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Old 10-03-2012, 06:09 PM   #1
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Default Using 6.5gal Bucket as Secondary for Dry Hopping

Hey all,

I read as much as I could find on this, but no one seems to have done the exact same thing as I just did and was wondering if anyone had opinions...

I brewed up an IPA with wet hops and received some extra fresh hops which I dried during the initial fermentation to use for dry-hopping. All cascades. 3 ounces of dried leaves nearly filled 2 gallon plastic bags, to give you an idea of how large a volume of solids I was going to have to add to dry-hop.

Anyhow, I debated using a 5-gallon carboy as a secondary, but the idea of getting that many hops into a 5-gallon batch in a 5 gallon carboy was a nightmare (regardless of the fact that a 5-gallon carboy has enough space for nearly 6 gallons of liquid).

So, I decided that I was going to use a standard 6.5 gallon bucket to make cleaning easier and avoiding getting hops into the bottling bucket. With the hops, there was MAYBE 3 inches of space to the lip of the bucket. I know there is always a risk of oxygenation, but has anyone else used this method? I only plan to dry hop for 6 days (bottling Sunday), so I'm hoping I didn't just screw myself over.

Thanks for any advice!

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Old 10-03-2012, 06:21 PM   #2
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I ferment in 6.5 gallon buckets, and have been dry hopping in the primary. Just pop the lid, dump in hops and seal it back up. You shouldn't have any problems.

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Old 10-03-2012, 06:27 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by BBL_Brewer View Post
I ferment in 6.5 gallon buckets, and have been dry hopping in the primary. Just pop the lid, dump in hops and seal it back up. You shouldn't have any problems.
Here's hoping...
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Old 10-03-2012, 10:36 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BBL_Brewer View Post
I ferment in 6.5 gallon buckets, and have been dry hopping in the primary. Just pop the lid, dump in hops and seal it back up. You shouldn't have any problems.
Might want to consider using a hop sock in that primary. Loose hops = lost beer.
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Old 10-03-2012, 10:41 PM   #5
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Might want to consider using a hop sock in that primary. Loose hops = lost beer.
Not so much, really. I never use bags, and have no problems. I just racked 10 gallons the other day, as a matter of fact.
Sure, the hops absorb some beer, but the bag doesn't "save" that from happening.
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Old 10-04-2012, 02:11 AM   #6
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Might want to consider using a hop sock in that primary. Loose hops = lost beer.
I use whole hops. A bag would just be one more useless thing to sanitize.
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Old 10-04-2012, 02:38 AM   #7
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If you're going to use a plastic pail for a secondary, you might want to look into a CO2 purging system. They're fairly cheap and can help compensate for the increased headspace.

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Old 10-04-2012, 04:39 PM   #8
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Hmm. I only have until Sunday to find out if it jacked anything up. I'm going to bet that there were enough hops in the bucket to not worry about that headspace. If I'm wrong, this forum will be the first to know.

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