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Old 01-29-2013, 12:39 PM   #1
whitesoup12
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Default Headspace in Secondary

Previously I have done my secondary fermentation's in a 6 gallon Better Bottle. I'm wanting to move into a glass carboy for lagering, but am unsure whether to go with a 5 or 6 gallon carboy. I've read that during the secondary you want minimal headspace, but then you also run the risk of foam in the airlock. I'd rather not run a blow off tube if space is going to be an issue with a 5 gallon, especially if I can just use an airlock with a 6 gallon carboy. What are the disadvantages of having that extra headspace with the 6 gallon?
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Old 01-29-2013, 12:43 PM   #2
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Oxygenation. If you've got a CO2 system, you could pump that in to the carboy on top of the beer and displace the O2 (CO2 is heavier, the O2 goes out, the CO2 stays in).

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Old 01-29-2013, 12:50 PM   #3
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Okay, I see. So what methods or systems would you recommend for getting the CO2 in and O2 out?
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Old 01-29-2013, 01:22 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by whitesoup12
Okay, I see. So what methods or systems would you recommend for getting the CO2 in and O2 out?
Can get CO2 purge system pretty cheap. Saw one recently by Williams Brewing for only $30.

http://www.williamsbrewing.com/C02-PURGE-KIT-no-air-shipment-P3131C106.aspx
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Old 01-29-2013, 04:34 PM   #5
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Is Nitrogen heavier than air? I should know but.. I'm cloudy. If it is, a cheap way to do it might be to get one of the canisters of nitrogen that is used for purging partial bottles of wine. Another thought I've had but haven't pursued is to get a ton of marbles.. sanitize them and use them to adjust headspace... A real positive with marbles, if it makes sense, is that the gunk will settle in the spaces and make racking cleaner????

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Old 01-29-2013, 04:36 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by ThreeGnomes View Post
Is Nitrogen heavier than air? I should know but.. I'm cloudy. If it is, a cheap way to do it might be to get one of the canisters of nitrogen that is used for purging partial bottles of wine. Another thought I've had but haven't pursued is to get a ton of marbles.. sanitize them and use them to adjust headspace... A real positive with marbles, if it makes sense, is that the gunk will settle in the spaces and make racking cleaner????
Most of the atmosphere is already made up of nitrogen, so it would not be as effective as CO2 to purge O2 out of the carboy.
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