Plastic primary fermentaion bucket fail

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Jun 8, 2009
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I was just reading that there were some problems with plastic primary fermentation buckets made by Ropak having the bottoms give out after a few uses. Has anybody had this problem? Anybody know if the problem was fixed?
Worried Jim
oh man that wud be horrible!!! *knock on wood* we havnt had this happen!! dont know what brand bucket we are runing tho.
Jim the bucket failing is for real and yes it has happened to some members on another forum. I will try to find the artical later and post it.
Here you go...

Ropak Fermenting Bucket Failure
grapestompers has recently been made aware of what appears to be a manufacturing defect in the fermenting buckets used by home winemakers across the USA and Canada, and we wanted to alert all of our customers about it.

The buckets we are referring to are the 7.8 US gallon size that are typically used for primary fermentation. Evidently, Ropak Can-Am Ltd., the manufacturer of the buckets, has recently changed their design of the bucket which causes the bucket to crack or split along the bottom seam.

We do not know when exactly the design change occurred, only that it drastically affects the ability of the bucket to stay together! The photo above shows what can happen when the bottom drops off.

Please understand - only some of the most recently made buckets have this flaw*. Earlier versions of the fermenting bucket had supporting ribs around the perimeter of the bottom to help hold the bottom together. The photo below shows a comparison of the two buckets side by side.

It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out which bucket is more sturdily built!

*The buckets in question were manufactured in July 2008. You can tell the date of manufacture by turning over the bucket and looking for the date "2008" stamped or printed inside a clock-like looking circle, with a line pointing towards the "7" on the clock.

What we discovered is that the bucket usually develops small cracks along the bottom seam, that get longer and wider as time (and use) go by.

grapestompers recommends that you check the bottoms of your buckets to see which kind you have. If you have one of these buckets described above, and you purchased it from us, you can get a replacement if you follow the 2 steps below:

1.Document that you have an affected bucket by taking a digital photo or two of the bottom
2.Send the photos to Tom and Pam at [email protected] along with your name and shipping address. If you know your order or invoice number, that would be a big help.
We'll verify your purchase, and follow up as soon as possible with a replacement bucket.

We would like to thank our distributor for helping us support our customers through this ordeal, even though the bucket was not manufactured by them and is not their responsibility.
Hi Dan, yup, that's the article I saw. Was wondering if the problem was fixed. That article says the buckets with the problems were made on 07/08. The bucket I have was made on 12/08. Looks like the same design. Maybe I'll just buy another bucket.
With this economy many companies and Gov'ts are going to be making changes to save them money and that means the quality is going down the crapper. It's a shame too, I don't mind spending more to get a good quality product.

There's a reason why it's cheap and you don't have to be a rocket scientist to figure it out.
My recollection is that there was only a problem with that production run and that the problem was resolved. I don't recall hearing what the problem was or how it was corrected, though.
I use my Regina juice buckets. I have a lot of them and use them for everything from wine making, gardening, trash and one even holds Titan's dog food when he comes over.

Having a bucket break on me would bring about more than an "oh snap":)
I heard winemaking can be full of surprises but having the bottom go out of your primary would be the ultimate surprise indeed!!!!

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