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Is there a fool proof way to transfer to a secondary?

[quote=“Old Guy”]I’m for secondary. I Guess I’m Anal about DMS or Diacetyl, but for 25 yrs I’ve 2-3 wk primary and 1-2 wk secondary mainly to clear, plus I’m in no hurry, and that’s for those that I don’t cold crash. I sanitize
[ Star San ] everything the beer touches, and can honestly say nothing has ever had Infection, oxidation, nothing bad. So if you want you can say I’ve been lucky for 25 yrs. That’s been my procedure
and it works for me. Like I say everybody is different, so do what works for you.[/quote]

then why not just go 4-6 weeks in primary? Autolysis is not effected on a homebrew level

I’ve never found using a secondary to be as much work as many make it out to be.

Sure you have to clean your siphon when done but all I do is run some hot water through it as soon as I’m done. Hang it up to dry and it’s ready to be sanitized at next use. Takes a few min.

As for cleaning secondaries, while I use both buckets and glass for primary, I find the easiest container to clean to be glass secondaries. Since there is no active fermentation my biggest concern is the small ring that appears at the liquid level. It comes right off w/ a carboy brush.

The most time consuming aspect for me is waiting the 5 or so min while it transfers. Not a big deal considering I probably spent around 5 hrs. on brew day to get it to this point.

The benefit for me is cleaner beer weeks faster. It opens up primary. Also, when I reuse yeast, I like the idea of reusing it sooner rather than later.
My preference anyway.

[quote=“dsiets”]I’ve never found using a secondary to be as much work as many make it out to be.

Sure you have to clean your siphon when done but all I do is run some hot water through it as soon as I’m done. Hang it up to dry and it’s ready to be sanitized at next use. Takes a few min.

As for cleaning secondaries, while I use both buckets and glass for primary, I find the easiest container to clean to be glass secondaries. Since there is no active fermentation my biggest concern is the small ring that appears at the liquid level. It comes right off w/ a carboy brush.

The most time consuming aspect for me is waiting the 5 or so min while it transfers. Not a big deal considering I probably spent around 5 hrs. on brew day to get it to this point.

The benefit for me is cleaner beer weeks faster. It opens up primary. Also, when I reuse yeast, I like the idea of reusing it sooner rather later.
My preference anyway.[/quote]

your missing tons of stuff… to say it takes a few minutes to secondary is BS. And you are not having clearer beer weeks faster you are just letting it sit longer, you can let it sit in the primary that extra time and have just as clear of beer. If not you are disturbing yeast or moving carboys etc…
Your talking half hour to an hour at least…to where you can just let it sit in the primary longer rack carefully and save your self the whole process

You have to gather equipment
clean and sanitize, fermenter, racking canes, siphons, tubing etc…
Rack your beer depending how you rack and the size of hardware being used times vary.
Clean all used equipment and pack back up, then going through the process all over again to rack out of secondary.
You are adding well over an hour to a brew for doing something that is not needed for most beers

[quote=“grainbelt”][quote=“dsiets”]I’ve never found using a secondary to be as much work as many make it out to be.

Sure you have to clean your siphon when done but all I do is run some hot water through it as soon as I’m done. Hang it up to dry and it’s ready to be sanitized at next use. Takes a few min.

As for cleaning secondaries, while I use both buckets and glass for primary, I find the easiest container to clean to be glass secondaries. Since there is no active fermentation my biggest concern is the small ring that appears at the liquid level. It comes right off w/ a carboy brush.

The most time consuming aspect for me is waiting the 5 or so min while it transfers. Not a big deal considering I probably spent around 5 hrs. on brew day to get it to this point.

The benefit for me is cleaner beer weeks faster. It opens up primary. Also, when I reuse yeast, I like the idea of reusing it sooner rather later.
My preference anyway.[/quote]

your missing tons of stuff… to say it takes a few minutes to secondary is BS. And you are not having clearer beer weeks faster you are just letting it sit longer, you can let it sit in the primary that extra time and have just as clear of beer. If not you are disturbing yeast or moving carboys etc…
Your talking half hour to an hour at least…to where you can just let it sit in the primary longer rack carefully and save your self the whole process

You have to gather equipment
clean and sanitize, fermenter, racking canes, siphons, tubing etc…
Rack your beer depending how you rack and the size of hardware being used times vary.
Clean all used equipment and pack back up, then going through the process all over again to rack out of secondary.
You are adding well over an hour to a brew for doing something that is not needed for most beers[/quote]

Yes, for example, my last beer I skipped secondary, it was still cloudy at 4 weeks in primary and 2 weeks in keg @ 40 degrees.
Yes, yeast strain comes into play but I don’t normally have this problem like when I use a secondary.

The norm for me is 1.5-2 weeks primary, 1 week secondary, and it is cleared. So no I’m not taking yeast w/ it.

As for time:
Grab my racking assembly and secondary fermenter, expose them to bucket of starsan. 5 min. (I usually store a couple stoppers and airlocks in my starsan bucket so I’m only grabbing my starsan bucket, syphon assembly, and carboy.)
Insert racking cane into fermenter and transfer. 5 min.
Rinse syphon w/ hot water (I keep the hose attached) and hang it up like I found it. 5 min.
(I’m not including cleaning the primary because that will have to be done regardless of using a secondary or not.)
When secondary is done it really only needs to be brushed at the neck where the liquid line was, otherwise a hot rinse and inspection takes care of it. 5 min.
If in doubt, add some cleaner and fill it w/ hot water. 5 min.
ETA: Tell person at door I’m not interested in buying a vacuum cleaner. 5min.

That’s pretty much how I do it.

[quote=“dsiets”][quote=“grainbelt”][quote=“dsiets”]I’ve never found using a secondary to be as much work as many make it out to be.

Sure you have to clean your siphon when done but all I do is run some hot water through it as soon as I’m done. Hang it up to dry and it’s ready to be sanitized at next use. Takes a few min.

As for cleaning secondaries, while I use both buckets and glass for primary, I find the easiest container to clean to be glass secondaries. Since there is no active fermentation my biggest concern is the small ring that appears at the liquid level. It comes right off w/ a carboy brush.

The most time consuming aspect for me is waiting the 5 or so min while it transfers. Not a big deal considering I probably spent around 5 hrs. on brew day to get it to this point.

The benefit for me is cleaner beer weeks faster. It opens up primary. Also, when I reuse yeast, I like the idea of reusing it sooner rather later.
My preference anyway.[/quote]

your missing tons of stuff… to say it takes a few minutes to secondary is BS. And you are not having clearer beer weeks faster you are just letting it sit longer, you can let it sit in the primary that extra time and have just as clear of beer. If not you are disturbing yeast or moving carboys etc…
Your talking half hour to an hour at least…to where you can just let it sit in the primary longer rack carefully and save your self the whole process

You have to gather equipment
clean and sanitize, fermenter, racking canes, siphons, tubing etc…
Rack your beer depending how you rack and the size of hardware being used times vary.
Clean all used equipment and pack back up, then going through the process all over again to rack out of secondary.
You are adding well over an hour to a brew for doing something that is not needed for most beers[/quote]

Yes, for example, my last beer I skipped secondary, it was still cloudy at 4 weeks in primary and 2 weeks in keg @ 40 degrees.
Yes, yeast strain comes into play but I don’t normally have this problem like when I use a secondary.

The norm for me is 1.5-2 weeks primary, 1 week secondary, and it is cleared. So no I’m not taking yeast w/ it.

As for time:
Grab my racking assembly and secondary fermenter, expose them to bucket of starsan. 5 min. (I usually store a couple stoppers and airlocks in my starsan bucket so I’m only grabbing my starsan bucket, syphon assembly, and carboy.)
Insert racking cane into fermenter and transfer. 5 min.
Rinse syphon w/ hot water (I keep the hose attached) and hang it up like I found it. 5 min.
(I’m not including cleaning the primary because that will have to be done regardless of using a secondary or not.)
When secondary is done it really only needs to be brushed at the neck where the liquid line was, otherwise a hot rinse and inspection takes care of it. 5 min.
If in doubt, add some cleaner and fill it w/ hot water. 5 min.

That’s pretty much how I do it.[/quote]

I would have to question something in your process and you have really cloudy beer at 6 weeks with 2 of them being in a fridge. It is either supposed to be cloudy low folccer or something else is wrong. 10 years of brewing if it is a decent flocc yeast its clear beer by the time I am pouring out the keg after the first few pulls Usually 2-5 weeks no secondary
I can not see how only doing 3 with a sceondary os going to make that much of an improvement vs twice the time in primary.

[quote=“grainbelt”]

I would have to question something in your process and you have really cloudy beer at 6 weeks with 2 of them being in a fridge. It is either supposed to be cloudy low folccer or something else is wrong. 10 years of brewing if it is a decent flocc yeast its clear beer by the time I am pouring out the keg after the first few pulls Usually 2-5 weeks no secondary
I can not see how only doing 3 with a sceondary os going to make that much of an improvement vs twice the time in primary.[/quote]

That was an example of my last beer I figured I would reference and I mentioned, yeast strain comes into play. But it’s also one of those times where I look back and wished I had used a secondary as it was taking so long to clear.

Having done it both ways many times over, I have my preference. I also never tell anyone they have to do it my way. What I will do is ask that they try it both ways a few times to see which they prefer. I still do it both ways as it is.

I’ve been helping a buddy of mine and he has been brewing for a year now and I started out showing him how to use a secondary and now he is stuck on it. I’ve told him to try going w/o a secondary just to try it. Maybe he’ll prefer no secondary if he tries it.

[quote=“dsiets”][quote=“grainbelt”]

I would have to question something in your process and you have really cloudy beer at 6 weeks with 2 of them being in a fridge. It is either supposed to be cloudy low folccer or something else is wrong. 10 years of brewing if it is a decent flocc yeast its clear beer by the time I am pouring out the keg after the first few pulls Usually 2-5 weeks no secondary
I can not see how only doing 3 with a sceondary os going to make that much of an improvement vs twice the time in primary.[/quote]

That was an example of my last beer I figured I would reference and I mentioned, yeast strain comes into play. But it’s also one of those times where I look back and wished I had used a secondary as it was taking so long to clear.

Having done it both ways many times over, I have my preference. I also never tell anyone they have to do it my way. What I will do is ask that they try it both ways a few times to see which they prefer. I still do it both ways as it is.

I’ve been helping a buddy of mine and he has been brewing for a year now and I started out showing him how to use a secondary and now he is stuck on it. I’ve told him to try going w/o a secondary just to try it. Maybe he’ll prefer no secondary if he tries it.[/quote]

I don’t care what people do or what needs to be done, I am saying is time and temperature is the main thing to clear beer, time no matter how many vessels is time you are not adding more time…
Leaving it sit in the primary for a month vs primary for 3 weeks and 1 week secondary has always resulted in the same clarity, the later just has much much more work involved. If your moving your fermenter or trying to get every last drop of beer out you are going to have a little bit of cloudy beer for another week or two until that settle out, your first few kegs pours will be cloudy or you are going to have more settllement in bottles

Sorry double post.

I secondary. I get clear beer. I don’t get any sediment in first pull. My kegs are easier to clean (its because most sediment was left in secondary). Sounds like a much better solution for 10 mins it takes to get to secondary. Like dsiets said… YMMV.

This could easily be avoided by cold crashing in the primary, also. It’s good to lager on the yeast cake too if you brew lagers.

[quote=“grainbelt”][quote=“dsiets”][quote=“grainbelt”]

I would have to question something in your process and you have really cloudy beer at 6 weeks with 2 of them being in a fridge. It is either supposed to be cloudy low folccer or something else is wrong. 10 years of brewing if it is a decent flocc yeast its clear beer by the time I am pouring out the keg after the first few pulls Usually 2-5 weeks no secondary
I can not see how only doing 3 with a sceondary os going to make that much of an improvement vs twice the time in primary.[/quote]

That was an example of my last beer I figured I would reference and I mentioned, yeast strain comes into play. But it’s also one of those times where I look back and wished I had used a secondary as it was taking so long to clear.

Having done it both ways many times over, I have my preference. I also never tell anyone they have to do it my way. What I will do is ask that they try it both ways a few times to see which they prefer. I still do it both ways as it is.

I’ve been helping a buddy of mine and he has been brewing for a year now and I started out showing him how to use a secondary and now he is stuck on it. I’ve told him to try going w/o a secondary just to try it. Maybe he’ll prefer no secondary if he tries it.[/quote]

I don’t care what people do or what needs to be done, I am saying is time and temperature is the main thing to clear beer, time no matter how many vessels is time you are not adding more time…
Leaving it sit in the primary for a month vs primary for 3 weeks and 1 week secondary has always resulted in the same clarity, the later just has much much more work involved. If your moving your fermenter or trying to get every last drop of beer out you are going to have a little bit of cloudy beer for another week or two until that settle out, your first few kegs pours will be cloudy or you are going to have more settllement in bottles[/quote]

I don’t know what to say. I like having clear beer faster. I find I have clearer beer much sooner. Sooner than the “3 weeks primary, 1 week secondary” which I never mentioned but you wrote above.
I’m going to disagree that it’s “much more work”. Maybe for you it is. I don’t know. I’m sharing my experience and my preference.

I maybe get a beer or maybe 2 of cloudy beer sometimes none depending how carefull I am when racking. That is the most important thing not rousing yeast.

But the oh it only take 10 minutes to do secondary is nonsense, even if you have a brew room where your beer is and have a sink there all cleaning suppleis etc… and everything right there 10 mintues is pushing it. It takes probably 4 minutes for a .5" siphon to go through a 5g carboy

If you want to do it, do it. If you don’t want to, don’t. While we’re at it, for typical ales I am kegging at 2 weeks and don’t subscribe to the time for the yeast to clean up logic. I think if someone says their beer needs time, something in their process needs be dialed in.

Some racking tidbits I wish pass on to some of the newer brewers, get the larger ID racking cane and lines, it’s crazy faster. Also, use lines the same ID as the cane and heat the line with hot water and slip over the cane so no air gaps or broken siphons.

If the outlet is lower than the intake it will keep running. Put fermentor on the counter and the bottling bucket on the floor.

I do have a brew room with sink. I also store everything pre sanitized under cover so resanitization only takes a min. It only takes 5 mins to rack to secondary. So I’m totalling 6-7 mins… and that’s when I use a carboy. Its much quicker when I use my conicals.

Mr. Loopie, how can it take you 6-7 min. to rack to secondary when it takes the entire homebrewing community 20 min?
Are we to believe racking to secondary in you homebrewery occurs faster than any other place on the face of the earth?
Perhaps the laws of physics cease to exist in your homebrewery?
Is this a magic secondary? Did you buy it from a stranger selling magic beans?
:mrgreen:

I’ll assume you’ve seen “My Cousin Vinny”.

The defense is wrooooooooong!!

If you have the equipment, I would say the best way is under CO2 pressure and into a CO2 purged vessel (corny kegs work well).

If you don’t have a CO2 tank, you can use some of the CO2 generated during fermentation to purge your secondary vessel. Here’s a idea from an old post about Better Bottles:

[quote=“johnsma22”]Here is a shot of mine in action. The 1/4" ID tubing connected to the 90˚ barb fitting in the ported closure of each primary fermenter inserts into the ID of the high flow valve of the secondary fermenters and allows the CO2 produced during primary fermentation to purge all of the air out of the secondaries. This allows for completely oxygen free racking.

BTW, the bags with sanitizer are so that I can see the bubble rate from the dry tap air locks.

John

[/quote]

Dsiets its real easy and I have mastered my technique. First I sanitize a funnel and place it in the neck of my secondary. I then pick up the primary and dump it into the funnel. The remaining 8 minutes are spent watching in admiration of the growing foam and bubbles. I then just throw my primary out since it takes too long to clean.

I see where you’re coming from, but I disagree that a secondary is the only option for you to get clear beer. I would suggest that you try cold-crashing the beer in primary for a week if possible before you rack to the bottling bucket. Even a couple days of cold crashing will drop most of the yeast and you can bottle beer with very little sediment.

You’re still able to harvest yeast and you save the time and hassle (and oxidation/contamination risk) of using a secondary.

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