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Small Batch Partial Mash

eltoro77

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Oct 8, 2012
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Hello everyone,

I need some expert opinion.  I am making the transition to all grain from extract.  I made a DIY Tun and sparge water tank and brewed a partial mash pale ale.  I was working out the kinks with the system so that it is humming when I brew my first all grain.  The problem is in the process I ended up with a less than expected brew volume and less wort in the end (3.5 gallons in stead of 5 --spilled water, too much sparge, ect).  Anyhow, I am now concerned with moving the fermented beer (3.5 gallons) to secondary because my secondary bottle is 5 gallons.  I usually go to secondary for 2-4 weeks.  I am concern about oxygenation.  Of course the primary (6.5 gallon bucket) is full of CO2.  Should I just leave it in the Primary?  Is oxidation not as much of a threat with only 1.5 gallons of head space? Any thoughts?  Thanks.

 

durrettd

Grandmaster Brewer
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If you haven't already done so, read John Palmer's "How to Brew" at http://www.howtobrew.com/.

The on-line version is not the latest and some of his guidance may have changed. An increasing number of brewers are pushing the primary to four weeks or more with good results.
 

eltoro77

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I have read it nearly cover to cover, I am just looking for opinion about this particular problem because if I leave it in primary I can't brew again for that 4 weeks....  Because I only have one primary  :( 

I need to buy another one :-[
 

alcaponejunior

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Your best bet is to buy another primary fermentation bucket and not do the secondary.  Buckets are cheep, cheeper than a ruined batch of partial mash beer, cheeper than a ruined batch of all grain beer for that matter.  Although merely doing a secondary isn't a guarantee of oxidation, it's certainly a risk.  Meanwhile, you really don't need to do a secondary at all for most beers.  I personally never do a secondary unless it's high gravity or there's a specific reason to do so (usually fruit).  At this point, most people I know aren't doing secondaries either.  They're just not necessary.  I know some people still do them, but your beer will be fine without them.
 
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