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Time To Rack Into Secondary

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Stagger Inn

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Hi Guys

I have a English special bitter in the fermenter, its been in there for 6 days OG 1048 gravity is at 1019 now, I was hoping to get a lager down tomorrow. My problem is my fermenting fridge has excellent temp control set at 19deg via a dial that I dial up whatever I need lager would be 8deg, but I can only fit one fermenter in, I use a 50L Stainless steel keg as a fermenter. If I rack into the secondary now what would happen given temp control would be gone. I have been told two different things with regards to this, I have been told that you should rack before fermentation has completed and I have been told fermentation must be finished.


Bat :super:
 

warrenlw63

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Rack it Bat. You're more or less three-quarters of the way to your FG. As long as ambient temperatures aren't too high you should be pretty right.

Worst case scenario you'll have some residual diacetyl. Not excactly out of style for a bitter anyway. If ambient temps are in the low 20's they'll finish the beer off anyway.

Go for it. :super:

Warren -
 

Stagger Inn

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Thanks Warren

I think I will rack it tomorrow, I had a look at this morning and it looks like there is a big yeast cake on top, so I was going to stir that in to night and than rake it tomorrow. I will keep it in the house and burp it from time to time.


Bat
:super:
 

Samwise Gamgee

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So should you pretty much always rack to secondary before fermentation is complete?

I always thought you do it afterwards.
 

warrenlw63

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Generally you do.

But I think that Mr. Bat is desperate for fermentation space. ;)

Being an ale he should be able to get away with it. Some English brewers used to (not sure if they still do) rack from the primary at or about three quarters terminal gravity to the cask and let residual fermentation take care of the rest for carbonation.

Residual diacetyl would be his main worry but if it's an ESB type beer it would not be out of style/character.

Given the time and choice, yes wait for primary fermentation to abate. But desperate times call for desperate measures. :D

Warren -
 

Jazman

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I would rather wait till it fermented out then rack it
 

Stagger Inn

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Well I did rack it on the weekend and it seems to be fine, I have put it into the keg and have placed them inside the house so the temp control should be ok. Every time I walk past I burp the keg, fermentation still going. Today I left the pressure relief open with a towel over the top so not to let the pressure to increase to much.
I have been talking to a fellow brewer down here and he has had to the same thing before and he thinks it will be fine.
 

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