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Old 08-18-2009, 02:53 AM   #1
biZurk
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Default After careful measuring, my carboy doesnt look full enough...

I am fermenting in a 5 gallon carboy, and when i compare mine with other pictures, my carboy seems its at maybe 4 gallons? My question is, when the fermenting is complete, can i add water to add up to 5 gallons just before the bottling process? I am scared my brew will be way to strong when its done.

Here's a picture..



Thanks guys!

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Old 08-18-2009, 03:11 AM   #2
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It won't be ridiculously strong. In fact, it will be just what your hydrometer says assuming you took an OG reading. I wouldn't top off after fermentation, it will just make it watery I think.

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Old 08-18-2009, 03:14 AM   #3
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That's about how much I had when I racked to a secondary fermenter with my first brew. I imagine some was soaked up by the trub, but not enough to make that significant of a difference. But oh well, you can always make more beer.

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Old 08-18-2009, 03:45 AM   #4
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Yeah but i dont really feel like ruining 40$ worth of beer. It would kinda of be a huge dissappoint seeing how this is my first time.

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Old 08-18-2009, 03:50 AM   #5
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It's a little late for this batch but I filled my carboys with water using a measuring container and marked off each gallon with tape. I also marked it with a Sharpie but good ole Oxy-CLean took that right off. Somebody mentioned an etching method but for me the tape is working.

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Old 08-18-2009, 04:18 AM   #6
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I assume you mean 'strong' (as in flavor) not alcohol content...if so, don't worry. I made an IPA with less in the glass carboy than you have (I was bummed too at first) the beer has a stronger flavor, but is great! You can tweak the next 5 gallons...but first enjoy this batch...it will be fine. Don't add water...just drink and enjoy. Cheers.

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Old 08-18-2009, 01:51 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LarryC View Post
It's a little late for this batch but I filled my carboys with water using a measuring container and marked off each gallon with tape. I also marked it with a Sharpie but good ole Oxy-CLean took that right off. Somebody mentioned an etching method but for me the tape is working.
Borrow some fingernail polish from SWMBO (or if you want to use your own, no one will judge you here!). This works really well for graduating your carboy and is relatively impervious to oxyclean (I refresh the marks every year or so, as needed)
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Old 08-18-2009, 02:01 PM   #8
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You may have boiled your 6 gallons down to 4 instead of 5? If you started at 5, then perhaps you didn't account for evaporative losses?

No worries, mate - I rarely end up exactly at 5. Your hydrometer readings are the real indicator of how your beer is - did it meet the expected OG? If your OG is higher than the recipe, you boiled off too much water. But it will still be beer.

+1 with the others, don't add water AFTER fermentation. If you need top-off water, do that before fermenting (that, too, will reduce your OG).

It will still be beer. Enjoy.

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Old 08-18-2009, 05:17 PM   #9
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Drink the beer as is. Chalk it up to a lesson learned and don't make the mistakes again.

1. Mark your carboy at desired increments before brewing. Mine is marked at 5, 5.25, and 6 gallons with a label maker.
2. Take gravity readings and write them down.

Lots of people make mistakes, just learn from them and move on.

Good luck.

Eric

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Old 08-18-2009, 05:20 PM   #10
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most of my beer is a mistake and that is why it is a hobby, but the best part is, when your beer mistake turns out to be pretty nice...

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