Best Conical Fermenters for Home Brewers in 2019
Whether you want to cut down cleaning time or you want to stop racking, a conical fermenter may just be the right equipment you need. To those who don’t know, a conical fermenter has a cone-shaped bottom fitted with a valve at the point of the cone and not a flat bottom as is usually seen in carboy or buckets.
All the solid contents collect at the cone, and the valve makes it easy to safely and cleanly remove the yeast and trub for repitching or disposal. Conical fermenters are not outrageously expensive, and it is a versatile piece of brewing equipment that every professional brewer must never lack in their arsenal.
The process of home brewing is always a worthwhile pursuit, but it can also be time-consuming. This is especially if you have not invested in proper techniques and equipment to allow you some great deal of efficiency. If you can’t operate efficiently in your home brewing pursuits, you will always a lot of time, and you may not enjoy the results of your efforts.
As such, those who are serious with home brewing will always invest in techniques and equipment that will make their processes easier, less messy and lead to quality beers. This is the very essence of using conical fermenters.
Best Plastic Conical Fermenters
1. FastFerment Conical Fermenter 7.9 Gallon HomeBrew Kit BPA Free Food grade Primary Carboy Fermenter
This 7.9 gallon FastFerment conical fermenter gives you everything you need to begin brewing or making wine like a pro right from the comfort of your home. It is designed with special features to make the brewing process fast, easy, and efficient, leading to quality brews. It has a wide top opening to facilitate easy ingredient addition.
The yeast collection ball fitted at the bottom will give you the convenience you need to collect all the sediments and trub so that you have a very clear wine, cider or beer, not to mention that you can also use it to collect yeast for reuse. It also comes with a bottle filling attachment for fast and easy filling of your kegs or bottles. You will also love the stainless steel thermowell that will be of immense help when it comes to temperature monitoring.
• Easy and efficient to use
• Allows for yeast collection
• Good capacity of 7.9 gallons
• Wide opening
• Wall mount as an accessory
• Weak brew ball valve
2. BrewDemon Conical Fermenter
BrewDemon conical fermenter is considered as the world’s first small batch conical fermenting system that has enabled home brewers to brew like real pros. It is a panted system that features a 3-gallon conical fermenter ideal for brewing 2-gallon and 2.5-gallon beer batches. However, the system is not just designed for beer alone, since you can still comfortably use it for brewing hard cider, mead and also for wine.
The fermenter is constructed using heat tolerant food-grade plastic, and as such, it will not introduce any unwanted flavors into your brew. It cone design also facilitates the transfer of beer into bottles or mugs, while the trub remains at the bottom. With this design, no airlock is necessary.
• No airlock required
• Completely reusable
• Perfect for small batches
• Brittle spigot. May make you lose your batch
• Cheap tap. Can easily break
• The lid doesn’t seal effectively
3. Full Throttle Parts Fastferment Complete Conical Fermenting Set Up 1551
This is a special edition package from FirstFerment, and it is one of the top first fermenters you will find in the market today. The set up features a 7.9-gallon conical fermenter, stainless steel thermowell, homebrew thermometer, a carry strap, and a fermenter strand.
With the stand, you get the flexibility to brew anywhere you seen convenient around the home, and with the stainless steel thermometer, you get the ability to consistently monitor the brew fermentation without the need to interfere with the process. The straps, on the other hand, will fit so firmly around the kit to make it a breeze for you to move it from one place to another.
Finally, the stainless steel thermowell will also help you monitor the process without necessarily having to disturb the fermentation and again, you won’t have to worry about changes in taste or corrosion.
• Versatile stand with tight-fitting straps
• Stainless steel thermometer
• Can be moved with ease
• Not leak-proof
4. The Catalyst Fermentation System, Craft a Brew, 6.5 gal Conical Fermenter
This is an impressive 6-gallon conical fermenter that will do an exemplary job in separating sediments, eliminating transfers and allowing you to bottle your brew directly from the fermenter. The fermenter is made from Tritan, a food-safe polymer, which will ensure that the material will not lose its clarity or smoothness and is also resistant to shattering.
Another notable feature is the 3” trub trap butterfly valve which other than being the largest in the industry, is extremely useful in catching and storing yeast which can be used for future fermentation. The set up comes with a lid, stand, bottling attachment, tubing clamp, transfer tubing, a proprietary butterfly valve, and a rubber stopper. You will also appreciate the wide mouth Mason jar that will make it a breeze for you to add your ingredients.
• Kettle rub for pre-fermentation
• Allows for secondary yeast harvesting
• Made from innovative materials
• Ineffective lid seal
Best Stainless Steel Conical Fermenters
5. Blichmann Fermenator Conical – 14 Gallon
This fermenator comes fitted with every feature ideal for successful home brewing. The interior of the fermenter is weld-free, and this not only makes it easy to clean but also increase its sealing capabilities. It has a dump valve that is of immense importance when it comes to the removal of sediments and yeast.
It is also fitted with a rotating racking arm primarily designed to aid the transferring process. Before you transfer your beer to bottles or kegs, you can conveniently dump the trub and yeast out of the bottom, thereby allowing you to have a very clear transfer. The lid comes with a removal keg-style hatch with pressure capabilities to make it easy for you to transfer carbon dioxide and to minimize exposure to the air. With this fermenter, you can comfortably ferment beer in batches of 10 gallons each without compromising the quality.
• Weld-free interior
• Dump valve
• Rotating racking arm
• Air-tight lid
• Hard to Clean
6. Ss Brewtech Home Brewing Conical Fermenter – 7 Gallon
The Ss Brewtech home brewing fermenter is one of the top fermenters worth considering if you are looking for an effective option to take your home brewing to the next level. The fermenter has been designed with every home brewer in mind with the aim with the aim of giving them the convenience to use quality tanks like those used by the professional brewers.
One of the features you will love about it is the dual fermentation facilitated by the bottom dump valve that will effortlessly allow you to harvest yeast as well as reduce the contact between the yeast and the beer thus allowing for both primary and secondary fermentation in the same bucket. It also comes with temperature control to give you more grip on the quality of your brew.
• Dual fermentation
• Temperature control
• Professional brewing at home
• Not ideal for small batches
Ideal Non- Conical Options
7. Brewmaster Brewcraft Homebrew Primary Fermenter with Plastic Lid, 6 Gallon
The Brewmaster Brewcraft primary fermenter is an affordable food grade fermenter ideal for wine, beer, cider, mead and other types of fermented beverage you would like to make at home. It comes as a complete equipment kit, with every feature you will ever need to make your brewing process a success.
Some of the notable features include its decent capacity of 6 gallons, a plastic lid grommet for an airlock, ergonomic handle for safety and comfort when lifting or moving from one place to another, and it can also tell the temperature of its content. Even when filled to the maximum capacity of 6 gallons, there will be enough headroom for the wort so that it can ferment away slowly and gently, leading to high-quality brew.
• Lid grommet for airlock
• Can tell the temperature of the content
• Low cost
• Versatile in applications
• Poor seal
• Difficult to open
8. Northern Brewer - Big Mouth Bubbler PET Plastic Carboy Fermentor
Northern Brewers are known to create some of the best beer fermenters and home brewing equipment in the world, and a look at this fermenter is a further demonstration of their commitment to quality brewing equipment. This fermenter features a revolutionary mouth that will not just make the addition of ingredients easy but also will make it a breeze to clean the entire inside of the fermenter.
Also worth noting are the volume markers present on the side of the vessel to help you get the fermenting volumes right. The fermenters come with a standard #6.5 stopper which ensures no leakage, and since it is made of glass, it will also allow for easy monitoring of the fermentation process. The fermenter is ideal for primary fermentation for beer or wine making.
• Wide mouth for easy cleaning
• Volume markers on the sides
• Clear for easy monitoring of the fermentation process
• The lid is not 100% leak-proof
9. Northern Brewer - 6 Gallons Glass Carboy Fermenter
The Northern Brewer – 6 Gallon Glass Carboy promises to make the fermentation process of your brewing as smooth as it can possibly be. The fermenter guarantees the highest quality for your wine, beer, kombucha, cider or any other brew for which you may wish to have a quality fermenter. The fermenter has an enviable capacity of 6 gallons, and this should be sufficient for your home brewing needs unless you want to get into the big leagues.
You will be interested to know that the glass used for making the fermenter is not permeable to oxygen, and as such, the brew will be adequately protected from oxygenation or any other form of contamination that might arise due to contact with oxygen. For the sake of sanitation, washing and sanitizing the glass is easy, and you won’t have to worry about it having any scratches as a result of the washing.
• Doesn’t hold any odor
• It is easy to clean
• Do not scratch while scrubbing
• Don’t break down over time and keeps oxygen out
• Delicate. Requires handling with care
• May crack if not well taken care of
Benefits you will get by investing in a decent conical fermenter -
1. No need to use a secondary fermenter
If you are using the normal fermentation buckets, it is always a challenge to stop trub from getting into the secondary fermenter, and this is never good for the process because it can make your beer hazy. It will also make the beer less appealing to look at and may drive away all the appetite. With conical fermenters, both the trub and the yeast will gather at the bottom of the cone, from where all you have to do is dump the sediments by draining with a hose or by removing the containment unit. As such, you won’t have to worry about racking or the need to use a secondary fermenter.
Most of the conical fermenters you will find in the market today are made of stainless steel, and this implies that they are not only durable but also easy to clean. You will find them easier to sanitize than the typical plastic fermenters, and this will also be more durable than the plastic buckets.
3. Reduce Overall Cost with Repitching
With conical beer fermenters, you can easily remove the trub from your beer, while at the same time collect the yeast for reuse. After you separate the yeast from the trub, all you have to do is wash them and then use them later for brewing. In this manner, you will save some money since you will not have to buy new yeast for the next batch. Reusing yeast may sound weird for home brewing, but you should know that commercial brewers reuse yeast all the time for a number of good reasons, and so don’t think of it as something very strange.
Things to consider while Buying a Conical Fermenter -
Since you fully understand the value of investing in a conical fermenter, you should also know how to choose the right one when you go shopping. The fermenter you choose should not be necessarily expensive, and it should be able to meet your home brewing needs. As such, there is certain consideration you need to make to ensure that you end up with just the right fermenting bucket for your home beer. Here is a brief guide at some of the factors you should consider when buying the fermenter.
The necessary accessories to use the fermenter
Most of the top fermenters will come fully equipped with valves and spigots while others will require you to purchase the accessories as add-ons. Watch out for these accessories since they make inflate the final cost of having the fermenter installed in your home.
The type of valves
There are a couple of valves needed for home beer brewing, and this is another consideration you must make when thinking of buying a conical fermenter. In most cases, you will find the fermenters with the standard three-piece ball valves, and these will usually work well if you will be disassembling them to clean them so as to avoid infection. The other valves you may desire to have in your fermenter include the butterfly valve for removing yeast or trub and the transfer valve. Just be sure to check the fermenter to ensure that it has all the valves you will need for your convenience.
The size of the fermenter
When it comes to the size, you should go for a fermenter that suits your home brewing needs. If you love to brew large batches, then you should go for a bigger fermenter, but if you are a small time brewer who loves dealing with smaller batches, just choose a decently sized fermenter to avoid ingredient wastage.
The temperature controls
Temperature control is an essential aspect of beer brewing, and it is another consideration you must make when choosing your conical fermenters. Your ideal fermenter should have a temperature control mechanism so that you don’t ruin the quality of your beer because you brewed at the wrong temperatures.