Fear of Oxidation

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MileHighHops

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I currently have my second ever batch (both 1st and 2nd were IPAs) bottle conditioning. I bottled last Saturday (5 days ago) so I'm still impatiently waiting to see if everything turned out okay. (11 days primary, 11 days secondary w/ dry hop, 5 days and counting in bottle).

So here's the problem, when racking to secondary and later to bottling bucket I wasn't concerned with limiting the splasing of the beer and there were times that air bubbles got into my siphon. It wasn't until after the fact that I realized those are both bad things and I should have been paying careful attention to limiting the amount of oxygen that comes in contact with my post-fermented beer.

The one thing I have going for me is my first batch turned out great, and I'm sure I probably splashed the hell out of that beer too. I also sanitized everything from the first batch in the bathtub (cleaned it thoroughly, but still dumb nonetheless) and just used that powder sanitizer, no star san. I even used my mouth when siphoning and accidentally had beer spill from my mouth into bottling bucket...and everything was still fine! I was much more diligent in my sanitizing practices my second time around, but didn't learn of oxidation precautions until after the fact.

So, should I worry about this batch having off flavors due to oxidation?
 

aggiejay06

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Oxidation takes a while to develop...so just brew another batch whilst you consume this one.
 

brew2enjoy

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I have never been able to siphon without seeing bubbles in the line. If somebody has a way to eliminate that i would like to hear it. Im thinking its not possible to completely eliminate bubbles
 

ThePearsonFam

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no, don't worry.... just drink faster...

I've noticed that I get tiny bubbles in my autosiphon too. I stopped them from happening by holding the siphon tube (runs down the middle) off the top of the outer tube (can you picture that?). The bend would normally sit right down on top of the outer tube....

I've also heard (but I've not verified) that the bend causes a low pressure region (that part I know to be true) that allows the beer to bubble due to CO2 coming out of solution in the low-pressure bend. That certainly SEEMS reasonable. If it is CO2 coming out of solution, then you have no worry about it introducing O2 into your beer.
 

KevinW

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autosiphon for me. I love it!!

Don't worry about the oxygenation in your beer. If you were doing an Imperial IPA or a barleywine that would need months of conditioning you may have some concern. I have splashed, bubbled, and sloshed my beers post-ferment quite a bit and never had issues!

No sanitizer and using your mouth to start the siphon is my worry!! StarSan is really great and easy to use and of course Iodophor is good too. I do not recommend bleach but a lot of homebrewers use bleach and do great with it!

If you don't use sanitizer at first you may get away with it but over time you can build up "stuff" on your equipment that can possibly infect your beers so you may want to consider getting some sort of sanitizer but that is just my opinion!!

Good luck and keep on brewing!
 

joetothemo

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The best beer I have made in my limited experience was my second batch. I did not know what this "oxidation" was at that point.

Here is the list of foolish things I did:

-Splashed the steaming hot wort into my fermenter with vigor (This is a "NO!" says John Palmer)
-Stuck my face in the fermenter every few days to smell the glorious hops (probably disturbing the CO2 blanket).
-Noisily siphoned my beer from primary to secondary.
-Splashed the hell out of the beer in my secondary a few days later by shoving 2 hop socks full of Cascade through the neck.
-When the hops wouldn't sink, I poked them with a sanitized stir rod over and over again to submerge them...disturbing the beer in my carboy in countless ways.
-Scared that the half-soaked floating socks were an issue, I pulled them up into the neck of the fermenter (splashing all along) and snipped them with scissors...thus releasing their contents splashing back into the beer.
-Noticed bubbles in my bottling wand and didn't do anything to correct them...not knowing that O2 was potentially dangerous.

Obviously, these are not "best practices." But if I was able to avoid oxidation... just maybe you will too.

What do they say? RDWHAHB
Also, never do the things I just mentioned. Sheesh. I cringe thinking about that.
 

Chris1272

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I have never been able to siphon without seeing bubbles in the line. If somebody has a way to eliminate that i would like to hear it. Im thinking its not possible to completely eliminate bubbles
Short answer:
Dont worry about it its normal

Longer answer:
Its not oxygen, fermentation produces CO2 as a by product most gets gassed off through your air lock but an unavoidable amount gets trapped in solution with the beer. As the beer moves trough your tubing it experiences a change in momentum the CO2 is released from solution and forms bubbles in your line.
 

Malric

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I currently have my second ever batch (both 1st and 2nd were IPAs) bottle conditioning. I bottled last Saturday (5 days ago) so I'm still impatiently waiting to see if everything turned out okay. (11 days primary, 11 days secondary w/ dry hop, 5 days and counting in bottle).

So here's the problem, when racking to secondary and later to bottling bucket I wasn't concerned with limiting the splasing of the beer and there were times that air bubbles got into my siphon. It wasn't until after the fact that I realized those are both bad things and I should have been paying careful attention to limiting the amount of oxygen that comes in contact with my post-fermented beer.

The one thing I have going for me is my first batch turned out great, and I'm sure I probably splashed the hell out of that beer too. I also sanitized everything from the first batch in the bathtub (cleaned it thoroughly, but still dumb nonetheless) and just used that powder sanitizer, no star san. I even used my mouth when siphoning and accidentally had beer spill from my mouth into bottling bucket...and everything was still fine! I was much more diligent in my sanitizing practices my second time around, but didn't learn of oxidation precautions until after the fact.

So, should I worry about this batch having off flavors due to oxidation?
I know you didn't ask, but it is related. In my opinion, you can eliminate the secondary even when dry hopping. I have done several IPAs and an IIPA all in the primary. This reduces your chances of oxidation since you're removing a transfer.
 
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MileHighHops

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Thanks to all for your replies. I've learned my lesson for future batches and it sounds like I'll still be able to enjoy this batch! I love learning lessons without the consequences :)

I purchased some star san before this batch and have been sanitizing everything in a 5 gallon bucket..much better than my bathtub method!

I think I'm going to get an auto-siphon for my next batch. I've quickly discovered that siphoning is my least favorite brewing activity. I used the water in siphon method this time and everything was going great until I accidentally lifted the racking cane above the liquid with about 1 gallon of brew left. Getting that last gallon into the bottling bucket was one of the most frustrating experiences of my life.....

And to respond to Marlic, I've heard a lot of people on here talk about skipping the secondary altogether, but my LHBS guys insist that secondary does wonders for your beer. He's pretty close with the guys at Avery Brewing so I take his word for it
 

Malric

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Even Palmer now states that the secondary is largely unnecessary at the homebrewing level. I have found that leaving it on the yeast for 3-4 weeks produces a better beer than when I transferred to the secondary. As with most things on this forum, do your own testing and see what produces the best results for you.
 

dfc

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I currently have my second ever batch (both 1st and 2nd were IPAs) bottle conditioning. I bottled last Saturday (5 days ago) so I'm still impatiently waiting to see if everything turned out okay. (11 days primary, 11 days secondary w/ dry hop, 5 days and counting in bottle).

So here's the problem, when racking to secondary and later to bottling bucket I wasn't concerned with limiting the splasing of the beer and there were times that air bubbles got into my siphon. It wasn't until after the fact that I realized those are both bad things and I should have been paying careful attention to limiting the amount of oxygen that comes in contact with my post-fermented beer.

The one thing I have going for me is my first batch turned out great, and I'm sure I probably splashed the hell out of that beer too. I also sanitized everything from the first batch in the bathtub (cleaned it thoroughly, but still dumb nonetheless) and just used that powder sanitizer, no star san. I even used my mouth when siphoning and accidentally had beer spill from my mouth into bottling bucket...and everything was still fine! I was much more diligent in my sanitizing practices my second time around, but didn't learn of oxidation precautions until after the fact.

So, should I worry about this batch having off flavors due to oxidation?
No. RDWHAHB.
 

Homercidal

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RDWHAHB!

It's all good, baby!

I love my autosiphon, but ever since I melted my first one, I've had to try a different method to get a siphon started in my boil kettle. I made a T about halfway up the siphon hose and put s short piece of hose coming out the side. On this I put a pinch clamp. When I want a siphon, I cover the end of the hose with a sanitized finger, and suck on the piece coming off the T. When the siphon gets going I pinch the clamp. Bugs stay out of the hose and out of your beer.
 
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MileHighHops

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Even Palmer now states that the secondary is largely unnecessary at the homebrewing level. I have found that leaving it on the yeast for 3-4 weeks produces a better beer than when I transferred to the secondary. As with most things on this forum, do your own testing and see what produces the best results for you.
I'll have to try the primary only method with one of my next batches. I'm still a novice and am open to experimenting. Hell, I haven't even read a book on homebrewing yet. Everything I know is either from my LHBS or from you guys. My fiance made the mistake of buying me a kit for Christmas...within a few months our 1 bedroom condo has turned into a mini micro-brewery and winery (have already collected 2 buckets, 4 carboys and approximately 100 bottles :ban:

Oh, and what does RDWHAHB mean? Some of these acronyms are new to me
 

vinoterp

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The best beer I have made in my limited experience was my second batch. I did not know what this "oxidation" was at that point.

Here is the list of foolish things I did:

-Splashed the steaming hot wort into my fermenter with vigor (This is a "NO!" says John Palmer)
-Stuck my face in the fermenter every few days to smell the glorious hops (probably disturbing the CO2 blanket).
-Noisily siphoned my beer from primary to secondary.
-Splashed the hell out of the beer in my secondary a few days later by shoving 2 hop socks full of Cascade through the neck.
-When the hops wouldn't sink, I poked them with a sanitized stir rod over and over again to submerge them...disturbing the beer in my carboy in countless ways.
-Scared that the half-soaked floating socks were an issue, I pulled them up into the neck of the fermenter (splashing all along) and snipped them with scissors...thus releasing their contents splashing back into the beer.
-Noticed bubbles in my bottling wand and didn't do anything to correct them...not knowing that O2 was potentially dangerous.

Obviously, these are not "best practices." But if I was able to avoid oxidation... just maybe you will too.

What do they say? RDWHAHB
Also, never do the things I just mentioned. Sheesh. I cringe thinking about that.
joetothemo, you just made my day, I definitely splashed my steaming hot wort (<130 degrees) into the fermenter, and read afterward that John Palmer said it was a huge no. But my other concern is that it took me about 5 hours to cool my wort down to 75 degrees... Once I got it down to about 120-130 I dumped it into the fermenter, like the directions said with about two gallons of ice cold water and covered up the carboy with a sanitized piece of foil, but looking back I definitely should of done the bath soak cooling method, oh well, lessons learned for next time. Hopefully it turns out drinkable!
 
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