Today is my first time at home brewing, can’t wait!! I only have a primary fermentor, the instructions call for 1-2 in primary, then 2-4 in secondary. Will it be ok to leave in primary for an extended period of time? How long should I ferment for? Any suggestions will be greatly appreciated. Am looking forward to the tasting.
The secondary helps to clarify the beer and gives the yeast more time to drop out. If you search the forums there are lots of people who only use the primary fermenter, one of the major benefits being simplicity, and reducing the chance of an infection in the transfer. I would leave it one to two weeks personally after the fermentation is done - which you can verify with your hydrometer. In short, you’ll be fine without the secondary.
3 weeks in the fermenter. Then bottle.
You can check the gravity with a hydrometer after 1 week to see where it’s at. Drink the sample, don’t put it back in. Then check again in a week. Bottle the next.
As you can see, you need another fermenter to get another batch going next week. Buckets are inexpensive and work as well as carboys.