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Swelling Old Foeders???

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  • Swelling Old Foeders???

    First time poster here, so please forgive me if this isnt in the correct place.

    I'll cut right down to it though:

    My old winery job is willing to sell me some of their old foeders at a price that I cant ignore. There was a cellar at this winery a few years ago that was filled with them, and New Belgium came through and bought most of them. After I left the job, the company took the remaining tanks and just set them outside in the sun for a few years.

    I looked at all of them the other day, and I can see sunlight coming through at the heads, and in between staves in every one of them. I guess Im wondering if anyone thinks its possible to swell these things up again.

    I only got a few pictures of the outsides, so I cant really describe how bad these things look on the inside. I guess the best way to describe it, is that I didnt need a flashlight to see the inside condition!!.

    Any insight or thoughts would be most appreciated, or if anyone can lead me to someone that has dealt with this would be great. I think it seems a little too good to be true, but hey if I can get my hands on a foeder, and feel its possible to hold liquid again, Ill try it.


  • #2
    I have been successful doing this with barrels. Just keep wetting the outside, with fabric or something over them until they start to hold some water, then keep filling them and tapping around on the staves and bands.

    Might want to try before you buy them if possible.


    • #3
      Sorry, I fogot to mention.

      I have done this with barrels, and sometimes it was successful, other times I felt it wasnt worth it. No biggie on a small cheap barrel.

      These are between 2000 and 3000 gallons, so trying before I buy would be a little difficult. They are out in a field, so I would have to purchase it first, have it delivered, which would be pricey, then install it at my location, before I could even attempt swelling them


      • #4
        Have you talked to Peter (or Lauren or Eric) at NB? He's (They're) most helpful, especially after a Wit or two on the house.
        Fighting ignorance and apathy since 2004.


        • #5
          I've been trying to find contact info for Peter (I met him when he bought the better ones at the winery) or Lauren, but dont know how to get ahold of them. Anyone know of a way to get that?


          • #6
            Fielded Foedors

            So im hardly an expert, but i was reading about Bug damage yesterday in foedors. Before you go to far id go through them and figure out how much of the wood may of been chewed by Bore Bugs before giving them any sort of money for something that may be infested.

            Good Luck!



            • #7
              New Belgium's cellar manager talked about this at the CBC 2016. Keep trying to get ahold of them. She did say it was a long slow process.
              Brewmaster, Minocqua Brewing Company
              "Your results may vary"


              • #8
                I didn't even think about boring bugs, I'll definitely check that out, thanks!!

                Ok, maybe I can find some sort of write up or transcript from the CBC, thanks for that.


                • #9
                  I would contact Jace Marti up at August Schells. He brought a dozen massive cypress foeders out of a 100 year old cellar, rehabilitated them and is cranking great beer out of them. Old wood can be fantastic, as long as it isn't rotten or filled with insects.