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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > General Techniques > Bottling bucket - to stir or not to stir?
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Old 04-03-2010, 03:35 PM   #1
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Default Bottling bucket - to stir or not to stir?

I will be bottling my 5th brew later today and I have a question about the distribution of the sugar in the bottling bucket.

It seems like some of my bottles are more carbonated than others and I wonder if I am getting the sugar evenly mixed up in the wort. I dissolve the sugar in a pint of water I have boiled and pour it into the bottom of the bucket. I then rack my wort into the bucket - then bottle.

I was wondering if it is OK to stir the mixture? I did a search but it seemed like there were two schools of thought on this. I thought I had read that it was bad to stir the wort after fermentation.

So...is it OK to the beer before bottling without harming it?

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Old 04-03-2010, 03:41 PM   #2
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My vote is to stir gently to evenly disperse.

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Old 04-03-2010, 03:41 PM   #3
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I've always just let the beer filling the bottling bucket stir the sugar mixture into the beer, but I recently had the same thought.

I sanitized my giant spoon and gently just swirled it around the bucket one or two revolutions on my last batch.

I think if you are very gentle, don't splash, etc. Essentially avoid whipping any air/oxygen into the green beer, you'll be okay. Since exposing the beer to oxygen will oxidize it, etc.

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Old 04-03-2010, 03:48 PM   #4
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If you add the sugar solution first, then lay the output of the siphon in the bottom of the bucket so that the flow creates a circular motion, then it mixes fine, IME.

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Old 04-03-2010, 03:53 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffmeh View Post
If you add the sugar solution first, then lay the output of the siphon in the bottom of the bucket so that the flow creates a circular motion, then it mixes fine, IME.
I agree, this generally tends to work fine for me as well, but I have noticed perhaps a very very slight difference between some of my beer bottles from the same batch. Not really a big deal.

I recently purchased a chest freezer and I am hoping to move to kegging in the near future anyways.
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Old 04-03-2010, 04:46 PM   #6
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Gently stirring with a sanitized spoon/stirrer is fine! I do it all the time and my beers have been very consistently carbed!
Of course, always be sure your beer is finished fermenting! Throwing too much active yeast in a capped bottle can produce some explosive results!
Proßt

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Old 04-03-2010, 04:51 PM   #7
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Thanks for your suggestions.

Also, one of the reasons I asked this was that my first brew produced a bottle bomb. It was only one bottle (a bomber - oh the irony) and it was only that one bottle that one time.

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Old 04-03-2010, 05:23 PM   #8
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+1 on gently stirring. Better be sure the sugar is evenly distributed so carbonation levels are what you expect in each bottle. Besides, if you don't splash, it's virtually risk free to get that extra assurance. Beer takes a lot of work to make so it's especially frustrating when you crack an under/over carbonated bottle of an otherwise perfectly good beer.

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Old 04-03-2010, 08:11 PM   #9
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Personally I add te sugar for the botteling bucket then allow the beer being siphoned into the bucket to stir up my sugars for carbonation. I also see nothing wrong with a gental stir, but I like letting my system do the work for me whenever possible.

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Old 04-04-2010, 01:33 PM   #10
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I used to not stir; but, recently I have had a couple batches that had very inconsistent carb & flavors between bottles. I am going to gently stir from now on to see if that was the issue.

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