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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Fermentation & Yeast > over carbonated after bottling - need help
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Old 09-30-2012, 02:07 PM   #1
razzle
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Default over carbonated after bottling - need help

i think this might be the dumbest post i've ever made, but honestly i need to ask it, because i feel like a dork when i go into my homebrew store now. i gave the owner two samples of my black raspberry ale (2 different batches), and her comment was "it was really bubbly" - is it because i bottled too soon? after reading some of the posts about fermentation times, i feel like a newbie (although i've brewed 16 batches over 3 years) - i move to secondary after 1 week, and then bottle after 1-2 weeks. gravity has been fine, but if i'm using the correct amount of priming sugar, and my bottles have never exploded, what the heck am i doing wrong? they're all super carbonated. except my oatmeal stout, which came out hardly carbonated at all - almost flat, which is not really that pleasant IMO

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Old 09-30-2012, 05:40 PM   #2
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IMO you should be keeping the beer in primary for 2 weeks and then go to secondary if that what you like to do.

Was it raspberry extract or actual fruit? You may have gotten secondary fermentation that caused the over carbonation.

What is your bottling process and how much sugar are you using?

How long are you keeping in the fridge prior to drinking?

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Old 09-30-2012, 09:57 PM   #3
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Personally I think most kits and recipes result in over carbonation. 5 ounces for 5 gallons is too fizzy for me for nearly all styles. But different people have different tolerance for carbonation.

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Old 10-01-2012, 06:08 PM   #4
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this is a 5-gallon partial mash, not a kit. the grains are crushed at time of purchase, the malt is fresh as are the pellet hops and Wyeast liquid yeast. The fruit is fresh, well, frozen. Wild black raspberries from my garden, added 2.5 lbs for the last 10 minutes of the boil. Cool to 70 degrees, pitched yeast, set up primary fermentation at room temperature. After 1 week, I've moved it to secondary. Usually only keep it in secondary a week or two, check gravity, then move to a bottling bucket with 3/4 cup priming sugar. Fill 48-52 sanitized bottles to within 2", and cap. Store at room temperature for 2-3 weeks, and then only refrigerate the ones I'll be consuming within 24 hrs. I wonder if there is some secondary carbonation, but maybe I'm just to anxious to move from primary to secondary, and then to bottling. I don't usually store them in the fridge, since the flavors improve the longer it sits. But I do have an over-carbonation problem.

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Old 10-01-2012, 06:38 PM   #5
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I used to over carbonate and under carbonate all the time until I went out and bought a scale to weigh the sugar instead of measuring by volume. There are several online calculators: http://www.tastybrew.com/calculators/priming.html or you can use CP's Brew Chart: http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f84/cps-...-3-0-a-224451/
I also think 2" inches is a little too much air space. 24 hours is maybe not long enough in the fridge to drive the carbonation back into the beer. Those are my ideas..

Good Luck... over carbonation scares me ever since I had a bottle bomb ... scary noise and mess .... a glass grenade stuck shards of glass into the foam of my storage area.... very scary....

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Old 10-01-2012, 09:21 PM   #6
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Generally, carbing is pretty straightforward, so I'd check procedure first. Like BrewerinBR said, if you're measuring by volume and not weight, that's an easy change. Are you making sure your dosing material is well-mixed? Are you sure there's plenty of yeast in suspension in the case of undercarbed beer? Have you waited long enough? Is the beer infection-free? How much CO2 is already in solution at bottling?

If your procedure is correct, you should be able to really nail down carbonation levels. The biggest area of guesswork would be how much CO2 is in solution at bottling, which most calculators derive from the temperature of the beer.

If you are sure none of that is the problem, you might not have a problem. Everyone's palette is different, and what might have seemed over-carbed to the LHBS owner would be just fine or enjoyable to someone else. If it seems over to you, and you're sure its nothing procedural, just start dialing back your priming sugar until you get a lever you're happy with.

Finally, if you just can't get to a happy place, call/email the closest 10kbbl+ micro and ask if they wouldn't mind testing a bottle for you. Not every brewer will have this equipment - it's pretty expensive and low on the list for things small brewers care about - and even if they do, they might not have the time or inclination to help. But it doesn't cost much to ask, right?

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