Topping off the carboy

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Nov 21, 2009
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I have been reading about topping off the carboy after racking and I was wondering how far on the carboy do you fill it up to? Up to the shoulder or where the neck begins? Just wouldn't want to leave to much room or have a big mess to clean up.
Your first racking from primary to secoundary dont wory to much, go ahead and give it a good inch below the neck just incase you transfered early. But after that all other rackings fill to 1/2 " below the bung.
I'll have 3 inches or so below the bung..pretty much where the neck is, as long as it's fermenting there is a layer of gas there to protect it.. and once bulk storing.. you've got sulphites in there anyway.

I thought that the normal advice was 2-3" below the bung. Not 1/2".

1" below the bung with a ferementing wine could result in wine coming out the air lock.

Steve, define bung! I have been confused on this myself. Is the bung the top of the neck, the very top? Or, are we talking about where the carboy beging to "go up in the neck"?
the bung is the stopper. the rubber or silicone stopper. so he's referring to inches below the bottom of the stopper.

with a wine in secondary, a few inches is fine. in bulk aging, i try to get within an inch or two, but, if you've sulfited properly, a half-inch here or there isn't going to make too much a difference as long as the top level of the wine is into the neck to minimize surface area in contact with air.

Thanks everyone, for the help and I'll leave the neck empty unless I'm in bulk storage.