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Old 02-24-2013, 11:33 PM   #1
doornumber3
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Default brand new....fermenting done

Hi Everyone,

I'm brand new at brewing and my first batch is fermenting right now. I did brew it with someone that brewed before but it's been a while. We had a recipe he used for a Scottish Ale with a hint of chocolate. We didn't do a full mash (thinking of trying it next batch), but used an extract. So a few quesitons:

1) I have it in a glass 5 gallon container and it started bubbling like crazy after 24 hours, good sign right?

2) My friend said about a week or a little more and then move to bottling. he goes by the bubbles but reading here, definitely go by gravity reading right? Whats the easiest way to do the reading after it's in a 5 gallon glass jug?

3) Once bottled, i was going to do the 3 weeks, sound good?

Sorry for the noob questions, but like i said, i'm brand brand new to brewing!

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Old 02-25-2013, 12:34 AM   #2
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1 - yes that is a great sign. Usually beer starts fermenting in 24 - 72 hours. You must have done a good job aerating your wort.

2 - your friend is in correct here. Do not bottle after one week, it is not near long enough for fermentation to be complete. More like 14 - 21 days and in some cases even more. The best way to judge fermentation is to take gravity readings. The easiest way to do this is to get a beer thief (turkey baster), sanitize it, open up one side of the fermenter, steal the beer, then take your reading.

3 - yes 3 weeks is how long I wait until I even sample the beer. If it tastes good, then I begin to chill it. Some people chill for 3 weeks before they drink.

I hope this helps.

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Old 02-25-2013, 12:41 AM   #3
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Right, go by gravity readings. If it stays the same for about five days your good to bottle. If you bottle before its done fermenting you'll have bottle bombs. I would leave it in your primary for about three weeks before bottling. I use a sanitized turkey baster to get wort out of my carboy. It takes about 2-4 weeks in a bottle to carb up but it could take longer than that to taste best.

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Old 02-25-2013, 01:02 AM   #4
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As a newbie I learned the bubbles are just for fun. Learn to take gravity readings, and in most cases let it go for at least three weeks before bottling.

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Old 02-25-2013, 01:21 AM   #5
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Thanks everyone. Does it make sense to just leave it be for a 3 weeks and not risk contamination? my friend is pretty hung up on not contaminating and leave it be instead of taking readings.

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Old 02-25-2013, 01:28 AM   #6
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You can ya, after three weeks its gonna be done. You can just take a last gravity reading before bottling. This is what I usually do. Unless I think it might not be done.

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Old 02-25-2013, 02:08 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by doornumber3 View Post
Thanks everyone. Does it make sense to just leave it be for a 3 weeks and not risk contamination? my friend is pretty hung up on not contaminating and leave it be instead of taking readings.
Leaving it to finish fermentation for 3-4 weeks is a good idea if you're afraid of a risk of contamination from taking hydro samples. If you use a sanitized wine thief, the chance for contamination is pretty small.

After bottling, let it sit at 70*F for 4 weeks (mine seem to be a bit nicer at 4 weeks than at 3), put a few in the fridge, let them chill at least 2-3 days and enjoy the goodness.
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