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Old 09-07-2011, 03:03 PM   #1
HomebrewPete
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Default First Time Brew

Hey guys, this is my first time on this site.

Anyway, last week I decided to try brewing some beer for the first time in my life. I opted to use an extract kit I got from Midwest Supplies. The instructions were pretty clear and everything went good during the brew. Two days ago I moved the beer to a carboy for the secondary part of the fermentation and this is where I need help.

It's been two days since I've moved the beer to the carboy and as far as I can tell it hasn't been fermenting at all. I am not really sure if this is a bad thing or not but it does seem strange. I used dry yeast for this recipe and the specific gravity of the brew when I moved it to the carboy was 1.008. There was also probably an inch or so of yeast slurry on the bottom of the primary fermentation container. From what I've read online the reading I got is usually where fermentation for beer ends at, but I'm not sure on that. I forgot to take an O.G for this recipe so that kind of sucks.

Anyway, assuming fermentation is done is there any reason to keep it in a carboy for another week until bottling time?

Thanks.

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Old 09-07-2011, 03:12 PM   #2
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You've done great. It sounds like you totally fermented out. You can check by taking gravity readings a couple days apart. If they are the same, you're done. The secondary is not for fermenting, but for clarifying. You shouldn't be seeing any fermenting going on there. Typically you will find people suggest letting it set in the secondary a bit longer, or just the primary. I say do what you want, that's how you learn. Whatever you choose to do, it'll be beer. Good luck, get another one going soon, you're gonna need it!

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Old 09-07-2011, 11:49 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by bluemoose View Post
You've done great. It sounds like you totally fermented out. You can check by taking gravity readings a couple days apart. If they are the same, you're done. The secondary is not for fermenting, but for clarifying. You shouldn't be seeing any fermenting going on there. Typically you will find people suggest letting it set in the secondary a bit longer, or just the primary. I say do what you want, that's how you learn. Whatever you choose to do, it'll be beer. Good luck, get another one going soon, you're gonna need it!
Thanks for the advice man. Now I can sit back and relax instead of worrying about my beer.

Quick question though, if the secondary fermentator (Carboy in my case) isn't actually used for the fermentation, what reason is there to put an airlock onto the bung?

My friend and I actually brewed a second batch last think (knock off recipe of Red Hook's ESB) and realized we didn't have a second airlock after we poured the wort into the bucket. We ended up having to use a makeshift blowoff hose that we made. Oh and we remembered to take an O.G this time - ~1.058.
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Old 09-08-2011, 12:22 AM   #4
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There is alway a bit of activity with yeast, even in the bottle. Airlock provides a release for the pressure without the chance of any other bugs getting in. The secondary will mainly allow the beer to clear up a bit. Many here, including me, leave the beer in the primary instead of moving to secondary. It really is a personal choice.
I go primary only for most beers because:

A. I'm lazy.
B. I don't have enough carboys.
C. I believe after the yeast eat the simple sugars they will go back and clean up what they left behind.
D. It's really easy to dry hop in the primary ( see A)
E. I have seen no significant difference in all primary vs using secondary.
F. It's beer, not rocket science.

Brew.

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