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Brews & Views Bulletin Board Service * Brews and Views Archive 2005 * Archive through February 25, 2005 * Opinions on DIY aeration wand < Previous Next >

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Joe DiBenedetti
New Member
Username: Docwino

Post Number: 23
Registered: 01-2005
Posted on Wednesday, February 16, 2005 - 09:36 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Went to the LHBS yesterday to pick up an aeration wand. $30!---almost knoked my sox off---don't think I paid that much for my used stainless 34q brewpot. So, here's my idea. Take a 1/2" X 8" copper stubout, looks like a torpedo open on one end. Drill it full of small holes and neck it down with brass screw fittings to a 1/4" barb. Fill it with "chore boy", hook it up to the pump and your good to go. Don't see why it wont work, plus the whole thing is under $5, which is less than what I paid for the air filter.
 

Bob McCouch
Intermediate Member
Username: Vector

Post Number: 347
Registered: 11-2001
Posted on Wednesday, February 16, 2005 - 10:00 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

The difference is that you'll get a much lower absorbtion rate of gas into the wort because of the (comparitively) huge holes that you drill in the copper. Or, more correctly, the fewer bubbles that will be generated.

An airstone works because it takes X volume of gas and forces it through those tiny little pores of the stone into many thousands of tiny bubbles. That creates a huge overall surface area of gas/liquid contact area, greatly increasing the amount of gas that gets dissolved into the liquid. Your version might take that same volume of gas, and divide it into hundreds- or thousands-of-times fewer bubbles. This substantially smaller contact surface area will make absorbtion *much* less efficient.

Will it "work"? Yes it will. Will it work well? Not nearly as well as the $30 wand/stone combo.
 

John Shaw
Junior Member
Username: Johns

Post Number: 88
Registered: 08-2003
Posted on Wednesday, February 16, 2005 - 10:53 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

You could also try using a cheap plastic or ceramic aeration stone from a pet store. $2 for a pack of 6 plastic stones (white, NOT the blue kind). I've attached the stone to an old racking cane hooked up to my aquarium pump and filter. Works great.

Of course if you brew a lot, you might as well get the stainless stone - which should last a lifetime.
 

Mark Tigges
Member
Username: Mtigges

Post Number: 240
Registered: 03-2003
Posted on Wednesday, February 16, 2005 - 11:30 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I'm going to get knocked for this for sure. I've been sheepish to mention it before. I don't do *gasp* anything to aerate. Nothing, nada, nyet. I used to... bernz-o-matic O2 bottle through a filter through a .3 micron stone. One of the b3 kits. A fun waste-o-money. When I moved, I couldn't find the regulator, and couldn't find a replacement. Only available locally in solder/welding toy kits at home despot. But since I stopped aerating, probably about 10 batches ago, I have noticed NO DIFFERENCE in terminal gravity, speed of fermentation, and most importantly ... quality. I'm not going to come out and say you don't need to aerate ... but it certainly seems like you might not need to. I've since found the regulator. Haven't bothered to use it.
 

Joe DiBenedetti
New Member
Username: Docwino

Post Number: 24
Registered: 01-2005
Posted on Wednesday, February 16, 2005 - 11:38 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Here's how I figured out my cock-eyed sience. Since the smallest holes I could drill were 1/16" I filled the tube with "chore boy" to difuse the air before it could escape from the holes. It appears to have the same size bubbles as the wifes aqueriam and more of them. Then again the pump I'm using was designed for a 50 gal tank.
Was going to test it out this weekend with some San Francisco Steam beer, but the LHBS is closed for a few days for a family emergency and the only other one I know of it my area is 50 miles away through cross town traffic. Oh well another weekend doing yard work.
 

Ric Heinz
Member
Username: Rheinz

Post Number: 185
Registered: 01-2004
Posted on Thursday, February 17, 2005 - 12:03 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

John -

Why not the blue ones?

Ric
Flatfender Brewing, NW Houston
 

John Shaw
Junior Member
Username: Johns

Post Number: 89
Registered: 08-2003
Posted on Thursday, February 17, 2005 - 12:11 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I've not actually used the blue stones, but I've heard from others that they've come apart in the wort. The white stones are actually cheaper than the blue stones anyway, so that's what I use. Just soak them in sanitizer. I clean them immediately after use - and even then I will only use them twice. But they're still cheap.
 

Bob McCouch
Intermediate Member
Username: Vector

Post Number: 348
Registered: 11-2001
Posted on Thursday, February 17, 2005 - 12:18 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Don't get me wrong, Joe, you should certainly give your contraption a try. I was just saying that I think it will take more air to acheive a similar oxygenation level in the wort. Particularly if you're just using air pumped through a fish pump, that may be just fine. I probably wouldn't want to do that with pure O2 just because it wouldn't be an efficient use of a relatively expensive brewing supply. Air and electricity are both cheap, so give it a go.

Good luck!
 

John Shaw
Junior Member
Username: Johns

Post Number: 90
Registered: 08-2003
Posted on Thursday, February 17, 2005 - 12:39 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Joe, the only other downside to using an airpump is that it takes longer to aerate over pure O2. I aerate my wort for at least 30 minutes} with an airstone. With your set up you will probably want to aerate even longer.
 

Bill Pierce
Moderator
Username: Billpierce

Post Number: 2328
Registered: 01-2002
Posted on Thursday, February 17, 2005 - 01:33 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Most airstones have a porosity of about 1 micron. The goal is to dissolve oxygen into the wort, not bubble it off into the air. An airstone produces infinitely smaller bubbles that are dissolved in the wort much more easily than from anything you could drill or build yourself.

(Message edited by BillPierce on February 18, 2005)
 

Ric Heinz
Member
Username: Rheinz

Post Number: 186
Registered: 01-2004
Posted on Thursday, February 17, 2005 - 08:55 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

John

Thanks. I'll check out the white ones.


Ric
Flatfender Brewing, NW Houston
 

Tim W
Member
Username: Timw

Post Number: 124
Registered: 03-2003
Posted on Friday, February 18, 2005 - 06:03 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

The homade wand your talking about would be hard to clean.
 

michael atkins
Junior Member
Username: Mga

Post Number: 97
Registered: 11-2003
Posted on Saturday, February 19, 2005 - 12:20 am:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Buy-buy-buy-every homebrew gadget known to mankind, at a preimum price, at your local homebrew store.

When it's over "then" and only "then" will you be satisfied with the magnitude of your new found hobby!

This is the cheapest hobby that I have ever had! Plus you get to drink the results of your labor, which is better than anything, you can purchase for retail, for many years ahead.
 

Joe DiBenedetti
Junior Member
Username: Docwino

Post Number: 29
Registered: 01-2005
Posted on Saturday, February 19, 2005 - 02:39 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

The homade wand your talking about would be hard to clean.

Took that into consideration. The stub out has a
FIP adaptor on the end. This is connected to a brass MIP to 1/4" barb. Unscrew it, sanitize it, replace the "chore boy" innards and your good to go again.
 

Bill Pierce
Moderator
Username: Billpierce

Post Number: 2351
Registered: 01-2002
Posted on Saturday, February 19, 2005 - 03:13 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

I don't think a chore boy would provide small enough bubbles. Ideally you are looking for a porosity of about 1 micron.
 

Bill Tobler
Intermediate Member
Username: Billt

Post Number: 296
Registered: 08-2001
Posted on Saturday, February 19, 2005 - 04:14 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Ya know, it wasn't too long ago that all I did was shake the carboy till I got tired, then put the wort up and hope for the best. These days, I have a bottle of O2 in the brewery and 2 SS airation stones and a SS wand to accomplish the same thing. To tell you the truth, I really don't see a very big improvement over the old method. I make 10 gallon batches now and ferment in a 15 gallon SS pot, which is why I went to the O2 in the first place.
Bill Tobler
Lake Jackson,Texas
My Brewery
 

Joe DiBenedetti
Junior Member
Username: Docwino

Post Number: 33
Registered: 01-2005
Posted on Saturday, February 19, 2005 - 04:22 pm:   Edit Post Delete Post View Post/Check IP    Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Shaking a 5 gal carboy----that's one way to develop arms like Popeye.