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Old 08-02-2007, 10:34 PM   #1
BNVince
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Default Getting A Hydrometer Reading

So here is a dumb question. Last night, while doing my first batch of home brew, I had a real moment where I didn't know what to do. After I poured the wort in to the primary bucket I went to get my OG. So, holding a long sanitized cylinder in my hand, I had no idea how to extract the cooled wort in to the cylinder so I could get a hydrometer reading.

Now that I look back, should I just have put the hydrometer right in the bucket to try to get a reading? How do you guys take your hydrometer readings from primary buckets?

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Old 08-02-2007, 10:51 PM   #2
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If you are going to fill the primary with your cooled wort before taking a reading, you need to get yourself a devise called a "Thief" at your LHBS. It is nothing more than a long plastic tube that allows wort to go into it when immersed and then out when pressed down. It has one of those tips like on your bottle filling tube that lets liquid in and out when depressed. Instead of this, when you are filling you primary bucket, just pour some cooled wort into a glass or jar for use in determining gravity. Also don't dump the wort used in determining gravity back into your primary. Throw it away once you are done with it.

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Old 08-02-2007, 10:56 PM   #3
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A wine thief is the tool for the job. Sanatize it and take a sample to fill your hydrometer tube.

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Old 08-02-2007, 10:56 PM   #4
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Or drink it

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Old 08-02-2007, 10:57 PM   #5
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Get a turkey baster. Works great when you forget to get a sample before putting in the fermenter. As for putting your hydrometer into the fermenter... you could do that, but I would make every effort to sterilize it and your hands before putting it in there.

As for now don't worry about it. Just take a reading after it's done fermenting. If it's close, at, or near what it should be, then you'll know it's done. All depends on what you've brewed and the recipe you've followed.

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Old 08-02-2007, 11:07 PM   #6
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Just put the hydrometer in the bucket. Why complicate things and waste good beer?

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Old 08-02-2007, 11:22 PM   #7
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In the last minute of the boil I take a 1 cup pyrex measuring cup and get at least 6 oz and then put it in the fridge. By the time I have everything chilled, pitched and cleaned, the sample is down to 60-70 degrees and the break material has settled out of the sample. Pour in hydrometer and take reading. Now, I'm doing full boils, so this won't work for partial boil extract brews, but then again, extract brews don't deviate from the OG that much either, so a hydrometer is not as necessary.

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Old 08-02-2007, 11:52 PM   #8
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Turkey baster or a thief. Awesome. Thanks guys.

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Old 08-04-2007, 02:45 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grnich
Just put the hydrometer in the bucket. Why complicate things and waste good beer?
well, if it's a carboy, you can't.

if you stirred the crap outta the wort in the bucket to get it aerated, there's too much foam on top to see the hydrometer.

however, when its at the end of fermentation, yeah I agree, just drop the sanitized hydrometer in the bucket, spin it a few times, and take your reading.
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Old 08-04-2007, 02:52 AM   #10
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Outta the bucket I just use a stainless steel measuring cup and dip out a sample.

Outta the carboy, I just use my racking cane to siphon off a cup...takes about 3 minutes from idea, to cleaning the racking cane..

I always drink my samples...like a mad scientist.

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