Starting My Second Batch Need Help

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BuckBird

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Hey, I stumbled on this site and now I am hooked! Thanks for all of the good information.

I have a few questions I need help with.

1st: I was told that I should be doing my primary fermentation in a brew pale that does not have a spigot. I was told that the spigot can hold bacteria that may infect my brew. Is this true? Can I just go to my local hardware store and get a 5 Gallon bucket? How do I know if the plastic is ok to use?

2nd: I picked up some extra Corn Sugar at my HBS and want to kick up the alcohol in my next batch. When do I add the extra sugar? How much do I add?

3rd: Any tips on making my own immersion chiller?

Thanks!!!
 

Suthrncomfrt1884

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1. Doing primary in a bottling bucket isn't recommended, but I've done it plenty of times when I have no other pails open. As long as you have good practices when sanitizing, you'll be fine. Make sure you get inside the spigot and clean it very well.

As for your bucket...you have to make sure it's food grade plastic. It should also be bigger than 6 gallons to allow headspace for krausen.

2. If you want to up your alcohol, I suggest using more malt extract instead of corn sugar. Just my personal opinion though.

3. Check out the DIY section of this forum. There's tons of info on IC's.
 

Kauai_Kahuna

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Suthrncomfrt1884 seemed to have nailed all the answers.
I would like to add that adding additional sugar over 10% of the fermentable sugars CAN add a thinner taste or a bite to the beer.
One thing you can do is invert the sugar with some acid blend, or the juice from a lemon, and boiling it to a soft crack temperature and add that to your boil.
It will still have a thinner taste like adding honey but it seems to get rid of the bite.
But like most brewers here, I just add more malts unless the style calls for it like a Belgium.
 

Richabt

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There are several easy ways to boost the alcohol. Like mentioned above I like adding more LME or DME. You can also use rice syrup solids with little affect on taste. All of these I would add during my boil. Note that the rice solids can be a little pricey compared to extract.
 

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