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Old 02-26-2013, 03:53 PM   #1
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Default When to transfer to secondary?

I am brewing my first batch and I am using a kit. It is a Double IPA.

The directions say to transfer it after 5-7days, when the fermenting slows but nit to wait until it stops. How do I know when it has slowed enough to transfer?



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Old 02-26-2013, 04:01 PM   #2
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There will be plenty who say to avoid it all together and leave it in the primary for 3 weeks (or more) and then bottle or keg it. But... I'm not one of them.

I like using a secondary to get the beer off the hops and yeast trub.. That's just me..

If you must - and expect that a lot of people will tell you not to - do it while there is still active airlock activity (5 to 7 days is fine. Then wait another 2 weeks in secondary before you bottle. Just understand that there are risks involved in the transfer - as in there's one more opportunity to infect the beer and one more opportunity to expose it to excessive oxygen. If it is done with a lot of attention to detail it will yield some pretty clean results and possibly better flavor.

But if you search for "when to secondary" you're going to find many, many pages and opinions.. The choice will ultimately be yours.

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Old 02-26-2013, 04:03 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brewinchef_fairfax
There will be plenty who say to avoid it all together and leave it in the primary for 3 weeks (or more) and then bottle or keg it. But... I'm not one of them.

I like using a secondary to get the beer off the hops and yeast trub.. That's just me..

If you must - and expect that a lot of people will tell you not to - do it while there is still active airlock activity (5 to 7 days is fine. Then wait another 2 weeks in secondary before you bottle. Just understand that there are risks involved in the transfer - as in there's one more opportunity to infect the beer and one more opportunity to expose it to excessive oxygen. If it is done with a lot of attention to detail it will yield some pretty clean results and possibly better flavor.

But if you search for "when to secondary" you're going to find many, many pages and opinions.. The choice will ultimately be yours.
Thank you!! I was reading through a few other threads now.

You have answered my question.
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Old 02-26-2013, 04:44 PM   #4
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If you ask a question of 10 brewers, you'll get 12 answers...

I really don't understand the instruction not to wait for fermentation to finish. You'll be moving the beer off the bulk of the yeast, before it's finished its job. If you really want to secondary, wait until you reach FG. Otherwise, you'll be starting a thread titled "Why is my FG so high?"

But then, I never secondary, so take it with a grain of salt.

Cheers!

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Old 02-26-2013, 04:56 PM   #5
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The first time I brewed, I transferred as soon as fermentation stopped (about 7 days). On my next batch I gave it another week and I got better results, it was an identical kit

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Old 02-26-2013, 05:13 PM   #6
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It's normal proceedure to wait til FG is reached before racking. Otherwise, the yeast can stall from shocking. Secondary is just a bright tank anyway. No need to hurry it off the yeast at our level of brewing. Autolysis is a thing of the past,by & large. Patience will take you further.

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Old 02-26-2013, 05:33 PM   #7
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Obviously it's a trade-off and when to rack is going to be an opinion based on experience or consensus. There is no hard and fast rule for racking to secondary, it's more of a continuum. Racking before FG is reached will ensure that it sits on the yeast long enough to properly ferment and the yeast can clean up after itself, however it will not be producing CO2 as much so after transfer, the headspace will be O2 and there is a larger potential for oxidation. Racking slightly before FG ensures that CO2 is still being produced and will displace the O2 in the headspace after transfer but runs the risk of less than optimal attenuation from pulling it off the majority of the yeast too soon. Whenever you decide to transfer, if you even do, comes down to how you view these factors as important to you and what you are trying to achieve.

That said, I think a majority of us tend to leave it in primary until it is at FG, no need to hurry it.

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Old 02-26-2013, 06:18 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by frazier View Post
I really don't understand the instruction not to wait for fermentation to finish...
It's so that the fermentation will still have enough energy to expel the 02 in the head-space of the secondary. No other reason.
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