Back to Shopping at

I Stuck My Arm in My Bottling Bucket

I’m sure everyone starting out has had that crazy thing happen to them with a batch of beer. Well, mine is, “I stuck my arm in my bottling bucket…” Yep.

This just seemed like one of those things that would never happen. I’d had my bottling bucket along with tubing, etc. sitting overnight filled with a mixture of Star San. The morning I’m bottling I empty the Star San and begin filling my bucket with my beer. The bucket fills and the spigot is leaking - what? So I figure I’ll turn it and voila the gasket slips and beer starts flowing onto the garage floor. My first thought was to grab it and run out of the garage. My second thought was to plug the hole and fix the spigot. I’d been up to elbows all morning in Star San sanitizing bottles, etc. SO I stuck my arm in the bucket removed the spigot and plugged the hole with my hand.

To make a long (and funny story) short, I was able to get the spigot back in and only lost about a gallon of beer. My next thought was, “I’m not letting this go to waste.” I assumed in my mind I was sanitized and the beer was ~6% ABV so what did I have to loose. So I continued the bottling process while the aroma of my beer filled the garage. Now things are boxed and put away to age.

Right now I think my biggest risk is oxidation. That just means I’ll have to drink it faster. I can hear the stories to my friends of how the spigot blew across the room…


Clearly not ideal. But I think you’ll be fine. With the ABV and lower pH of the beer it will take something fairly strong to take hold.

1 Like

I’ve actually done something similar with no bad effects. I don’t make it a standard practice but I’d bet on it being just fine.

And the yeast fermenting in the bottle to carb it, should take care of some, if not all the O2… Yeah, stuff happens and you’d not want to loose too much of your hard work to an equipment malfunction… What are you going to call your brew? Fore arm ale? Sneezles61


I still remember Dawson in the DVD that came with the deluxe NB starter kit back in 2013, “Make sure the spigot is closed”…he says it like three times in the bottling section! Lol

Obviously we’ve all been there…spectacular fails

Dont we all make mistakes. Me droped my false tooth in the fermenting bucket once


Just call it “Olan’s Forearm Ale”. There’ve been worse things in beer.


One time I had a small catastrophe where lots of things started to tip over. Started small like the spigot was leaking, then the autosiphon started to tip and almost fell out of the beer. As I reacted to catch that, I almost knocked over my carboy. As I caught that with my leg, I started to lose my balance and almost took it all with me.

Long story short, I had the tubing from my racking cane in between my toes, the handle of the bottling bucket in my teeth, and I was standing on one foot. It was such a precarious position that it took a long time just to get it all back to normal just so I could stand upright again. Nothing bad happened, but I definitely didn’t tell anyone how close my feet were to the beer


I have done that. Probably a couple of times. You will have no problems

Great mental picture … :joy:

The mighty arm that saved the brew. Do what you got to do.

1 Like

Just call it “Amendment #2

If anyone asks, tell them it’s the beer with the right to bare arms.


Had the seal leak slightly before. I was lucky enough that I just twisted the outside of the spigot around and was able to tighten without holding the nut. Maybe buy one of those plastic carboy spigot wrenches for emergencies. I’m good for leaving the spigot open after draining star san and having my back turned when I hear beer spilling to the floor.

Well it turned out pretty good.


Any arm flavor?
I happy it turned out for you… What’s up next? Sneezles61


Is it the RIGHT stuff?


Did that same thing with a Lagunitas clone. Didn’t lose the spigot but it leaked and had to be tightened. Turned out to be one of the best IPAs I’ve brewed in a long time. Makes you seriously consider doing it again.

1 Like

Was the brew Zestfully clean?

1 Like
Back to Shopping at