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Old 01-12-2005, 01:06 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Janx
Best advice I've seen on this board. I NEVER use a hydrometer and don't own one. When it stops bubbling and the yeast settles, it's done. Not sure? Wait a few more days. Waiting a little bit longer will only make your beer better and won't hurt it.

Throw your hydrometer away, and stop taking samples while it ferments. It only causes risk and less beer to drink later and doesn't do a damn bit of good. There is no harm in letting your beer sit around for a bit.

Janx
Good advice on the hydrometer. When I first started brewing, I thought everything had to be perfect, and of course the local homebrew probably tried to sell me everything I did'nt need. Your right its beer, its suppose to be fun, taking samples all the time does give you a better chance of contamination also. I never really thought of it that way.
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Old 01-12-2005, 06:08 AM   #12
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Thanks for the guidance. Back to my original inquiry; not knowing what "done fermenting" beer really looks like and me racking too soon was my main curiosity. It's settling down quite a bit now (10 days in secondary).

I did call the local shop on how long to let it sit in the secondary since it continued to ferment for the 1st 5 days there fairly actively. He said it's beer don't worry, give it a week but if you want hydro it today and in 3 days and if no movement; it's done. So, I did so tonight (before reading the no-hydro comments ).

Curious as to the taste I take a swig of the sample. &hit is bitter! I'm currently washing that taste away with a nice IPA from the local brewery pub down the road . Followed the instructs to the tee so hoping it just ain't done yet. It's a brewers best bock recipe. Does whopping bitter taste mean not done yet or screwed up? BTW, No worries, having fun learning.

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Old 01-12-2005, 07:19 PM   #13
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The bitterness will likely soften up with time. If you have some trub in your sample, that often causses it to taste much more bitter, too, especially if you used pellets.

Janx

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Old 01-12-2005, 08:03 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Janx
The bitterness will likely soften up with time. If you have some trub in your sample, that often causses it to taste much more bitter, too, especially if you used pellets.

Janx
Pellets it was. She's quite clear on the top so don't believe I got a slurp of trub. Time will tell.

Thanks for your help.
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Old 02-02-2005, 05:03 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by rightwingnut
I wonder could you put the hydrometer in the carboy when you rack and leave it. (If there's enough space).
That'll only work if you do one batch at a time.

Not a good idea if you have several batches going at a time (I usually have 3). You'll need more than 1 hydrometer.
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Old 02-02-2005, 07:23 AM   #16
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While I don't copletely agree with Janx's advice to throw the hydrometer away (some people like to keep records), I DEFINITELY agree that a little extra time in the fermenter won't hurt. When I brewed my first batch, the instructions said to wait until there were 2 to 3 minutes between bubbles in the fermentation lock. That's not a bad rule of thumb, but waiting a little longer won't hurt. The time it takes to ferment depends on lots of things (yeast strain, temperature, OG, etc...). There's no way to time it perfectly. I usually let it sit in the primary for one week, then in the secondary for another two. If there's still a little activity in the secondary.... so what? If there's still some activity after two weeks in the secondary... give it another week. I've got a vanilla-bourbon-porter in the carboy that's still 'bubbling' after 10 days. It's HIGH gravity, so I expect it'll keep going for a while.

Don't bother taking gravity until it's done fermenting (your not doing yourself any good worrying about it). When the bubble stop (or slow down to a ridiculous rate), it's ready to bottle and age.

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Old 02-03-2005, 01:01 AM   #17
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Man, has it been that long already since I posted this? Well, I'm already on my 3rd batch and "no worries" anymore. I have been doing an SG another when racking and another when I bottle just for record keeping. I do believe I'll be skipping the racking hydro; kind of worthless.

I may be beyond newbie and getting towards apprentice! Thanks to everyone here.

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