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Old 08-17-2007, 12:17 AM   #1
mrg247
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Default Question about yeast sediment.

My first batch is currently fermenting in my carboy(been 1 day). I understand that the yeast will eventually settle to the bottom. After 2 weeks or so I have to prime it and whatnot. Do I mix the settled yeast back into the mix? Do i discard of it? What do I do with it? I can't seem to find those detailed instructions.

But now that I think of it, will the primer reactivate the settled yeast?

newbie here.


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Old 08-17-2007, 12:35 AM   #2
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Do you have another bucket or carboy?

If so, you need to syphon off the beer into the other container leaving the trub (yeasties and other stuff) in the original carboy. This yeast cake can either be reused or simply chucked out (I give mine to my lemon tree and it likes it!)

Once the beer has been racked (syphoned) off into the other vessel you can go two ways.
1) Use it as a secondary (helps clear the beer)
2) Use it as a bottling bucket. If you do this put the primer in prior to the beer and it will mix it in nicely.

1 week primary, 2 weeks secondary, 3 weeks in bottle is common.
Be careful not to splash the beer when racking as this will introduce air into the mix which can cause off-flavours.

...does this make sense - it is early friday morning here for me!


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Old 08-17-2007, 01:06 AM   #3
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dibby33

elaborate

>1) Use it as a secondary (helps clear the beer)

then do what, bottle (with primer) I assume?

>2) Use it as a bottling bucket. If you do this put the primer in prior to the beer and it will mix it in nicely.

you lost me on this one, how do you go about bottling using this approach
I'm on my first batch too, just looking for info

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Old 08-17-2007, 01:18 AM   #4
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A secondary is a bit of a misnomer, since no fermenting is actually taking place. After the beer is finished fermenting, you can rack it into a second carboy to take it off the trub. It can then stay in this "secondary" to clear and condition for as long as you'd like, usually two weeks is good.

More "stuff" will settle out and should NOT be mixed in- the whole point of this clearing tank is to allow the beer to clear up a bit and the trub to settle.

You can then rack into a bottling bucket- a bucket with a spigot. You boil 2 cups of water with 4-5 ounces of corn sugar and mix that thoroughly and cool. When it's cool, add it into the sanitized bottling bucket and then siphon your beer into it with the tip under the surface of the liquid in the bucket, as to not splash. If you put it at an angle, the beer will swirl around and mix in the priming sugar with the beer. Then, put your bottling wand into the spigot and fill each bottle. Here's the best place for this info: http://howtobrew.com/section1/chapter11.html

It's actually easier than it sounds!
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Old 08-17-2007, 01:19 AM   #5
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Normal process is :
1 week in primary vessel
2 weeks in secondary vessel
3 weeks in bottle.

Step 1 : Make beer. Primary fermentation takes place.
Step 2 : Beer to racked to another vessel. This is refered to as a secondary.
Step 3 : Priming sugar placed in empty vessel. Beer racked from secondary into here. Ensure sugar mixed in - but no splashing of course. Bottled straight away from this vessel.
Step 4 : Bottles placed somewhere warm for a few days. This will kick in the secondary fermentation and will allow the beer to become carbonated.


Note that in the secondary vessel there will be little no fermination, this stage is really just to clear the beer and allow it to mature a little.

...have had coffees now
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Old 08-17-2007, 01:22 AM   #6
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Nope leave all the crap that's there in there before you bottle. You can reuse it but I wouldn't worry about that too much if it's your first batch. As stated it does make good fertiliser.

When you prime the batch there'll be enough yeast left in the beer to create that extra bit of CO2 you need.

EDIT: Ooops I was a little slow of the mark hehe.

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Old 08-17-2007, 06:49 AM   #7
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I have it fermenting in my glass carboy. Once it is done I will transfer it to my other plastic carboy that has a nozzle to fill the bottles with.

What I now understand(thanks to all your help, everyone) is that I will leave the bottom yeast alone. But when the siphoning gets to the bottom, how do I avoid the sitting yeast? I am visioning myself just skimming above it.

Thanks. btw, it is a light american ale.

Tell me how it looks 1.2 days into fermenting:


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Old 08-17-2007, 11:26 AM   #8
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It looks great! Nice picture.

Exactly what you said- skim off the beer just above the sludge. Sometimes I put the carboy on the counter early in the day, then sanitize the bottles. By then, all the trub is settled down and I just rack off of it. You'll lose a bit of beer in the process but not much and it's even less if you tilt the carboy with a book before starting. They even sell carboy wedges just for this purpose.

Racking canes/auto siphons have a black cap on the bottom to help not suck up trub. I still lift mine just above it though.
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Old 08-17-2007, 08:05 PM   #9
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You can't see them, but there's plenty of yeast still in suspension during bottling, after 3 weeks in the first two stages, to still turn that priming sugar into carbonation.

only really long fermentations, or highly flocculent yeast could require a little yeast addition at bottling time. (not uncommon for lagers with a long cold aging prior to bottling.


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