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Old 01-24-2012, 10:30 PM   #1
djk
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Default Keep the wort/beer in the kettle from boil to bottling?

OK, here's an idea. Probably not an original idea, but if anyone's heard of this, or has done it, or knows why it would be a Bad Idea, let's talk.

Keep the wort/beer in the kettle from (full extract) boil to bottling.

I already dump everything from my boil kettle into my plastic bucket to ferment, so this new way wouldn't add anything that wasn't already there. I don't use a secondary, either.

My concerns are:

  • Aeration. I currently aerate with a vigorous pour and a wisk. Guess I could just wisk more.
  • Sanitation. I would have a sanitized lid on the kettle, and maybe foil. Is that enough to keep the Baddies out of my wort?
  • Oxygenation. Don't figure it would be much worse than with a bucket, once the layer of CO2 has built up in the kettle.
  • Priming. Could I stir in the priming solution without causing oxygenation? I was thinking of doing a light stir next bottling day anyways, since the sugar didn't seem to get evenly distributed last time.
  • Bottling. Aside from being careful to not pick up a bottle of trub, how tough would it be to fill bottles from the primary? Would the yeast distribution be OK for carbonation?

Any guidance would be appreciated - I'm likely to give it a shot anyways.
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Old 01-24-2012, 10:59 PM   #2
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The problem is that your beer will be sitting on all of the trub and your cold break as well. This could contribute to cloudy beer with off flavors from the sediment. Oxygen will not be an issue as long as you have a tight fitting lid to keep the bugs out and the co2 in.

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Old 01-24-2012, 11:04 PM   #3
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But how are you going to boil your next batch in the meantime? Don't tell me you only brew one batch at a time?

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Old 01-24-2012, 11:06 PM   #4
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Just a couple of things to think about.

One, how will you install an airlock on your boil kettle? If you just cover the pot with the lid, the co2 produced might very well blow off the lid. You need a way to vent the co2 without allowing bugs in. Second, do you really want to stir your priming sugar into a kettle with 4 inches of trub? So you'll resuspend all of the trub and stir in the priming sugar and then put that in bottles? Sounds really awful to me.

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Old 01-24-2012, 11:07 PM   #5
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I don't really see any problem in fermenting your beer in your kettle, I dump everything from my kettle into my fermenter with each batch and end up with clear beer every time.

I sure would hate trying to bottle without the help of a bottling bucket though.

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Old 01-24-2012, 11:09 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yooper View Post
Just a couple of things to think about.

One, how will you install an airlock on your boil kettle? If you just cover the pot with the lid, the co2 produced might very well blow off the lid.
I would suspect if it didn't blow off from a huge krausen it would rattle constantly. Like a pot left boiling with the lid on.

Not something I'd want to listen to for a week.
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Old 01-24-2012, 11:30 PM   #7
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@ehedge20
I'm not too worried about cloudiness, but off flavors wouldn't be cool. OTOH, I don't currently take my beer off the trub; I've only done small ales so far. If I were going to lager or have a longer fermentation, I would probably rack to secondary.

@mcarb
Yes, my space is limited enough that I only do 1 batch at a time. A shame, I know. :-/

@Yooper, phenry
Very good points about the co2/airlock and priming.
If I cover and secure some foil over the kettle, would that work? Nothing could fall in, and co2 could still escape.

Stirring in the priming sugar would upset the trub, wouldn't it? If I give it a good whirlpool, do you think the trub would settle down to the center quickly enough, or would this just make bottling day an (even longer) exercise?

Maybe I'll still have to use a bottling bucket. This boil-to-bottle idea occurred to me as I was figuring out how I could ferment in a SS container without spending big bucks (and space) on a conical; eliminating the bottling bucket is more of an "extra" thought.

Thanks everyone for the replies!

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