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Old 01-05-2012, 12:01 AM   #1
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Default Some do Some don't...

I've read in books, discussion boards, and even kit instructions different takes on racking their beer to a second carboy. Some see a benefit and transfer after a prescribed timeframe, and others just go straight to bottling. What's your experience?


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Old 01-05-2012, 12:03 AM   #2
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lots of debate on this site.

My way of doing things is not to secondary unless I am adding something later on - like fruit or spices or aging a really big beer over a long period of time.

so most of my beers - even big belgians - don't get a secondary.


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Old 01-05-2012, 02:25 AM   #3
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I almost never go to 2ndary because it's too much work. I did go one time to test dry hopping from the bottom instead of in a bag and saw no difference in taste.
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Old 01-05-2012, 02:26 AM   #4
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I have never done a secondary in my life, although I've only made a few hundred gallons of beer, so I have limited experience.
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Old 01-05-2012, 03:20 AM   #5
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Wow - helluva question to ask here! I say this: if you are going to use a secondary, wait a minimum of two weeks before you move it.

I rack to secondary for a myriad of reasons. The most common reason is space. Additions of fruit, hops, oak..... All are also good reasons to use a 2nd.
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Old 01-05-2012, 03:27 AM   #6
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Secondary was to avoid autolysis. With healthier yeast these days, autolysis is not an issue after only 1 month on top of the yeast cake.

I still use a secondary when I'm using a fining like gelatin, dry hopping, or other flavor contributors such as fruit or oak. I also will throw a brew in secondary after fermentation has slowed if I need the bigger carboy for a new batch.
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Old 01-05-2012, 03:29 AM   #7
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Depends on whether or not the beer needs a secondary, really. Am I clarifying it further, am I using a second yeast strain, am I adding oak, am I racking off fruit, am I racking on fruit, is the beer naturally hazy, do I have a keg free or a carboy, am I dry hopping...there are far to many factors to consider, and there really is no definite answer that encompasses every scenario. As a general answer, you don't really have to use a secondary, but there are a number of benefits to using one, if you are able to.
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Old 01-05-2012, 04:09 AM   #8
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If there is no need for Lagering then really there is no need for a secondary... assuming you're not going to leave it in the primary for more than 6 weeks and that's pushing it. IMO
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Old 01-05-2012, 11:26 AM   #9
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I secondary now, didn't when I started...mainly for dry-hopping but its also easier to clean the primaries
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Old 01-05-2012, 11:40 AM   #10
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I suggest you read THIS thread, it's become the "uber discussion" on this topic.

To Secondary or Not? John Palmer and Jamil Zainasheff Weigh In .

Most everyone on this forum has already ventured their opinions on the subject many many many many many many many many many many times, and most of them have ended up in the above thread. If you really do want opinions, and even some facts and citations, and articles, podcasts and other things on this topic, hit that thread, then make up your own mind.


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