First lager - Secondary fermentor?

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hennesse

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I'm making my first lager, and need to know when to put it into a secondary fermentor. Before the diacetyl rest? After?

Why? I brew 10 gal at a time. I have 2 glass carboys, and lots of Corny kegs. For ales, I rack from carboys to Cornies after 10 days, which frees up the carboys for the next batch.

On this Vienna Lager, I'm at 20 days in the primary at 50 degrees, ready for the next step...

Thanks, Dave
 

hottpeper13

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I keg my lagers at 21-28 days in primary(can't cold crash in primary) hook em up to CO2 at basement temps for a week or two then put in 33* lagerator until a tap opens up.
 

jdauria

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Definitely do not transfer before diacetyl rest! Personally I leave my lagers on the yeast for 3 weeks at minimum, then transfer to kegs to lager. Also at 20 days, you most likely missed the time for a d-rest. You want to do it before the beer is done fermenting.
 

lumpher

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In your situation, I'd do a d-rest for 3 days now (can't hurt to do it, even if it's late for it), then keg and lager it.
 

Holden Caulfield

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I'm making my first lager, and need to know when to put it into a secondary fermentor.
Short answer - never.

Not necessary with today's yeast health. All you will do is expose your beer to oxygen and increase likelihood of infection. For most lager yeast, just primary for 2-3 weeks then raise temp for diacetyl rest for 3-5 days. Then just secondary in bottle or keg. Don't cold cash in primary, unless you have a way to prevent cold crash suck back which will oxygenate your beer.

Easier process and better beer.
 
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hennesse

hennesse

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Thanks folks. Life got in the way for awhile. Doing the d-rest now. Will go straight to serving keg.
 

IslandLizard

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Will go straight to serving keg.
I think you missed the essence. You can lager your beer in a keg for a few weeks in your kegerator for it to clarify. Then either carefully transfer to another keg for serving, or use a floating dip tube in your lagering keg for immediate tapping.

Since the beer is kept under CO2, a keg is better for lagering than a bucket or carboy (secondary).
 
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hennesse

hennesse

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I think you missed the essence. You can lager your beer in a keg for a few weeks in your kegerator for it to clarify. Then either carefully transfer to another keg for serving, or use a floating dip tube in your lagering keg for immediate tapping.

Since the beer is kept under CO2, a keg is better for lagering than a bucket or carboy (secondary).
I have a pair of ball-lock 2-arys that I cut 1/2" off the dip tubes to prevent sucking up yeast and glop from the bottom. Since lagering takes so long, I'm gonna buy some extra dip tubes and cut them off - then I can change serving kegs into 2-arys (and reverse) whenever needed. $5 each here-> Chi Company

I CO2 purge and transfer 2-ary to serving, so minimal air contamination.
 

AZ Maverick

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I also don't do secondaries anymore.
I ferment until just before it's done then raise the temp for the d-rest until the SG is done and stable, then I drop the temp for the lagering stage usually for three or four weeks, then I fine with gelatin and cold crash at just above freezing.
After that I keg it and let it lager for however long I can wait.
Here's a Tilt Hydrometer chart of a Maibock lager I did a few months ago.

Maibock.jpg
 
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Andre3000

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I also don't do secondaries anymore.
I ferment until just before it's done then raise the temp for the d-rest until the SG is done and stable, then I drop the temp for the lagering stage usually for three or four weeks, then I cold crash at just above freezing.
After that I keg it and let it lager for however long I can wait.
Here's a Tilt Hydrometer chart of a Maibock lager I did a few months ago.

View attachment 772095
Now that, my friends, is proper d-rest timing.

I don't understand why people think lager primary lasts several weeks. If you wait several weeks to do a d-rest you've missed the timing completely. As a general rule for myself, lager ferments approach FG within 4-5 days. D-rest always occuring on day 4.
 

Jag75

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Now that, my friends, is proper d-rest timing.

I don't understand why people think lager primary lasts several weeks. If you wait several weeks to do a d-rest you've missed the timing completely. As a general rule for myself, lager ferments approach FG within 4-5 days. D-rest always occuring on day 4.

It's tough to specify days . I've found it best to start raising the temp once fermentation is 75% completed . Raising the temp daily until that temp is in mid/high 60's. Once there hold for 3 days , then dropping the temp daily until in the 30's . Then hold for a few days , then keg.
 
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