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Old 09-15-2010, 05:46 PM   #1
s4nder
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Default Is it time to move my brew into the second fermenter?

Hello everybody! 7 days a go I started brewing my first beer ever. I chose Coopers european lager (probably should have started with an ale : /). The beer has been fermenting for 7 days at 19 C . The problem however is that i wasnt able to hermeticly seal the fermenter ( the CO2 is leaking out somewere). I know that cuz there hasnt been any bubbeling in the airlock. I am however been able to observe the brew through the lit ( plastic taped on the top of a 40L milk container ). There has been lots of foaming earlier but for the last 2 days it has died out and i can now see the surface of my brew. So what you people think? should I wait, or is it ready for kegging?

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Old 09-15-2010, 05:54 PM   #2
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Most people here would tell you to just leaving be in primary for another 2-3 weeks and then rack directly to the keg.

PS: I'm pretty sure all the coopers kits come with ale yeast anyway, so you're probably good there.

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Old 09-15-2010, 05:56 PM   #3
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My thoughts:
1. You have a lager kit, but you fermented at Ale temps (19C).
2. God knows what yeast Coopers includes with their kits....hopefully it was ale yeast since that is how you fermented it. If it was lager yeast, then you should expect some real off-flavors from fermenting way too warm for a lager.
3. Airlock bubbling isn't a reliable indicator of fermentation...take a hydrometer reading.
4. It sounds like the bulk of fermentation is done, but things are still happening in the fementer....transferring to secondary may mess those processeses up. I wouldn't consider transferring for another 2-3 weeks.
5. I was confused by your post...are you talking about transferring to secondary or to the keg for serving as the next step. Either way, you should wait.

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Old 09-15-2010, 06:16 PM   #4
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I agree with what all have said so far, I am curious about the "lagering" step in making a lager, you might need a little more cooling to achieve that like around 6C or 7C! If not, I am sure the beer will taste fine.

Leave it in the primary for at least 3 weeks, 4 even better! It will give the yeast a chance to clean up after themselves and also a chance for the beer to clear up a bit!

If you can cool it down to lagering temps then I would transfer to a secondary before cooling!

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Old 09-15-2010, 06:32 PM   #5
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+1 on what everyone said, which is basically dont be hasty. take your time, rack in a couple weeks, you'll be good. you may have some off flavors in your beer if it is indeed lager yeast, but give it time and you may have a great beer on your hands!

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Old 09-15-2010, 07:23 PM   #6
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Thank you for all your replies. The reasone I fermented it at 19C is because i read the instructiones that came with the kit.

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f39/anyb...estion-158817/ you can read theme here.. just scroll down a bit.

Note that these instructiones state that coopers european lager uses lager yeast and recommended temp is 21C.
It says nothing about how long the fermentation takes, so i assumed its the same as for other beers.

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Old 09-15-2010, 07:27 PM   #7
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About the keg. Im not talking about cornelius keg. I have this old stainless steel keg my grandfather used to brew beer in. It's basically a 40L stainless steel vessel with a tap and a manometre.

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Old 09-15-2010, 10:29 PM   #8
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To answer your direct question: you can rack to secondary once the gravity has hit your estimated final gravity (or really close to it) for 3+ days.
So, time means nothing, bubbles mean nothing, hydrometer readings mean everything.

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Old 09-15-2010, 10:55 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrookdaleBrew View Post
Most people here would tell you to just leaving be in primary for another 2-3 weeks and then rack directly to the keg.

PS: I'm pretty sure all the coopers kits come with ale yeast anyway, so you're probably good there.
Nope. It's a Lager yeast and the instructions state that you can ferment as low as 13 C
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Old 09-16-2010, 01:10 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tomheff View Post
Nope. It's a Lager yeast and the instructions state that you can ferment as low as 13 C
ouch....if it was a lager yeast and it was fermented at ale temps, there might be some funky off-flavors going on there. Not exactly the type of beer I'd want a first-time homebrewer to end up with (that is if I wanted him/her to continue in the hobby!).

Frankly, I think that lagers are outside of the beginner home-brewers skill-set (heck, I'm an AG brewer and have been homebrewing for almost 10 years now and have yet to attempt a lager!) so I don't understand why lagers are even offered as kits available to beginners.

From other things I've read, it might be a good idea for beginners to steer clear of Cooper's kits altogether. There is the lager issue, there is the lack of instruction/wrong instruction issues, and they are shipped over here from Australia....not exactly the freshest product out there!

Besides, there are plenty of good beginner kits offered by the likes of AHS, MoreBeer, NB, etc. Its really a shame these crappy Cooper's kits gets pushed on beginners.

Just my 0.02
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