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5 Gallon Carboy

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jwj

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I finally got all my equipment (most from a local homebrew store) and am ready to brew my first batch. The equipment package came with 2- 5 gallon carboys. The owner seems to think that using a 5 gallon volume (with a blow off hose) for the primary is a better way to go (probably due to the fact that most of the kreuzen will be removed?). The question I have is-- will using a 5 gallons carboy for my primary fermentation result in great volume loss? Would I be better off using a 6 or 6.5 gallon carboy? I would hate to spend more money as my wife is already getting on my a_ _ for the money I spent. me

Thanks

Jim
 
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I would say that a little head room in there would be good. You don't want to blow off absolutely everthing which would be the case if you filled a 5gal carboy with 5gal of beer. Something you could do would be to make 4.5 gal batches. If your with kits then the beer will be just a bit stronger in taste and alcohol but thats favorable depending on your tastes. This would keep you from spending more money on another carboy.
 

brewhead

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6.5 gal carboy with airlock and stopper $21.50

don't eat lunch one day and you'll just about be there
 
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I'd agree with the 6.5 to ferment in. If this hobby catches on with you (it does for many) you'd be buying another 5g carboy later anyway for multi-batch fermenting so it's not money lost.
 

uglygoat

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you can never have too many carboys.

they are great :)

if you end up buying more, get a six gallon one... those can ferment a five gallon batch and double as a secondary.

the big pimpin 6.5 is recommended, but no necisary for primary fermentation :)
 

brewhead

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i honestly don't understand the argument between a 5 gal and a 6.5 gal. in $$ it's like 3 at my local HBS. yea i like saving money too - buy 3 dollars - c'mon.
 

Kephren

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brewhead said:
i honestly don't understand the argument between a 5 gal and a 6.5 gal. in $$ it's like 3 at my local HBS. yea i like saving money too - buy 3 dollars - c'mon.
I agree. The bigger, the better. I don't have any real use for a 5 gallon except for wine making where it is very beneficial to top the wine up to the very top. Surface oxygen isn't much of an issue since I get a small amount of fermentation in my secondary, which will stratify the atmosphere inside the carboy, leaving a blanket of CO2 on top of the beer. The same is not true for wine.
 

Sasquatch

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I think this thread has started to miss the point... point being, beer will brew in a 5 or a 6, or a 6.5... or what the hell ever. Blow out some crud from a 5 gal... are you down to 3 gallons of beer? No. So relax, have a homebrew.

Use what you got, jwj. Are 6.5 gallon carboys going to break your financial back? Nah, just your marriage. So brew a batch or two in your fives, let your wife see what you're up to, and that it's not a passing phase... and then pretty soon you'll have 17 carboys like everyone else here. (key phrase is always "Honey, I'm SAVING money here.")
:D :D :D
 
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jwj

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Thanks guys for your comments. Though I probably would be just fine primary fermenting in a 5 gallon carboy, the consensus seems to think a 6.5 gallon is the better and safer way to go.

Just to let you know, I agree that $20.00 for another carboy is nothing. However last week I bought all my equipment and the bells and whistles that most novices do without (e.g. a new keg system, wart cooler, oxgenator etc...). This set me back over $400.00 and as you can imagine my wife lost it. But hey, I am of the school if you are going to do something, do it right!


Thanks again,

Jim

PS For the record, I did purchase a 6.5 gallon carboy yesterday to ease my fear. It took some sweet talking and little male psychology.
 

andre the giant

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I don't see much benefit to using a 6.5 over a 5 gallon carboy. My batches usually yield right at 5 gallons and the 5 gal carboy has enough headroom for that. I don't mind a little blowoff now and then, and I really don't like the looks of having a carboy only 2/3 full of beer. It makes me sad. I've got two 5 gal and one 6.5 gal carboys. I use them all about equally.

Who cares? Brew with what you've got. If you're going to buy, buy one of each. For the record, my 5 gal carboys cost me $10 each from the local "water cooler place."
 
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jwj said:
I finally got all my equipment (most from a local homebrew store) and am ready to brew my first batch. The equipment package came with 2- 5 gallon carboys. The owner seems to think that using a 5 gallon volume (with a blow off hose) for the primary is a better way to go (probably due to the fact that most of the kreuzen will be removed?). The question I have is-- will using a 5 gallons carboy for my primary fermentation result in great volume loss? Would I be better off using a 6 or 6.5 gallon carboy? I would hate to spend more money as my wife is already getting on my a_ _ for the money I spent. me

Thanks

Jim
What exactly do you define as a Carboy ? The reason that I ask is because in the UK, a carboy was a large round glass bottle ( 10 gallons ) with a narrow neck, packed in a steel basket with straw so that it was shock-resistant, it was used for transporting sulphuric acid or distilled water, I saw many of them while serving in the Royal Air Force in the '60s. They are not used any more and when old ones came on to the market here they were often used as "bottle gardens"
[email protected] (U.K.)
 

Dude

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What exactly do you define as a Carboy ? The reason that I ask is because in the UK, a carboy was a large round glass bottle ( 10 gallons ) with a narrow neck, packed in a steel basket with straw so that it was shock-resistant, it was used for transporting sulphuric acid or distilled water, I saw many of them while serving in the Royal Air Force in the '60s. They are not used any more and when old ones came on to the market here they were often used as "bottle gardens"
[email protected] (U.K.)

I think what you are describing, we probably call a demijohn. But in either case, the carboy we speak of is a large glass container as well. Like this:

 

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