Options after primary fermentation?

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kojinakata

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Hi,
I did a one gallon SMASH batch with pale malt, brewers gold hops and Safale S-04 dry yeast. I saw the krausen rise and fall, and now there is no sign of foam or anything on the top of beer. The batch is in a 4-gallon glass carboy and the airlock is bubbling every 6 minutes. Fermentis spec sheet says that the optimum temperature for the yeast is between 15-20 celcius, I kept it between 17-19 celcius from the beginning. It has now been 5 days since I pitched.

Does this mean the primary fermentation is over?
Basicly, what are my options from here on?
Can I just prime and bottle it?
Is a diacetyl rest or secondary fermentation needed?
 

AZBeerNut

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Only way to tell, definitively, if your fermentation is complete... is by taking gravity readings that remain consistent.

Beyond that... my personal recommendation is to leave it alone. :) I don't touch my primaries for a long time, and definitely not after just 5 days, brother.

** Learn PATIENCE early and your beers will be MUCH better in the long run!! **

To answer your other questions... yes, once it's done (which you should confirm with gravity readings), you can move into bottling. Most brewers, these days, recommend skipping a secondary (unless you're trying to dry hop, add some fruit, or something). Again, bro... personal recommendation... let it sit in primary for a good bit (I do 30 days at LEAST), then take your readings and bottle!

:mug:
 

peterj

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The bulk of ferementation is over, but you need to give the yeast time to clean up any byproducts they made (including diacetyl) and completely finish ferementing. I usually wait a minimum of 2 weeks before I bottle. 5 days is not long enough. And you should take gravity readings to make sure it's done ferementing. Consistent readings 2 or 3 days apart means it's done. You don't need to put it into a secondary vessel. I would give it at least 10-14 days, make sure it's at FG, and then bottle.
 
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kojinakata

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I hoped to skip the secondary because I do not own a second carboy to work as secondary fermenter.

30 days seemed a lot. Wouldn't it cause bad flavors caused by yeast autolysis or other reasons? After a month in the primary, you just prime it and bottle then? What temperature range do you keep your beer in the primary?
 

Yooper

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Since it's a one gallon batch in a 4 gallon carboy (I didn't even know they made 4 gallon carboys, as I've never seen one in my life!), I'd let it sit another week or so before bottling, assuming that it starts to clear in the next few days.

Active fermentation will end in 3-5 days in most cases, and the yeast will slowly finish up. The yeast will go back and digest less preferred sugars after they are done with simple sugars, then for about 24 hours afterwards will continue to digest whatever they can, including their own waste products (such as diacetyl). That's about the time many brewers will raise the temperature a bit, but still keep the fermenter in the yeast strain's optimum range, to encourage the yeast to finish that job.

After that, they begin to fall out and the beer will clear. At that point, it can be bottled. I don't see any advantage, especially with a small batch in a big carboy, to letting it sit longer than that process takes. Thirty days is ridiculously long in primary for most cases, and especially so in this one. Some people do that as a matter of course, but it's not needed.
 
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kojinakata

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It is a 15 liter carboy produced by a local spring water company.

So 15-30 days is the recommended time for primary. Then priming and bottling is next.


Thanks guys for quick and informational answers.
 

AZBeerNut

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So 15-30 days is the recommended time for primary. Then priming and bottling is next.
... which is what I recommended! :mug: We all have varying opinions... but I'm tellin' ya man -- make patience your first ingredient and you'll be a happier brewer over time!
 

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