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Proper sized fermentation vessel?

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Ajmassa

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I will be putting a 6 gal juice pale of Chilean Cab/merlot into primary with x3 lug's worth of Cab grape skins lightly pressed. As well as an extra 9 pound grape pack. My 7.9 gal bucket won't be big enough.
Anyone to have insight to the proper size vessel?
Currently my options are to split it into two separate 6 gallon buckets, or use this big oversized keg tub I've used. Should I grab a brute? What size?
 

Ajmassa

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I do have prime. I think I'll heed your advice.

In six months I have the same issue. And I'll need a vessel to ferment about 13 lugs of grapes. (14.25 gal Demi). May neee the 44 gal for that one
 
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ceeaton

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I do have prime. I think I'll heed your advice.

In six months I have the same issue. And I'll need a vessel to ferment about 13 lugs of grapes. (14.25 gal Demi). May neee the 44 gal for that one
Lowe's and Home Depot have them too if you want them today. Only one bucket and one lug in this one, but it would be tough to not overflow in a 7.9 gallon bucket even with that small amount. Bigger is better when it comes to wine making.

5-7-17_brutte.JPG
 

Boatboy24

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I have 3 20's and will probably get a 4th before the fall harvest.
 

Ajmassa

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Already have the trashcan dollies. The heavy duty commercial ones that thread into the bottom of our cans. I gotta see if they are universal to all size brutes tomorrow. I think they might be. A 20'gal will be perfect for this odd sized batch.
Would a 30 be big enough for a 15 gal (13 lug?) all grape primary? Or would I need bigger.
Unfortunately my family's wine equipment, the barrels and tub and crusher etc... was all given away years back. All very old, wooden and bulky and space issues apparently. Makes me cringe. All that's left are the 2 demis I've inherited. The old timers are all gone now and my father scaled down years ago. I Gotta keep it going though (one of my excuses anyway). And slowly gearing up. Investing in a crusher and press for next season too. Somehow I've overlooked putting any thought at all into fermentation vessels
 

BlueStimulator

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I too am scaling up as a first timer and I gotta say it is fun buying gear. Just don't tell my better half
 

cmason1957

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I don't think a 30 is enough for 13 lugs of grapes. Usually a lug is 30 lbs and 3 lugs ends up being 6 gallons finished. About 9 gallons with skins and seeds. As I recall I put 5, maybe 6 lugs in my 30 and 4 in my 20. You might be able to go one more, but that leaves little room for the cap to rise.
 

Boatboy24

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Are we talking US lugs or Chilean lugs? One is 18lbs and the other is 36.
 

Ajmassa

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Ok forget lugs. My lugs are 18 lbs. so I just need to figure out how big a brute I'll need for a batch from all grapes going into a 15 gal Demi.
Not a big deal tho. Bigger is better. I'll probably get a 44 gal for that. And get 20 gal this week for my 6 gal pale and 54 lbs of skins.
 

Ajmassa

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I'll be doing 15 gal grape batches for both US and Chilean in the future. The dolly seems to be universal (fits both the 32 and 44) and would be great if it also fits the 20 gal.
Is there a rule of thumb with skin volume? Seems to be about whatever the desired finished wine volume will be about the same in skins. Plus room for bubbles and foam. If so, 32 gal would then be pushing the limit for a 15 gal batch. The 44 is damn big!
ImageUploadedByWine Making1494257570.473337.jpg
This is a 44 and 32 side by side. That dolly fits both.
 

cmason1957

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You could probably do the 15 gallons in a 32, but it is safer to oversize and go with the 44 gallon. I think the max I have done in my 20 gallon is l50 lbs of grapes. It isn't just the overall volume, when it ferments, the skins and some of the seeds get pushed up by the Co2. You have to leave room for that cap to grow and then get punched back down twice or thrice a day.
 

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