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Old 01-10-2014, 12:45 PM   #1
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Default Bottling bucket vs plastic carboy for primary fermenting

I'm filling the pipeline, boys! I have four in the keezer already pouring and two in the closet fermenting away. I'm brewing another batch this morning (Barney Flats Oatmeal Stout, if anyone's interested) and realized that I don't have any more fermenting buckets to speak of. I have a bottling bucket and several of the 5 gallon water jugs.

Is there a preference as to which of the lesser two evils I should use? I realize neither is preferrable, but which would you use, given the situation?

Thanks in advance!

Scott

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Old 01-10-2014, 12:48 PM   #2
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The regular bottling bucket would have the needed head space the 5 gallon BB wouldn't.

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Old 01-10-2014, 12:51 PM   #3
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The regular bottling bucket would have the needed head space the 5 gallon BB wouldn't.
Whatever you do, do not ferment 5 gallons in a 5 gallon container with an airlock!

That my friend is a wort bomb!
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Old 01-10-2014, 01:02 PM   #4
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Sorry, I shoulda mentioned that the bottling bucket is 7 gallons whereas the carboy is only 5.5, which kind of answers my question I suppose. I do have the blow off top for the carboy, but perhaps I'll use the bottling bucket today and grab another standard primary bucket next time I'm at the LHBS.

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Old 01-10-2014, 01:15 PM   #5
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Have you ever brewed the batch you are about to brew? If you have and it is a generally calm fermenting beer, you MIGHT be ok with only 1/2 gallon of headspace. Assuming you are controlling the fermentation temperature.

It is a risk, though.

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Old 01-10-2014, 01:31 PM   #6
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I gather you will not need the bottling bucket to bottle any of the 3 batches fermenting ?

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Old 01-10-2014, 01:35 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wilserbrewer View Post
Whatever you do, do not ferment 5 gallons in a 5 gallon container with an airlock!

That my friend is a wort bomb!
Bottling buckets gnerally being 6.5G,an airlock isn't much of a problem if you get pitch temp down to 65F or so,like I do.
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Old 01-10-2014, 01:41 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by freisste View Post
Have you ever brewed the batch you are about to brew? If you have and it is a generally calm fermenting beer, you MIGHT be ok with only 1/2 gallon of headspace. Assuming you are controlling the fermentation temperature.

It is a risk, though.
I haven't brewed this before, no, so I don't know the activity on it. I leave my fermenting buckets in bigger buckets filled with water (and add frozen water bottles as necessary) to try to moderate the temperature swings as much as possible, but living in Florida, it's tough to keep it below 72 for 10 days straight.

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I gather you will not need the bottling bucket to bottle any of the 3 batches fermenting ?
No, I go straight from fermenting to keg. Thanks for the comment.

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Bottling buckets gnerally being 6.5G,an airlock isn't much of a problem if you get pitch temp down to 65F or so,like I do.
I try to get it down below 70 before pitching the yeast, but quite often it's 75-80.
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Old 01-10-2014, 01:48 PM   #9
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In that case,a blow off rig would be advisable.

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Old 01-10-2014, 01:50 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Taylormade View Post
I haven't brewed this before, no, so I don't know the activity on it. I leave my fermenting buckets in bigger buckets filled with water (and add frozen water bottles as necessary) to try to moderate the temperature swings as much as possible, but living in Florida, it's tough to keep it below 72 for 10 days straight.



No, I go straight from fermenting to keg. Thanks for the comment.



I try to get it down below 70 before pitching the yeast, but quite often it's 75-80.
For some good news, consider this. Any off flavors in your beer are created within the first 3 to 5 days so you don't have to keep your beer so cool for so long. Try to start it and keep it in the low to mid 60's until the fast part of the ferment is over and then let it warm to room temp. Here's some info about the way ale yeast works. http://www.brewgeeks.com/the-life-cycle-of-yeast.html
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