Secondary Fermentors: What Are The Best?

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quincy

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Not all but some. The dip tube will only draw the "gunk" nearby. When my kegs are empty, there is a good coating in the bottom not disturbed by the dip tube at all.
So my humble conclusion would be - racking to a serving keg will reduce the amount of gunk but not totally.

BTW, I've thought about cutting some off the dip tube, but I find that after I have poured a couple of glasses from the keg, the clarity starts to improve greatly. By the time I'm about half way through, clarity is excellent.


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Jase

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After reading the article, he transfers the beer between kegs using two liquid disconnects. As soon as the beer in the lines become milky/cloudy, he removes the disconnects, therefore removing almost all of the sediment that remains in the secondary keg. May be worth a try.


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Jase
 

Jino

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Yeah i did read that after the post unfortunately....

I might give it a go i think.
 

tonydav

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I've been reading John Palmer's online book on how to brew. In particular I was interested in the part on secondary fermentation and as I keg I had thought of using a keg for the secondary.

To date I've kept my brew in the primary for a week or so and then transfered to the keg and then in the fridge to condition. The way I'm reading John's book is that I should transfer to the secondary after a couple of days or so when the primary fermentation has completed. In this case I assume I'd have to leave the keg at 20 degrees or so to enable fermentation to continue.

Is this correct?

I'm also thinking that I'll end up with more sediment this was as when I normally transfer to the keg after a week or so it has settled a lot whereas in this case it won't have settled at all. I'm just wondering if it will be worth it or I should just leave the brew in the primary for 2 weeks or so and then to the keg and then CC as I normally do?

tony
 

sosman

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tonydav said:
I'm just wondering if it will be worth it or I should just leave the brew in the primary for 2 weeks or so and then to the keg and then CC as I normally do?
[post="57206"][/post]​
I rarely secondary, other people reckon you can't make beer unless you secondary. I generally leave mine in primary for around 2 weeks. More recently I have been chilling the primary for 48 hours before transferring to keg, but only because I can.

Call me lazy but I don't like washing up.
 

sosman

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pint of lager said:
Easy to do, look on the bottom where there will be some maker's marks from the moulding, with maybe a manufacturere's name and a triangular symbol with arrow heads on it and a number in the middle. 2 is good, this means it is manufactured from new plastic stock. 4 is bad, this means it is manufactured from recycled plastic stock, and you have no idea what the original plastic was used for.
[post="43257"][/post]​
PoL - where did you get that info from? The numbers relate to the material used. You are right in that HDPE is #2 and commonly used for fermenters. #4 is LDPE.

http://www.greenfeet.com/recycle-by-numbers.html
 

RobW

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Tony
I secondary into jerrycans but after a week not 2 days. I found that doing it any earlier gave problems with incomplete/stuck ferments. After a week in secondary at the original fermentation temperature I put the jerries into the fridge to CC for another week & then bottle. No reason not to do the same or similiar with a keg.
 

tonydav

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RobW said:
Tony
I secondary into jerrycans but after a week not 2 days. I found that doing it any earlier gave problems with incomplete/stuck ferments. After a week in secondary at the original fermentation temperature I put the jerries into the fridge to CC for another week & then bottle. No reason not to do the same or similiar with a keg.
[post="57230"][/post]​

That sounds much like I'm doing at present. Only difference is that I'm putting it straight in the fridge.

So I think what I'll try next batch is a week or so primary, transfer to the keg, burp it and leave for a week or two at room temperature, then into the fridge to CC.

Unless someone can tell me more about John's method in his book (and that they've tried it successfully). I'd be worried about a stuck fermenatation as well. I'm sure I'd also have much more trouble getting the beer to clear. When I brew all malt mine's normally only slightly cloudy at first and clear from about 2 or 3 glasses, and then totally bright from about halfway down the keg.

tony
 

warrenlw63

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sosman said:
Call me lazy but I don't like washing up.
[post="57227"][/post]​

Lazy! :p

That said I'm lazy too. Personally I don't think regular strength Ales really need secondary fermenters.

Just follow Sos's procedure (very similar to mine). Ferment 2 weeks in primary, crash cool to about 3-5c for 24-48 hours and rack to a keg.

Chances are that the beer's going to be consumed in less than 3 months. I reserve racking for stronger beers or lagers. Even then I rack to a keg with a shorter dip tube then transfer after the desired time.

Warren -
 

Stagger

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My 2 cents
I ferment in a s/s fermenter then transfer to c/keg for cc for 2 weeks, then under pressure I have a transfer line from beer out to beer out. Release the bleed valve on the keg to be filled and fill, the beer is never open to the air.

Stagger
 

pint of lager

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PoL - where did you get that info from? The numbers relate to the material used. You are right in that HDPE is #2 and commonly used for fermenters. #4 is LDPE.

Sos, I was repeating something I read on the internet. I saw it in two different places and have reiterated it. Mea culpa for being guilty of repeating bad information. Thanks for posting a much better source of information.

Back to the secondary debate. To rack or not to rack. To secondary or not to secondary. I used to rack most of my beers. Now, I rarely rack, unless there is no dispensing keg space, and I will then rack to another fermenter. Big beers may spend time in glass secondaries.

Usually, ales stay in primary 2-4 weeks, then go into dispensing kegs. If they stay longer than 2 weeks, the fermenter will be moved to somewhere cooler. Lagers stay in primary for usually 4 weeks and then into dispensing kegs. Most kegs are bulk primed with dextrose.

My successful entry in last year's mash paddle comp spent 14 days in primary, then bottled and kegged and judged I think 3 weeks after bottling.

Like so many brewing processes, if you have the time and gear and inclination, rack and CC away. Just make sure whatever method suits you, your recipe and your yeast. If a yeast floccs out early, be ready to stir it back in. If a yeast generates lots of extra flavours, make sure it stays in primary longer to allow the yeast to metabolize some of the fermentation byproducts.
 

chiller

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pint of lager said:
[snip]

Back to the secondary debate. To rack or not to rack. To secondary or not to secondary. I used to rack most of my beers. Now, I rarely rack, unless there is no dispensing keg space, and I will then rack to another fermenter. Big beers may spend time in glass secondaries.

Usually, ales stay in primary 2-4 weeks, then go into dispensing kegs. If they stay longer than 2 weeks, the fermenter will be moved to somewhere cooler. Lagers stay in primary for usually 4 weeks and then into dispensing kegs. Most kegs are bulk primed with dextrose.

My successful entry in last year's mash paddle comp spent 14 days in primary, then bottled and kegged and judged I think 3 weeks after bottling.

Like so many brewing processes, if you have the time and gear and inclination, rack and CC away. Just make sure whatever method suits you, your recipe and your yeast. If a yeast floccs out early, be ready to stir it back in. If a yeast generates lots of extra flavours, make sure it stays in primary longer to allow the yeast to metabolize some of the fermentation byproducts.
[post="57260"][/post]​

Sos may be lazy -- I'm a sloath.

I'm not a lager brewer so thse comments are directed towards ale production.

One of the best things you can do for your beer is get is clear, and I mean really clear. Not just with a very short CC in keg or cube but with finings.

My ales go straight from the fermenter to the serving keg to which I have added 2 heaped teasoons of gelatin dissolved in half a cup of NOT boiling water. The beer goes in on top of the gelatin to mix it fully.

Every keg will benifit from surgury to the dip tube even if you don't use a fining agent.

One of the biggest drawbacks with an ale that contains yeast is the thickness imparted to the mouth feel by even a small amount of suspended yeast.

That traditional Homebrew taste is more often than not the suspended yeast affecting the real beer flavour. If you like suspended yeast then that is fine.

My kegs have 20mm removed from the tube and I use finings. An Ale is basically ready to drink [> 1050] as soon as it is fermented. It will freshen as the yeast is removed.

As soon as final gravity has been reached I transfer the beer to the keg with the finings and gas it up Rock and Roll method. I then put the keg in a deep freeze for about 5 hours and that helps floc out the yeast and the finings will do their job better as well. After about 2 days the beer is Home brew clear -- after 3 days the beer is commercial bright.

I have noticed no lack or loss of flavour using gelatin. Occassionally there will be a yeast strain that it doesn't work quite so well with. but that is rare.

We had a discussion at the Floccs on Sunday as to the number of kegs we each have and while I'm very keg deprived at only 4 I can have 4 beers in the fridge at anyone time all ready to drink.

This is my method and it works very well for me. I have 3 Glass carboys for seconday but ---- well I don't secondary at all.

For the lagr purists I use the exact same method and it works well .... Lager ready to drink in 2 weeks. Still too long in my opinion :)


Steve
 

Jim - Perth

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As mentioned in a previous line-up, I have been known to use those 15L spring water bottles as secondaries with quite acceptable results.

Benefits = minimal headspace, minimal cost, light & hard to break.

I would be interested to hear from anyone else who has tried this experiment.
 

Samwise Gamgee

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Sosman and PoL,

In regards to the grade of plastic the fermenters are, I got both of mine from HB shops and they are 4, will the plastic leach chemicals etc into the beer? Or does need heat for this to happen (hot wort)?


Cheers,
sam
 

sosman

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am said:
In regards to the grade of plastic the fermenters are, I got both of mine from HB shops and they are 4, will the plastic leach chemicals etc into the beer? Or does need heat for this to happen (hot wort)?
[post="57746"][/post]​
Check out what google has to say on LDPE. It is used for lots of food applications.
 
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