Winemaking Equipment Kit
Wine Equipment Explained
In order to make wine, you need equipment.
There are basic pieces of winemaking equipment needed whether you are making wine from kits or from fresh fruits and grapes. The following is a list of what is included in the Base Kit of our Build Your Own Winemaking Kit which has everything you need to start making your own wine.
The fermenting bucket is a food grade plastic bucket with a 7.9 gallon capacity, that is used to ferment the must (unfermented wine).
The bottle filler attaches to the tubing that is attached to the spigot and has a valve on the tip. The valve releases the wine into the bottle when pressed on the bottom of the bottle. Fill the wine to the very top of the bottle and remove bottle filler. The filler displaces the exact amount of air space needed to properly age your wine. It is a very handy tool.
The hydrometer allows you to take gravity readings that help determine the alcohol level of your wine and more importantly, it allows you to follow the progress of your fermenting wine to ensure it is ready for the next step in the process.
A racking cane allows you to transfer your wort from one vessel to another. It is made of hard plastic and is shaped like a cane. The end of the cane has an anti-sediment tip that draws liquid from above so that sediment can be avoided while transferring.
The kit also includes a bottle brush, tubing, sanitizing powder and 30 corks for your first batch of wine!
Other Equipment Your Can add to your winemaking kit.
We have a variety of corkers available for the home winemaker. The most popular is the double-lever corker. It is easy to use and one person can operate it easily. The cork is inserted into the slot and is compressed as it is being pushed into the wine bottle. This is the main downside to the double lever corker. Because it is compressed as it is inserted into the bottle, it leaves a dimple in the cork. This doesn't affect the aging but isn't as attractive as other corkers that leave a smooth "polished" look to the cork.
The Gilda 3 lever corker uses an iris, like the more expensive bench models. The iris pre-compresses the cork before it is inserted into the wine bottle, leaving a smooth, finished look to the cork. This corker is a bit more difficult to use and it is recommended that you have a helper to hold the wine bottle as it isn't as stable as the double lever.
The bench corkers are really the best for corking your wine. We carry 2 models, the Portuguese and Italian floor corkers. Both have an iris that pre-compresses the corks. The handle that pushed the cork into the bottle is adjustable so you can control how far the cork is inserted. The bottle locks into place as you are corking to keep the wine bottles in place. The biggest difference between the two is the the Italian is more solid in construction with a brass iris rather that a plastic one. The Italian also will cork champagne.
A wine thief allows you to draw a sample from the carboy, allowing you to take hydrometer (and other) readings. Our thief releases the sample back into fermenter when done.
De-gassing your wine. Stage #3 is the most important stage of the winemaking process. In order to prevent a fizzy wine, it is very important to vigorously stir the wine to drive off any co2 that is in the wine. Excessive co2 not only causes a fizzy wine, it can also prevent the finings from effectively clearing the wine. We strongly recommend a Mix-stir that attaches to a power drill and is used in stage #3 to stir and de-gas the wine.
The mix-ster is designed for stirring beer/wine and degassing. Manufactured in high quality polycarbonate with ABS blades and steel insert. The blades act like a turbine for maximum mixing and stirring efficiency.
The mix-stir fits any electric hand drill (variable speed drill with reversing capability recommended.)
The mix-stir comes standard in a 24" length.
The mix-stir is long enough to be used in large primary fermenters and barrels. The plastic blades also make it safe to use with glass carboys.