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Old 02-08-2013, 04:53 AM   #1
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Default Racking and Bottle Conditioning Lagers

I'm making MoreBeer's Doppel Bock and have looked all over, only to find precious little information about how to actually deal with the lagering. I have a nice fermentation controller that's been handling the temperature of the primary, but I'm a bit at a loss on what to do now.

Lagers botttom ferment, so if I rack to a secondary am I leaving all of my active yeast behind? If I then lager at a low temperature in the secondary does my yeast crash out? If so, then what happens when I prime with sugar and bottle? Are there still active yeasts there to create my carbonation? If I add another yeast strain on top of the WLP 833 with which I fermented (e.g. US-05) am I in danger of restarting the fermentation and creating bottle bombs?

Please help with advice, even pointers to good references. Google hasn't been as helpful at this one as I'd like.

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Old 02-08-2013, 07:54 AM   #2
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you don't want to rack until fermentation is totally completely 100% done, as well as a diacetyl rest if you are doing one, then cool the beer back down and rack in to whatever vessel you will lager in, a purged keg is my vessel of choice, and then chill that sucker as close as you can to 0C for x weeks. for a big beer like yours it will need time. i have never bottle carbed a lager but some people add back a little bit of yeast at bottling. i'm sure you can easily find info on how much to add back. adding yeast isn't going to magically ferment your fully fermented beer further, unless you add brett or something super attenuative that can eat complex sugars. us05 can't. sorry no references, these are just standard procedures
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Old 02-08-2013, 09:06 AM   #3
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I have bottled carbed lagers, I move to secondary after fermentation is over, leave at 35F for 4 weeks usually, never had an issue with carbing but does take a hair bit longer it seems. It doesn't take very many yeast at all to carb a beer. Anyway, you will have some leftover yeast even after secondary, you could always mix a little bit of it in your bottling bucket if it would help you sleep at night.
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