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Old 07-02-2011, 12:28 AM   #1
VincentOates
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Default Boiled off most of my wort. i need more common sense.

This is my first time brewing beer. I pretty much screwed up.

I was attempting to make Cincinnati Pale Ale from John Palmer's guide: How to Brew. I followed the directions to the best of my ability. However, I sized the batch from 5 gallons to 1 gallon (I just wanted to start small before I go big).

The problem: I wasn't thinking about evaporation, so I didn't think about adjusting the boiling time. Yep, I kept it boiling for 1 hour. At the finish, I had a very thick dark brown candy-like syrup. The funny thing is, I didn't realize something was wrong at this point. It wasn't until I poured the wort into my fermenter that I saw that I had less than half a gallon. So I poured in some water and scraped off the remaining brown candy from my pot and put that in the fermenter as well.

Whatever it is that I produced, well, its sitting in my closet now. What do you think will happen to it? Will it be drinkable beer someday? I really want something to drink in 4 weeks. Should I go back to my lhbs and try again?

thanks,
Vince

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Old 07-02-2011, 12:30 AM   #2
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It will probably be fine. However, how much water did you add? Is it going to be close to 1 gallon?

Did you take a gravity reading after you added the water?

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Old 07-02-2011, 12:35 AM   #3
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i added 3 16 ounce water bottles. i would say about .93 of a gallon

i purchased a hydrometer, but it is misplaced at the moment.

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Old 07-02-2011, 12:39 AM   #4
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for future reference, how should I be adjusting my boiling time when I want to be making these 1 gallon test batches.

for this recipe I was supposed to boil unhopped malt extract for 1 hour. 15 minutes into the boil i added bittering hops. 15 minutes before the boil ended I added finishing hops. Also, should I boil on my stovetop's hottest setting. I was kind of switching between that and medium heat whenever the foam became overwhelming.

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Old 07-02-2011, 01:38 AM   #5
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The boil time is the same, the boil volume should be bigger. how much extract? how much water? everything in the recipe needs to be scaled down.

.66 lb pale malt extract (liquid)
.5 lb amber dry malt extract

Hops .1 oz nugget or .15 Northern brewer (bittering 60 min boil)
.2 cascade or .25 liberty (aroma at 15)

1 packet dry yeast, probably safale 05

3/4 gallon of water into pot, bring to about 160 degrees
start adding the dry extract (it will mix easier at lower temps)
add in the liquid extract as soon as it gets back to 160 degrees

this will bring to about 1.8 gallons of wort, you want to over shoot some because you will loose a little with hot break and left over in the pot

bring this to a boil, watch the temp, when it gets to 205 back off the heat and bring it to boil slowly, it will foam like mad, if it starts to foam alot and it may boil over (in a small pot) stur it and trun the heat off, after it dies down some bring the heat agin, eventually it will get to a point where it will stop foaming

once you get a steady boil add your first hops, the 60 min, be ready for it to foam again, it may, it may not

even out the boil, it doesn`t have to be a MAD boil, just enough to roll the wort, boil for 45 min then add the aroma hops, boil for 15 more min

after you add the aroma hops during the last 15 min fill your sink with ice water to put the pot in to cool after the boil is done.

follow JP after this.

you will find that a 5 gallon batch is the same amount of time and effort as a 1 gallon batch, most would advise 5 gallon batches to start as the recipes are set up for 5 or use brewing software to scale it down.

leave what you have in the fermentor to see what happens but i would go back the the brew shop and try again.

check youtube for some videos as well

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Old 07-02-2011, 01:40 AM   #6
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I don't think adjusting your boiling time is what you need to do so much as you need to adjust for boiloff rate. I try and account for 1/2 gallon every 30 minutes. I honestly couldn't tell you what environmental factors come in to play, i.e. pot dimensions, humidity, blah..., but it seems to work for me. So, if I wanted to have a one gallon batch and I was planning on a 90 minute boil, I would use a boil size of 2.5 gallons of wort.

As far as your boil temp, unless it's pure water, which wort isn't, it won't go above 212'. So, if you want to boil away at your stovetop's highest setting, go ahead. I find that using a fan pointed at my boils helps to alleviate boilover.

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Old 07-02-2011, 02:01 AM   #7
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thanks everyone for setting me straight, especially vegas. i know my next batch will be great!

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Old 07-02-2011, 06:18 PM   #8
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na, not setting you strait, sounds like discipline LMAO!! just passing on some of what i have learned myself on these forums from some great people. don`t give up, keep going, my first 3 batches were BAAAD....but it gets better as you learn. if your not making mistakes your not learning.

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Old 07-02-2011, 06:23 PM   #9
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Lesson learned: just brew 5 gallons

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Old 07-02-2011, 06:35 PM   #10
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yes, but to end up with 5 gallons you must start off with 7ish or more depending on how long you plan on boiling, and what your boil off rate it is.

do this, with just water put 5 gallons in a pot and boil for an hour. measure the water that is left in said pot and subtract from the original 5 gallons and that is your boil off rate with your equipment and location.

-=Jason=-

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