Simple Wine Station Ideas.

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vinny

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I already have some grandiose ideas for when I kick the business out of my shop. I can tap in to the back side of the bathroom and set up close to a 20ft work space with sinks. I might close of the whole area, roughly 20x20 or so. Then I can control temps and have it double as a wine making room and cellar. It's well insulated and has a massive slab which helps keep things cool and stable. I could get lost in all my ideas...

Anyway, that's the later in life dream.

For now I want to set up a simple space for cleaning and mixing up kits where chipped counter tops and disappointed looks will be a thing of the past. Then I should be down to simple recipes like country wines in the kitchen.

The laundry sink is between the washer and dryer, an inch or 2 lower. I plan to span over the whole area, about 7 feet, with a solid counter. Add a new, deep sink still in between and set it up for the bulk of my needs. If I wash bottles I am usually setting dirty bottles on one side of the sink and the drying rack on the other, I think it;s a functional layout.

SO! with limited space I am looking for clever ideas. I have a carboy wand and a plunger bottle rinsing attachment, but with either attached to the tap I can't rinse the outside or anything else. I am thinking 2 taps and maybe a hand sprayer as well. I have a cabinet below the sink, and uppers. This will give me some storage for cleaners, attachments etc., but carboys, bottles, and the bulk of equipment will be stored elsewhere. I'll ramp up the lighting, maybe under cabinet so I can see well.

That's about all I've got. You guys must have some clever ideas you have come up with over the years to make your spaces more efficient. Any suggestions, or must haves?
 
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BigDaveK

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I have a bottle tree for draining/drying that holds a boatload of bottles and saves a lot of space.
The time I spend mixing and washing and etc is minimal so at least right now it's not a concern. Storage for bottles and bulk aging is my priority at this time. Nine gallon jugs and 2 3-gallon carboys aging now. That will easily double later this year. Perhaps I'll circle back to a nice work station once my storage issue is satisfactorally addressed.
 

vinny

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I have a tree as well. Works well. I am just trying to get out of the kitchen with the bulk of the process. I only took a small chip out of the counter on the inside edge of the sink when I dropped the carboy, but I'm calling that lucky and taking the hint to get out while I'm ahead. The laundry room has vinyl instead of plank flooring too, so safer on all fronts.

This afternoon I got a Grillo Pinot Grigio, and a Mystic California (cab sauv, merlot, and sirah, I believe) into primary. Kits # 5&6. No big incidences other than a broken hydrometer. All the plastic in this world and a fella can't get a reasonably priced acrylic hydrometer? Oh well. I play by the rules and keep a couple spares. Otherwise you'd break it every time!

I think I will add a little piece of stainless scrubby to the bottom of my graduated cylinder to dampen the drop in the hopes of prolonging the life of the next one.

I also noticed I had let my Raspberry (the one that started it all) get really low in the air lock. I think I dodged a bullet seems to taste just fine. If you like sour candy's :p . I think the 750 wine bottle is on the way to vinegar. At least I hope so, if it's gonna spoil I'd like it to end up on a different shelf...
 

ChuckD

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I already have some grandiose ideas
Don’t we all! My wine lab has a toilet in the corner and I wash carboys in the tub (basement bathroom). If lumber prices ever come down the addition will go up and I’ll have 800sf of basement all to myself. Double restaurant sink, some repurposed kitchen cabinets, stainless steel prep table, and an exterior entrance right to the garden and vineyard! A boy can dream 😃
 

vinny

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I didn't like my pumping experience it was slower and more complicated than just siphon racking. I vacuumed the Pinot Grigio and siphoned the Shiraz right after. I have no intention of vacuum transferring any time soon, but I have a big loud oil filled pump. Save up for the real deal if you are going to do it, I just had this one kicking around.

I think I might get a little hand truck or dolly to move full carboys and fermenters to my room, but I can transfer and bottle in there. I don't need to pull everything into the laundry, mostly just washing and maybe making wines. Like you depending on what I'm doing, sometimes I end up in the tub. Other times it's the kitchen, sometimes the laundry sink. Sometimes all of the above. That's a crowd pleaser!
 
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TurkeyHollow

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This afternoon I got a Grillo Pinot Grigio, and a Mystic California (cab sauv, merlot, and sirah, I believe) into primary. Kits # 5&6. No big incidences other than a broken hydrometer. All the plastic in this world and a fella can't get a reasonably priced acrylic hydrometer? Oh well. I play by the rules and keep a couple spares. Otherwise you'd break it every time!
If you hold your empty graduated cylinder at a slight angle (closer to horizontal) then you can GENTLY slide your hydrometer into it to the bottom. Now tip it up to fill with wine/must to test. It won't slam the bottom and you'll never overfill it because you only need to fill it until it floats. I only learned this after bouncing a hydrometer off the bottom as you did. You're absolutely correct in keeping a couple of spares though - by having an extra, you'll never break your primary.
 

VinesnBines

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If you hold your empty graduated cylinder at a slight angle (closer to horizontal) then you can GENTLY slide your hydrometer into it to the bottom. Now tip it up to fill with wine/must to test. It won't slam the bottom and you'll never overfill it because you only need to fill it until it floats. I only learned this after bouncing a hydrometer off the bottom as you did. You're absolutely correct in keeping a couple of spares though - by having an extra, you'll never break your primary.
If you put the liquid in the cylinder first, the hydrometer won't hit the bottom. You can mark the cylinder to the level that it won't overflow when you add the hydrometer.
I also noticed I had let my Raspberry (the one that started it all) get really low in the air lock. I think I dodged a bullet seems to taste just fine. If you like sour candy's :p
Red raspberry can be sour and tart. It has taken a lot of work to get mine to a taste that is not lip pucker.
 

VinesnBines

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Somewhere on the forum, someone made a carboy lift out of a transmission jack. I've thought of that but for now a small transfer pump has been doing the job.
 

vinny

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If you hold your empty graduated cylinder at a slight angle (closer to horizontal) then you can GENTLY slide your hydrometer into it to the bottom.

If you put the liquid in the cylinder first, the hydrometer won't hit the bottom.

I was chaptalizing the kit. I added the sugar and was stirring while dumping back my sample. I was pinching the hydrometer as I poured. Paying more attention to stirring than allowing the hydrometer to set back on the bottom I dropped it from an inch or so, learning a lesson I have already learned too many times. Focus on what you are doing, and be gentle with your hydrometer.
 

vinny

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Somewhere on the forum, someone made a carboy lift out of a transmission jack. I've thought of that but for now a small transfer pump has been doing the job.

I have a 2x4 ft hydraulic electric scissor lift table I am not using. I had a 5x8 tabletop on it for working on quads and SxS's before I got my hoist.

I couldn't part with it because it is such a good little unit. It's not going to make it into the house plans, but you just made sure it is still going to be around here when I get my space set up in the shop. You just step on the foot peddle and voila! Its at working height.

Thanks!
 

vinny

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I still have to head to the hardware store to see what they have for counter tops, but I have a sink and faucet on order.

22x25x10 with a grid to save me from beating up the bottom with carboys and bottles. There is a 28 inch option, but I don't know that it will offer much over this.

sink.jpg

washer.jpeg
I have a bottle washer like this that connects to the tap as well as a long wand for washing carboys. I think this faucet will be very functional to allow attachments and still have a tall sprayer for rinsing.
faucet.jpg

It's coming together!
 

BigDaveK

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Harbor Freight has a hydraulic lift cart.
Not my first choice for tools but I LOVE my cement mixer and greenhouse - both of which I bought 3 years ago for half the current price. And they always have coupons.

 

bstnh1

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You're absolutely correct in keeping a couple of spares though - by having an extra, you'll never break your primary.
Very true! About 10 years ago after breaking a couple of hydrometers, I ordered a couple of spares and stuck them in a drawer. And there they still sit today! The one I use on a regular basis since then is still in perfect shape.
 

TurkeyHollow

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Very true! About 10 years ago after breaking a couple of hydrometers, I ordered a couple of spares and stuck them in a drawer. And there they still sit today! The one I use on a regular basis since then is still in perfect shape.
Same here - 2 in the drawer and I haven't broken one since I bought the 3 of them.
 
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