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Old 02-26-2008, 06:55 PM   #1
maltMonkey
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Default ? for those that swear by blowoff tubes

I've seen a ton of people that say to always use a blowoff tube. I was just curious if they are only necessary in a smaller carboy or bucket.

I've never used one (don't even own one) and I haven't had a problem yet using 7.9g buckets and 6.5g carboys. Last brew was a 1.085 RIS with a 2L starter and while I saw a very vigorous fermentation that was pretty much done in 3 days I always had at least 10" of headspace in the carboy.

Of course I haven't tried pitching onto a yeast cake yet....

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Old 02-26-2008, 06:56 PM   #2
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I typically only use one if I have to do my primary in a 5 gallon carboy. I've yet to need one for my bucket or 6.5 gallon carboy.

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Old 02-26-2008, 06:57 PM   #3
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Really depends on the situation. I keep an eye on my carboys and throw on the blowoff if it looks like it is going to blow. I have had to clean up a couple messes, even in my 6 and 6.5 gallon carboys.

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Old 02-26-2008, 06:58 PM   #4
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I primary 5-5.5 gallon batches in 6 gallon Better Bottles. I always use blowoffs and I leave them on until I keg. I never do secondarying anymore...

(note: this comment is subject to change)

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Old 02-26-2008, 07:05 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Professor Frink
I typically only use one if I have to do my primary in a 5 gallon carboy. I've yet to need one for my bucket or 6.5 gallon carboy.
For my currently fermenting brew in a 6.5 gallon bucket I decided to use a blowoff because I was pitching onto a yeastcake. I'm really glad I did. Lots of stuff blowing through it.

I did the mcgyver blow off attachment I've seen on here.



I don't know if I'm the only one whose ever lost the top of a 3 piece airlock, but I decided to save the rest of it for this purpose. I also took a small saw and cut off the little bit cris-crossed plastic at the bottom of it so that it would have unrestricted access.

When I left for work this morning the darn thing was still glorping away after nearly 36 hours, and the runoff container was 1/4 full of brown bubbling liguid.
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Old 02-26-2008, 07:08 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Soulive
I primary 5-5.5 gallon batches in 6 gallon Better Bottles. I always use blowoffs ...
+1

I've started attaching a blowoff to my 6.5 gallon carboy, too, just out of habit. There's no harm in doing so.

I replace it in a week with an airlock.
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Old 02-26-2008, 07:11 PM   #7
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The fact that so many people have needed them makes me wonder if I'm constantly underpitching.....

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Old 02-26-2008, 07:14 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maltMonkey
The fact that so many people have needed them makes me wonder if I'm constantly underpitching.....
Don't doubt yourself. If the OGs are moderate-low and you keep fermentation temps under control, you may not need one. I just feel I'm better safe than sorry...
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Old 02-26-2008, 07:16 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maltMonkey
The fact that so many people have needed them makes me wonder if I'm constantly underpitching.....
Well, I guess you could be, but it sounds like you have a lot of headspace in your buckets. I use on with my 6gal BB because the headspace is pretty small with a 5.5gal batch. Some yeast never blows off (SafAle S-04), others do pretty regularly (SafAle US-05, Nottingham). I just use a blow-off tube all the time because its one less thing to worry about.
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Old 02-26-2008, 07:18 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maltMonkey
The fact that so many people have needed them makes me wonder if I'm constantly underpitching.....
None of my other brews have ever needed one...But since I was pitching onto an old cake (Safale-05) and agitating the heck out of it I figured this brew would blow. It was a strong brown ale recipe with a lot of fermentables, so I figured better safe than a total mess in my closet.

I think the only other time I would consider it was if I was doing a fruit beer with fruit in the primary.

All my other brews so far have been fine in the bucket with a normal airlock.
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