Delay in fulfillment...

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BarrelMonkey

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Well, this sucks. Several months ago I ordered (and paid for) a #35 stainless basket press from my 'local' (90-minute drive away) wine supply store, it was to be shipped from Italy. Today I got an email with the title 'DELAY IN FULFILLMENT', which basically means they did not ship my press and so I will not have it for this season.

They offered 3 alternatives that are in stock: #30 stainless press, #35 wooden press and #40 stainless press. I really want to make wine this season so I'm leaning towards getting the #30 stainless option - but I am now much less inclined to do business with them again.

I'm still hoping to make wine this year, and still looking for 1/2 ton of grapes - but I guess I will be doing a few more press cycles if I get the smaller unit. Anyone else press 1/2 ton grapes with this size press? Basket holds 7.9 gal/30L.
 

winemaker81

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I use a #40 wooden press for ~600 lbs of grapes, and it can handle about 300 lbs, although I do 144 to 180 lb batches and press by the batch.

I would not necessarily blame the LHBS for the problem -- supplies of all types have been impacted by COVID, including an upsurge in winemaking. They can't receive what the manufacturer doesn't ship.
 

Rice_Guy

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One option my local shop(s) offer is that they rent equipment. A guess is your shop will too, ,,,, and this gives you experience with more equipment.

In California there should be a plethora of equipment which is used two days to a week out of the year. Possibly this is a way to meet some wine making buddies.
 

BarrelMonkey

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I use a #40 wooden press for ~600 lbs of grapes, and it can handle about 300 lbs, although I do 144 to 180 lb batches and press by the batch.

I would not necessarily blame the LHBS for the problem -- supplies of all types have been impacted by COVID, including an upsurge in winemaking. They can't receive what the manufacturer doesn't ship.
I agree that it may not be their fault, though when I ordered it they explicitly said that their supplier had sent an additional #35 press - so I assumed it was already in transit.

That's good to hear that you can press small batches with a #40 press - the reason I was leaning to the smaller press was so that I could maybe make more, smaller lots instead of just one big press every year.
 

winemaker81

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You can ask them about the backorder, stating you were under the impression it was shipping. See what they say.

That's good to hear that you can press small batches with a #40 press - the reason I was leaning to the smaller press was so that I could maybe make more, smaller lots instead of just one big press every year.
My first year I did three 5 lug (180 lb) batches and the press handled it with no problem, and I expect the press could handle 8 lugs.

Last year I did four 4 lug (144 lbs) as the fermenters are a lot easier to deal with at the lower weight -- I'm using 32 gallon Brutes, which are overkill for the batches I'm doing, but large enough I could easily double the individual batch sizes.

On the lower end of the scale, I'd probably not use it for batches of much less than 100 lbs. But since that is a ~19 liter carboy of aging wine, that's about right.

This press is what was available on Facebook Marketplace -- everything else was either junk or tiny. For me it was a good purchase. If I jump from ~600 to 1,000 lbs of grapes, it would still work fine for me.

Side note -- last fall I made a really high-tech jig that enabled me to rack the free-run wine from the pomace, greatly reducing the weight we had to carry in the fermenter and having less wine simply splash through the press. I wrapped it in a fine-mesh straining bag which allows juice to flow while keeping the pomace out. This was a real labor saver.

I was in a hurry last fall, as I thought of it at the last moment. I'm going to drill more holes and use a rat-tail file to remove sprue.

racking jig.jpg
 

franc1969

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I got a 30 liter press myself, should allow more flexibility for smaller batches, and it's better if you might end up pressing alone. A little bit more effort for large batches, but the gazillion hole pipe should help.
As has been said- the retailer cannot have what the manufacturer does not ship. You would have to figure out if that means retailer sold what they weren't reasonably sure of, or were told they would definitely have. Manufacturers tell retailers a lot of things that don't actually happen. Does not matter if it is a company issue or just the one guy- if there is only one ship a year.
 

balatonwine

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They offered 3 alternatives that are in stock: #30 stainless press, #35 wooden press and #40 stainless press.
I have a #55 wooden press and I can say lugging those baskets around gets old fast. No matter what size you get, get stainless. Your back will thank you. Stainless is also easier to clean.
 
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