Where do you place the equipment

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Feb 21, 2010
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Could be that I am being too up tight but everything I have read indicates the best and quickest way to ruin a batch of wine is to allow it to become contaminated. Having just started my first batch I am trying to do everything I can to be sucessfull. The kit instructions indicate I should be checking the SG and gentely stiring dailey at this stage. Question is after I sanitize the stirring spoon is it OK to put it on the formica counter top while I sanitize the hydrometer. Have been considering getting a small plastic tub and sanitizing it to place things in as I move through the equipment.
Those long narrow plastic trays for wallpaper cost about a buck and work great. I have a 1-gallon wide-mouth pickle jar full of k-meta/citric acid water and a turkey baster that I use for sanitizing and I just leave my spoon it it for a few minutes while I sanitize my hydrometer and tube. Get creative - a lot of things will work.
I have a couple of large open mouth pitchers that once sanitized are a good place to set something that is sanitized. One is not as heavy as I would like and I have to be careful that it doesn't tip over when I set a stirring spoon (or similar) in it. I saw some 2 litre (or 2 quart) glass ones somewhere that I thought might be heavy enough but they were a bit too expensive.

I keep a 5 gal bucket (with lid) of Star San solution and a sponge. I'll just dump everything - turkey baster, test jar, thermometer, etc. - and swirl around with the spoon. For the counter top, I lay down paper towers on laminate counter top to rest the equipment while I set up.
I also use a plastic pitcher that I fill half way with a light meta solution while I'm working, I place the paddle or spoon, wine thief or so on in there.
I also use a plastic pitcher that I fill half way with a light meta solution while I'm working, I place the paddle or spoon, wine thief or so on in there.

Old thread, but good tips to be had here.

I have a similar approach to Tom. An old flower vase is given several spritzes of KMeta solution. The sanitized tools are held in that while I'm working. It's big enough to comfortably hold a hydrometer, thermometer, spoon and wine thief.
I have a 2 1/2 gal water cooler that has a spigot on it. I keep it on the shelf above my sink. That way I can rinse anything off, fill spray bottles etc quickly under the spigot.

I lay down a double layer of paper towels and spray them with Star San solution.
If your formica counter is clean, then I think that you have nothing to fear. There are far mor worse things simply in the air that your wine is exposed to.
a spare fermenting bucket with some K-Meta in it. holds a ton of equipment and that snake of a siphon hose.

+1 to what bws said....i always have a bucket of sanitizer sitting nearby when i am working with my wine.....i'll use a piece of equipment, rinse it real quickly, and put it into the sanitizer bucket...
I clean counter well and lay a plastic $1.00 store cutting mat down, to place items on while in use. Use item rinse, spray with sanitizer and place on mat.
What I made from PVC pipe, about 3 feet tall with a screw on cap and a base, all from Home Depot. Total cost was around $10.00. On the bottom of the pipe I have a plastic bowl with some sulfite in it, and a piece of string attached to it to raise it and lower it. This way when im done with a big spoon or anything of that size I just rince it off and then place it in the tube and screw on the lid.
I use a plastic tub from Wally World - same tub I use to wash equipment in. Sanitize and place the equipment in the tub while working. The hydrometer I place on a paper towel. After breaking two of them, I don't take any chances!
After I have used any equipment I immediately rinse it out and place it in a large rectangular plastic tray holding a gal of detergent solution - B-Brite. After washing and much rinsing in cool water, I place it in another large plastic tray holding a gal or more of sanitizing solution - IO Star iodophor. After 5 minutes or so I remove it and place on a clean towel on my stove or counter top.

To reduce chances for breaking my glass hydrometer, I keep it in the plastic test jar until using and temporarily, while drawing a sample for that jar, in a sanitized two cup measuring cup.

In other words, I use the same AFTER equipment use cleaning/sanitation routine which I used BEFORE using it.

Maybe my sanitation routine stems from my experience working in a bacteriology lab! I try to put away my equipment as clean and sanitized as if I were about to use it.

I have a rubbermade tote in my laundry sink for sanibrew cleaner.
I clean everything rinse well and Sanitize before using. After using I rinse, dump all in the tote clean with cloth, rinse well and hang to dry. Before using again I wash in tote with sanibrew rinse well spray sanitize and rinse again. Place everything in my plastic container lined with paper towels and off to the wine room. I have no water or sink in there :mny
i rinse it and toss it in a 5 gallon bucket, when i need again, i sterilze,chemicals i keep in air tight big box.