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Old 08-17-2009, 08:07 PM   #1
Redbeard5289
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Default Double Duty

Hey Everyone,

I need your input on this idea I brewed up this weekend while partaking of a few our our creations with my next door neighbor.

We were discussing about adding a 2nd fermenter to our systems and what we should get, glass carboy, plastic better bottle carboy or another 6.5 gal bucket. (Currently we have the standard fermentation bucket and an open lid bottling bucket with spigot.)
After rounding up our kids and saying good night I had this idea while i was getting my boy ready for bed.

Could a guy just use the bottling bucket with a spigot as a 2nd fermenter. My thinking was that after the intial fermentation process was done in the primary fermentation bucket I could then siphon the beer into the bottling bucket, seal it up with a bucket lid (with an attached airlock, in case of 2nd fermentation process happened) and let the beer conditioned in the bottling bucket. When the conditioning was over (1-3 weeks) I can then attach my bottle filler to the bottling bucket spigot and start bottling. (I would be using carbonation tabs instead of mixing in sugar water into the beer for carbonation)

My thinking was that this would reduce contamination but also speed up the bottling process by cutting out a third vessel to transfer the beer to and from.

What do you guys and gals think? Looking for thoughts and feedback on this idea.

Thanks
Redbeard5289

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Old 08-17-2009, 08:23 PM   #2
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that could work. I dont think I would do it cuz I dont trust the spigot not to leak. and you do get some sediment in secondary. I would just get 1 more bucket. but its worth a shot.

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Old 08-17-2009, 08:23 PM   #3
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I have often thought about this but it seems to me that the spigot would be hard to clean, thus giving bacteria a place to harbor and multiply. So, to that end, I've never done it.

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Old 08-17-2009, 09:55 PM   #4
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Thanks for the feedback guys.

I was worried about the spigot being hard to clean but I think if one was diligent enough with pipe cleaners and q-tips that the spigot could be sanatized well.

I have never done a 2nd fermenter so I've never thought about additional sediment that would present. Could one position the spigot higher on the bucket to compensate for the sediment level? How high should a person go off the bottom of the 2nd fermentation bucket?

Redbeard5289

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Old 08-17-2009, 10:01 PM   #5
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I know a lot of people talk about issues with headspace for secondary in a bucket. All that headspace can lead to some oxidation issues since you don't have the active fermentation pushing CO2 to purge all the headspace. That's why a lot of people use a 5 gallon carboy. Just something to think about.

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Old 08-17-2009, 11:09 PM   #6
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Both the buckets I use have spigots.

I use buckets with spigots for primary, secondary, & bottling.

I usually rinse the spigots with warm water, then set them in one-step for a few minutes, then rinse them again and let them dry before storing them.

Haven't had any problems with infection or leaking thus far.

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Old 08-17-2009, 11:17 PM   #7
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If you are worried about sediment in the bottling bucket, just leave the bucket tilted slightly during the secondary fermentation (spigot side higher - just use a wooden shim or something under one edge). This will cause most of the sedimentation to collect on the far side of the bucket.

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Old 08-17-2009, 11:31 PM   #8
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I think that would work, but you may be creating more work using the carb tabs.

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Old 08-17-2009, 11:38 PM   #9
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The problems with spigots:

1. cleaning
2. leaking

If this doesn't bother you, go for it. My spigot leaks. Also, I took it apart, and was surprised at the grime in there. That was after many soaks w/ oxiclean and starsan. There are some hard to clean spots in the internals.

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Old 08-18-2009, 01:07 PM   #10
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Thanks for all the feedback! I love this forum!!
You all have definately given more to think about. I never even to into account the headspace in the sealed bucket would cause oxidation issues. Perhaps if I size down to a 5 gal bucket this won't be such an issue.

Theogard: Love the Shim Idea.

Conpewter: I am curious as to your comment about using Carb Tabs making more work. Can you elaborate on what you mean? My brother has been using Carb Tabs for a few years now and swears by them, not only for making bottling easier but having a more uniform carbonation between bottles.

Thanks for all the feedback on this idea. Definately helps you explore all options so no "big" suprises await you when you implement your ideas.

Thanks
Redbeard5289

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