Should I be worried?

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New Member
Jan 8, 2008
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Hello all, newbie here, just brewed my first batch last weekend. I brewed a Continental Pilsner kit from BB.

I racked from the primary to the secondary. According to the FG everything was right on target and it didn't taste too bad, a little water down possibly but not too bad all in all. How much head space should I have in my secondary. I have been reading about too much oxygen being a bad thing. I am using a 5 gallon carboy and the headspace is roughly 3-4 inches, is this a terrible thing or what.

My second question is, the beer itself seems really dark. I don't know if anyone is familiar with the Continental Pilsner, but should it be that dark. It is a little darker than Michelob Amber Bock, as an example. Is this normal or did something go wrong somewhere.

Thanks for the advice and help. I am sure I will be on this forum a lot in the future.
your fine for head space, don't concern yourself.

it's probably not as dark as it looks in the secondary (a glass will be clearer)

however, extracts will darken the brew. you may wish to look into adding some of the extract in a later addition so it doesn't carmelize as much.
+1 for deathbrewers reply, it will look MUCH darker in a carboy compared to a glass. Think about it, you are looking through about 12 inches of liquid in a carboy, and only an inch or two in a glass.
First You will be fine with a 5 gallon carboy. The beer will only be in there a week or tow and will probably create enough CO2 to blanket the beer. It is quite common to secondary in a 5 gallon carboy.

A couple things about beer color. First beers look much darker in a 5 gallon carboy. Even Budweiser would look surprisingly dark. Look at your beer in a glass for a more accurate evaluation of the beer's color. Second Extract brews with partial boils will be darker than what you are shooting for. The concentrated wort darkens during the boil. The only way around this is full boils which require a very large pot or you can also do late additions of your malt extract. Less time boiling = less color addition.

EDIT: Deathweed and Deathbrew did a fine job answering your questions before I did.:mug: