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Old 08-16-2006, 12:51 PM   #1
Todd
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Default Adding water to Secondary?

I brewed the strawberry ale last night. I ran into a problem though I didn't have enough water to make my intended batch. I ended up with only about 5 gallons and I was shooting for 6. What would happen if I added some water in the secondary? My thought process is it would not have any effect on taste. What i mean is it shoud still taste like the original 6 gallon would have.

Has anyone done this? Is there a reason to not do this? I can't find anything in Palmers' book or the Dummies book about adding water.

I figure we add it post boil so why not post Primary?

Oh and fermentation is going strong I have foam in the airlock after 10 hours.


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Old 08-16-2006, 01:12 PM   #2
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What was your OG? Did it come in higher than you had expected (because of the lesser volume)? I don't imagine it will be a problem, but you will, of course, end up with a more watered-down beer than what you would have had without adding water (there's a blinding flash of the obvious). Unless your OG reading was pretty high, I'd be inclined, personally, to leave it be.


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Old 08-16-2006, 01:26 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by the_bird
What was your OG? Did it come in higher than you had expected (because of the lesser volume)? I don't imagine it will be a problem, but you will, of course, end up with a more watered-down beer than what you would have had without adding water (there's a blinding flash of the obvious). Unless your OG reading was pretty high, I'd be inclined, personally, to leave it be.
Honestly I didn't take a reading, I used 6# of extra light LME and 1# of crystal 20L steeped. I used a belgian yeast and my goal was a fairly light bodied and very fruity beer. I was orginally shooting for about 35-40 og. This was just something I put together so I was kind of winging it. 6# in 6 gallons should give me about 1.036 OG right? In 5 gallons it is 1.043, how much of a difference are we looking at? I think what I will do is when I transfer to secondary I'll just be sure I have at least 5 total gallons in the carboy. If not I'll top off with a bit of water.

I also used 8 pounds of strawberries. Would it be a good idea to shake up the primary after a couple days to get the berries mixed up again?
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Old 08-16-2006, 01:33 PM   #4
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No, you can't aerate at this point. I don't think you really need to, I did a raspberry ale with a lot fewer berries than that and had no problems getting flavor from them without shaking or stirring. The only time to aerate is when the wort is cooled and before it is fermented, i.e. on its way into the primary and immediately after.
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Old 08-16-2006, 01:47 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by the_bird
No, you can't aerate at this point. I don't think you really need to, I did a raspberry ale with a lot fewer berries than that and had no problems getting flavor from them without shaking or stirring. The only time to aerate is when the wort is cooled and before it is fermented, i.e. on its way into the primary and immediately after.
I was thinking since the primary is sealed and currently filled to the top with krausen that there wasn't any o2 left in it? Isn't the first thing that happens the yeast use all the o2 in the wort, then the co2 should push out the o2 from the head space.

I'll just let it sit, too many thoughts and ideas running through my head.
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Old 08-16-2006, 01:54 PM   #6
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Could be, likely is the case, but I don't think you really NEED to shake the primary for your flavors to come out in full. Personally, I wouldn't risk it.
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Old 08-16-2006, 01:55 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Todd
I was thinking since the primary is sealed and currently filled to the top with krausen that there wasn't any o2 left in it? Isn't the first thing that happens the yeast use all the o2 in the wort, then the co2 should push out the o2 from the head space.
Logically, you are correct. I wouldn't bother though, the yeast know where to find those berries.
If you really must add water to your secondary, boil it for anout 10 minutes to get all the oxygen out of it and let it cool. You will be increasing your risk of infection, but not too much if you're really careful. I'd leave it as is, otherwise it'll be pretty watery, unless of course that's what you were after...


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