Bottled Oxygen or Air for "oxygenating" the FV

Discussion in 'General Brewing Discussions' started by AHarper, Apr 15, 2021.

  1. AHarper

    AHarper Well-Known Member

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    What do you all use out there for "oxygenating" the brew prior to adding the yeast in the FV?

    Do you just shake it all up to get it all frothy or do you pump oxygen / air through it?

    I'm interested as, until now, I have been just agitating the wort as you do, but now I am thinking of getting some oxygen - in a small cylinder - to bubble through the wort.

    I have thought of using a fish tank bubbler with a suitable brass "stone" to do the job but the the question of sanitation arises. The air is drawn through the base of the pump with just a simple felt filter, which could be sanitised before use of course, but would this be enough to avoid any infection?

    Oxygen gas comes in several forms of course, from the small canisters on Amazon that seem to have only a few puffs in them (5L or 10L) to larger bottles used for welding kits (these are not for Medical use- as stated on the canisters) to the various sizes of Medical quality Oxygen cylinders and bottles. The later ones seem to have restrictions on the purchase here (maybe that is a UK thing, I don't know) and they are expensive to not only buy but to cobble together the other necessary parts such as regulators to adjust the flow etc.

    Any recommendations as to the best way to go - this may help others out there with similar intentions.
     
  2. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    Search Hepa filters this is what you add inline on the aquarium pump. Also the stone is a oxygen Diffusion stone .2 micron and up. They can be a PITA sometimes to get air flowing. Don't touch them with fingers as the oils will clog the tiny holes.

    I used to boil the stone for sanitize.

    I just splash the wort whilst pumping it into FV.
    I've got the aquarium pump and stone and filter but I don't use it.

    My understanding is it provide a more o2 than the shake method but less than pure o2

    Good luck on your pursuits.
     
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  3. Craigerrr

    Craigerrr Well-Known Member

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    If I ever use liquid yeast I pump the wort in the FV, and will shake it for a minute or two. As I pretty much only use dry yeast, I don't even think about oxygenating the wort.
     
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  4. Josh Hughes

    Josh Hughes Well-Known Member

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    I dump Through a screened funnel and it foams. Even with with liquid yeast or slurry i just dump. Been lucky so far
     
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  5. philjohnwilliams

    philjohnwilliams Well-Known Member

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    I siphon the cooled wort into the carboy, but I leave the end of the hose close to the top of the carboy so the wort splashes a bit as it drops in. Once the carboy is full I cap it and shake it for about a minute before adding the yeast. I give it one last shake for about 30 seconds and I'm done.
     
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  6. HighVoltageMan!

    HighVoltageMan! Well-Known Member

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    Liquid yeast benefits from higher dissolved oxygen levels. The maximum you can get with air is 7-8ppm. That’s on the lower end of ale requirements, lagers need 12-18ppm. Dry yeast does fine with 2-3ppm, basically it doesn’t need aeration.

    Simple shaking gets about 4-5ppm, air pumps can hit 7-8 ppm, but it may take 5 minutes or so. Pure oxygen can get 10-12ppm in about a minute with a 2 micron diffusion stone. In 2 minutes you can get 18-20ppm.

    I use pure oxygen for nearly every brew with the exception of Kveik Voss. I just use the small welding canisters, which is pretty common among home brewers. Oxygen is really important to the beer. It sets up the fermentation for success. It help the yeast perform as they should, it helps with under pitch situations and is a must for lagers and high gravity ales.
     
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  7. AHarper

    AHarper Well-Known Member

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    So these welding gas canisters are OK to use then? I thought they might be problematic as far as hygiene was concerned as they are not food grade/ Medical. Are the canisters clean enough inside or is it that you have not experienced any contamination?
    If they are OK to use then that would be the most economic route to go.
     
  8. RustyBeer

    RustyBeer Member

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    #8 RustyBeer, Apr 16, 2021
    Last edited: Apr 16, 2021
    Oxygen bottle from Home Depot with a carbing stone
     
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  9. HighVoltageMan!

    HighVoltageMan! Well-Known Member

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    https://www.homedepot.com/p/Bernzomatic-1-4-oz-Oxygen-Gas-Cylinder-304179/202044702

    Albeit not perfect, most homebrewers in the States use this. Food grade oxygen would be better for impurities, but so far no one has died...yet. Talking to local gas suppliers, there is not much difference between food grade and welding grade. However, I would not use it for anyone who needed long term oxygen therapy, just beer.

    There are no microbes that can harm beer in pure oxygen. In fact, unless I'm mistaken, nothing is alive in the presence of pure oxygen, I think.
     
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  10. Donoroto

    Donoroto Well-Known Member

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    But beware those 1.4 ounce cylinders don't have much oxygen in them for your $11.
     
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  11. HighVoltageMan!

    HighVoltageMan! Well-Known Member

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    Very true. There are probably cheaper ways, but not many more convenient. I can get 6-10 brews out of them depending on ale or lager. Ale gets 60 seconds, lager gets 120 seconds.
     
  12. Donoroto

    Donoroto Well-Known Member

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    I found a red bernz-o-matic bottle to last about 5 brews. So I switched to an aquarium pump. For dry yeast, I simply let the cooled wort splash into the fermenter, but for liquid yeast I run the pump for about 5 minutes. A friend has only ever used the splash method, and it results in beer regardless.

    One of my 0.5 micron carb stones did get clogged, so I ran some higher pressure air from my air compressor through it into the wort. I switched back to 2 micron carb stones, but they do clog easily even at 2 microns. I use a HEPA filter like Ben mentioned to keep the air clean. I have to try boiling it to keep it clean or at least not clogged.

    I'd love to find a medical oxygen bottle, but as in the UK, the USA requires a doctor's prescription to get it filled. Welding-grade oxygen is fine for our purposes, since you're not breathing the stuff, but a new tank is over $100 and then I need a regulator and such, a bit pricey when my $10 pump serves adequately.

    So air or oxygen? O2 is faster and can deliver more into the wort, but air is cheap and adequate.
     
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  13. Hawkbox

    Hawkbox Well-Known Member

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    Personally I just open transfer it from the kettle to the bucket fermenter and let it foam. That has worked well for my purposes, it's about a 40cm drop or so.
     
  14. Ozarks Mountain Brew

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    I pour mine from bucket to bucket untill I hear a sound change, I can tell if it's frothy
     
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  15. HighVoltageMan!

    HighVoltageMan! Well-Known Member

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    At the risk of repeating myself, I think aeration is one area where a lot homebrewers don't always do enough when using liquid yeast. I think splashing, letting the stream drop onto the fermenter and air pumps are okay for lower gravity ales (@1.050 or under). Lagers and high gravity ales benefit immensely from wort aerated up to 20ppm. The yeast performs so much better. Lag times are shortened, off flavors are greatly reduced or eliminated, higher alcohols are reduced (rocket fuel) and attenuation is more complete. Dry yeast is another matter.

    Of all the things I did to improve my beer, proper pitch rates and proper aeration were the 2 things I did to improve my beer the most. Of the two, I firmly believe aeration was the more important. Prior to that my beers were under attenuated and to me tasted "flabby". Undefined, dull, and not bright. Go to any brewery and you will see an oxygen tank somewhere in the brewery. It's there for a very good reason, yeast performance.
     
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  16. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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  17. Nosybear

    Nosybear Well-Known Member

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    I use the small size welding oxygen bottle. Still alive, don't mind that third eye... I believe it's 22 liters. I oxygenate using the Brewers Friend regulator at 1/32 lpm for 1 minute per ppm O2 desired in the wort. That little bottle lasts a LONG time used that way. The reason for the low flow is smaller bubbles have more surface area to absorb into the wort. I waste less gas that way.
     
  18. Minbari

    Minbari Active Member

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    this is how I do it too. it is, of course, the most expencive method of the three, but it does seem to have the best results.

    I got a 20cuft O2 tank for $130 filled with $20 fills after that. CK welding supplies. you dont own the tank so you dont have to worry about paying for inspections either. the regulator can be had on amazon for about $35
     
  19. BarbarianBrewer

    BarbarianBrewer Well-Known Member

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    Oxygen tank may have moved up the ladder of future purchases. I mostly brew ales in the 1.060 range so I'm probably good just laying my 30L Speidel on its side and rocking it back and forth for a few minutes. But O2 would definitely be useful for my annual Wee Heavy or Barleywine or the occasional lager.
     
  20. Minbari

    Minbari Active Member

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    I used this 1 time! the next time I went to use it had all leaked out. for $11 its not worth it.

    that 1.4 oz of gas = about 0.00146 cuft. 20cuft of O2 from the welding shop is $20
     
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