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Old 11-18-2010, 03:12 PM   #1
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Default Beer Clarity Experiment

This is a follow up to this thread:

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f39/meth...t-beer-205923/

I am going to brew three batches of Brewer's Best American Amber kit. I want to use different combinations of methods that are used to increase the clarity of the beer and compare the results.

I intend to use the yeast that is in the kit, use the same water source (bottled spring), the same production methods, immersion chiller, maintain the same temperature through out fermentation.

I would like some thoughts on how to combine the methods in each batch in order to compare the clarity.

Methods to combine are: Whirlfloc, irish moss, gelatin, primary only versus secondary (for gelatin test I think I need to have one batch go to a secondary), whirlpool, cold crash, maybe a different yeast in one batch than the package yeast, etc.

I'm trying to come up with a plan like: Batch #1 - Irish Moss, Whirlpool, primary only, no cold crash. Batch #2 - Whirlfloc, gelatin, secondary, cold crash. etc.

The intent here is to give a noobie the best advice on what methods will have the most impact on the clarity of the beer while brewing with extract kits.

Once I move on to AG, I intend to try this experiment again.

Thoughts??

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Old 11-18-2010, 03:54 PM   #2
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One in primary a month, one for 10 days no secondary, one for 5 days or whenever the airlock stops bubbling and then in secondary 2 weeks.

Seems to cover the 3 ways most people here do their beer.

Seems you also be able to compare what way tastes better too.

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Old 11-18-2010, 04:24 PM   #3
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You may also want to consider the new product from White Labs called Clarity-Ferm. Some online stores are starting to carry this and it runs about $2 per 5 gallon batch, I think. I think they gave out vials on it at GABF this year.

I used gelatin for the first time on a Brown Shugga clone last month and I can't believe how clear it came out!

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Old 11-18-2010, 04:27 PM   #4
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I don't know if I'd bother with Irish moss, if you're using whirlfloc. I mean, it's the same substance, just in a different form.

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Old 11-18-2010, 04:55 PM   #5
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I think to provide the most beneficial evidence, I would limit each batch to one variable. For example, instead of having batch #1 with Whirlfloc and immersion chiller and secondary conditioning, I would only have the Whirfloc. Compare that to batch #2 with the irish moss, batch #3 with clarity-ferm, etc. Keep everything else the exact same: temperatures, methods, ingredients, etc. That will keep you in line with the scientific method and give you more concrete evidence.

As a sidenote, there's a Brewing Network podcast that did this exact same experiment. It's either Sunday Session or Can You Brew It (Jamil Show). I forget the results, but discussion was definitely in depth and prolonged. They also discussed how the different clarifying agents effected head retention.

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Old 11-18-2010, 05:04 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by akthor View Post
One in primary a month, one for 10 days no secondary, one for 5 days or whenever the airlock stops bubbling and then in secondary 2 weeks.

Seems to cover the 3 ways most people here do their beer.

Seems you also be able to compare what way tastes better too.
I think that may be a separate experiment, as I want to focus solely on methods and agents that are focused on clarity.

I think I'll stick to one of the above methods for all batches, include cold crashing on one of them, and then once the clarity is accounted for, re-do the experiment with those three fermenting styles to see which produces better tasting beer.

Great add, thanks!
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Old 11-18-2010, 05:05 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yooper View Post
I don't know if I'd bother with Irish moss, if you're using whirlfloc. I mean, it's the same substance, just in a different form.
Noted, thanks. I'll stick with whichever is cheaper at the LHBS when I go. This eliminates one method and makes things a bit easier.
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Old 11-18-2010, 05:07 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BK1017 View Post
I think to provide the most beneficial evidence, I would limit each batch to one variable. For example, instead of having batch #1 with Whirlfloc and immersion chiller and secondary conditioning, I would only have the Whirfloc. Compare that to batch #2 with the irish moss, batch #3 with clarity-ferm, etc. Keep everything else the exact same: temperatures, methods, ingredients, etc. That will keep you in line with the scientific method and give you more concrete evidence.

As a sidenote, there's a Brewing Network podcast that did this exact same experiment. It's either Sunday Session or Can You Brew It (Jamil Show). I forget the results, but discussion was definitely in depth and prolonged. They also discussed how the different clarifying agents effected head retention.
I'm going to search for that podcast, thanks!

I thought about using only a single variable change between batches, but I don't want to brew too many of the same styles to settle this. I can do one with each clarifying agent, but then want to take a look at the methods too (whirlpool, cold crashing, primary/secondary).

Based on the early discussions here, I need to think more about what the best way is to break this experiment up.
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Old 11-18-2010, 06:50 PM   #9
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That's a whole lot of variables for an "experiment".

Hell, it could just be the extract in your kit and you are using for all the batches of beer that make it hazy.

This would be a lot better for an AG person to do that can create one large batch of wort (say 10 gal) and split that wort into 4 diff. batches of beer. Then just alter one variable for each brew (say, whirlfloc, irish moss, gelatin, a control). Then a new experiment would need to be done testing crash cooling and primary v. secondary.

Ooops, looks like someone already said this.

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Old 11-18-2010, 07:46 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by funkswing View Post
That's a whole lot of variables for an "experiment".

Hell, it could just be the extract in your kit and you are using for all the batches of beer that make it hazy.

This would be a lot better for an AG person to do that can create one large batch of wort (say 10 gal) and split that wort into 4 diff. batches of beer. Then just alter one variable for each brew (say, whirlfloc, irish moss, gelatin, a control). Then a new experiment would need to be done testing crash cooling and primary v. secondary.

Ooops, looks like someone already said this.
I'm disappointed with the tone of your comment, funkswing. Everyone else on this forum has been polite and encouraging.

Hopefully I've just read your comment wrong?
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