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1 or 2 carboys?

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SeeGeeBee

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I'm in the process of getting my gear together to brew and bottle my first batch of beer. After reviewing available starter kits, I've decided to go with midwest. I am considering two of their packages. First is the beginner and the second is the intermediate found here Compare All Kits :: Midwest Supplies Homebrewing and Winemaking Supplies

The only difference I can see other than the $40 is the addition of a second glass carboy, two thermometers and a funnel. For a beginner, what would be the advantage of a second carboy? My initial plan is to have the fermenting bucket and use the carboy for secondary. What is the other carboy for...another batch of beer?
 

brewmasterpa

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its for the primary fermenter. with the dual glass carboy setup, you do both primary and secondary fermentation. the only thing is that with the 5-gallon carboy, you have to have a blowoff tube setup for primary fermentation or youll have a new color paint in your closet.
 

SumnerH

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I'd go for a PET carboy (like the Better Bottles on that page) rather than glass, even if it were the same price or slightly more expensive--that it's cheaper is just another reason to do it.

2 carboys lets you have 2 beers in secondary. No real advantage to doing that out of the gate rather than picking up another carboy ($25 or so for a PET one) later, unless you're planning on brewing every weekend for a bit to fill up your pipeline.

In a pinch you can play a bit of musical chairs--I have a primary bucket, a bottling bucket, and a 5 gallon carboy for secondary. I bottled one batch and brewed 2 this weekend. One done in secondary, brew one into primary bucket, rack the done one to bottling bucket, bottle it, brew one into bottling bucket (not ideal but passable) which will be racked into the carboy when it's ready. Having an extra primary bucket and an extra carboy would let me brew more often without abusing the bottling bucket (which is kind of tempting fate since the spigot's a lot more likely to harbor nasties than a regular smooth bucket is).

Bucket for primary + carboy for secondary is a perfectly fine plan.
 

brewmasterpa

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i concur, bucket primary, carboy secondary. ive got 3 of each so technically i can have 6 batches going at once. a little musical batches of beer is necessary from time to time when i get stupid and think i can do 6 at once. ha!
 

SumnerH

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its for the primary fermenter. with the dual glass carboy setup, you do both primary and secondary fermentation. the only thing is that with the 5-gallon carboy, you have to have a blowoff tube setup for primary fermentation or youll have a new color paint in your closet.
Usually people go with a 6 gallon carboy if they're doing primary in a carboy, no? Still needs a blowoff tube for the same reason, but you'll lose less than cramming it into a 5-gal.
 
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