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Old 10-11-2005, 08:55 PM   #1
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Default Smaller than 5 gallon batches?

This question mostly pertains to my future attempts at hard cider, mead and wines, but could also be for brewing beers on something Im not sure I would like.

Is it possible to brew smaller amounts of the above examples just in case I dont like the end result?

For example, im interested in making wine, but not sure what I like. I dont want to get stuck with 5 gallons of a certain type of wine if I can help it.

Ive seen places sell 1 and 3 gallon fermenters. If I used the 3 gallon fermenter for a mead, wine or cider, could I make a batch that lets say is a 2 gallon batch?

That would mean I would have to use 40% of the normal 5 gallon-batch ingredients?

Does this work and do any of you ever try this?

thanks


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Old 10-11-2005, 08:59 PM   #2
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You can make smaller batches. 2 gallons would be 40% of a 5 gallon batch, but use the same amount of the yeast. About the only time I make small batches is when I need to top off the barley wine. I'll make 2-3 gallons and after aging for 3 months, I'll add it to the old batch. After four years, the flavors are getting complicated.


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Old 10-11-2005, 09:17 PM   #3
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Is 2 gallons of a wine/mead/cider safe for primary fermentation in a 3 gallon fermenter carboy? Dont they ferment a little more than normal ales?
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Old 10-12-2005, 06:45 AM   #4
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I do one 5 gallon main brew and 3 2 gallon brews that way I have more variety. All seems to be going fine. It also means I can experiment with the 2g and it's not too bad if it goes wrong.
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Old 10-12-2005, 07:15 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xpoc454
Is 2 gallons of a wine/mead/cider safe for primary fermentation in a 3 gallon fermenter carboy? Dont they ferment a little more than normal ales?

Not more but longer fermentations. Heck, you can do a 2 gallon batch in a 5 gallon carboy for the primary. It's the secondary where you need to reduce the headspace. You want that O2 in the primary.
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Old 10-13-2005, 01:17 AM   #6
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I made a Peach Mead last weekend. With all the ingredients it's at the 6 gal mark on the primary and I didn't even use all my normal 5.5 gals of water.

I had to stop adding water because I was running out of room in the 7 gal bucket.
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Old 10-15-2005, 06:48 PM   #7
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There is no reason that you can't brew any size batch you want.
I am a quality not quantity beer drinker and get bored fairly quickly so some years ago I switched to 3 gallon batches.
I primary in a five gallon carboy then rack to a three or 2.8 gallon for secondary.
One gallon is a good size to experiment on meads and ciders.
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Old 10-16-2005, 12:36 AM   #8
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I've been thinking about doing small batches for a while, but for slightly different reasons.

I have a lot of experiments I want to try. And as with any experimentation, complete and utter failure can be expected from time to time. I'd rather not have to throw away a large batch of Bad Taste Ale.

I just can't justify the little carboys to myself, because I know they won't get used very often. Hmmm... maybe I can find some small food grade plastic buckets and use those for those experiments.

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Old 10-16-2005, 12:48 AM   #9
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That's what I use Walker, at 3 each I have 4 x 2.5 gallon buckets. They have water tight lids, I drill them and stick a bored bung in for the air lock.
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Old 10-16-2005, 12:52 AM   #10
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Quantity, quality.... Can't we have both ? Found a website the other day that lets you adjust batch sizes. Don't know how to do links, so you'll have to write.http//hbd.org/cgi-bin/recipator/recipator? The site has hundreds of recipes. Quite cool. As far as brews gone bad, I've found it's best just to man up and drink it. Don't mention that batch. I was taught that dumping beer was a sin. Dad called it alcohol abuse. Don't be an abuser.


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