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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Beginners Beer Brewing Forum > Thanks for all the info, think my first time went well!
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Old 05-20-2012, 02:49 PM   #1
FATC1TY
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Default Thanks for all the info, think my first time went well!

So I'm just getting into HB. I'm a huge beer geek and love most all styles save for lambics/sours.

Anyways, I got all the beginner stuff recently, and had some stuff left over from maybe 10 years ago when my father was sort of into home brew. 2 huge glass carboys, and funnels, and brushes, and a boat load of bottles and caps were found in the basement. I picked up some buckets, airlocks, stoppers, hydrometers, cappers and all the other goodies from my LHBS, and decided to do a imperial IPA extract/specialty grain kit to break my home brewing virginity.

The local guy said he would have talked me out of it because of the need to cool it down quickly, but I had already bought a wort chiller as well!!

Anyways, followed the directions... sort of.. Steeped grains like I was suppose to, but decided to do just about a full boil, minus 1 gallon roughly, so around 4 gallon boil.

Did it outside on my propane burner, and everything went well. I dropped back around a 1/4 oz of the bittering hops due to reading that a fuller boil, will yield higher IBU's here, so that was nice to know. Said it should be around 65-70 IBU's which is pretty weak for a hophead like me, so it calculated out close to 90-95 for what I was doing. Perfect!

Boiled it up, kept all my temps within 5 degrees of where they should have been. Cooled the 4 gallons of wort down in around 15 minutes to roughly 82* F, and got it stirred up really well. Transferred to my bucket, and added really cold bottled spring water to bring me up to my 5 gallons total, as well as dropping my temp to 68* F, perfect for my yeast pitch. Blended it really, really well, and took a reading, got 1.082 OG, which was right in the middle of where it should have been. I was thrilled.

Pitched the yeast, stirred it up, and put it in my spare bathroom tub. It's roughly 70/72 in there, and steady. Airlock is bubbling away this morning, so hope all was well.

I'm a fiend for sanitizing everything, and have read "How to Brew" up and down. Glad I took the jump to steeping grain and a full boil extract for my first time. I think after a few more of these, I'll go fill grain once I get a gist of what equipment I need to invest in!

Thanks for all the help on these forums guys.


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Old 05-20-2012, 02:56 PM   #2
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Oh, and I'm planning on moving to secondary carboy. Decent idea, or skip it for first extract brew? I didn't strain anything when I pouring, planning to rack it off the bucket to my glass carboy anyways to help clear it up.

Can I rack it over after I see a decrease in bubbles from the airlock, check the gravity, and rack it to see if it continues to drop? What the best process for racking to secondary?


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Old 05-20-2012, 03:18 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by FATC1TY View Post
Oh, and I'm planning on moving to secondary carboy. Decent idea, or skip it for first extract brew? I didn't strain anything when I pouring, planning to rack it off the bucket to my glass carboy anyways to help clear it up.

Can I rack it over after I see a decrease in bubbles from the airlock, check the gravity, and rack it to see if it continues to drop? What the best process for racking to secondary?
If you want to use a secondary, then wait for the fermentation to stop completely. 2to 3 weeks is a good guideline. Then use an "auto siphon" (available for under $20 at the LHBS) to move the beer from one container to the other. Position the bottom of the siphon about one inch off the bottom of the fermenter to minimize the amount of yeast and sediment that gets moved with the beer. Make sure to get a long enough hose for the siphon so that it reaches all the way to the bottom of the secondary Carboy. This will prevent splashing and aeration. Remember that any air added to the beer AFTER fermrntation can cause oxidation and make the beer go stale faster. This is why many people here prefer long primaries with no secondary.
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Old 05-20-2012, 03:30 PM   #4
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Thanks for the info. I already have an auto siphon, and plenty of hose for it.

Is there any real reason for me to do the secondary if I'm going to wait until fermentation is complete anyways at this point? I could see the reasoning for opening up my fermentation bucket for another batch, but I've got a glass one as well.

I guess I'm asking, what benefit do I have to move it to secondary, instead of bottling it straight from my primary?
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Old 05-20-2012, 04:46 PM   #5
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Thanks for the info. I already have an auto siphon, and plenty of hose for it.

Is there any real reason for me to do the secondary if I'm going to wait until fermentation is complete anyways at this point? I could see the reasoning for opening up my fermentation bucket for another batch, but I've got a glass one as well.

I guess I'm asking, what benefit do I have to move it to secondary, instead of bottling it straight from my primary?
This is a pretty hotly debated question with many arguments on both sides. Generally there is no NEED for secondary unless you are dry hopping, adding oak or fruit. Some people (like me!) Think that a secondary results in a clearer finished beer, although many users here report extremely clear beer using long primaries with NO secondary. Truthfully, it probably does not make a tremendous difference either way. It is a matter of what works for you and what you are comfortable with.


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