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Old 05-23-2013, 01:13 AM   #171
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+1 on Yoopers comment. It's pretty tough to do lagers if you can't get close to the low 50's. I brew pretty much only lagers and temp is everything. I hold the fermentation temp at 48. Since I've been holding temp from brew day to lagering, my beers have been coming out excellent.
I do a lot of lagers and I agree. They are a finicky beer. You want some maltiness, but it needs to be crisp and clear too.

I'm drinking one right now!
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Old 05-28-2013, 07:44 PM   #172
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So tonight I am going to test the gravity again. I believe it will be near terminal if not terminal.


Regardless of where its at, it is getting a diacetyl rest until next weekend, when I rack into kegs, and replace with an octoberfest brew.
I was planning to rack right onto the old yeast cake and stir with a sanitized spoon then oxygenate. I am not sure what the protocol is for oxygenating here. Normally I wouldn't oxygenate once pitched. But since this would be done basically simultaneously, I figured why not. I might consider dumping from the concial to collect the yeast, and washing it, and then trying to measure the amount of yeast cell volume via the mr malty calculator. That just seems like more ways to introduce error and contamination. I also got a stick on tape type thermometer to monitor the fermentation temp, and will try to calibrate the thermo well temp or at least determine how many degrees its off cal. I think I am also going to abandon the thermo well and just tape the probe to the conical. I am planning to use freezer tape, but still have concerns that its going to fall off the conical sidewall.

TD

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Old 05-29-2013, 12:49 AM   #173
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OK so the final, and probably terminal gravity is 1.019.

The OG was 1.048.

The expected attenuation was maximally 76% per whitelabs website. I assume this is apparent attenuation. For my brew I am at 60%. The range given for my yeast was 68-76% SO I am low.

I don't think its going to get much lower.

Well, what happened? I don't know. My other brews all attenuate correctly. I pitched a very generous and healthy starter. I oxygenated (90 sec) . Maybe I OVER oxygenated? Maybe my mash temps were incorrect, though I double check the PID/thermocouple temps with the integrated mash tun bimetallic BrewMometer, and also intermittentely with a handheld probe that is highly accurate (Thermapen).

Maybe my yeast flocculated out because my fermenter temp was too low. I have not yet verified the thermocouple temp controller accuracy.

At any rate, it is now doing a diacetly rest. Maybe the increased temps will cause fermentation to start up again, and re-suspend some yeast due to CO2 release. Who knows.. But I need the fermentation space so its either gonna fly or die.

Next up, an Oktoberfest.

Any suggestions welcomed.

Maybe its time to buy a Dissolved Oxygen meter.....

TD

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Old 06-03-2013, 10:51 PM   #174
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Brewed Oktoberfest yesterday.

10# vienna
6# munich
5# pils
1# aromatic
pinch carahell
Was planning to brew this with a enhanced double decoction, but added the aromatic instead and did direct fire mash tun heated step mash instead.

est 28 IBU Hersbrucker single 60 min addition

Mashed 100 dough in, 133 protein rest x 20, 156 x 20, 168x10.

Smelled, looked, and tasted good. OG was a tad low, but minimal soot (see below) this time. I attribute to my lack of mash stirring. about 3 points below where I was shooting. Ended up 1.056 Pre boil gravity also low though, so maybe I had poor water volume calculations or measurements.

racked onto yeast cake from Munich Helles. Couldn't chill below mid - low 60's and pitching was just racking the chiller output into conical, so ferm probably started a bit high. Was down to mid 50's by end of night though. sitting at 52 degrees now, and probably since late last night.
Got the temp controller probe taped to the side instead of as a thermowell. Reading on temp controller seems to match the stick on thermometer I bought.

The Munich Helles is probably flawed. I kegged 10 gallons, plus numerous hydrometer samples and still had about 24 oz leftover. This indicated the corn taste is probably from insufficient boil rate. Also missed target gravity, too low, by two points. That was the inaugural brew for the new burners, and some mini jets were slightly loose, with moderate soot on the boil kettle I noted. In hindsight, I probably should have washed the yeast first to rinse out any residual DMS flavor. Too late now.
After the DiAcetyl rest for a week, I cold crashed to 38 degrees, and saw renewed airlock activity which was odd. FG now down to just a hare below 1.015. Oddly Refractometer reads a 6.2 Brix, which converted to 1.010 from OG 1.048.

Used a little less oxygenation, by time, this go around, and shaked the concial like crazy hauling it to the ferm freezer where I oxygenated it. I'm planning a double bock next and then a mai bock once this is finished, then try another munich helles or german pilsner (or both) in my rotation.

TD

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Old 06-09-2013, 10:11 PM   #175
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So I tested the Oktoberfest today. 1 week after brewing
OG was 1.056
SG now by corrected hydrometer reading (actual temp 64F) 1.021, by refractometer 1.018 (corrected).

Seems like I might be doing something wrong. Been fermenting at 52F. The bad part is that I have NO IDEA what I might be doing "wrong".

Maybe its just too early to tell. I'll re-check in a week, though next weekend is HPDE time so might be more than day 14.

I'm not giving up on lagers. I wonder if switching to SafLager Dry Yeast would help. The temp strip on the conical indicates the same temp as the temp controller. No thermowell this time.

TD

EDIT- JB indicated that they tested the temp strips to an RTD probe, accurate within .1ºF and not significantly different than using a thermowell when tested against one.

bumped temp to 58ºF on the ferm freezer after I posted the last msg, and checked again today, 4 days later. Still at 1.021 by hydrometer reading. Can the CO2 in the hydroflask significantly affect the SG? Anyways, marching onwards. Thinking that the next lager on this yeast gonna get a couple packets of Saflager to the mix.

TD

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Old 06-14-2013, 03:32 AM   #176
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Help!

I made an extract with steeped grains using Wyeast Bohemian Lager Strain

Primary for 2 weeks at 67 degrees.
Secondary for 3 weeks at 35 degrees
Bottled with 5oz corn sugar.

2 weeks......no carbonation????

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Old 06-14-2013, 03:38 AM   #177
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MoreCowbell
Help!

I made an extract with steeped grains using Wyeast Bohemian Lager Strain

Primary for 2 weeks at 67 degrees.
Secondary for 3 weeks at 35 degrees
Bottled with 5oz corn sugar.

2 weeks......no carbonation????
I should add that the bottles have been around 65 and ther is no sediment at all.
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Old 06-14-2013, 02:31 PM   #178
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I should add that the bottles have been around 65 and ther is no sediment at all.
Either it's not ready yet or the beer needs to be warmed up a few degrees. I'd move half the batch to a warmer spot, give each bottle a swirl, and let it be.
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Old 06-14-2013, 03:35 PM   #179
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Sent a few home to a buddy who helped on my last brew day. His were in the mid to upper 70's and turned out great

image-981994496.jpg

I'll swirl and warm and RDWHAH :-)

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Old 06-14-2013, 03:38 PM   #180
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Good thing I had a controlled experiment going without knowing it :-)

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