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Old 01-28-2006, 09:05 PM   #1
DocBob
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Default Ale fermentation temp

This is my first post...great site! I have a feeling I will be here a lot.

Well my first batch ever is in the carboy...Woo Hoo!!! That was fun!

As a scientist by training, I tend to over analyze at times, so I thought I'd just ask the pros. I've read at least a half dozen different sources regarding fermentation temperature, and all are a little different. I take this to mean it's not extremely critical so long as you are in a reasonable range, but wanted to know what you all shoot for. What is the RANGE of temperatures Ale yeast will function in, and what is the PREFERED temperature?

I just pitched my yeast about 10 hours ago, and the carboy already looks like a snow globe!!! And the airlock is bubbling away.

OH by the way, I used a Wyeast smack pack to pitch, and it filled up the pouch within a few hours...that pouch was awful tight by the time I was ready for it...do those things ever explode???

Thanks,
Bob

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Old 01-28-2006, 09:12 PM   #2
El Pistolero
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Welcome to the forums doc.

Personally (and I'm no pro) I like to start things in the mid 70's, then move the primary to the mid 60's after fermentation has started. Once moving to secondary, I try to keep things in the mid 60's, or maybe even cooler (down to mid 50's) for the last week. For me that get's things going quickly to start and produces nice clear beer in the end, but of course you need to consult the Wyeast or White Labs web sites to get the preferred temps for any particular yeast strain.

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Old 01-28-2006, 09:18 PM   #3
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I would recommend staying center on a yeast's recommended temperature. I think I have only heard of Wyeasts slap packs rupturing on one occassion, so rare. I have had them fail to expand as they were supposed to. But, worked well in spite of it. The rapid start indicates healthy yeast and in good numbers.

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Old 01-28-2006, 09:46 PM   #4
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Now why didn't I think of that...the Wyeastlabs.com webpage?!?!? Good idea. The back of the pack just said start about 70, then go to "prefered temp"? That's not very helpful when you don't know what the prefered temp is. Obviously it's just a general statement for all the types that use that packaging. They did have a little better description on the website.
Thanks again.

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Old 01-29-2006, 12:48 AM   #5
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Generally, ale yeast performs between about 18 and 25 C, but some strains push that envelope in either direction. Lager yeast usually ferments between 10 and 15 C and secondary ferments between 0 and 4 C.

I have no problems at all with my ales fermenting between 15-18 degrees. I prefer the cooler temperatures to avoid any funny fruity flavours.

Wyeast packs do in fact give the temp ranges in very small print. You gotta look real hard.

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