The Great Bottle Opener Giveaway

Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > General Techniques > hydrometer/ SG reading question

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 03-07-2011, 03:11 PM   #1
Djuhnk
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Lake Park, MN
Posts: 57
Liked 4 Times on 3 Posts

Default hydrometer/ SG reading question

first off, i want to say i did a search on this but couldnt find anything helpful within the first 30 min so i decided to make a thread

i did my first all grain brew 2 weeks ago, here are the grains i used
8 lbs 2 row
2 lb 75l caramunich
4 oz simpsons chocolate
4 oz de-husked carafan 2
2 lb oats (flaked)

i started the mash at about 145 and gradually increased the temperature for 50 minutes or so until i was around 160 F. I never did a starch test with iodine because i thought it had converted for sure. i never ended up doing any SG readings either because all my prior beer has turned out to be fantastic no matter what. Anyways.. it sat in the primary for about 9 days and there was a significant yeast cake at the bottom so i never thought about it. after a week in the keg, i force carbed it and sampled it. it tastes horrible, like hop water, no maltiness or body whatsoever. just dark flavor and hops.

This time around i did an AG surly bender clone. I did a starch test at the end of my 50 min single infusion mash at 152 F and still found some starch present. the wort tasted very sweet so i decided to chill it and stick in in the primary anyways. This time i also took a hydrometer reading and found an initial gravity of 1.060 and 6% potential alchohol.

im worried about how this one is going to turn out. My question is: can a hydrometer reading be off because it detected starches in the wort. or does it only detect sugar

__________________
Djuhnk is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 03-07-2011, 03:41 PM   #2
Pappers_
Moderator
HBT_MODERATOR.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Pappers_'s Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jan 2009
Location: Chicago
Posts: 11,477
Liked 865 Times on 622 Posts
Likes Given: 1920

Default

First, ignore the "potential alcohol" scale on the hydrometer - that is for wine or other beverages that ferment completely out, to dryness, which is not what happens with beer.

Secondly, your hydrometer reading isn't 'off'. Assuming that your hydrometer isn't broken and you're taking the reading when the wort is around room temperature, if the hydrometer says your original gravity is 1.060, that's what it is. What you don't know is how fermentable is your wort - how much of your wort sugars will be eaten up by the yeasties and how much will be left.

I would suggest just relaxing, let it ferment out and see where the final gravity ends up. I suspect your beer will be just fine! Cheers,

Jim

Pappers_ is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 03-07-2011, 03:47 PM   #3
MalFet
/bɪər nərd/
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 1 reviews
 
MalFet's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: NYC / Kathmandu
Posts: 8,177
Liked 1216 Times on 804 Posts
Likes Given: 551

Default

A hydrometer reading will indeed reflect solublized starches, but a positive starch reading doesn't necessarily mean that you still had starches present in your beer. Starch tests can actually be somewhat hard to read at times, and will give false positives if you've got small bits of grain solids floating about.

I'd need more information to comment on what went wrong in the first batch, but I wouldn't be too worried about this one. Braukaiser.com has some good info about how to perform starch tests for future reference.

__________________
MalFet is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 03-07-2011, 06:11 PM   #4
Djuhnk
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jan 2011
Location: Lake Park, MN
Posts: 57
Liked 4 Times on 3 Posts

Default

thanks for the quick response guys. for this latest batch i was thinking that there had to be some unconvertable starch or some grain solids floating around in the spoon sample that i used to drop the iodine on.. there had to be something wrong because that wort tasted soo sweet..

ill have to do some more reading and see what this one turns out like, its just so hard to waste all those good grains.

__________________
Djuhnk 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
Getting a gravity reading without hydrometer JorgeIsKing General Techniques 4 01-09-2011 07:58 PM
When to Take Hydrometer Reading!? shot0rum247 General Techniques 9 07-06-2008 07:11 PM
When to take hydrometer reading cellardoor General Techniques 1 03-25-2008 01:53 AM
Getting A Hydrometer Reading BNVince General Techniques 11 08-05-2007 03:18 AM
Hydrometer reading Kokamantratarius General Techniques 7 04-15-2007 11:21 PM



Newest Threads