Get your HBT Growlers, Shirts and Membership before the Rush!


Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > General Beer Discussion > My first homebrew -- HELP!
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 07-05-2006, 06:49 PM   #1
tockeyhockey
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 71
Default My first homebrew -- HELP!

I was hoping someone could give me some peace of mind regarding my first home brew. I am using a basic ale kit that I bought at the brewery outlet along with the plastic tub that came with the kit.

Everything went well until the third day of fermenting, when the CO2 stopped coming through the airlock. Is this normal?

Also, I can't seem to find a way to get the temperature down below 72 F, even though my house is pretty cool and I have the fermenter in the basement. Right now, my thermometer reads about 74 F. Will that kill my yeast and ruin my beer?

What strategies do you recommend to cool down a plastic fermenter that doesn't seem to conduct heat away at all?

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

__________________
tockeyhockey is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 07-05-2006, 06:55 PM   #2
Walker
I use secondaries. :p
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Walker's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Cary, NC
Posts: 11,236
Liked 89 Times on 79 Posts
Likes Given: 11

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by tockeyhockey
Everything went well until the third day of fermenting, when the CO2 stopped coming through the airlock. Is this normal?
It's gotta stop at some point!

My batches usually bubble for 3 to 5 days. The warmer the temp, the faster the ferment. If you're at 74°F, 3 days seems fine to me.

Quote:
Originally Posted by tockeyhockey
Also, I can't seem to find a way to get the temperature down below 72 F, even though my house is pretty cool and I have the fermenter in the basement. Right now, my thermometer reads about 74 F. Will that kill my yeast and ruin my beer?

What strategies do you recommend to cool down a plastic fermenter that doesn't seem to conduct heat away at all?
74°F is not terrible, so I wouldn't worry too much about it. You might get more estery flavors than intended, but the yeast will certianly not die and the beer will not be ruined.

There are a number of tricks you can use to keep the fermenter a little cooler than the ambient temp. A very popular one is to wrap a wet towel or t-shirt around the fermenter. The evaporation of the water in the cloth will cool the fermenter a few degrees.

Another method is to put the fermenter in a big bucket of water. This will help regulate the temp as the day's temp warms and cools. If you want to keep it even cooler, you can put some ice in the water-bath.

The more expensive solution is to get an old fridge or freezer and hook it up to an external thermostat to keep the temp exactly where you want it.

-walker
__________________
Ground Fault Brewing Co.
Walker is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 07-05-2006, 06:58 PM   #3
RichBrewer
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
RichBrewer's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: Denver, Colorado
Posts: 5,767
Liked 85 Times on 41 Posts
Likes Given: 77

Default

At 72 to 74 degrees, your fermentation is probably complete. That is at the upper end of the temp range for ales. I wouldn't worry about it too much I bet the beer will be good. You can keep it in the primary for about 2 weeks total or you can rack into the secondary. I've heard of folks keeping their fermenter in a cool water bath or wrapping it in a wet towel to keep the temps lowered.
RDWHAHB
Or in your case RDWHA beer from your favorite brewery.

__________________

Cheers,
Rich

RichBrewer is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 07-05-2006, 07:03 PM   #4
tockeyhockey
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 71
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by RichBrewer
At 72 to 74 degrees, your fermentation is probably complete. That is at the upper end of the temp range for ales. I wouldn't worry about it too much I bet the beer will be good. You can keep it in the primary for about 2 weeks total or you can rack into the secondary. I've heard of folks keeping their fermenter in a cool water bath or wrapping it in a wet towel to keep the temps lowered.
RDWHAHB
Or in your case RDWHA beer from your favorite brewery.
Thanks. So if my specific gravity is close to where the recipe says it should be, I should siphon it off into another fermenter and let it sit for a while? How long before I can bottle it?
__________________
tockeyhockey is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 07-05-2006, 07:04 PM   #5
homebrewer_99
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
homebrewer_99's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Atkinson (near the Quad Cities), IL
Posts: 17,951
Liked 89 Times on 77 Posts
Likes Given: 1

Default

Let it sit in the secondary for about 1-2 weeks or until the gravity is within range for the final gravity AND the beer has cleared.

__________________
HB Bill
homebrewer_99 is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 07-05-2006, 07:08 PM   #6
tockeyhockey
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 71
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by homebrewer_99
Let it sit in the secondary for about 1-2 weeks or until the gravity is within range for the final gravity AND the beer has cleared.
and just to be sure -- the secondary fermenter is the second bucket i got with my equipment kit -- the one that has a bottling spigot on the bottom? just siphon it over, wait a couple of weeks, take another specific gravity check, and then bottle?
__________________
tockeyhockey is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 07-05-2006, 07:11 PM   #7
Walker
I use secondaries. :p
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Walker's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Cary, NC
Posts: 11,236
Liked 89 Times on 79 Posts
Likes Given: 11

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by tockeyhockey
and just to be sure -- the secondary fermenter is the second bucket i got with my equipment kit -- the one that has a bottling spigot on the bottom? just siphon it over, wait a couple of weeks, take another specific gravity check, and then bottle?
nope.. that's your bottling bucket.

You'll get some sediment at the bottom of the secondary fermenter, so if you bottle straight from that, you might end up with a lot of crud in the bottles.

For your next batch, use that spigoted bucket for your PRIMARY, rack to the non-spigoted bucket as a secondary, then rack back to the spigoted bucket to bottle.

Since you already have the non-spigot bucket as your primary, I'd let the beer sit in there for about 1.5 to 2 weeks, then rack to the bottling bucket and immediately into the bottles. I brewed many batches this wey in the past.

-walker
__________________
Ground Fault Brewing Co.
Walker is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 07-05-2006, 07:15 PM   #8
homebrewer_99
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
homebrewer_99's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Feb 2005
Location: Atkinson (near the Quad Cities), IL
Posts: 17,951
Liked 89 Times on 77 Posts
Likes Given: 1

Default

...as Walker-san said...or you could sanitize your bottling bucket and rack into it then clean out you primary and re-rack into your primary, but that's a lot of wasted time and effort.

Personally, I'd let it sit in the primary and go get another bucket, or better yet a carboy, for a secondary.

__________________
HB Bill
homebrewer_99 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
My first homebrew flylock_jac Home Brewing Photo Forum 6 02-10-2009 12:22 AM
Just had my first Homebrew ClutchDude General Beer Discussion 3 04-06-2008 03:21 AM
New to homebrew moto36 Introductions 6 02-06-2007 12:19 AM
Just tried my first homebrew weekendBrewer Extract Brewing 7 01-23-2007 05:46 PM



Newest Threads

LATEST SPONSOR DEALS