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Old 08-22-2011, 12:51 PM   #1
Willbrew
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Should i rack my lager to a secondary after primary fermentation



 
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Old 08-22-2011, 12:59 PM   #2
makomachine
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Yes. Did you do a diacytl rest and insure you are at FG with a hydrometer? If so, getting it into secondary for actual lagering is the next step.


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Old 08-22-2011, 02:49 PM   #3
mlyday
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Yes. Lagering is the only time I use a secondary and the only time I use glass.

 
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Old 08-22-2011, 03:24 PM   #4
944play
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I prefer to lager in stainless steel. The advantages of a keg are manifold.

Built in handles!
Built-in diptube
Unbreakable
You can carbonate in it (naturally or forced)
You can serve from it
Closed transfer possible/easy
Easier to purge w/CO2
No light intrusion
Smaller footprint than bucket/carboy
Same(ish) price as carboy
Bigger aperture than carboy (for dry-hopping, cleaning, etc.)
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Old 08-22-2011, 04:37 PM   #5
mlyday
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I picked up a couple of carboys really cheap from a guy getting a divorce, so I have 4 of them, and my keg are all full right now, but your points are all true.

 
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Old 08-22-2011, 04:37 PM   #6
remilard
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 944play View Post
I prefer to lager in stainless steel. The advantages of a keg are manifold.

Built in handles!
Built-in diptube
Unbreakable
You can carbonate in it (naturally or forced)
You can serve from it
Closed transfer possible/easy
Easier to purge w/CO2
No light intrusion
Smaller footprint than bucket/carboy
Same(ish) price as carboy
Bigger aperture than carboy (for dry-hopping, cleaning, etc.)
If not cheaper than a carboy. Never understood the love of long term aging in carboys.

I guess one downside is that for things you don't want carbonated (mead, wine) you need argon because ultimately you'll end up pressurizing the thing from time to time and c02 will dissolve.

 
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Old 08-22-2011, 08:52 PM   #7
Airborneguy
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I agree, I gave all my glass carboys to my friend who insists on using them. I use Better Bottles to lager in.
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Old 08-22-2011, 08:58 PM   #8
Cpt_Kirks
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The more you move your beer in the open, the greater the chances for an infection.

As mentioned above, I cold crash then go straight from the primary to the keg.

Lagering takes place in the keg, one less movement of the beer.


 
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Old 08-22-2011, 10:34 PM   #9
Willbrew
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Jul 2011
Monroe, Georgia
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Quote:
Originally Posted by makomachine
Yes. Did you do a diacytl rest and insure you are at FG with a hydrometer? If so, getting it into secondary for actual lagering is the next step.
Actually i was asking in advance. I just started the batch last nite and got it in the primary, but thanks for the diacytl input i probably would have forgotten that. This was my first lager. Any other pointers would be fantastic. Thanks for your advice

 
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Old 08-22-2011, 11:55 PM   #10
makomachine
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Willbrew View Post
Actually i was asking in advance. I just started the batch last nite and got it in the primary, but thanks for the diacytl input i probably would have forgotten that. This was my first lager. Any other pointers would be fantastic. Thanks for your advice
Not knowing your yeast and beer specifics I'll suggest what I've done successfully.

1)Hope you pitched a BIG starter - as outlined on Mrmalty.com. Lagers need more yeast than Ales. I pitch a stepped starter from 2L then 4L to get the recommended cell counts off of a single vial of WL yeast. I also pitch cold - getting my wort down to the 49F prior to pitching yeast so I do not have any fermentation at hotter temps that can lead to off flavors in the finished product. This has left me brewing one day and pitching the following morning after everything has cooled in the chest freezer/chamber.

2). Oxygenate well - again, probably late advice.

3). Do you have your OG measured? If so, you want to move to a diacytl rest when you are ~2/3 to 3/4 through fermentation. Some people watch Krausen fall, but that's variable and may be past the point where your yeast are still active. I ferment at 49 and bump it up to 60 for my diacytl rest - you can go higher than that and be ok, I just bump it up 10 degrees or so to help the yeast clean up.

4). Once you reach FG, as confirmed over consecutive days, then I take it down slowly to lagering temps over the course of two days. Others just cold crash, I am in the camp of easier is better and allows the yeast to keep working longer and doesn't shock them. (just my take)

5). Once I hit lagering temps of around 35F, I then rack to keg for long term lagering for as long as I can stand it.

I'm no expert, but this is what I've done on a couple, based on the advice of much more experienced lager veterans and it's worked well for me.


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Kegged: Waldo Lake Amber, Notty as Helles, Vanilla Porter, Sweet Stout (nitro), NB Surly Furious Clone, Petite Saison D'ete, Le Seigle Belge Saison, BM Cream of 3 Crops, Edworts Apfelwein
Bottled: Nada!
In Process: Braggot
Upcoming Brews: Surley Furious Clone, Uintah Wyld

 
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