This weekend I brewed up a batch of Coffee Milk Stout. If it turns out well, I will be sure to post the recipe for it. It should ride that line in between stout and imperial stout. I also chose to diminish the hop profile on it a bit so that the coffee flavors could be showcased on this batch. I am also going to try adding a cold brewed coffee concentrate to the fermenter after about a week instead of adding coffee beans to the fermenter. Fingers crossed that this will turn out well!
Prior to purchasing these home brew fermenters I tended to use glass carboys but would also use a plastic carboy on occasion. Often times I get asked if they are worth the money? For me I can quickly and honestly answer yes! The main reason is they are more durable and I do not have to worry about dropping one of my glass carboys anymore and having it send me to the hospital. I also got them for a great deal, or at least what I consider a great deal. I picked the stainless steel brew buckets up for $195 each, the 7 gallon for $395, and the 14 gallon for $495. There are a few more reasons why I like them so much.
They are constructed from 100% stainless steel, so if I care for them they will last a life time. Since these homebrew fermenters are built from metal, it also means that I do not need to worry about light oxidization while the wort or beer is in it. They are incredible easy to clean. If I want to I can transfer via CO2 pressure. My 14 gallon unit has a temperature control unit which makes fermenting an ale or a lager a breeze regardless of the time of year. My stainless brew buckets and 7 gallon conical fermenter all fit in my fermentation fridge and allow me to ferment about 18 gallons of beer as opposed to 10 gallons if I was still using my glass carboys! Dry hopping these are a snap since their lids come off, which make they a snap to clean as well. The conicals come with a thermowell built in and the stainless brewbuckets have a add-on kit for them as well; that makes monitoring temperature easy if you have a temp controller and fermentation chamber since it give you an actual temperature reading of the fermenting beer as opposed to the outside of the fermenter or ambient chamber temp which may be off by several degrees.
As you can see, filling the conical is as easy as it gets. It even has easy to read gallon markers etched into the inside wall of the fermenter. As you can see there are two ports on it. One for dumping large volumes from the base of the conical or harvesting yeast (which is simple and can save you some money) and a second transfer and tracking arm port for siphoning beer above the sediment and or yeast bed.
Transferring beer from the stainless steel home brewing brew bucket fermenter.
As you can see in the above photo, transferring beer from the stainless steel brew bucket is about as easy as it gets. It has a single port and rotating internal racking arm that makes transferring clear beer to the keg as easy as turning a valve. No more sanitizing siphons with these fermenters. Having less things to worry about or to clean is always a plus when it comes to home brewing.
Home Brewing Conical Fermenters
As I had mentioned earlier, cleaning these fermenters in very easy. I simply use some PBW, warm water and a nylon scrub sponge. The lid comes off so it is easy to reach everything and the conical fermenters come with sanitary clamps so they break down and reassemble effortlessly. I have used these fermenters for over 3 years now and still do not have one complaint about them!
If you are interested in picking one up, here are the links and best of all, they are shipped free!
It has been about a year since I purchased my 7 Gallon SS BrewTech conical fermenter and 14 gallon stainless steel conical fermenter. I have been very please with their performance and am happy to report that I have not had a single issue with them. The quality of the manufacturing is top notch and they were the best priced stainless steel conicals that I could find. Best of all they even shipped them for free, saving me a bundle.
Their price was recently reduced and they also release an upgraded Brew Master version of their already quality built line of stainless steel conical fermenters. So if you are looking to upgrade your homebrewing fermenters, this may be a great time to do so.
These stainless steel conicals come loaded with features, here are some of the specs:
Certified Food Grade 304 Stainless Steel Construction
Patent Pending Stainless Steel Rotating Racking Arm
They have a full range of these stainless steel homebrewing fermenters, including 1/2 barrel and full 1 barrel sized fermenter. Their brew bucket line of stainless steel fermenters is also on sale right now starting at $195.
Recently I had purchase a 7 gallon stainless steel conical fermenter and was in heaven until I realized that it did not fit in my converted chest freezer / fermentation chamber! So you know what that means; time to grab the cut saw and go all A-Team on the conical fermenter.
Stainless Steel Conical Homebrewing Fermenters
In the above photo, the stainless steel conical fermenter on the right is the 7 gallon unit that I am converting to fit into the chest freezer. I am adding a temperature control unit to the stainless steel conical fermenter on the left and will cover that project in a future blog. So to start, I had to replace the lid on fermenter with the lid from one of my stainless steel brew buckets. Because the stainless steel brew bucket lid is flat, it saved me a few inches and let me connect a stainless steel elbow pipe fitting so that I can use a blow-off tube as opposed to an airlock which save me another couple of inches. With those simple modifications, I was just about there. Next I measured the clearance space from the lower valve to the floor and I had approximately 4 inches of clearance. So I trimmed each leg down approximately 3 inches as you can see in the photo at the top of the page.
The modifications to my stainless conical fermenter worked perfectly and now it easily fits in my chest freezer and I am once again a happy man. You can see the photo below. If all goes well, I will brew my first batch with this fermenter this weekend and will let you guys know how it goes, but so far I have been very happy with the quality. I gave it a good cleaning and there were no leaks, all of the welds are perfect and the valves and fittings are all very high quality.
If you are looking to purchase one, they are currently available for just $395!
Blichmann Engineering Stainless Steel Conical Fermenters and Stainless Steel Brew Kettles are currently on sale! Click the conical fermenter image for additional details!
Blichmann Homebrewing Fermenters and Brew Kettle Sale
There is currently a sale going on at Greatfermentations.com that will let you save some serious cash on Blichmann Home Brewing products if you act now! It is a limited time deal, so if you were thinking of upgrading your Blichmann gear, this may be the time to do it. Blichmann Engineering makes some of the best homebrewing equipment around. You can check out the sale items here: