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Old 01-11-2008, 11:56 PM   #1
Rivercat96
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Default 5 gallons or 5.5

I saw someone post a thread a few weeks ago that talked about using 5.5 gallons of water instead of the normal 5 gallons for a extract brew. I couldn't find the thread again so wanted to know if anyone sees a problem using a half gallon more water in the wort? I wanted to add the extra half gallon so I would compensate for the loss of beer through evaporation and transferring between containers. I don't see why it'd be a problem other than it would water down the beer a small amount. Thoughts anybody? Thanks.

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Old 01-12-2008, 12:54 AM   #2
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When I did extract brews, I cooled my wort, then poured it through a strainer into my fermenter. The strainer caught all the coagulated gunk from the hot and cold breaks, so I never lost more than a quart through sediment in the primary. Now I brew all grain and use a counter flow wort chiller. All of the cold break piles up in the bottom of my fermenter, so I usuall shoot for about 5.5 gallons post-boil.

If you have extra malt extract sitting around, you could add a few ounces of that and an extar quart of water. Really though, the loss of volume is small and doesn't affect the quality beer, so why mess with pre-formulated recipes.

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Old 01-12-2008, 01:19 AM   #3
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Do it when you transfer your wort to your fermenter. I top up to 5.25-5.5gal all the time with no troubles.

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Old 01-12-2008, 02:03 AM   #4
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90% of my brews are 5.25 gals, the other 10% are 5.5 gals.

It really depends on if you are trying to hit a target OG of if you just want to make sure you bottle 5 gals after all the testing/sampling/racking.

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Old 01-12-2008, 07:46 PM   #5
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Thanks for the feedback folks. I knew it wasn't a big deal to add an extra half gallon to the primary but I kinda wanted to know what everyone else does. I actually brewed last night and added a total of 5.25 gallons. Happy brewing.

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Old 01-12-2008, 10:34 PM   #6
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The only drawbacks to adding too much water are it's thinner and has less alcoholic brew...that is unless the predicted OG is met then all's well.

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