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Old 10-06-2010, 12:23 AM   #1
owens14
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Default Beginning Brewer here seeking tips and advice

Hello fellas, my names Josh and im glad to have joined what seems like a great online community here. Im about to start my first batch of brew tomorrow morning and i was just wondering if you had any tips, advice, or general knowledge youd like to share with me. And if someone has tried the equipment im using before, maybe a heads up on the quality of it.

Me and a friend recently purchased a Beer Equipment Kit made by True Brew as well as a package of their Irish Stout. I was also wondering if anyones made this before and tips for the fermentation process and time to wait for carbonation. thanks for the help guys.

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Old 10-06-2010, 12:39 AM   #2
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For the first few brews I did I kept my laptop near me throughout the day. Pretty much every question I could think of as I went through things has been asked countless times on the internet and even this board alone.

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Old 10-06-2010, 12:45 AM   #3
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Hi Josh, welcome to the forums, and welcome to homebrewing. If the equipment kit you bought is the same one listed on the front page of this site, then that looks like pretty standard gear. Just follow the instructions that came with your ingredient kit, and you should be fine.

Couple things to remember:
*EVERYTHING that comes in contact with the beer from the time you shut the heat off after the boil until it touches your tongue coming out of the bottle must be CLEAN and SANITIZED
*Don't leave the lid on the pot while you're boiling
*Leave enough room in your boil kettle for the water volume to expand and come to a rolling boil. Boil overs are never fun
*Read this site: How to Brew, by John Palmer. Better yet, buy the book. Soak in as much as you can.
*If you're going to be topping off the wort in the fermenter to reach a full five gallons, make sure you mix it throughly before you take a hydrometer sample
*If using dry yeast, it is a good idea to rehydrate it in a small bowl of warm water at least an hour before throwing it in the fermenter.
*Don't be afraid to ask questions
*One little mistake (or even a few) won't totally ruin your beer.
*RDWHAHB
* Aerate your wort the best you can before you throw the yeast in, and then never again
*Be Patient! Despite what the kit's instructions may tell you, leave it in the fermenter for a minimum of 2 weeks. For your stout, probably a minimum of 3 weeks. Even if the hydrometer readings indicate that sugar conversion is done, it doesn't mean that your yeast is done doing their job yet.
*RDWHAHB

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Last edited by Skaggz; 10-06-2010 at 12:54 AM.
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Old 10-06-2010, 12:46 AM   #4
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Got Star San?????

I like the idea of starting your first brew in the morning as you'll be less likely to be hammered 1/2 way through.

Primary for 3 weeks and then transfer to your sanitized bottling bucket.

Oh yea, did I mention Star San?

Good luck

Bull

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Old 10-06-2010, 12:57 AM   #5
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@ bull my kit came with C-Brite. close enough?

@Skaggz yep that would be the one, only mine has a 7.5 gal bucket instead of the carboy

a couple probably easy questions but i thought while i had you guys here, id go ahead and ask. 1. is there a certain amount of time you need to wait after refridgeration to drink your beer or is it just until it gets cold enough for your taste? and 2. About on average how long do you need to leave bottled beer out to let it cabonate? thanks again for the help guys

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Old 10-06-2010, 01:05 AM   #6
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My beers usually needs 3 weeks at room temp of 68-70 to reach proper carbing levels. Afetr that, I move them to the basement and chill a few bottles for 2-3 days before sampling. This helps some of the yeasties to settle out.

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Old 10-06-2010, 01:05 AM   #7
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After you bottle, leave it out for a week. Then put one of the bottles in the fridge until you feel it is cold enough. Pop it open and give it a try. If it is not carbonated enough, or just doesn't taste right leave the rest out for another 3-4 days and test another one again.

Beer, especially a bigger beer such as a stout, will definitely benefit from conditioning. Both from waiting a few weeks in the bottles before you put them in the fridge, and also cold conditioning for several days or more after you put them in the fridge.

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Old 10-06-2010, 01:05 AM   #8
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C-brite is not the same. Opt for Star-san. Inexpensive and 100% reliable if used per instructions. Most of us clean with something like Oxy-clean and sanitize with Star-san.

To answer your later questions:

1. To your taste.
2. I'm gonna jump Revvy's claim! Yay! Bottled beer must be kept at 70F or above (within reason; don't cook it, but keep it above 70F) for AT LEAST THREE WEEKS (21 DAYS) for good condition. Don't rush it.

The more time you give your beer the happier you'll be with the result. As soon as you get your first batch out of the fermenter, start another batch! That's called "filling the pipeline" and it'll make you a patient, happy brewer.

Cheers,

Bob

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Old 10-06-2010, 01:15 AM   #9
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alright thanks alot guys. youve got me prepared enough to start in the morning, although im sure by 10am tomorrow, ill be on here asking more questions. one last question for the night though, this being my first brew i dont wanna get too complex but if i wanted to add some honey to sweeten my brew some, what time would i add it to the mix and about how much to add a hint of sweet taste without it being completely overpowering?

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Old 10-06-2010, 01:23 AM   #10
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Honey is almost 100% fermentable. Adding it won't really net you any sweet taste.

For your first few batches, please follow the instructions. Don't change anything in the ingredients list. The more you complicate a new procedure, the more variables you introduce, the steeper the learning curve. So KISS for the time being. Brew the recipe as written, try it. If you want a different flavor, brew it again and add an ingredient.

Cheers!

Bob

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