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Old 10-22-2009, 01:21 AM   #1
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Default Fermenting finished or not? Unsure about the signs

Hello,

My Muntons Winter Warmer had a FG of 1020 two days ago, and it was still 1020 today. When I press down on the lid of the barrel so the lid is flat it rasies again after a while so it becomes swollen again. Does that mean that it's still fermenting even though the FG seems to have stopped at 1020?

Read that Muntons is known for a FG of 1020 when it's finished.

The airlock seems dead.

Thanks in advance for any advice.

Edited: OG > FG

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Old 10-22-2009, 01:25 AM   #2
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If the FG is unchanging, it's done.

I'd still leave it for at least a couple of weeks before bottling, though, especially if it's a beer that can use a little mellowing/

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Old 10-22-2009, 01:33 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by YooperBrew View Post
If the FG is unchanging, it's done.

I'd still leave it for at least a couple of weeks before bottling, though, especially if it's a beer that can use a little mellowing/

Ok, thank you!
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Old 10-22-2009, 06:09 PM   #4
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does aging in the fermenter have a different affect than say...bottling and aging in bottles?

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Old 10-22-2009, 06:22 PM   #5
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What the airlock does really doesn't matter. That's NOT the best gauge of knowing what your beer is doing.

airlock bubbling, lack of airlock bubbling, stopped airlock bubbling, fast airlock bubbling, slow airlcok bubbling, heavy metal airlcok bubbling, or disco airlock bubbling really is not an indicator of what is happening to your beer, really isn't important, and it is NOT an accurate gauge of fermentation.

If your airlock was bubbling and stopped---It doesn't mean fermentation has stopped.

If you airlock isn't bubbling, it doesn't mean your fermentation hasn't started....

If your airlock starts bubbling, it really doesn't matter.

If your airlock NEVER bubbles, it doesn't mean anything is wrong or right.

Your airlock is not a fermentation gauge, it is a VALVE to release excess co2.

Fermentation is not always "dynamic," just because you don't SEE anything happening, doesn't mean that anything's wrong, and also doesn't mean that the yeast are still not working dilligantly away, doing what they've been doing for over 4,000 years....


The only way to truly know what is going on in your fermenter is with your hydrometer. Like I said here in my blog, which I encourage you to read, Think evaluation before action you sure as HELL wouldn't want a doctor to start cutting on you unless he used the proper diagnostic instuments like x-rays first, right? You wouldn't want him to just take a look in your eyes briefly and say "I'm cutting into your chest first thing in the morning." You would want them to use the right diagnostic tools before the slice and dice, right? You'd cry malpractice, I would hope, if they didn't say they were sending you for an MRI and other things before going in.....

So after it's been about 10 days take a hydrometer reading and see whare the beer's at. And just becasue the yeast if finished fermenting doesn't mean it's job is done, the yeast, if given time likes to clean up after itself, getting rid of all the byproducts of fermentation that leads to off flavors.

That's why you will find many of us leave our beers in primary for a month.

Even John Palmer in How to brew says;

Quote:
Leaving an ale beer in the primary fermentor for a total of 2-3 weeks (instead of just the one week most canned kits recommend), will provide time for the conditioning reactions and improve the beer. This extra time will also let more sediment settle out before bottling, resulting in a clearer beer and easier pouring. And, three weeks in the primary fermentor is usually not enough time for off-flavors to occur.
I tell new brewers to forget what their airlock does or doesn't do, it's really a flawed tool, and not a "gauge of fermentation."

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Old 10-23-2009, 01:49 AM   #6
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Great explanation Revvy. If I didn't only have one fermentation at a time I might have had the patience to wait that long. Bottled 51 bottles of Muntons Winter Warmer last night.

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Old 10-23-2009, 02:13 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Revvy View Post
You wouldn't want him to just take a look in your eyes briefly and say "I'm cutting into your chest first thing in the morning."
My doctor wants to see my junk regardless of what's wrong. You could walk in with a cold, and it wouldn't matter. So yeah, I could totally see him wanting to cut into my chest.
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Old 10-23-2009, 02:24 AM   #8
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My doctor wants to see my junk regardless of what's wrong. You could walk in with a cold, and it wouldn't matter. So yeah, I could totally see him wanting to cut into my chest.
HAHA.. This made me laugh pretty hard..
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Old 10-23-2009, 03:08 AM   #9
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#1 lesson for a newer brewer is patience. I think starting out I would have been best served to pitch the yeast and put the fermenter away without checking for 3 weeks. 9999 times out 10000 after 3 weeks of being left alone you will have awesome beer.

During my limited personal experience I have found time in the fermenter and fermentation temperature to be the two most important factors.

long time in fermenter + cool steady temperatures = good beer

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Old 12-19-2011, 05:35 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by permo View Post
#1 lesson for a newer brewer is patience. I think starting out I would have been best served to pitch the yeast and put the fermenter away without checking for 3 weeks. 9999 times out 10000 after 3 weeks of being left alone you will have awesome beer.

During my limited personal experience I have found time in the fermenter and fermentation temperature to be the two most important factors.

long time in fermenter + cool steady temperatures = good beer
This is the type of advice that I have been looking for. Every site that I enter seems to have different advice. Some swear by the SG method, some by less than a bubble/min, than others by the calendar no matter what. I am a perfectionist by nature and tend to over analize and fuss over things which do not require it. I want to keep home brewing fun and enjoy the product when it finishes. I have my first batch of Irish Pub Draught in a glass carboy with blow off tube. It has been there now for 10 days and the bubbles are sporatic and range from a minute apart or more and not consistantly (apart from being at least a minute apart). I do have my OG at 1.048. I also do not want to waste beer every time I take a gravity reading as it is only a 2 gal batch. What is recommended if I don't wish to waste beer measuring FG and yet wish to be accurate in bottling? Have brewers always had hydrometers? What was done a few hundred years ago to accomplish the same results?

Thank you,

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