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Old 11-16-2009, 07:47 PM   #1
mike1978
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Default How long can you leave beer in a primary?

How long can you leave beer in a primary?

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Old 11-16-2009, 09:01 PM   #2
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Well, I've got a porter that's been in the primary now for about 4 weeks. I've gone 6, but I try to get it out of there sooner than that.

Off of the beer subject, I have an Edwort Apfelwein that's been in the primary now for about 2.5 months. I'll prolly get it off of there soon.

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Old 11-16-2009, 09:06 PM   #3
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I try to go 4-6 weeks, tho its all about a gravity reading. When you get the same reading for 3 days in a row, you know its time to bottle.

Ive read on here tho people leaving it for months on end and beer turned out great. Good luck! RDWHAHB

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Old 11-16-2009, 09:41 PM   #4
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the general rule of thumb is 4 weeks. but from what i hear you can leave it on there for quite some time with no ill effects.

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Old 11-16-2009, 09:49 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TipsyDragon View Post
the general rule of thumb is 4 weeks. but from what i hear you can leave it on there for quite some time with no ill effects.
Where does that rule of thumb come from?

It's dependant on a few things.

I'd say it's generally more than 4 weeks though.
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Old 11-17-2009, 02:28 AM   #6
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I got the same gravity reading three days in a row after 10 days. Is that wrong to bottle then? It was only my second batch so hopefully it still comes out good.

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Old 11-17-2009, 02:40 AM   #7
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I've gone several months with no issues (recently about 5 months on an RIS). Generally I take it off the yeast at 3 weeks for a normal beer though.

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Old 11-17-2009, 02:43 AM   #8
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Quote:
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I got the same gravity reading three days in a row after 10 days. Is that wrong to bottle then? It was only my second batch so hopefully it still comes out good.
If it's the same reading it is safe to bottle.. most people would leave it at least 3 weeks to let the yeasties clean up after themselves though.. Waiting is rarely a bad thing.
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Old 11-17-2009, 02:44 AM   #9
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Yeah, I would never advise you to go too long on the yeast cake. Yeast tends to impart a "yeasty" characteristic to the beer the longer it sits in the primary. I had a light cream ale made with WLP001 recently. This batch was in my primary for over three months before it was finally kegged. Upon drinking, it tasted more like a belgian than the clean tasting WLP001. I concluded that this belgian yeastyness had to be caused by the long amount of time it was left on the yeast cake.

Under normal circumstances, I keep my beer in the primary for 3-4 weeks before kegging/bottling.

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Old 11-17-2009, 08:23 AM   #10
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Make your own mind up but there are many conversations on here about long times in primary without adverse effects. If you don't believe then do a search on autolysis.

From the words of Palmer.

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As a final note on this subject, I should mention that by brewing with healthy yeast in a well-prepared wort, many experienced brewers, myself included, have been able to leave a beer in the primary fermenter for several months without any evidence of autolysis. Autolysis is not inevitable, but it is lurking.
Must admit thought for the inexperience noob then it better to follow conventional instruction and then gain the knowledge through your own experience.
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