I have made a few batches of extract beer kits, and it seems that over on the beer forums, the general consesus is that a long primary is just as good as racking it to a secondary, unless you're dry-hopping or something...
SWMBO wanted to give wine a try, so we bought a box-kit of ingredients, and an 8 gallon primary. I have a 5 gallon carboy for beer, but if it's at all posssible, I would like to avoid buying a 6.5 secondary for the wine. Here are the instructions that came with the kit:
1) Add a half gallon of hot water to pirmary. Stir Bentonite into water.
2) Pour bag #1 of juice into primary, add a half gallon of warm water to the bag to rinse any remaining juice, and add that to the primary also.
3) Top off to 6 gallon mark with lukewarm water and stir
4) OG should be 1.048-1.052 (ours was 1.042 somehow)
5) Sprinkle yeast on top without stirring when temps are between 65-75*F
6) Fermentation should start in 24-48 hours.
This is where we are right now. We added the yeast last evening, and I'm now on the fence as to how to proceed. If you have the patience, please read the rest of these instructions and advise how to proceed. Thanks!
After 5-7 days in primary, and if SG is below 1.010, rack to 6.5 gallon carboy and leave it between 65-75* for 10 more days.
Stabilizing and Fining:
1) If, after the 10 days in the carboy, the SG is .996 or less, verify the stable gravity by checking again the next day. If unchanged, proceed.
-Do not rack the wine before stabilizing and fining. This kit requires the sediment to be stirred back into suspension. Racking the wine off the sediment prior to fining may permanently prevent clearing. Please be sure to stir all of the sediment up from the bottom.
-Vigorous stirring is required during this stage. Without vigorous stirring, gas in the wine will prevent clearing. At each stirring, whip the wine until it stops foaming.
2) Dissolve contents of metabisulphite and sorbate in 1/2 cup of lukewarm water. Add to carboy and stir vigorously for 2 minutes to disperse the stabilizers and drive off CO2. Again, be sure to stir up the yeast sediment from the bottom of the carboy.
3) To ensure room in your carboy for the contents of the f-pack, remove one liter of wine. Reserve this for topping up the carboy.
4) Shake the F-pack bag. Carefully remove the cap and gently pour contents into the carboy. Stir vigorously for 60 seconds. The SG will be between 1.010 and 1.018, depending on the style of the kit
5) Shake contents of chitosan and pour into carboy. stir for 2 minutes to drive off CO2.
6) Top up carboy to within 2" of the bottom of the bung with reserved wine from the F-pack addition. Add cool water if necessary. Add bung and airlock and leave for 14 days.
7) After 14 days, check for clarity by drawing a small sample and examining it in good light. If not completely clear, leave for 7 more days. Do not bottle cloudy wine.
I want to make sure that this turns out good so that SWMBO continues to enjoy the hobby, so I guess we should just buy another carboy and follow the directions, but I just want to justification.