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Old 12-09-2008, 11:29 PM   #1
ohill1981
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Default When moving to a secondary fermenter.....

We'll i was going to let my first batch sit for about 10 days then i was going to move it to a secondary fermenter.... My question is is it necessary to have a airlock on the secondary fermenter?

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Old 12-09-2008, 11:32 PM   #2
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Yes. You can start the secondary 5 to 7 days after you start the primary.

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Old 12-09-2008, 11:34 PM   #3
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Absolutely, even more so in the secondary than in the primary. Now that fermentation is mostly over, you don't want contaminants in the air to get into your beer. And you also want CO2 and other stuff to be able to vent. Fermentation can take up to or even over one month to compelte, so you don't want to seal your secondary container.

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Old 12-09-2008, 11:35 PM   #4
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What style of beer you looking to transfer? Recipe? OG? SG? etc.

5-7 days? Wellll....

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Old 12-10-2008, 12:06 AM   #5
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From everything I've heard its really not necessary to rack to secondary for ales unless you're dry hopping for a very long time. Autolysis (when the yeast cells that are in that layer of trub start breaking down and making the beer taste bad) does not occur fast enough to necessitate racking off of it any sooner than 3 weeks.

I know a lot of the members here swear by 3 weeks in the primary with no secondary as do a lot of the brewers I've heard talking about it. If I remember right Jamil Zainasheff doesn't rack to secondary on any of his ales.

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Old 12-10-2008, 06:15 AM   #6
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We'll my beer kit came with a primary fermenter and a secondary bottling bucket.... Should i not let the beer sit in the beer bucket because there is not a airlock hole?

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Old 12-10-2008, 06:18 AM   #7
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Well the beer is an Amber Ale and the recipe was

1 can hopped amber malt extract
2lbs light dried malt extract.
1oz Hop Pellets
5oz priming sugar... and of course yeast

Not sure of the OG i completely forgot to check it !

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Old 12-10-2008, 06:25 AM   #8
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thats not a "secondary bottling bucket" its just a bottling bucket and is supposed to be used specifically to mix the beer and the priming sugar, then to bottle right away

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Old 12-10-2008, 08:21 AM   #9
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Don't bother with the secondary. It's not necessary, and in your case you don't want to use your bottling bucket as a secondary anyways. For best results, leave the beer in the primary for 3-4 weeks and it will clear nicely. This will be plenty of time for the fermentation process to complete, and will allow most of the spent yeast to drop out of suspension. A secondary is not really necessary unless you are dry hopping or want to age your beer for many weeks or months. In the case of your amber ale, 3-4 weeks will be just right. If you want to clear your beer further, "crash cool" for 3 days before bottling. By dropping the temperature of your beer it will cause a lot of yeast and other stuff in suspension to drop to the bottom of the primary. Then, when you rack to the bottling bucket just avoid sucking this stuff up...you'll have some nice clear beer.

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Old 12-10-2008, 08:25 AM   #10
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You don't really want to use the bottling bucket as a secondary. The secondary is primarily to let the beer clear up. If it's already in the bottling bucket, you'll stir the yeast back up into the beer when you mix the priming sugar. Better to get a carboy and use that for secondary, then rack into the bottling bucket right before you bottle.

Using a secondary is not a necessity, but I like to use it because it frees up my primary fermenter for a new batch of beer. I also get nice clear beer and little bottle sediment.

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