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Old 02-03-2010, 09:11 PM   #1
brewster13
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What is the purpose of transfering my brew from a primary fermenter to a secondary? I just got my first brew in the primary and would like to start a second brew. Only problem is I only have one secondary fermenter. Is it possible to brew my second brew and just leave it in the primary until it is ready to be bottled?

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Old 02-03-2010, 09:15 PM   #2
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For long term bulk conditioning or "britening". Secondaries are running out of favor in homebrew for reasons you've already cited. They still have their uses but are becoming limited more and more.

Opinions vary.

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Old 02-03-2010, 09:15 PM   #3
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On very, very rare occasions will I use a secondary. Usually 3 weeks in the primary & keg.

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Old 02-03-2010, 09:18 PM   #4
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Some people do just leave it in the primary til bottling. It mostly depends on the type of beer and how clear you want it.

If you need to leave it in a fermenter for very long after it's done fermenting (like, a few weeks), then the junk at the bottom can impart off flavors. But if you're just going to have it in the fermenter for 2 weeks and you don't need it to be clear, sure, do it. My first beer went from 2 weeks in a primary to bottles and turned out great.

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Old 02-03-2010, 09:18 PM   #5
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Leave the first brew in the primary until fermentation is complete, for me 6-14 days. Once the hydrometer says it is at final gravity then transfer to your secondary. Clean and sanitize the primary while your second brew is boiling. After a week or two in the secondary, depending on the beer, you can bottle then clean and rack the finished beer in the primary to the secondary and start a new batch. This is called a pipeline. But beer has to have time to be good. You can drink it any time after the fermentation is finished but it probably won't taste good until at least a month has passed since brew day.

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Old 02-03-2010, 09:19 PM   #6
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Yes it is not an issue just to leave it in primary. There are many well written threads on this topic (even a sticky I believe) I personally do not secondary.

The main prupose is clarity. It also can be used to get the beer off the yeast if dry hopping or adding fruit - in this way the yeast may be repitched with out contributing any added flavours. There are other reasons, but these are the main ones. Secondary is really an uneccesary step.

Some will argue, but what I mean by 'uneccesary' is that I never secondary (except when fruiting or dry hopping) and I make great, clear, beer. If I can make great beer with out it why add another step?

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Old 02-03-2010, 09:20 PM   #7
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Are there any specific beers that require a secondary? Are you guys using a glass primary or plastic bucket. Will being in glass or plastic primary and leaving it in the primary the entire time make a difference?

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Old 02-03-2010, 09:36 PM   #8
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i dont have the experience of some guys, and money makes a limiting factor for me, but here's how I see my process going.

I just bottled my 1st, my 2nd is on the way.
If its here, I'll do it this weekend, if i get the washer and dryer fixed, and into the primary. Once the 2nd is done fermenting, I'll give it atleast another week and transfer to secondary for dry hopping.
once its transferred, I'll make the 3rd, and into the primary.
once the 3rd is done fermenting, I'll bottle the 2nd. Move the 3rd into the secondary and have the primary open for the 4th and continue like this until the resources for more primary and secondary buckets/carboys become available.

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Old 02-03-2010, 09:40 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brewster13 View Post
Are there any specific beers that require a secondary? Are you guys using a glass primary or plastic bucket. Will being in glass or plastic primary and leaving it in the primary the entire time make a difference?
Well, as stated above by someone else, dry hopping and other adjunct flavors are added in the secondary. There are quite a few styles that dry hop. So I guess those would require a secondary.
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Old 02-03-2010, 09:56 PM   #10
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What do you mean by dry hop? I am doing a liberty cream ale kit by midwest. Sorry I am new to this. lol

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