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Old 10-23-2013, 07:12 PM   #761
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I actually have had problems with getting an even mix from the racking alone. Regardless, I changed my bottling routine to include a verrrry gentle stir at 1/3 full, 2/3 full, and when finished. This did improve the consistency of my carbonation without any side effects. Just be sure to maintain good sanitization processes and do not get too aggressive with the stirring.
Previously I was gently stirring because I too suspect there's problems with the level of inconsistency in distribution with racking alone. This time, using recommendation from this thread, no stir but instead put 1/2 of the priming mix at bottom then 1/2 about 50% done with racking. I sampled a bottle from the tail end of the bottling process (I label a few caps so I can track) at two weeks conditioning and there was very little carbonation (used 5 oz corn sugar for 5 gals). I'll check another in about a week from early and late in bottling process to see if there's difference.
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Old 10-23-2013, 08:45 PM   #762
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Previously I was gently stirring because I too suspect there's problems with the level of inconsistency in distribution with racking alone. This time, using recommendation from this thread, no stir but instead put 1/2 of the priming mix at bottom then 1/2 about 50% done with racking. I sampled a bottle from the tail end of the bottling process (I label a few caps so I can track) at two weeks conditioning and there was very little carbonation (used 5 oz corn sugar for 5 gals). I'll check another in about a week from early and late in bottling process to see if there's difference.
The solution should mix pretty homogeneously with just the agitation from racking. Stirring isn't providing any different type of mixing that already isn't going on. Maybe there is a small whirlpool pocket but it's hard to believe the density of the sugar is higher in certain places. Maybe the issue resides in the amount of yeast in each bottle but I can't really see a side by side experiment yielding different results as the result of a gentle stir.

But anyways, just do what works for you. I personally just try to remove as much contact with oxygen that I can.
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Old 10-23-2013, 09:50 PM   #763
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The solution should mix pretty homogeneously with just the agitation from racking. Stirring isn't providing any different type of mixing that already isn't going on. Maybe there is a small whirlpool pocket but it's hard to believe the density of the sugar is higher in certain places. Maybe the issue resides in the amount of yeast in each bottle but I can't really see a side by side experiment yielding different results as the result of a gentle stir.

But anyways, just do what works for you. I personally just try to remove as much contact with oxygen that I can.
See my post above.

I've tried the approach of adding some sugar solution at the beginning and some at the middle of the racking process, but still have had issues with consistency. Not sure what causes it, but I found a solution through gentle stirring. This is based on a lot of experimentation (i.e., enough batches to see the difference).

And yes, as always, YMMV. Experiment and find what works for you, dear reader.
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Old 10-23-2013, 10:45 PM   #764
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See my post above.

I've tried the approach of adding some sugar solution at the beginning and some at the middle of the racking process, but still have had issues with consistency. Not sure what causes it, but I found a solution through gentle stirring. This is based on a lot of experimentation (i.e., enough batches to see the difference).

And yes, as always, YMMV. Experiment and find what works for you, dear reader.

You cannot narrow the inconsistencies down to stirring and not stirring unless you split a batch and priming solution. The inconsistencies could be from the particular batches you're comparing, or one of many other factors such as temperature and time or different yeast strains. I'm not disagreeing with you that it helps or not but you cannot assume the causation is one particular thing, even if it makes the most sense. I would be interested in someone splitting the process to make it an experiment and not inferring anything. Of course this is hard to do on the homebrew level, racking the bottom of the carboy could put more yeast in one and not the other. My guess is there wouldn't be a huge difference between the two processes.
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Old 10-23-2013, 11:25 PM   #765
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You cannot narrow the inconsistencies down to stirring and not stirring unless you split a batch and priming solution. The inconsistencies could be from the particular batches you're comparing, or one of many other factors such as temperature and time or different yeast strains. I'm not disagreeing with you that it helps or not but you cannot assume the causation is one particular thing, even if it makes the most sense. I would be interested in someone splitting the process to make it an experiment and not inferring anything. Of course this is hard to do on the homebrew level, racking the bottom of the carboy could put more yeast in one and not the other. My guess is there wouldn't be a huge difference between the two processes.
Maybe it's the yeast. Sugar should be fairly consistent, as it is highly soluble in water. But yeast cells are in suspension and maybe--with certain strains--some of them floc out during their time in the bottling bucket, or at least there is a gradient of yeast concentration between the top of it and the bottom.
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Old 10-24-2013, 12:53 AM   #766
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Maybe it's the yeast. Sugar should be fairly consistent, as it is highly soluble in water. But yeast cells are in suspension and maybe--with certain strains--some of them floc out during their time in the bottling bucket, or at least there is a gradient of yeast concentration between the top of it and the bottom.
If that is the case, stirring would help. But you cannot discount other possible causes like say, using a different amount of priming sugar between batches (or type of sugar, but that is easy to control).
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Old 10-24-2013, 12:56 PM   #767
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If that is the case, stirring would help. But you cannot discount other possible causes like say, using a different amount of priming sugar between batches (or type of sugar, but that is easy to control).
And for that reason I stir. And I give it another gentle stir right before I start filling bottles.
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Old 11-20-2013, 08:08 PM   #768
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Thanks for all of the info...a great all around help for a newbie! You state that you put the bottles in a warm closet for three weeks. Here's my question...how warm is too warm? , because I have a heating duct running through the closet. All of my beers have been fine until now, but I started in March, and this is the first real heat my bottles will run into...

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Old 11-20-2013, 10:33 PM   #769
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Thanks for all of the info...a great all around help for a newbie! You state that you put the bottles in a warm closet for three weeks. Here's my question...how warm is too warm? , because I have a heating duct running through the closet. All of my beers have been fine until now, but I started in March, and this is the first real heat my bottles will run into...
I asked a similar question when I started brewing and Revvy said not to worry about going too warm for those first few weeks. It's somewhere way back in this thread I believe. I suppose there is an upper limit but you're not likely to hit it.
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Old 11-20-2013, 11:21 PM   #770
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I asked a similar question when I started brewing and Revvy said not to worry about going too warm for those first few weeks. It's somewhere way back in this thread I believe. I suppose there is an upper limit but you're not likely to hit it.
It isn't about an upper limit or lower limit. There is no defined temperature that makes it "good" or "bad" aging, it is just a chemical process. CO2 production and absorption are both a process of temperature and time so you're just adjusting one of those variables. The yeast would benefit from a similar temperature of fermentation but there is such little activity by the yeast you won't notice much. If you made it warmer the yeast would work faster, but less CO2 would get absorbed. This is when you would put it it in the fridge once the CO2 production is complete. There is more to aging than just CO2 absorption so you can't really replace time, but the temperature is just a variable in a process.

Though theoretically you wouldn't want it to reach pasteurize temperatures because it would kill the yeast.
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