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Old 06-27-2012, 12:30 AM   #1
JHahn
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Default Splitting a batch into two different secondaries. Too much head space??

I want to start experimenting with different variables in a beer to see how single changes affect the outcome of the beer, so I can know how certain things taste. Like using different yeasts or repeating a recipe but changing one thing like a different steeping grain or the hops.

I brewed an IPA a few weeks ago using all Falconers Flight. Now I want to dry hop it, but I want to try two separate dry hops in different secondaries. I want to do Falconers in one and Citra in another. I have a few 6 gallon plastic buckers and a 5 gallon glass carboy but am concerned that there will be too much head space. I saw people taking about using marbles to decrease the head space or by using a C02 tank. Any suggestions? Should I just scrap that idea or get smaller vessels?

I also want to try using two different yeasts to see the difference in tastes. So I would want to brew a 5 gallon batch and then split it in to two different fermenters and use two different yeast strains. I'd make sure to adjust the amount of yeast for the brew. But would there be too much head space in that situation too?

Thanks

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Old 06-27-2012, 12:58 AM   #2
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I cannot give you the answer for the first question regarding having too much empty space in secondary but as far as the primary goes you can have lots of empty space at the start because the yeast will produce a blanket of CO2 that can easily fill 1/2 of the bucket. I will use white food grade buckets that I buy in the paint department of Walmart with a lid for under $4. These are 5 gallon (max volume) buckets that I use to ferment 2.5-3.5 gallon size brews, leaving my larger buckets for a full 5+ gallon size batch.

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Old 06-27-2012, 01:04 AM   #3
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+1. Just dry hop in the primaries. No need to worry with 2.5 gallon batches in a 5 gal primary.

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Old 06-27-2012, 01:09 AM   #4
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I am having the same experimental thoughts, and decided to get two 3-gallon "better bottle" carboys. Not that I like throwing money away, but for me and my fermenting chamber, I am limited on space - if I split one batch into buckets that have traditional diameters I can only have one batch going at once. But the 3-gal carboys are much, much thinner so I can have two experimental fermentations going on plus one regular, or two experimental secondarys plus one, or whatever.

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Old 06-27-2012, 01:13 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrettFitz
I am having the same experimental thoughts, and decided to get two 3-gallon "better bottle" carboys. Not that I like throwing money away, but for me and my fermenting chamber, I am limited on space - if I split one batch into buckets that have traditional diameters I can only have one batch going at once. But the 3-gal carboys are much, much thinner so I can have two experimental fermentations going on plus one regular, or two experimental secondarys plus one, or whatever.
Hmmm, I've almost bought those 3 gallons about a million times. Never thought about that angle. Damn, now I have to pull the trigger on new better bottles. Thanks a lot!
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