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Home Brew Forums > Wine, Mead, Cider, Sake & Soda > Cider Forum > 6 1/2 gallon Carboy? Can someone help?
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Old 12-02-2012, 03:33 AM   #1
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I have a carboy and last time when I followed the directions for a 5 gallon recipe I found that I came up with a lot of headspace...

Turns out the 5 gallon carboy I ordered is not a 5 gallon carboy, I think it could be a six but then I see it does not come up to the crest? I have a picture of the carboy at 6 gallons & at 6 1/2 gallons, maybe you guys can tell me if I should fill it with 6 1/2 gallons of juice or stick with six?

At 6 gallons



At 6 1/2 gallons


I am guessing I should fill it to 6 1/2 gallons, correct?


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Old 12-02-2012, 03:37 AM   #2
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Top it off to 6.5 gal. Worse thing is that you have more to drink.


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Old 12-02-2012, 03:39 AM   #3
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Default depends

the 6.5 gallon size is usually used as a fermenter...the extra 1.5 gallons provides head space for the krausen.

edit...just noticed this was in the cider forum
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Old 12-02-2012, 03:45 AM   #4
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If it were beer you would want the headspace.. Cider is low in protein, so it doesn't blow off nearly to the extent as beer. I would probably put 5 1/2 gallons to start, and then after the fermentation dies down you could too off with juice again to take care of the headspace. What are you using for juice?
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Old 12-02-2012, 03:46 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pwkblue
the 6.5 gallon size is usually used as a fermenter...the extra 1.5 gallons provides head space for the krausen.
I had a pretty violent fermentation last time.
I used EC1118 And 5 cups of brown sugar to an already very sugary juice And I still had foam and stuff coming out of the top....

Okay, rethinking this maybe I should only add 6 gallons of juice?

What would you guys do if you were me?
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Old 12-02-2012, 03:49 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bottlebomber
What are you using for juice?

6 gallons of fresh pressed apple From this apple orchard up in a place called Watsonville near where I live. They say all they have done is ran it through ultraviolet light...

I'm also going to do 3 gallons of a pear apple combination
Two gallons pear and one gallon apple

....

But I had a pretty violent fermentation on my first one using EC1118

I was going to fill the carboy to 6 1/2 gallons but now I'm thinking I should only fill it to six?
What do you think bomber?
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Old 12-02-2012, 03:55 AM   #7
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Default some headspace

my last cider used peaked at about 15% headspace, but I was using a belgian blend yeast..

5.5 gallons in a 6.5 gallon carboy seems safe...6 gallons might be pushing it
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Old 12-02-2012, 06:57 AM   #8
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If your using ec-1118 it tends to foam/krausen quite a bit (even when used for carbing root beer). I'd do 5.25 - 5.5 to get 5 gallons finished. That's what I do in my 6.5 gallon carboy. Something like montrachet yeast that's known for not foaming you could do more. You will see in the apfelwine (i can never spell it) threads, that many people do 6 or more gallons in a carboy that size with apple juice/sugar and montrachet wine yeast because they get maybe 1/2 inch of foam at the most. So it really depends on the what the fermentables are and the type of yeast.

In commercial environments they actually often leave much more room then that. 25-45% of the total volume is head space in primary fermentation. I think as the total volume goes up, the relative amount of head space needed actually gets higher. ie 10% is fine for 5 gallons but 1 bbl needs 40% head space. But its important to note your not going to hurt anything either way (unless you are only using 1/6 of the space or something). It will form a protective co2 blanket soon after yeast activity begins that will remain until racking it out of the primary, and if you don't have enough space you can always use a blow off tube (though in my experience you can lose a lot of volume to blow off).
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Old 12-02-2012, 08:33 AM   #9
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The first pic is an Apple Mango Banana brew just after the yeast really kicked on. It's in a 6 ish gallon carboy. I used Nottingham yeast on this one. The foam didn't rise past where it is in this pic. The OG for this one was 1085.

The second pic is an Apple / Berry brew. I used EC-1118 in this one and had no problem with the headspace. Krausen didn't rise above the level in the pic (the crud on top was solids from the berry juice I used), OG 1070. Same carboy as the first pic.

The Apple Mango Banana was 24 litres (6 gallons), the Apple Berry was 23 litres (5.75 gallons).

Both brews went nuts with the bubbling!!! Machine gun airlock...


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