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A better brew bucket design

How, on a scale of 1 to 5, 1 being not interested and 5 being very interested, would you value the following upgrades to the common brewing bucket?

  1. A rubber seal in the lip of the lid. This would help it seal better.

  2. A built in hydrometer so that the progress of the beer could be checked without removing the lid and exposing the beer to air.

  3. A cone shaped bottom. This would allow yeast to settle into a small volume with a low surface area.

  4. An airlock that works without having to be filled with water.

  5. An insulated outer wall and lid. This would prevent temperature spikes that can shock yeast and slow fermentation.

You may reply by simply putting your results in order and posting them as such: 4,3,5,4,2

[quote=“ronman83a”]How, on a scale of 1 to 5, 1 being not interested and 5 being very interested, would you value the following upgrades to the common brewing bucket?

  1. A rubber seal in the lip of the lid. This would help it seal better.

  2. A built in hydrometer so that the progress of the beer could be checked without removing the lid and exposing the beer to air.

  3. A cone shaped bottom. This would allow yeast to settle into a small volume with a low surface area.

  4. An airlock that works without having to be filled with water.

  5. An insulated outer wall and lid. This would prevent temperature spikes that can shock yeast and slow fermentation.

You may reply by simply putting your results in order and posting them as such: 4,3,5,4,2[/quote]

1). 1
2.) 0
3.) 0
4.) 2
5.) 4

[quote=“ronman83a”]How, on a scale of 1 to 5, 1 being not interested and 5 being very interested, would you value the following upgrades to the common brewing bucket?

  1. A rubber seal in the lip of the lid. This would help it seal better. [/quote]

0, unless you use a material that is non-permeable to oxygen, then I’d bump this up to 4 since it could be useful for long-term aging

2

1; If there’s a way to pull the yeast off the bottom (like in a conical), this would go up to a 3-5 depending on price point

2

[quote=“ronman83a”]5) An insulated outer wall and lid. This would prevent temperature spikes that can shock yeast and slow fermentation.
[/quote]

4 - a vacuum insulated double wall would be fantastic if you could pull it off

If there’s a cone shaped bottom there has to be a stand of some sort. Then it becomes (another) plastic conical. It would have to offer more than the others out there to be worth it.

As to the lid seal, that’s not the obstacle to long term aging. It’s the permeability of the plastic itself. I applaud the OP’s creativity, but it looks to me like solutions in search of problems.

Without knowing a $ figure for whatever the design might be, it’s hard to get behind the options. As Denny implies, there are already A LOT of fermenter vessels out there already.

Every bucket I own has a rubber o-ring in the lid. None of the other options are appealing.

I have used many different types of fermenters (glass, plastic bottles, plastic conicals, buckets, etc.) and over the past couple years I have settled on simply using “buckets.” There are two primary reasons I have decided to go with buckets -
1.) They are very easy to clean and work with.
2.) They are cheap.

It seems to me that the “improvements” you are suggesting would potentially get in the way of the 2 things (IMO) that make buckets great.

+1 Same here. Even my Curtec Drums have seals.

The fermentation buckets sold over here do NOT have o-rings in the lid seal. They use an interference fit on the lip to get the air-tight seal. Works well, so much so that the lids are designed with built-in lever tabs to allow you to open them.

They are not cheap, but adding any of the other features proposed would only add cost and potentially make them harder to clean. Simple and cheap is good.

A seal ion the bucket lid isn’t that big a deal. It’s not like germs are gonna crawl up under the lid! As long as the top of the fermenter is covered, you’re fine.

1 - in my experience the buckets seal well, and an air-tight seal isn’t really necessary anyway.
1 - a sample port is a much easier way to accomplish this.
5 - but only if there’s a way to drop yeast.
3 - but these already exist.
1 - this would make it all but impossible to regulate temperature. Instead of a ~5°F increase at high krausen, it would be 15+.

I think the only way I would improve the bucket is to make it clear so I could see the fermentation. IMO that’s the only advantage carboys have, except for long-term aging obviously.

I have flour buckets with o-rings and the are a pain in the butt I prefer my ale pale with an interference fit. Anyone use an old keg as fermentor?

[quote=“a10t2”]
1 - this would make it all but impossible to regulate temperature. Instead of a ~5°F increase at high krausen, it would be 15+.[/quote]

Good call - I didn’t even think of this

What about making them with nice screw top lids(not the crappy spin on lids like the ones at WB). Thats one of the things that I love about my Curtecs.

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