Secondary With A Larger? - Home Brew Forums
Register Now For Free!

Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Fermentation & Yeast > Secondary With A Larger?

Thread Tools
Old 10-12-2012, 01:11 PM   #1
Oct 2011
East Providence, Rhode Island
Posts: 43
Liked 2 Times on 2 Posts

So on my last two batches of ale I decided to take the advice of countless members of HBT and not do a secondary fermentation, and even after all of my concerns things turned out well. well Im about to do my first larger hopefully a pilsner (if I can find a simple recipe ) Any way I was wondering if the same rule would apply, because of the longer fermentation period.

Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-2012, 01:21 PM   #2
kh54s10's Avatar
Aug 2011
Tiverton, Rhode Island
Posts: 11,675
Liked 1874 Times on 1536 Posts

I assume you are talking about a Lager.

It is my understanding, (I have not done one yet because I do not have good temperature control) that because there is a long conditioning period at controlled temperatures a secondary is necessary.

Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-2012, 02:07 PM   #3

I would definitely use a secondary for a pilsner, after ensuring the beer has been on the yeast long enough to get rid of any diacetyl. Here's what I would do:

(1) pitch 1.5 million cells per ml of wort per degree Plato to ferment at between 45 and 50 degrees (depending on the yeast strain).

(2) hold the fermentation temperature until you are something like 8 points above expected FG: 1.020 is a good rule of thumb. You can't just say "I'm going to ferment it for ___ days." It will depend on how fermentation progresses.

(3) allow the temperature to rise to somewhere over 60 degrees. I usually just go to room temperature. This is your "diacetyl rest" that allows fermentation to finish off strong, and helps prevent the formation of diacetyl in your beer (slick, oily mouthfeel with a buttery flavour). A d-rest is not always necessary, in fact it is not often necessary. But I always do one; it costs you nothing and can save you a lot of trouble. I especially recommend them for new lager brewers, who are more likely to underpitch, which is one of the main causes of diacetyl.

(4) once you have reached FG, rack your beer into a secondary and take it down to lagering temperatures. I usually just crash it; some poeple take it down 3-5 degrees per day but if fermentation is complete it probably doesn't matter. Lager it as cold as you can for as long as you can stand. It can be lagered in a keg (pressurized or not) or carboy. Extended storage at cold temperatures will help your beer develop the crispness that partially characterizes lagers. Flaws also tend to smooth out over time.

Good luck!
2012 Canadian Brewer of the Year
2013 Canadian Brewer of the Year
2015 Canadian Brewer of the Year


Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-2012, 02:16 PM   #4
Feb 2011
Reading, Massachusetts
Posts: 181
Liked 9 Times on 7 Posts

A good lager is tough to make. I'm a proponent of no secondary but lagers are different, especially light lagers. This is what I do for my lagers. Some will say I'm over doing it but I must say I make very clean lagers.

After I put my wort into the carboy I put it in the fridge to cool it down to 3 or 4 degrees below what I want to ferment at. This could take until the next day for this to happen. There will be cold break/trub at the bottom of the carboy. I then rack the beer off that initial trub to another carboy and then pitch my yeast. Sanitization is key! After fermentation is complete I then rack the beer into secondary. I use a smaller carboy for secondary so there is little headspace. I leave it there for a week and then cold crash. I rack that into a keg and carbonate.

My lagers are very clean and clear. I only do this for light lagers. Any dark lagers or any ale only goes into a primary.

Reply With Quote
Thread Tools

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
dark larger leewilliams88 General Beer Discussion 5 02-01-2012 06:40 PM
Larger bottles jdburnett Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 10 01-27-2012 11:03 PM
Larger fermenter than necessary Svenhook Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 1 11-10-2011 01:43 PM
Jet burners, do NG need larger s pdilley Equipment/Sanitation 4 08-05-2009 03:08 PM
Looking for a larger style Ale (P/M) Fuzzyfella Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 2 03-16-2009 04:03 PM

Forum Jump