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Old 08-04-2008, 02:38 AM   #1
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Default What do you use as a fermenter?

What do you use as your fermenter? Carboy? Ale Pail? Better Bottle? And what size do you use, if applicable? I'm currently using an ale pail, but thinking about moving to a 6.5G carboy or a BB, looking for some input on what's easiest to use for racking, bottling, etc.

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Old 08-04-2008, 02:49 AM   #2
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I use all of the following:

6.5 gallon Ale Pail
6 gallon Better Bottle
21 gallon stainless conical fermenter
Assorted Erlenmeyer flasks and wine jugs

For 5 gallon batches, I prefer to do a non-racked ferment in the Better Bottle (ported with a spigot). For big batches, the conical is the only choice. When I'm out of space, the Ale Pails come out. For small batches of wine, mead, cider, and yeast starters I use the other glassware.

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Old 08-04-2008, 02:53 AM   #3
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I use a 7.9 gallon bucket with a spigot attached. Real easy for using to transfer to secondary. Also, doubles great as a bottling bucket.

I understand that you can add a spigot to a better bottle as well. I don't like this idea though. I would probably lose 4 to 6 ounces of beer if I were to use it as a secondary if I had the spigot.

Also, I have never had a blowoff with my bucket for 5 gallon batches. Not to say that it's not possible (it certainly is possible), I just find that is less of a likelyhood. the bucket is easily 1.5 gallons more than most of the glass and better bottle carboys out there. Also, the pressure is diffused across a much wider area. If you've read any of the stories about people's ceilings being painted you will notice they are all carboy stories. Less room in a carboy neck to gradually expand so it shoots out with explosive force.

Nothing wrong with a carboy as primary. Hell, I use it for my meads and ciders. I just find that the bucket is easier to move and has more space. I guess the main drawback is that you can't watch the fermentation take place and you can't observe the krausen.

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Old 08-04-2008, 02:53 AM   #4
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Yuri:

Why do you prefer the non-racked ferment? Simplicity? Less chance of any problems? Or is the BB part of the reason?

Davaspawn:

The main reason I'm considering a 6.5 gallon carboy or BB is for the reason you mentioned, I want to see the krausen.

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Old 08-04-2008, 02:54 AM   #5
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Damn! Yuri beat me!

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Prim 1: Ogre's Inverted Extra Red Ale
Prim 2: Ogre's Hair of the Dog Imperial Amber Ale
Prim 3: Ogre's Relaxed APA
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Old 08-04-2008, 02:59 AM   #6
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I have switched over to the unported 6g BB for my fermentation vessels and like Yuri do not rack to a secondary.

I prefer the lower weight, can observe fermentation and minimal risk of contamination/infection. With controlled fermentation temps my risk of blow-offs is now about zero - although I still use one for ales because there could always be a first time!

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Old 08-04-2008, 03:00 AM   #7
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You nailed it - simplicity. There's a theory (that I'm citing very loosely) that keeping it on the yeast for a longer period of time results in a cleaner flavor profile. I think Jamil uses the technique.

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Old 08-04-2008, 03:13 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yuri_Rage View Post
You nailed it - simplicity. There's a theory (that I'm citing very loosely) that keeping it on the yeast for a longer period of time results in a cleaner flavor profile. I think Jamil uses the technique.
So, using any ale for example, how long would you keep that in the primary if you don't rack to a secondary, on average?

And did you go with the ported BB for bottling, or for another reason? I think I would still want to rack to a bottling bucket.

By the by, I assume you're the Yuri on youtube. If so, I like your videos, very well done.
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Old 08-04-2008, 03:18 AM   #9
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I did one for 2 weeks once. Simple Amber Ale. It came out fine it just took a longer time in the keg to clear up.

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Prim 2: Ogre's Hair of the Dog Imperial Amber Ale
Prim 3: Ogre's Relaxed APA
Sec 1: Honey Blonde Ale with Hefe Yeast
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Old 08-04-2008, 03:21 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by devaspawn View Post
I did one for 2 weeks once. Simple Amber Ale. It came out fine it just took a longer time in the keg to clear up.

I don't keg too often, mostly bottle for myriad reasons, mainly because I give away a lot of beer. All my friends think I'm a wizard, lol

So, does the bottling alter how you would handle things?
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