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View Poll Results: Do you use a secondary fermenter?
Always skip a secondary fermenter 45 17.65%
Never skip a secondary fermenter 141 55.29%
Only use a secondary when dry hopping 20 7.84%
Other 49 19.22%
Voters: 255. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 03-18-2007, 09:26 PM   #21
MariaAZ's Avatar
Dec 2006
Phoenix, Arizona
Posts: 169

Good topic! I've only brewed three batches, and put only one in secondary. I'm still too new to have a real opinion on if secondary is good or not, but at this stage of the game clarity of the brew isn't a concern for me; I'm sure the beer tastes just as good cloudy!

That being said, I didn't want to clarify my hefeweizen so I bottled it after 2 weeks in primary. And, it turned out crystal clear. Go figure!
Primary - none
Secondary - none
Bottled - APA, robust porter, hefeweizen

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Old 03-18-2007, 09:49 PM   #22
Dirty blonde
DesertBrew's Avatar
Jan 2005
Twin Cities, MN
Posts: 5,807
Liked 120 Times on 105 Posts

Had to pick other only because of Hefe's. 60+ batches under my belt and my 1st Hefe. Time to rack it to a keg today! All my previous I've used a secondary.

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Old 03-18-2007, 09:54 PM   #23

Do hefe's really need to be cloudy or have yeast in the bottom of the bottle or is that just what a couple craft breweries do and now it is viewed as law?
I say, clear...
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Old 03-18-2007, 10:52 PM   #24
Blender's Avatar
Jan 2006
Santa Cruz, CA.
Posts: 3,106
Liked 8 Times on 5 Posts

I still use a secondary. I do 2 weeks in primary and only one week in secondary plus I try to get it cold. I think it makes my beers clearer.

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Old 03-18-2007, 11:06 PM   #25
loopmd's Avatar
Jan 2005
Omaha, Nebraska
Posts: 657
Liked 7 Times on 4 Posts

I brewed for about 2 years before ponying up the 20 or so bucks for a carboy...after I bought it and used it, I wished I would have done it sooner.


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Old 03-18-2007, 11:46 PM   #26
DG Paul
DG Paul's Avatar
Nov 2006
Downers Grove, IL
Posts: 45

Always use a secondary now. When I did my first batches I didn't, but since I've progressed I like the process of getting the beer out of the primary after 7-10 days and putting it in the secondary for a week or two. It seems to help the flavor of my beer. (I always natural carbonate in bottles or minikegs.)

I've also (knock on wood) never had to deal with a bottle bomb yet. I think the extra time i secondary helps with that, too.

"Chicks dig me, because I rarely wear underwear and when I do it's usually something unusual." John Winger, Stripes

On Deck: AHS Fat Tire, AHS Belgian White
Primary 1: AHS Grand Cru
Primary 2: AHS Boddington's
Secondary 1: Dead Head Draught
Secondary 2: Open
Kegged: AHS Fat Tire Clone / NB Irish Ale / Dead Head Draught / NB Honey Kolsch
Bottles/Mini Kegs: NB Bourbon Oak Porter / Yorkshire Ale / AHS British IPA / Double Chocolate Stout / NB Honey Kolsch

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Old 03-19-2007, 12:19 AM   #27
dibby33's Avatar
Nov 2006
Hobart, Tasmania
Posts: 2,127
Liked 15 Times on 15 Posts

I only started using one a few months ago and the beer is much clearer. As for how it affects the taste I can't say that I have noticed any difference.

s : Ginger Beer, Wheat Beer
Secondary :
: all drunk
Drinking : A Lot.
Next Up : Wheat Beer with grainy things

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Old 03-19-2007, 01:08 AM   #28
Art by David Shrigley
Catfish's Avatar
Jul 2005
Nishinomiya, Japan
Posts: 840
Liked 15 Times on 3 Posts

I chose other.
I bottle and the *only* time I use a secondary is if I am using brett on a beer. Big beers, little beers, aged beers, quick beers; no brett no secondary.
鯰 a.k.a. なまず a.k.a. Catfish

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Old 03-19-2007, 02:01 PM   #29
Apr 2005
Posts: 832
Liked 5 Times on 5 Posts

if I'm doing mid range abv beers - below 7% - then i won't secondary. i hear a lot of people talking about clarity in the secondary. true...this will allow further clarification, however i achieve the same results or better in quicker time by cold crashing.
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Old 03-19-2007, 02:04 PM   #30
10th-Level Beer Nerd
the_bird's Avatar
May 2006
Adams, MA
Posts: 20,922
Liked 535 Times on 430 Posts

I've skipped using secondary once once, but it was a pretty modest-sized brown ale that didn't need to be clear. What I like about using the secondary as much as anything is that I don't have to give a second thought to making sure I get the beer off the yeast. I've gotten busy and not been able to bottle for four weeks after putting the beer in secondary, after sitting in primary for two. I've potentially be looking at autolysis (sp?) issues if I hadn't racked. It just gives me more flexibility, plus freeing up the bucket to brew again.
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