To much head space in Secondary? - Home Brew Forums
Register Now For Free!

Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Beginners Beer Brewing Forum > To much head space in Secondary?

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 10-12-2012, 04:18 PM   #1
MZzzz
Recipes 
 
Mar 2011
Phila, PA
Posts: 17


My IPA concoction has fermented for 3 weeks in the primary. Last night I transferred it to a secondary and added some hop pellets in hopes to add some flavor/aroma over the next week and then move to bottling. Im a bit worried now though because I lost some beer during a blowoff early in the fermentation. As you can see in the picture below I have a good amount of space in the top of the carboy. Should I cut my losses and get this bottled now to avoid any aeration, or do you think its safe to leave for another 5 days? This is my first 5 gallon brew, I'll just be happy if its drinkable.
Click image for larger version

Name:	carboy.jpg
Views:	418
Size:	44.9 KB
ID:	79231  

 
Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-2012, 04:51 PM   #2
unionrdr
Heavyweight homebrewing author & air gun shooter
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
 
unionrdr's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Feb 2011
Sheffield, Ohio
Posts: 38,988
Liked 3706 Times on 3178 Posts


That's def too much head space for 5G of beer. A 5G carboy or better bottle would be the best choice for secondary. Or a 5G food grade pail,which would be easier to work with with it's wider openning.
Keep an eye on it,you may need to bottle if it so much as starts to look off.
__________________
NEW books on amazon/Kindle! Check it out now...
Home Brewing- https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00PBAP6JO
Distopian Sci-Fi- https://www.amazon.com/dp/B00NTA0L6G
New! John Henry- https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01GBV3UXU

 
Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-2012, 05:01 PM   #3
twistr25
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
 
twistr25's Avatar
Recipes 
 
May 2012
Raleigh, NC
Posts: 1,440
Liked 117 Times on 110 Posts


Aeration is not really the concern per say at this point. When you transfer from the primary, the CO2 blanket gets disrupted after fermentation. While in secondary, very little fermentation should be taking place, therefore that CO2 blanket will not reform and oxygen can re-permeate into the beer. Like uniondr said, keep a close eye on it and if you start seeing a film, different than the hop oils, may want to go ahead and bottle it.
__________________
____________________
Primary: N/A
Bottled: N/A
Kegs: Tri-Peppered Saison and Sunset Orange Kolsch
Future:Something new, SMaSH perhaps?
2013 Previous: Sunrise Honey Rye Pale Ale, Dark Skies Black IPA, Sunset Orange Kolsch, All Hallow's Eve Pumpkin Ale, Raining Hops and Dogs IPA

Awards/Recognition
Dark Skies Black IPA - 2nd Place at a local comp. Score of 39 from a BJCP judge

Twistr25 Recipes

GT Keezer Build

 
Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-2012, 05:44 PM   #4
MZzzz
Recipes 
 
Mar 2011
Phila, PA
Posts: 17

Thanks for the input. It is actually a 5g carboy, Im not quite sure how we lost so much. Union-When you say it starts to look "off" do you mean a layer of film as twistr mentioned? If not for film are there any other signs, and would it be to far gone once the film started?

 
Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-2012, 06:34 PM   #5
twistr25
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
 
twistr25's Avatar
Recipes 
 
May 2012
Raleigh, NC
Posts: 1,440
Liked 117 Times on 110 Posts


Shouldn't be too far gone if a film develops, you can always rack from underneath it. Unless you had bad sanitation procedures, I wouldn't expect it to look "off" necessarily, but if oxygen gets into it, the beer will have a stale taste and I think that's the bigger concern.
__________________
____________________
Primary: N/A
Bottled: N/A
Kegs: Tri-Peppered Saison and Sunset Orange Kolsch
Future:Something new, SMaSH perhaps?
2013 Previous: Sunrise Honey Rye Pale Ale, Dark Skies Black IPA, Sunset Orange Kolsch, All Hallow's Eve Pumpkin Ale, Raining Hops and Dogs IPA

Awards/Recognition
Dark Skies Black IPA - 2nd Place at a local comp. Score of 39 from a BJCP judge

Twistr25 Recipes

GT Keezer Build

 
Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-2012, 06:51 PM   #6
WiscoMan
Recipes 
 
Aug 2012
Madison, Wisconsin
Posts: 83
Liked 2 Times on 1 Posts


You'll be fine. CO2 blanket will protect it. I have had beers with twice as much head space as that turn out great.
__________________
On Deck:
Primary: Citra IPA
Secondary: None
Bottle Conditioning:

 
Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-2012, 07:04 PM   #7
twistr25
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
 
twistr25's Avatar
Recipes 
 
May 2012
Raleigh, NC
Posts: 1,440
Liked 117 Times on 110 Posts


Quote:
Originally Posted by WiscoMan View Post
You'll be fine. CO2 blanket will protect it. I have had beers with twice as much head space as that turn out great.
The problem is it won't have that blanket anymore since it is in secondary now. If it were still in primary it wouldn't be a big deal, but after racking it, a lot less likely it will return.
__________________
____________________
Primary: N/A
Bottled: N/A
Kegs: Tri-Peppered Saison and Sunset Orange Kolsch
Future:Something new, SMaSH perhaps?
2013 Previous: Sunrise Honey Rye Pale Ale, Dark Skies Black IPA, Sunset Orange Kolsch, All Hallow's Eve Pumpkin Ale, Raining Hops and Dogs IPA

Awards/Recognition
Dark Skies Black IPA - 2nd Place at a local comp. Score of 39 from a BJCP judge

Twistr25 Recipes

GT Keezer Build

 
Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-2012, 07:09 PM   #8
drewmedic23
Recipes 
 
Aug 2012
Jackson, NJ
Posts: 251
Liked 9 Times on 9 Posts


Did you say that is a 5gal that you are using as the secondary? if so it looks like you are about a gallon short

 
Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-2012, 07:26 PM   #9
sweetcell
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
 
sweetcell's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Jan 2012
Rockville, MD
Posts: 5,145
Liked 981 Times on 710 Posts


for 5 days, you'll be fine. i wouldn't bulk-age it like that for several months, but for less than a week i suspect you'll be fine.
__________________
What hops should I grow? Looking for cheap honey?
- Drinking: ECY20 rye sour, local sour cherry kriek #2, Imperial Chocolate Milk Stout (half on vanilla, half on coconut), sour blond on second-use cherries, English Barleywine
- Aging: English Barleywine on brett, 3726 saison w/ brett x2 (dregs mix & Lochristi), GNO 3724 saison w/ brett mix, cherry mead, acerglyn, and a few other sours...

 
Reply With Quote
Old 10-12-2012, 07:26 PM   #10
MZzzz
Recipes 
 
Mar 2011
Phila, PA
Posts: 17

I think our sanitation was pretty spot on. The biggest issue I had was cooling the wort after the boil. I didn't have enough ice and it took about 40min before I had it cooled down and poured into fermenter. Rookie mistake, I guess next time I need to double up on the ice. A few days into the fermentation the airlock had bubbled over and we lost a good amount of wort. We made a blowoff tube and left that on for about a week until the fermentation settled down.

Bottom line, I just don't want to risk leaving it in the carboy if its going to develop unwanted flavors. And if there is no visible way to tell that sounds like trouble. Maybe I'll just leave it for 3-4 days instead of 7.

 
Reply With Quote
Reply
Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Too much head space in Secondary? mcod Fermentation & Yeast 4 08-20-2011 03:24 AM
First time using secondary and too much head space.. Oaklandgourmand Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 7 02-27-2010 02:09 AM
Head Space in Secondary LovetheHops General Techniques 5 10-23-2009 01:33 PM
head space in secondary.. JUSTBEERPLEASE Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 2 12-22-2008 09:57 PM
Head Space in Secondary BarnabyHooge General Techniques 2 09-02-2008 02:07 PM


Forum Jump