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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > General Techniques > skipping the secondary
View Poll Results: Do you use a secondary fermenter?
Always skip a secondary fermenter 45 17.65%
Never skip a secondary fermenter 141 55.29%
Only use a secondary when dry hopping 20 7.84%
Other 49 19.22%
Voters: 255. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 03-18-2007, 04:24 PM   #11
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I selected 'other' primarily because I'm on the fence. I was going to start a thread but here one is!
Listening to podcasts from the Brewing Network, I have heard more and more proponents that are against secondaries. Most recently, I listened to a podcast from them including Jamil and John Palmer where they made it clear that they really believe the secondary is not good. They didn't say using the secondary is horrible, but Johh Palmer said his opinion regarding using secondaries has changed dramatically from the time he wrote his first edition of How to brew and now. He recommends against it now.

I skipped the secondary on a recent batch and it was fine - but then, I kegged it so who knows...

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Old 03-18-2007, 04:31 PM   #12
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What are Palmer's reasons for not using a secondary fermenter? Contamination and oxidization fears? Something else?

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Old 03-18-2007, 04:36 PM   #13
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I use a secondary with pretty much everything except Hefes.

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Old 03-18-2007, 04:40 PM   #14
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I can see skipping the secondary on a really quick turn-around beer, but Im not gonna tie up my primary for weeks when I can just drop a beer to the secondary and start another one in the primary. (I only have 1 6.5 G carboy)

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Old 03-18-2007, 04:56 PM   #15
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For pale ales or lighter-bodied beers that clear well on their own (particularly with a high floccuating yeast), I sometimes don't bother with a secondary. They seem to bottle condition just fine, so why bother?

And now that I have a keg, some lighter 'session' beers should be really easy to produce, especially if you can skip the secondary. Just ferment for 2-3 weeks, chill, rack to a keg with some finings, force-carb, and that's it. I am looking forward to trimming down my time spent processing beer so that I have time to brew MORE of it!

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Old 03-18-2007, 05:02 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chimone
I use a secondary with pretty much everything except Hefes.
Same here! I keg everthing, and unless its a Hefe, I use a secondary.
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Old 03-18-2007, 06:20 PM   #17
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I mainly use the secondary to free up my primary. I'm going to start kegging soon though so I will probably skip the secondary stage and just rack to the keg once fermentation is done except for high gravity beers that need more time or beers that I plan to bottle for whatever reason.

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Old 03-18-2007, 06:25 PM   #18
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I've only skipped it once, and that's because I was making a hefe. I think I'll always keep it as part of my process. It gives everything an extra 2 weeks to mature.

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Old 03-18-2007, 07:22 PM   #19
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I feel it clears my beer better than when I used to leave it in primary.

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Old 03-18-2007, 08:36 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Torchiest
What are Palmer's reasons for not using a secondary fermenter? Contamination and oxidization fears? Something else?
It isn't totally clear to me but here is what I've gleaned from what I've heard so far...

1 - Yeasties continue working and result in better tasting beer in the long run, less off-flavors because the yeast consumes the root causes
2 - Less chance of o2 getting in the beer resulting in longer shelf life (I don't have that worry since I drink my beer too fast to have shelf life)
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