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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Casper, WY
    Posts
    526

    Post

    Hi Guys,

    There aren't many glass carboys here, but there are lots of plastic 5 gallon water bottles available. What are the pros and cons of using them instead of glass.

    Regards
    Dennis

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Lyons, CO
    Posts
    3,035

    Post

    I'd be careful using plastic water bottles. They might (likely do) have micro-scratches inside that could prevent adequate sanitation for one, but the biggie IMO is that they are permeable to oxygen over time so not great for storage/conditioning. Probably OK for the primary if you need to get going. Alternatives? Mailorder a carboy, or one of the new "Betterbottle" plastics that are supposed to be impermeable to O2. Some water companies that do 5-gal bottled water for offices still have 5-gallon glassies you can get for a deposit. Glass carboys often are available at auctions and yard sales too, Or do one-gallon batches in glass juice jugs.

    Really I'd recommend finding glass if you can arrange it. Ever come down towards Boulder?
    Bees, brews and fun
    in Lyons, CO

  3. #3

    Post

    For a 5 gallon batch, I'd agree. Make the splurge. You can also try large hobby type shops. Around here we have a "New River Pottery" that has had cheap 5 gallon glass carboys from time to time. I'm going to post a new topic on finding suppliers....

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Casper, WY
    Posts
    526

    Post

    Hi Ben,

    I get down that way about twice a year. Are you a supplier?

    Regards
    Dennis

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Lyons, CO
    Posts
    3,035

    Post

    I'm not a brewing supplier, but I play one in my taproom

    I'm not positive, but Boulder may be the closest shop for you. What's Brewin' is a very low-key local shop with quality ingredients and doodads. I managed the shop there for a time, but have moved on since and can recommend them as good people. Unfortunately no internet vending. We had lots of folks from your neck come down and stock up; dry wine yeasts keep for well over a year and most nutrients/acids/etc virtually indefinitely. Certainly worth swinging in for carboys, stoppers, airlocks, and the basics: shipping carboys is expensive! If it's only a couple times a year, time one of them for (maybe) February 2006's International Mead Festival which has been a true gem in past sessions, educational for the palatte and the mind if not the liver [img]redface.gif[/img]

    Also, if you're feeling froggy, check out the area meaderies Medovina Meadery in Niwot (beekeeper's meadery, very kind and knowledgeable guy) and also Redstone Meadery in Boulder, with a tasting room and a wide variety of meads. Boulder's a great town for a tasting day!
    Bees, brews and fun
    in Lyons, CO

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Clarksville, MI
    Posts
    92

    Post

    I buy carboys from www.homebrew.com and get them shipped. If you include the cost of gas, I can get them shipped to my house for the same price as driving to the closest brewshop and buying them there.
    <a href=\"http://www.slezakfarms.com\" target=\"_blank\">http://www.slezakfarms.com</a>

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Kennett Square, PA
    Posts
    608

    Post

    FWIW, I agree on the glass vs. plastic - stick with glass. When you buy your carboys, make sure to pick up a plastic dipped metal handle for each that permanently clamps on the carboy neck - makes hauling and handling MUCH easier.

    I mail ordered all my carboys. Back when I bought them, the mail order price was better than at the local shops. It's been a while tho, so I don't remember exactly where I got mine.

    If you have access to a water cooler, grab some of the plastic caps that come on the water-filled plastic carboys. Even after they've been torn off, they still seal a carboy well enough for storage (keeping dust out). I store mine full of lightly-chlorinated water so they're ready for their next use.

    Careful with thermal shock with glass. When I was just learning, I figured I'd sanitize by pouring boiling water into my carboy - cracked the bottom out clean, and I ended up with a glass disk and a big glass funnel! Other than that one loss, my glass carboys (with handles) have held up great for over 10 years!
    Southeast PA - 7 colonies, local mutts on natural comb, TF
    George Imirie's INDEXED Pink Pages: http://goo.gl/WiZUH3

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