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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Beginners Beer Brewing Forum > Next question ,Head space
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Old 12-16-2012, 04:58 PM   #1
TheCacheGuy
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Default Next question ,Head space

I know with my experience in wine making head space in secondary its very critical. Does the same hold true with Home brew? Transferred from primary to secondary last night. And there is about 3 or 4 inches of space between the ale and the top of the carboy.

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Old 12-16-2012, 05:05 PM   #2
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Ideally you want to limit head space during secondary since the beer will not put off as much CO2 to push the oxygen (air) out of carboy during secondary. I use a 5 gallon carboy for secondary (on the rare occasion that I do secondary)....so there is minimal headspace for a 5 gallon batch.

You could purge larger carboys with CO2 prior to transferring beer if there will be a lot of headspace for batch size. Too late for you to do that though.

What size was your batch and what size carboy?

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Old 12-16-2012, 05:06 PM   #3
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Yes, but with only 3-4" and the fact you are probably only going to have it there for 5-7 days it should not be a concern. If you were, say going to leave it for 2-3 months it would be a concern.

BTW, are you dry hopping it? If not, do some reading on actually using a secondary. While many instructions tell you to do this the general consensus these days unless you are adding fruit, spices or oaking there is no need to go secondary, just extend the primary time by a week or two.

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Old 12-16-2012, 09:38 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mgortel View Post
Ideally you want to limit head space during secondary since the beer will not put off as much CO2 to push the oxygen (air) out of carboy during secondary. I use a 5 gallon carboy for secondary (on the rare occasion that I do secondary)....so there is minimal headspace for a 5 gallon batch.

You could purge larger carboys with CO2 prior to transferring beer if there will be a lot of headspace for batch size. Too late for you to do that though.

What size was your batch and what size carboy?
Its a 5 gal batch . And no not dry hopping it. And 5 gal carboy.
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Old 12-16-2012, 09:41 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by duboman View Post
Yes, but with only 3-4" and the fact you are probably only going to have it there for 5-7 days it should not be a concern. If you were, say going to leave it for 2-3 months it would be a concern.

BTW, are you dry hopping it? If not, do some reading on actually using a secondary. While many instructions tell you to do this the general consensus these days unless you are adding fruit, spices or oaking there is no need to go secondary, just extend the primary time by a week or two.
So I can leave it primary (bucket) for the whole time?
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Old 12-16-2012, 09:44 PM   #6
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So I can leave it primary (bucket) for the whole time?
Yes.

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Old 12-16-2012, 09:44 PM   #7
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So I can leave it primary (bucket) for the whole time?
Correct, even up to 4-5 weeks as long as you're not repeatedly opening the bucket.

Take a reading at 10 days to 2 weeks for FG and taste. If it tastes good and is at FG give it a week more to drop bright and package!
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Old 12-16-2012, 09:45 PM   #8
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I've never tried to dry hop in the primary, but I have had beer in the secondary for a couple weeks with a good 4" of head space with no issues. I can't comment on the primary/secondary debate, I just know I've never had one go bad because of too much head space.

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