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Very Small Batch fermenters - PET, Glass, what can I use?

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r055c0

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Hi All,

I want to get my hands on some cheap (preferably free via the magic of recycling) 2L to 5L vessels for very small batch brewing. The idea being I can experiment by adding different hops / adjuncts etc to the same 20L batch of beer split across 5 or so fermenters to see the difference between the ingredients. Or trying out a couple of small batches of apple cider. Or having a bash at making mead. Or whatever takes my fancy after a few beers.

I was looking at the cheapo sherry flagons, they are glass and hold about 2L, but I was also looking at a couple of 4L PET spring water bottles at the supermarket and wondering if they would work.

Seems like a good experiment for this weekend anyways... Has anyone tried using PET bottles before or do you have a suggestion for an alternative?

Cheers, r055c0

PS Sorry if this has been covered before, I had a squiz with the search function but didn't find anything.
 

Sam England

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I've used 5L pickle jars a few times for comparison brews. I drilled a hole in the lid and put in an airlock grommet and airlock, but you could just use gladwrap and some big rubber bands. The other benefit is you can get your hands in through the opening to give them a good clean.
Cheers,
BB
 

Darkman

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ro55c0 said:
Hi All,

I want to get my hands on some cheap (preferably free via the magic of recycling) 2L to 5L vessels for very small batch brewing. The idea being I can experiment by adding different hops / adjuncts etc to the same 20L batch of beer split across 5 or so fermenters to see the difference between the ingredients. Or trying out a couple of small batches of apple cider. Or having a bash at making mead. Or whatever takes my fancy after a few beers.

I was looking at the cheapo sherry flagons, they are glass and hold about 2L, but I was also looking at a couple of 4L PET spring water bottles at the supermarket and wondering if they would work.

Seems like a good experiment for this weekend anyways... Has anyone tried using PET bottles before or do you have a suggestion for an alternative?

Cheers, r055c0

PS Sorry if this has been covered before, I had a squiz with the search function but didn't find anything.
Try your local Asian Variety store. Some of shops near me sell jars from 5L up to 15L which would be ideal to ferment beer in.
 

super_simian

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I've used 3L juice bottles and 5L water bottles for sour fractions before. As long as you have a good handle on siphoning or whatever for bottling, because there is no tap!
 

ticinglese

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i bought some small plastic food grade buckets that look exactly like the 30 litre fermentors with airtight lids. drilled a hole in the lid for the airlock gromit and one near the bottom for a tap. even stuck a thermometer strip on them. worked a charm. You could get them free from restaurants as mayo etc often comes in them but they were so cheap and had no danger of being tainted by what had come in them previously that i just bought. Most bottles of any sort inc the old 1 gallon fermenters are harder to clean as you cant get yr hands in to scrub beer stone off the sides, though I guess if they are free like 5 litre water bottles you can just bin them.
 

treefiddy

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$12.50 for a proper 5 L glass demi is not that expensive is it? Mead can take a long time to ferment in primary and secondary, so glass is always the preferred option.
 

r055c0

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Some good suggestions, thanks :)
I'll have a bash with the 4L PET water bottle and post my results.
 

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