, at the same time this thread was about opinions on best over all fermenters not cheapest or most expensive So im commenting on the fermenter and its performance capabilites which are up to the brewer to see or take advantage of or not.
I'm just chiming in as a homebrewer and small brewpub owner with my 2 cents backed up by the fact that breweries both big and small almost always use real conical fermenters with a dump valve. Having the ablity to use them as unitanks and pressurize them is yet another plus (Obviously everyone's needs and process on the homebrewing scale varies so some or even all of the features may not be used or beneficial..) Like someone else pointed out, you can still make the same quality beer with a plastic bucket. but there are other factors such as shelf life of that beer before oxidation takes effect due to exposure and the amount of additional labor needed vs other equipment. Ive used carboys both glass and plastic (and have had one explode) as well as buckets and both plastic and stainless conical fermenters. I prefer stainless unitanks with both heat and cooling temp control for the possible enviromental control of the wort/beer.
I completely understand but as I saw it, at the same time this thread was about opinions on best over all fermenters not cheapest or most expensive So im commenting on the fermenter and its performance capabilites which are up to the brewer to see or take advantage of or not.
I'm just chiming in as a homebrewer and small brewpub owner with my 2 cents backed up by the fact that breweries both big and small almost always use real conical fermenters with a dump valve. Having the ablity to use them as unitanks and pressurize them is yet another plus (Obviously everyone's needs and process on the homebrewing scale varies so some or even all of the features may not be used or beneficial..) Like someone else pointed out, you can still make the same quality beer with a plastic bucket. but there are other factors such as shelf life of that beer before oxidation takes effect due to exposure and the amount of additional labor needed vs other equipment. Ive used carboys both glass and plastic (and have had one explode) as well as buckets and both plastic and stainless conical fermenters. I prefer stainless unitanks with both heat and cooling temp control for the possible enviromental control of the wort/beer.
you are correct, thread was about best fermenters
I completely understand but as I saw it, at the same time this thread was about opinions on best over all fermenters not cheapest or most expensive So im commenting on the fermenter and its performance capabilites which are up to the brewer to see or take advantage of or not.
I'm just chiming in as a homebrewer and small brewpub owner with my 2 cents backed up by the fact that breweries both big and small almost always use real conical fermenters with a dump valve. Having the ablity to use them as unitanks and pressurize them is yet another plus (Obviously everyone's needs and process on the homebrewing scale varies so some or even all of the features may not be used or beneficial..) Like someone else pointed out, you can still make the same quality beer with a plastic bucket. but there are other factors such as shelf life of that beer before oxidation takes effect due to exposure and the amount of additional labor needed vs other equipment. Ive used carboys both glass and plastic (and have had one explode) as well as buckets and both plastic and stainless conical fermenters. I prefer stainless unitanks with both heat and cooling temp control for the possible enviromental control of the wort/beer.
you are correct, OP did inquire about best fermenters, but a later post indicated a $200-300 budget, $400 was pushing it. $500 no way. if we could get unitanks with heat/cool for $300 we'd all have them. I've seen your builds, etc. nice stuff. love it.
I built my kegmenters with internal stainless coils, heat belt, glycol pumps and controllers for $230 ea. my ghetto glycol chiller cost me $165 with glycol.
my dream brewery has to wait until I get two children out of college. brew on :)
 
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ILMSTMF

ILMSTMF

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I completely understand but as I saw it, at the same time this thread was about opinions on best over all performing fermenters not cheapest, most expensive or even most cost effective.
I concur. Been a while since I started this thread - pretty sure that was the point. Get the pro's and cons from users with experience with each type of vessel. Weigh it all out and figure out...

up to the brewer to see or take advantage of or not.
EXACTLY. For me, all the contributions here helped me arrive at my decision. Paramount was something "better" than the plastic bucket I've been using for years. That wound up being a FV with a great seal to eliminate or drastically reduce O2 exposure. Easy clean up, blah blah blah. I've probably already written about this sh1t in the thread lol

Having the ablity to use them as unitanks and pressurize them is yet another plus (Obviously everyone's needs and process on the homebrewing scale varies so some or even all of the features may not be used or beneficial..)
Indeed! Ex. a unitank wouldn't work for me because I wouldn't reap the benefit of serving from it. Where I ferment the beer is not where I dispense it.
I mean... technically I could do that with my Fermzilla. Ferment, carbonate, serve. But for me and my specific setup, it wouldn't make sense. That would mean tying up my FC with the FV thus preventing me from brewing another / fermenting another beer. Again, my specific setup, I don't have a second FC or FV. Really beating this point into the ground lol

you are correct, OP did inquire about best fermenters, but a later post indicated a $200-300 budget, $400 was pushing it. $500 no way.
Yeah. In a perfect world, I would have had all my sh1t together and wrote all the pertinent stuff in the first post. Scatterbrain, story of my life. 🙃

my dream brewery has to wait until I get two children out of college. brew on :)
Same. Mine includes a dedicated space where the brew gear stays...for brewing and cleaning. That space aint gonna be anywhere nearby the "regular living space" where the dispensing happens. How do I transport the finished beer from brewing / fermenting to serving area? By the time I can actually afford this, I expect teleportation to be "a thing". LMAO
OR we could travel back in time and I set this up in a house with a FKN dumbwaiter in it!
WTF has this thread become? Haha
 
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