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Glass Marbles For Topping Up


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#1 kg233

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Posted 03 November 2008 - 05:35 PM

I am thinking about using sanitized glass marbles to top up. My concern is finding some that won't be harmful, yes I am paranoid of the Made in China stuff due to all the problems lately. (Almost all that I am finding are made in China). I found a place online that has clear glass marbles/gems that are made in Mexico. I figure since my carboys were made in Mexico - that might be the way to go???

Otherwise, I will top up with wine. Looking for suggestions for a Mosti Fresco Barolo, in case I do not go with the marble option.

Any feedback would be appreciated. I have heard that glass marbles can chip the carboys too - just wondering if that is a big issue. smileycheers.gif

#2 SouthernMan

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Posted 03 November 2008 - 05:42 PM

I no longer use marbles, because I ended up chipping one of my carboys and I took it easy putting them in the carboy. Whenever I make wine, I make more than what I need so that I have extra to top up with.
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#3 red_feet

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Posted 03 November 2008 - 05:47 PM

I used marbles in a gallon jug, but I dropped them into the sanitized cut off leg of a nylon stocking my wife didn't need, holding it off the bottom of the jug until the wine level was to the top. When I let it go, it was almost on the bottom of the jug anyway, so it did no damage.
For marbles, you might try an arts and crafts store.

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#4 muscadine

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Posted 03 November 2008 - 05:50 PM

Glass carboys are no longer made in Mexico.

#5 Riker

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Posted 03 November 2008 - 06:32 PM

Not sure where they were made, but I found some large, pancake shaped, silver dollar-sized ones that I use in my 3 gallon better bottle and also some smaller more round marbles that can fit into a carboy...both at Target.
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#6 Nankingcherry

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Posted 03 November 2008 - 07:49 PM

I know I used to have marbles... but everyone tells me I've lost them tongue.gif

#7 wine maker wannabe

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Posted 03 November 2008 - 09:37 PM

I have used the marble method, and it works but I think it is easier to just have several different sized containers on hand. Your local home brew shop should have bungs to fit many sizes, including the standard 750 ml wine bottle. Also it is just one more thing to wash and sanitize, which is not my favorite thing!

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#8 Luc Volders

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Posted 03 November 2008 - 11:47 PM

QUOTE (red_feet @ Nov 4 2008, 01:19 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
I used marbles in a gallon jug, but I dropped them into the sanitized cut off leg of a nylon stocking my wife didn't need, holding it off the bottom of the jug until the wine level was to the top. When I let it go, it was almost on the bottom of the jug anyway, so it did no damage.
For marbles, you might try an arts and crafts store.

Ken wave.gif


Same way I do it nowadays luxhello.gif

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#9 D&S

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Posted 04 November 2008 - 07:45 AM

I have used clear glass marbles in the past but no longer do it for several reasons. First, the cost of marbles is often more than the cost of buying extra grapes or juice to have around as top up wine. Secondly, I've found it increases my losses in subsequent rackings. Wine gets trapped between the marbles layers yet sediment collects on the top layer. Finally, it's additional work to get the marbles out and cleaned up.

For me, it's much easier to get some of last year's wine (or a similar
commercial wine) in an emergency.



#10 red_feet

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Posted 04 November 2008 - 11:57 AM

QUOTE (Luc Volders @ Nov 4 2008, 01:19 AM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Same way I do it nowadays luxhello.gif

Luc


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#11 A_perfect_ashler

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Posted 04 November 2008 - 11:56 PM

QUOTE (kg233 @ Nov 3 2008, 06:07 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Otherwise, I will top up with wine. Looking for suggestions for a Mosti Fresco Barolo, in case I do not go with the marble option.

Any feedback would be appreciated. I have heard that glass marbles can chip the carboys too - just wondering if that is a big issue. smileycheers.gif


Get a 4L jug of comerical Itallian style jug wine, top up with that and chug the rest. smileycheers.gif

Next time make a batch that is larger than your carboy, put the excess in the 4L jug, and a decreasing series of smaller bottles and ferment them alongside the main batch then use them to top up with. Use the smaller bottled first then split up the larger bottles as needed. For these you can use 4L, 3L, 1.5 L, .75L right on down.

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#12 shoelesst

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Posted 05 November 2008 - 06:23 AM

I tried the marble thing, but came to conclusion that, for me, it wasn't worth it. The amount you have to spend in marbles to actually make up an inch or two of head space, you might as well just buy another box of grapes.
Always have a variety of sizes of glass around and you should be able to get pretty close to perfect without going through the marble trouble.
I make 5 gallons of second run, put it into gallon, 3L and 1/2 gallon glass and use it when I need to top off if I run out of the regular wine.
By summer, we've racked a few times, we keep 2, 1/2 gallons jugs for topping and make Sangria out of the rest.
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#13 Medsen Fey

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Posted 05 November 2008 - 12:14 PM

Am I the only one that doesn't worry about marbles, other liquids, or other sized containers and just flushes the headspace with inert gas? wink.gif
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#14 kg233

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Posted 07 November 2008 - 07:11 PM

I appreciate everyone's advice/comments. I wish I could have bought an extra gallon of juice, but it was a Mosti Mondiale bucket which was only available in 6 gallon increments. So I am stuck, couldn't get anything extra to top up. (I will be making some wine from grapes yet so I will definitely get extra for topping up). Might just invest in a 5 gallon better bottle or try the inert gas for this one then. Thanks again!

#15 deb_rn

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Posted 07 November 2008 - 08:44 PM

I've seen you all talk of "inert gas" before.... where do you get it, how is it supplied, and are any extra supplies needed to accomplish it?

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