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Old 02-18-2013, 05:24 PM   #1
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Default When is fermentation complete?

Brewed the DOZE IPA from morebeer this weekend and one of the things I hate when getting recipes from morebeer is then never list what the final OG should be.

Typically I give 2-3 weeks before bottling or kegging but I would like to be sure next time. Should I just take a reading after 2 weeks and just assume its done if its below 1.020? If the airlock is not showing any activity after 2 weeks does this mean fermentation is completed?

Also, when taking readings from the fermenter, is there a preferred way to do this? I use a bucket with a spigot but whenever I try to take a reading I always get a **** load of hops and garbage in my hydrometer. Any suggestions?

Thanks

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Old 02-18-2013, 06:15 PM   #2
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Wait 2-3 weeks and take your first reading. Wait another 3 days and take another reading. If readings are the same, it is finished. If 2nd reading is lower than first, it's still fermenting, so give it another week and repeat. You know it's done when you get two straight readings that are the same over a period of 3 days.

Carefully open the lid and dip a sanitized measuring cup to pull a sample. You only need about 1/2 cup or so. Or, get a wine thief and use that to pull your sample. Either way, you'll need to open the lid. If you want to really be cautious, take a spray bottle of Starsan and spray around the lid before opening it.

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Old 02-18-2013, 09:25 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LLBeanJ View Post
Wait 2-3 weeks and take your first reading. Wait another 3 days and take another reading. If readings are the same, it is finished. If 2nd reading is lower than first, it's still fermenting, so give it another week and repeat. You know it's done when you get two straight readings that are the same over a period of 3 days.

Carefully open the lid and dip a sanitized measuring cup to pull a sample. You only need about 1/2 cup or so. Or, get a wine thief and use that to pull your sample. Either way, you'll need to open the lid. If you want to really be cautious, take a spray bottle of Starsan and spray around the lid before opening it.
Great post. Ill have to look into getting a wine thief. Any suggestions?
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Old 02-19-2013, 12:39 PM   #4
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I don't use a thief myself, so I can't really offer any suggestions. Maybe other posters will jump in with a recommendation or two.

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Old 02-19-2013, 12:43 PM   #5
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Your LHBS or online will have one. I'd avoid the glass ones--just one more thing to go wrong. They will be a long plastic tube with a small home over the back end that you cover to hold in the beer when sampling. Not much can go wrong with a plastic thief if you sanitize properly.

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Old 02-19-2013, 12:52 PM   #6
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I sanitize a glass measuring cup and take out 2/3c from the top.

For how many days to wait between measurements see here:
http://woodlandbrew.blogspot.com/201...ermenting.html

How to predict fermentation completion:
http://woodlandbrew.blogspot.com/201...tion-time.html

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