Kegconnection Complete Starter Kit and More Giveaway!


Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > General Techniques > Guidelines for conditioning

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 11-01-2011, 02:32 PM   #1
BadWolfBrewing
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Madison, WI
Posts: 399
Liked 50 Times on 35 Posts
Likes Given: 1

Default Guidelines for conditioning

Esteemed colleagues,

I have a few questions about conditioning. I bottle condition, but I'm sure this is valid for secondary/keg as well.

I was wondering if anybody has come across some guidelines about conditioning times besides the most basic. By basic, I mean that higher gravity increases conditioning time, colder temps (for ales) increase conditioning time.

Are there any more specific examples people have seen? Different grains taking longer to get to where you want them, different yeasts moving faster, etc?

I do the common 'wait few weeks, try one, wait another week, try one...' until they are ready for general consumption. I'd be interested in setting up some rules of thumb based on more than the gravity.

I ask now, because I'm waiting on a Scotch Export to be drinkable. I have a sneaking suspicion it was just a bad recipe though...

__________________
BadWolfBrewing is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 11-01-2011, 02:40 PM   #2
Revvy
Post Hoc Ergo Propter Hoc
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Revvy's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: "Detroitish" Michigan
Posts: 40,804
Liked 2710 Times on 1629 Posts
Likes Given: 3484

Default

Didn't you already ask this, like yesterday or the day before??


This is all you need.....




No, there's nothing like what you're looking for. Because really every beer is different, every temp is different, every yeast is different, different proteins affect yeast differently....there's just way too many different variables involved in the process to be able to give you what you're hoping for.

It's all a generalization just based on what we've observed...but precise and measurable in this regard, can't really be done...

The 3 weeks at 70 degrees, that we recommend tends to be the minimum time it takes for average gravity beers to carbonate and condition. Higher grav beers take longer. Temp and gravity are the two factors that contribute to the time it takes to carb beer.

Using the 3 weeks at 70 as the "mean" an average grav beer at a temp below 70 may take a little longer than one above. Consequently, an average beer beer significantly above 70 may take less time to carb up. (I say may, because there is still a process that the beer has to go through to produce enough gas to carbonate the beer, and that takes time to generate no matter what temp it is at.)

68 is relative close to 70, so 3 weeks is still the rule of thumb.....but if the same beer was at 65 degrees, though not a lot of temp range to us, may indeed be enough to add a week to the carb/conditioning cycle.

In some beers, but maybe not for others....

It's pretty imprecise, every beer/yeast combo is different (we're dealing with living micro-organisms afterall and there always is a wild card factor) but the 3 weeks at 70 tends to be a nice "rule of thumb" to go by for beers in the 1.050 range or below.

(Some folks says add another week for every 10 grav points til you get into higher grav beers (Barleywines/Belgians,) then think in terms of months instead.

What folks seem to forget is that when you stick the beer in the bottles, you are sticking them into separate little fermenters.

Each one is it's own little microcosm, a tiny difference in temps between bottles in storage can affect the yeasties, speed them up or slow them down. Like if you store them in a closet against a warm wall, the beers closest to the heat source may be a tad warmer than those further way, so thy may carb/condition at slightly different rates. I usually store a batch in 2 seperate locations in my loft 1 case in my bedroom which is a little warmer, and the other in the closet in the lving room, which being in a larger space is a tad cooler, at least according to the thermostat next to that closet. It can be 5-10 degrees warmer in my bedroom. So I usually start with that case at three weeks. Giving the other half a little more time.

You can split a batch in half put them in 2 identical carboys, and pitch equal amounts of yeast from the same starter...and have them act completely differently...for some reason on a subatomic level...think about it...yeasties are small...1 degree difference in temp to us, could be a 50 degree difference to them...one fermenter can be a couple degrees warmer because it's closer to a vent all the way across the room and the yeasties take off...

Someone, Grinder I think posted a pic once of 2 carboys touching each other, and one one of the carboys the krausen had formed only on the side that touched the other carboy...probably reacting to the heat of the first fermentation....but it was like symbiotic or something...

With living micro-organisms there is always a wildcard factor in play. Two complete fermentations (and bottle conditioning is just another fermentation) can behave differently due to even the slightest change in enviorment, especially temps.

I don't touch my first beer til it's been 3 weeks in the bottle, then I chill one or 2 for a day or so, and try then.....if they're not carbed or conditioned, I wait another week or two and try again. If you have a pipeline, you may not even get around to a batch until it's ready....

__________________

Like my snazzy new avatar? Get Sons of Zymurgy swag, here, and brew with the best.

Revvy's one of the cool reverends. He has a Harley and a t-shirt that says on the back "If you can read this, the bitch was Raptured. - Madman

I gotta tell ya, just between us girls, that Revvy is HOT. Very tall, gorgeous grey hair and a terrific smile. He's very good looking in person, with a charismatic personality... he drives like a ****ing maniac! - YooperBrew

Revvy is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 11-01-2011, 02:45 PM   #3
MakeshiftBrew
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Columbus, Ohio
Posts: 66
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts
Likes Given: 1

Default

Cold temperatures increase bottle conditioning time but decrease Kegging time. I'm going to assume different yeasts carb faster than others probably due to their attenuation. IME 2 to 3 weeks results in a complete carbonation.

__________________
May your yeast live long and prosper.
MakeshiftBrew is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 11-01-2011, 02:46 PM   #4
BadWolfBrewing
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Madison, WI
Posts: 399
Liked 50 Times on 35 Posts
Likes Given: 1

Default

good answer, thanks.

pipeline, that is what I need.

__________________
BadWolfBrewing is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 11-01-2011, 02:58 PM   #5
Revvy
Post Hoc Ergo Propter Hoc
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Revvy's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: "Detroitish" Michigan
Posts: 40,804
Liked 2710 Times on 1629 Posts
Likes Given: 3484

Default

I think stuff like this really is only a concern to those of you who haven't brewed all that long. Because once you have a pipeline (keg or bottle) you will be leaving your beer plenty of time to be ready...just because you'll have more beer that you know what to do with...and if for example you keg you may only have 2 kegs in your setup, and may have four more beers in line, maybe 1 in long primary, one bulk aging with oak in a secondary and two just sitting in kegs....or like me, a bunch of milk crates full of beer in bottles, plus a few full fermenters. (I have nine fermenters, last I counted.)

By the time you finish a batch, the next one will be ready to drink.....

I wrote this awhile ago...It should give you an idea about a typical pipeline.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Revvy
I think a lot of new brewers stress this out too much.

I mean, I sort of understand, you want to drink your beers, now.

But honestly, the difference between good beer, and great beer, is simply a few more weeks.

When you brew a lot, and start to build a pipeline, you are used to waiting, because you have batches at different stages, fermenting, secondarying, lagering, bottle conditioning and drinking.

And you can't drink everything at once anyway.

For example right now I have a red and an ipa that I am drinking currently. I have a chocolate mole porter that is sort of coming into it's own, that I am entering in a contest the first week of Feb.

I have a few bottles of my year old Belgian Strong Dark, that is still aging, and I pull one out every now and then.

I Have a vienna lager in a secondary lagering for at least another two weeks, if not more.

I am going to probably bottle my Belgian wit this weekend, or I may give it another week to clear, but more than likely I will bottle sooner rather than later since it's coming up on a month in Primary, and I'm on a wit kick right now (in fact I've been buying wits lately rather than drink my red and ipa.)

I also have a 2.5 gallon barelywine that I partigyle brewed on New Years eve which more than likely will get racked to a secondary for a few months, and then bottle conditioned for a few more.

The second runnings, which is sort of a dark amber ale, I will more than likely bottle soon, I'm not sure. I really haven't looked at it and the barelywine since I brewed it.

And I am thinking about brewing something this weekend, maybe another lager.....

As you can see I have beers at all stages or fermentation, so if something needs a few extra weeks to carb, or condition, I'm not going to sweat it. I'm about quality beer anyway. If nothings not to my liking/readiness, then I go buy some.

I've only ever made one mild, most of my beers are 1.060 or higher, so they're going to take longer.

I'm not out to win any races, I'm out to make tasty beer.

Hell I once found a bottle in the back of my fridge that had been there 3 months. It was pretty amazing; crystal clear and the cake in the bottom was so tight that you could upend the bottle over the glass and not one drop of yeast fell in the glass.
Give it time and you'll have the same thing happening.

__________________

Like my snazzy new avatar? Get Sons of Zymurgy swag, here, and brew with the best.

Revvy's one of the cool reverends. He has a Harley and a t-shirt that says on the back "If you can read this, the bitch was Raptured. - Madman

I gotta tell ya, just between us girls, that Revvy is HOT. Very tall, gorgeous grey hair and a terrific smile. He's very good looking in person, with a charismatic personality... he drives like a ****ing maniac! - YooperBrew

Revvy is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 11-01-2011, 03:01 PM   #6
unionrdr
Wannabe author
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
unionrdr's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Sheffield, Ohio
Posts: 27,892
Liked 1842 Times on 1624 Posts
Likes Given: 1312

Default

I think maybe I can color up the gray area a little bit. I'm starting to see that it's not just a function of OG,temps,add infinitum. But the actual grains employed in creating the wort,be it AG or extract,DME or LME. Where it comes from,What color malt it is,& how much is used in total. I'm seeing that darker beers need more time to carb and condition.
My Whiskely ale,based on a dark ale recipe with bourbon soaked French oak,took 9 weeks & 6 days to condition properly. OG was only 1.050.
My Burton ale was OG 1.065,& it's on it's forth week working down to FG now. It's a sort of rusty amber golden brown color as well.
Now,as to fridge time,it seems to be the same deal. That dark ale Whiskely took a solid 2 weeks in the fridge to get decent carbonation & a good 2-3 finger head. Other ales (APA/IPA,& the like had very thick head,& very good carbonation to the last chug.
So I would have to say how much the grains are roasted & what type of species of Barley/local type is being used by you or the maltster in what country also has some bearing,I think possibly a density thing in the grain itself due to species/sub species,local soil & weather,etc. It all would have some bearing on the density of the grain cernals used in our malts.
So it's not just OG,it's something to do with the grains making differing densities,That cause more or less conditioning/fridge times,ime. Hope this treatise makes sense,i'm trying to explain a pattern I'm starting to see.
__________________
Everything works if ya let it-Roady(meatloaf)
My new book is on Amazon Kindle! http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00L3MCU0W
unionrdr is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 11-15-2011, 04:58 AM   #7
Trippel-A
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Trippel-A's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Oak Park, IL
Posts: 278
Liked 20 Times on 17 Posts
Likes Given: 117

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by unionrdr View Post
So it's not just OG, it's something to do with the grains making differing densities, That cause more or less conditioning/fridge times.
The problem with this is that gravity IS density. Or, slightly more specifically, it's the density of a liquid in comparison to the density of water. Higher gravity means the liquid is more dense, and the color of the liquid is not necessarily related.
__________________
Trippel-A is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 11-15-2011, 05:31 PM   #8
unionrdr
Wannabe author
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
unionrdr's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Sheffield, Ohio
Posts: 27,892
Liked 1842 Times on 1624 Posts
Likes Given: 1312

Default

I understand what you're saying TA,but in my experiences thus far,ithe amount of roast being color related as well as flavor,has some baring on it. My darker ales seemed to take longer to condition well. So it seemed to me it's not just SG (density) in the usual sense. But how much the grains used are roasted as to how fast or slow they condition at that stage.
__________________
Everything works if ya let it-Roady(meatloaf)
My new book is on Amazon Kindle! http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00L3MCU0W
unionrdr is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Reply


Quick Reply
Message:
Options
Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
General guidelines to laying out your hop schedule MBasile General Techniques 17 11-13-2011 09:33 AM
Overshooting gravity outside of style guidelines dmfa200 General Techniques 3 12-19-2010 01:26 AM
Are there guidelines for aging? jacksonbrown General Techniques 11 05-07-2008 05:49 PM
New BJCP Guidelines are Published FlyGuy General Techniques 0 02-09-2008 07:16 AM