6 head gravity bottle filler
we have used this about 10 times now. anyone have these and have some tips on how to speed up the fill process? 700 bottles an hour is crazy talk as it states. I'm guessing with flat wine it would fill quicker but not that fast.
we bottle condition all our ales in 22oz bombers - the tubes to the tank evacs the air out of the bottles as it fills - which obviously with beer has some co2 from fermentation so it is a foamy mess up the tube - we were concerned about aeration so we use longer tubes now to the back of tank into a pitcher and just toss that foam/beer. same effect on fill time.
the issue is the time it takes - yes its a slow leisurely bottle day we label sanitize and cap with ease but it takes forever to do 75-100 cases 22oz (5-6 hours with small breaks) we were quicker with a homemade two bottle wand system.
anyone have any ideas how to speed this up? tips? etc?
beer is flat, chilled, we have tried larger & smaller hoses on the bottle evac lines?
thanks for any help
We currently use the same bottler for occasional runs of two lines of our higher-end beer that goes in 750ml bottles and is corked and caged. Not near as fast as our Meheen, but I actually like the thing (price point on our 750's kind of makes me think the time is more worth it), but your fill time and procedure are close to ours; we fill 80 cases in about 4-5 hours, not counting set-up/sanitize/CIP/breakdown time. We also bottles flat beer. We krausen the beer with day-old fermenting beer morning of bottling and recirc the tank every 20 minutes. After 20 times doing this, the one constant we've found is that it starts out bang-out fast and slows as we go, so that we're nearly crawling by the end. I've never pegged why that is. Interesting you've tried bigger evac/balance hoses to no effect. Maybe if the stainless ferrule that the hoses are clamped to were bigger it would help? That thing is so small it probably necks down the balance/evacuation at that point so maybe bigger hoses don't matter.
Sorry to say I don't have any other suggestions on how to speed it up. I've always guessed the little bit of CO2 in the beer is enough to slow things down; like you, I definitely feel it would fly if the product were TOTALLY flat. I'm guessing we slow down as time goes on because the krausen beer is beginning to ferment and cause more CO2 absorption.
If you ever figure out how to go faster, let me know!
Blue Mountain Brewery
Blue Mountain Barrel House
I have used one of these fillers with wine and spirits in 750ml bottles 700 bph is a do able number if you are totally rocking with two plus people so the filler never stops filling. We had disabled the float on the inside of the holding tank. If you have not done that I would suggest giving that a try especially at the end of the run. You will need a throttle valve inline somewhere before the holding tank. I hope this helps.