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Old 11-12-2008, 04:11 AM   #1
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Default How to take gravity reading from glass carboy?

I've racked to my secondary glass carboy and need to take a gravity reading in a few days. Does anyone have an easier way of doing this than siphoning? I saw a product called a Wine Theif that supposedly does something like this - anyone have experience with it?

thanks!

d

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Old 11-12-2008, 04:13 AM   #2
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Turkey baster.

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Old 11-12-2008, 04:21 AM   #3
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Brilliant. Duh. Muchas gracias, beermigo.

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Old 11-12-2008, 04:56 AM   #4
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I got tired of this whole situation. I had rigged up a turkey baster with a bit of extra tubing so I could check the progress on 5.5G batches in a 7 gallon carboy. I stopped checking until three weeks later when I racked it to secondary. I think I'm just going to buy a refractometer, then I'll only need a drop or two instead of a whole tube full of it...

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Old 11-12-2008, 05:04 AM   #5
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RDWHAHB use the turkey baster or just play it by ear, this the coolest empirical process on earth

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Old 11-12-2008, 05:45 AM   #6
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refractometer is no good once you get any alcohol in the must. Its only good for the initial reading.

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Old 11-12-2008, 05:50 AM   #7
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I use a wine thief and it's nice and easy. It's basically a thick tube with a small hole on each end. You dip it in, then plug the top hole with your thumb after it fills. Then you can pull it out, put the end in your sample container, let your thumb up and it drops right in. Kinda like when you played with your straw in your pop as a kid. Same principle.

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Old 11-12-2008, 06:57 AM   #8
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The Wine Thief is great (I don't know why it's labeled 'wine'...) -- You stick it in, pull it out partially, drop in your Hydrometer, look at it, then touch the release at the bottom of the Thief to the side of the carboy, and it puts the beer back in, and your done. 20 seconds.

After doing the syphoning thing myself the first time, I went to the brewing store and bought the thief. (It was on my Christmas list, but I couldn't wait...)

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Old 11-12-2008, 06:58 AM   #9
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A Wine Thief is basically a Turkey baster, I use a three piece plastic one that is easy to break apart for cleaning and sanitation. Just make sure you clean it well and soak it in some sanitizer prior to using it. IE: No stuck clumps of greasy turkey left on it.

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Old 11-12-2008, 01:47 PM   #10
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The problem is that the turkey baster won't reach a 5.5 gallon batch in a larger carboy, and attaching some tubing to the end of it doesn't really work all that well. I'm going to invest in a thief soon...and thanks for the info on the refractometer, I didn't know that it wouldn't work for FG readings.

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