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Molasses transfer

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How are people transferring molasses from a 55 gallon barrel or larger tote into their fermenters? Gravity? Electric barrel/tote pumps?

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I am trying to solve this very issue right now, my local homebrew store has 55 gallon drums of LME that they screw a special tap onto the port on the top and then lay the drum on a stand on its side. it can then be measured out into a smaller bucket. Pumping the stuff seems like a mess.

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Is the barrel airtight? Put a valve stem on it and use your compressor to push it out.

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A 55gal. drum with two standardized bungholes will give you plenty of options. A 3/4" faucet style tap and a forklift to elevate the drum laying on its side it shouldn't make gravity feeding too hard. But like 3d0g said, a schrader valve and 5-10 psi to help push would be a big help. One thing to note is that it's not really a question of how to avoid a mess; it's a question of how to minimize the mess you make. Like most things in life, a little forethought goes a long way.

One thing I did my first time working with molasses (on a cold day in spring to boot) was pour the syrup into an intermediate 40L stainless bucket that had a tap on the bottom and flowed from there into my fermenter. I could mix the molasses with hot water as necessary to maintain good drainage from my bucket into the fermenter. Once it was all in I simply added enough cold water as was necessary to get it to an adequate ferm. temp. and volume The bucket allowed me to mix my solution easily and add things like yeast nutrient or dunder "inline".

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I bought a crane kit for my forklift, and barrel lift kit, and a barrel spout. I just pick up the barrel, position it over my cook tank, and open the spout. Gravity does the rest. Crane kit was from Grangers, Barrel lift kit was Amazon, spout was Uline.

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geekspirits method is definitely the easiest way ive found to do it and also the least messy

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