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Old 05-14-2012, 02:08 AM   #1
Marshi
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Default 5 week fermentation?

Sup yall, quick question: I'm going on a 5 week trip, but before I go, I would love to brew a beer that will be ready to bottle when I get back.

Are there any styles of beer that could last 5 weeks in a glass primary (no secondary fermentation)? I'm worried about potential oxidation and off flavors from dead or unhealthy yeast, but is it possible to do a 5 week fermentation in the same fermenter? I'm thinking my a high alcohol beer would work well, but I'm not certain.

Any help appreciated!

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Old 05-14-2012, 02:38 AM   #2
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All beers that dont include fruit...I leave my beer in the Primary for 3 weeks, others go longer...summary 5 weeks shouldnt be an issue with any beer style that doesnt contain fruit.

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Old 05-14-2012, 02:50 AM   #3
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It's no problem at all to leave it in primary for 5 weeks. Since you won't be removing the bung on the carboy for the 5 weeks you're gone, oxidation won't be a problem at all.. Autolysis of the yeast shouldn't be a problem at 5 weeks either. I've gone 4-5 weeks a few times with good results. You don't have to do a high ABV, either..

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Old 05-14-2012, 03:15 AM   #4
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Yup, what the others have said. The first saison I brewed sat in the primary for 6 weeks and it was amazing. Part of that was waiting on bottling/corking supplies otherwise I would have bottled it after 4 or so, but yeah...5 weeks should be fine.

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Old 05-14-2012, 04:31 AM   #5
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What's the temperature going to be in your house during this period? I like to turn off the AC when I'm gone for significant periods in warm weather months, so this means that I plan to only have beers using saison yeasts in fermenters. From what I understand, SF is a bit more temperate until late summer, though, in which case you have a bit more freedom.

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Old 05-14-2012, 04:49 AM   #6
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You might want to be around for the first few days in case you need a blow off tube in that carboy. High krausen can easily blow the airlock right off the carboy and you don't want it to sit like that for 5 weeks.

If you are doing 5 gallons in a 6.5 carboy you might have enough headspace for an airlock-only fermentation.

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Old 05-15-2012, 07:36 PM   #7
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Ooh, good point, didn't think about blowing off my airlock. I think i'll just use a blow off tube to make sure I don't run into any problems. Yeah I live in SF so I'm not too worried about crazy temperature changes.

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Old 05-15-2012, 07:53 PM   #8
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5 week primary = no problem. you can leave the blowoff tube on for the 5 weeks, it'll act as the air-lock.

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Old 05-15-2012, 09:31 PM   #9
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You can use some Fermcap-S foam inhibitor in your boil to keep the foam down in the fermentor. You shouldn't need a blowoff tube if you use it. I did a high gravity witbier using Wyeast 3944(a yeast notorious for lots of kraussen) and didn't need a blowoff tube in a bucket with 1.5 gallons of headspace.

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