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Old 08-14-2008, 06:42 PM   #1
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Default When to take IPA out of primary?

Hey all, my IPA will be done fermenting and in the primary for one week tomorrow. I have been convinced to start leaving my beer in the primary for up to 4 weeks to let the yeasties clean up the beer, where I used to do everything on the 1-2-3 approach. However, for this IPA I will be dry hopping, so secondary is a must. Should I rack tomorrow or wait longer?

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Old 08-14-2008, 06:55 PM   #2
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Depends on how big it was. I usually try to leave all of my beers in primary for at least a couple weeks (2 or 3). My gauge for racking is when the beer is fully attenuated, the yeast has dropped and the beer has started to clear. No reason to move it before the yeast has done their thing and given up. The bigger the beer, the longer this seems to take.

My last IPA was racked after 14 days. Current IIPA in secondary got there after 22. I made the mistake of racking early once. Never fully attenuated, and ended up being sweet, and didn't age well.

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Old 08-14-2008, 07:01 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by s3n8 View Post
Depends on how big it was. I usually try to leave all of my beers in primary for at least a couple weeks (2 or 3). My gauge for racking is when the beer is fully attenuated, the yeast has dropped and the beer has started to clear. No reason to move it before the yeast has done their thing and given up. The bigger the beer, the longer this seems to take.

My last IPA was racked after 14 days. Current IIPA in secondary got there after 22. I made the mistake of racking early once. Never fully attenuated, and ended up being sweet, and didn't age well.
1.042 OG, It was supposed to be 1.064 but the crush sucked something awful and I got a 50% efficiency. Oh well, horray for light IPA's. Ill leave it for another week, cant hurt. Then prob. another 2 weeks or so in the secondary dry-hopping. Then straight to the KEG!
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Old 08-14-2008, 07:04 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by EamusCatuli View Post
Hey all, my IPA will be done fermenting and in the primary for one week tomorrow. I have been convinced to start leaving my beer in the primary for up to 4 weeks to let the yeasties clean up the beer, where I used to do everything on the 1-2-3 approach. However, for this IPA I will be dry hopping, so secondary is a must. Should I rack tomorrow or wait longer?
As soon as my IPA was done fermenting (3 days same hydro reading), I racked to secondary and dry hopped with 1.5 ounces. It took 9 days to fully ferment, and after that I racked to secondary and let that sit for 2.5 weeks. That IPA was a beautiful thing...
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Old 08-14-2008, 07:14 PM   #5
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i would probably leave it in longer than a week.. or go with the 3 day hydrometer reading approach. i just did an iipa and am pretty sure i didn't leave it in primary long enough (only 8 days) b/c the end product is a bit sweeter than i'm sure its supposed to be. still tastes good though

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Old 08-14-2008, 07:19 PM   #6
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My extract IPAs improved greatly when I went 2 weeks primary and 2 weeks secondary. But I havn't dry hopped any, so best to ignore me.

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Old 08-14-2008, 07:25 PM   #7
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My extract IPAs improved greatly when I went 2 weeks primary and 2 weeks secondary. But I havn't dry hopped any, so best to ignore me.
Most of us do anyway, Brit.

OP - as long as it's done you can move it anytime you want.
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Old 08-14-2008, 07:39 PM   #8
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Well I know its done fermenting, but was told that leaving beer in the primary for extended amounts of time was the best upgrade to peeps beers they have made (as far as processes). It just seems like it doesnt work with dry-hopped IPA's. Its going to be my first one, and since IPA's are about the most expensive batch of brew out there, I want to do it right.

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Old 08-14-2008, 07:48 PM   #9
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why not dry hop in the primary after the fermentation stops. I just sprinkle the hop pellets in the fermented beer and rack to the keg from the primary three weeks later.

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Old 08-14-2008, 08:48 PM   #10
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why not dry hop in the primary after the fermentation stops. I just sprinkle the hop pellets in the fermented beer and rack to the keg from the primary three weeks later.
Thought about it, except that typically you need to rack on top of the hops to ensure it gets through all of the beer. Plus, I really want to keep the IPA on top of the yeast cake as long as possible.
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