Are all airlocks created equal?

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stickman

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@BMarNJ be careful when topping with commercial wine, many of the typical daily drinking wines contain some residual sugar, it's not a problem when your wine was just put into the secondary, but when your wine has already aged 6 or 9 months, it is possible to see some unexpected CO2 release maybe a couple of weeks after topping.
I'm not saying to not use commercial for topping, I've used it many times, but just be aware of the possibility that it contains some residual sugar, you can't always tell by taste.
 

mainshipfred

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@BMarNJ be careful when topping with commercial wine, many of the typical daily drinking wines contain some residual sugar, it's not a problem when your wine was just put into the secondary, but when your wine has already aged 6 or 9 months, it is possible to see some unexpected CO2 release maybe a couple of weeks after topping.
I'm not saying to not use commercial for topping, I've used it many times, but just be aware of the possibility that it contains some residual sugar, you can't always tell by taste.
Good point, commercial wines with residual sugar are probably sterile filtered to prevent fermentation.
 

Johnd

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The twist definitely works when they’re stubborn. Ya gotta cork screw that sucker into that bunghole. Just a little extra convincing helps if they aren’t into it at first.

However I do have one vessel that refuses to accept it.

*i really do lol. It’s a 34L demijohn which has an odd sized opening and taper. Smaller than large demis and PET, —closer to #9 barrel bung but all depends on the taper.
Only the solid rubber style bungs stay in that. The friction of the rubber holds it down. (Not sure what type of rubber that is) But any type of silicon refuses to hold (nothing to do with pressure)

The universal style silicon bungs have similar friction, however no size fits the damn thing. I would go and check my wine and notice the bung would be sitting loose. Maybe sealed maybe not. Still trying to find ideal stoppers for it.
Maybe you could try a expandable mechanical plug like we use in boats, something like this: https://www.grainger.com/category/plumbing/pipe-tubing-and-fittings/pipe-and-tubing-accessories/pipe-and-test-plugs?attrs=Nominal+Size|1-1/4"&filters=attrs

If you could find the right size, it may help solve the issue, I'm unsure if neoprene rubber is a proper material for the application, but it doesn't touch your wine.............
 

Rice_Guy

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A water column air lock will always be capable of sucking into the container. The difference in height between the two sides is a measure of how much pressure or vacuum, therefore if it is an inch you will have about .1 Kia pressure or vacuum , , , maximum!
Yes to your question, there will be some oxygen transport through the liquid, not likely significant with a good size carboy. With smaller containers it will have a higher percentage effect.
Good observation
When I go to top up the barrel after 3 weeks or so and pull the solid silicon bung off the barrel there is a large sucking sound as the evaporated water has created a vacuum in the barrel , , if I used a three piece or S shaped, add water type of airlock, would that vacuum in . . . I suspect the answer is yes, but it must not be significant. Looking forward to , , , and other’s thoughts.
I have some flexible plastic containers that I run with a 1 or 0.5 Kia check valve, (ie like Steve puts into a head space eliminator)
Silicone bungs seem good but have never tried to measure pressure or vacuum. For me silicone is as good as it gets. The hollow shell style always slips out so I don’t use em long term. The white rubber are good when new but harden when exposed to SO2 or 2 years old or have dust on them.
I use solid corks on things that are over 9 months.
One time I ran a big mouth bubbler wound up with a silicone funnel that fit the opening and some kind of light air lock on top of that. , , , summary, silicone especially clean new silicone always is effective.
If I had vacuum on a barrel I would ask what could I do to slow the effect, this is why god invented high humidity wine cellars.
 
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BMarNJ

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The other thing that you can try is drying off the bung and the inside neck of the carboy, then twisting the bung as you push it down in place. Even my vented bungs will pop up if the neck / bung is wet, due to the slippery nature of the silicone and taper on the bung. A reproduction from the past: "Nobody likes a wet, slippery bung hole."
@Johnd, I've learned that drying trick from this forum and use in on my pool gizmos with PVC (if you have a pool you know what gizmos are). So much of what I’ve learned from pool maintenance, cheese making and wine making overlap. Lots of chemistry and lots of patience.
 

buzi

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How about this? If you have properly sealed your barrel, as the"angels share" leaves the barrel thought the staves and wood, it leaves a vacuum behind.

However, I typically leave my new wine in the garage for a few months. By the time it gets to the basement and warms up I typically have a 6 or 6.5g carboy or two that expands and pushes up into the airlock. It seems a little more expansion than the 25mls... So I could see between temp flux and atmospheric pressure how a vacuum could form in a Barrel. Thoughts?
 
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