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Old 12-27-2009, 01:15 AM   #1
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Default A couple of newbie questions

Hi everybody, I'm brand spanking new to this brewing thing, but I'm excited to get into it and start brewing. My question has to do with my equipment. My folks bought me a kit for Christmas, and it contains pretty much everything I would need. The only puzzling thing for me is that it looks like the bottling bucket is also going to be used as the fermenting bucket. It's got a hole cut in the top for the airlock. I'm not exactly sure what the carboy is supposed to be used for. My guess is that I siphon the beer out of the bucket, into the carboy, clean the bucket, put the beer back in it, then bottle it. The carboy didn't come with a stopper for the airlock, but it did come with one of those orange caps, that looks like it's made for siphoning. Does that sound right? Thanks for your help folks, I'll probably be back asking a million questions when I start the actual brewing. I'll try to trawl the forum first though.

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Old 12-27-2009, 01:27 AM   #2
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What are the volumes of the bucket and the carboy? Typically for a 5 gallon batch of beer you would use a 6 or 6.5 gallon bucket for the primary fermentation which could last 2-3 weeks and then some recipes have you transfer this to a secondary for the rest of the fermentation period which could be another 2-3 weeks. Not every recipe will have you going to the secondary.


If your carboy has a maximum volume of 5 gallons then fermenting a 5 gallon recipe in this won't leave enough room for headspace. If the carboy is 5 gallon then use this for a secondary on a 5 gallon batch and perhaps get a another 6 or 6.5 gallon food grade plastic bucket that will work with your existing lid. Having one or two buckets dedicated to fermentation will free up your bottling bucket to bottle beer at different dates. Thus, you can have more than one batch going if this hobby starts to become an obsessio.

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Old 12-27-2009, 02:15 AM   #3
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It's a 5 gallon carboy. Yeah, I'm thinking about running out and getting another 6.5 gallon for the fermenting. I'm guessing the kit came with the carboy for secondary fermentation, if the recipe called for it. My plan is to have one batch fermenting, while I'm letting a batch finish up in the bottles. Thanks for the help!

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Old 12-27-2009, 02:23 AM   #4
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You might check at some DIY stores like Home Depot or Lowe's to see if they have any food grade plastic buckets. If your lid does not fit their bucket then perhaps you can drill a hole for the rubber grommet to fit the new lid.

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Old 12-27-2009, 02:34 AM   #5
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That sounds right to me. Generally, I use a 6 gallon Better Bottle carboy for primary, a glass 5 gallon for secondary, and a bottling bucket.

When I was starting out, I found a series of videos on YouTube to be very helpful. These folks have put out 13 or 14 videos, very straightforward and thorough, if slow paced. One of the early videos goes over equipment. http://www.youtube.com/user/HomebrewingVideo

Have fun and cheers!

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Old 12-27-2009, 03:14 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pappers View Post
That sounds right to me. Generally, I use a 6 gallon Better Bottle carboy for primary, a glass 5 gallon for secondary, and a bottling bucket.

When I was starting out, I found a series of videos on YouTube to be very helpful. These folks have put out 13 or 14 videos, very straightforward and thorough, if slow paced. One of the early videos goes over equipment. http://www.youtube.com/user/HomebrewingVideo

Have fun and cheers!
Sweet, thanks. I'm hoping to be ready to go in about a week. I've got a Coopers IPA kit ready to go, and have pretty much all the gear I need, save the bottles. I think I'm going to take msa8967's advice and get another bucket for the actual fermenting. Thanks for the help guys.
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Old 12-27-2009, 03:21 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blackflag77 View Post
...
My plan is to have one batch fermenting, while I'm letting a batch finish up in the bottles.
...
Yeah, that's your plan now... Wait a few months, you'll be out buying more buckets...

Welcome to the addiction.
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