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Old 12-13-2011, 03:52 AM   #1
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Default Inconsistent bottle carbonation

I'm having issues with one bottle with tons of head and carb and the next with little or none. I put the cooled priming sugar solution in the bottling bucket first. The wort swirls the whole time it's being racked. Is that a good enough mix, cuz that's all I do?

Mike

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Old 12-13-2011, 04:10 AM   #2
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That should be yes. Sometimes you just don't luck out with it. You can try and gently stir with a racking cane, just dont splash, you don't want aeration, or you'll get off flavors.

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Old 12-13-2011, 04:17 AM   #3
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Check your capper and capping quality too. I've had "help" from friends at bottling time, and later discovered they had some lopsided or not well crimped. But from your description you probably are on the right path suspecting the mixing of priming sugars. You could try cooper's carb drops or similar products for a batch to confirm that.

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Old 12-13-2011, 04:29 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hoppybrewster View Post
I'm having issues with one bottle with tons of head and carb and the next with little or none. I put the cooled priming sugar solution in the bottling bucket first. The wort swirls the whole time it's being racked. Is that a good enough mix, cuz that's all I do?

Mike
I do the same thing and have never seen any issues from one bottle to the next. Also make sure that you are filling to the same level in each bottle. I used to fill all the way until the top with my wand still inside the bottle, but now I tend to anticipate it hitting the top of the bottle and pull it out a second before that. It all comes with practice. RDWHAHB
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Old 12-13-2011, 04:36 AM   #5
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So far I'm doing everything you guys have said. I don't get it. By the way they do all taste the same.

Mike

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Old 12-13-2011, 04:46 AM   #6
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I have had similar issues as have others who have posted on here....gentle stir after bottling bucket has filled to mix the sugar...don't do too much to oxidize.

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Old 12-13-2011, 05:14 AM   #7
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How long are you letting the bottles sit before opening? I like to try throughout the aging process (read: I'm impatient) and get a flat beer from time to time. After a month or two they're consistient.

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Old 12-13-2011, 05:50 AM   #8
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I had that problem. Instead of adding the cooled priming sugar only at the bottom, I started adding half of it at the bottom, and the other half when I'm almost done racking it into the bottling bucket. So, a little at the bottom and a little at the top, then gently stir it (without splashing). It seems like that distributes it more evenly for me.

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Old 12-13-2011, 02:05 PM   #9
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stirring sounds like the way to go. I've had similar issues, although not usually finding flat ones. I'm doing the average amount of corn sugar so I don't think it's just that I used too much, but most of my bottles have been slow volcanoes.

Maybe I'm just unlucky and I'm going to find some flat ones at the end, or I guess it's possible my yeast gave up a wee bit prematurely (although FG and time suggests not) and there was extra sugar that they found later on in the bottle?

But I was going to try a gentle stir or two once in a while as my bucket's filling after I add the sugar next time.

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Old 12-13-2011, 02:35 PM   #10
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I add all of the sugar to the bottling bucket first. Then start racking the beer on top. As the last gallon or so is coming into the bucket, I'm providing some gentle swirling with the racking tube. Not enough to induce oxygen, but enough to get that sugar fully mixed in with the beer.

Make sure that you give each bottle a minimum of 24 hours in the fridge to get the CO2 into solution. 2 or 3 days might be better. If you were to open a freshly carbonated bottle with only a few hours of fridge time, I would guess much of the CO2 is still in the headspace.

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