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Old 11-28-2008, 06:44 AM   #1
LumberjackJohn
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Default Brewing my second batch

Hey everyone, I just put the water on to boil for my second batch of homebrew. My first batch was a few years ago, so this is my re-introduction into the hobby. My parents bought me the kit and ingredients, so I'm not 100% sure of the style of beer, all I know is I have a can of dark malt extract, a tub of what looks like brewery grade corn syrup, and Cascade hops. Hope everything goes well! I will try to take some pictures for y'all!

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Old 11-28-2008, 10:09 PM   #2
Kauai_Kahuna
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Good luck, and hopefully everything goes smoothly.

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Old 11-28-2008, 11:40 PM   #3
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That first brew should be aged enough I figure! good luck with #2.

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Bottled! Award winning East India Porter, Oatmeal Stout, Milk Stout, Saison fermenting at a nice controlled 85 degrees (up from 70) as it should be - weird isn't it.

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Old 11-29-2008, 12:18 AM   #4
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Thanks guys, I put it in a plastic fermenter so I can't get pictures right now, but it is fermenting away. Being as paranoid and OCD as I am, I was worried when the airlock wasn't bubbling after about 12 hours, but now it has been about 16 hours and it is bubbling away! I will take pictures when I rack to secondary.

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Old 11-29-2008, 05:08 AM   #5
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If your next brew doesn't bubble at all, don't worry. Airlock activity is a bad indicator of activity. Your hydrometer is the only way to be sure.

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Old 11-29-2008, 05:40 AM   #6
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Yeah I've read that, but a bubbling airlock does give you that warm feeling inside. It's an instant assurance of what a hydrometer will tell you.

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Old 11-29-2008, 06:08 AM   #7
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LumberjackJohn - It gives me a warm fuzzy too, but don't trust it.
Use the hydrometer Luke, Trust the hydrometer. But I am NOT your father kind of stuff. Believe me, the hydrometer and thermometer is the only thing I trust after testing and verification they are working.
I tend to break the glass on the bottom of hydrometer and all the beads fall out, so test, verify, then believe.
(queue sound track from the X-Files).

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In Primary: Belgium Chimay clones.
In Secondary: Braggot, pale ale, end of the world white.
Conditioning: Mead, Cider, braggot, Belgium Wheat.
On Tap: Clones, Chimay Blue, Red, Porter, malted cider.
Bottles: Far, far, too many to list.

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Old 11-29-2008, 05:43 PM   #8
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How often should I take a hydrometer reading? Once a week, or is that too often?

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Old 11-29-2008, 06:06 PM   #9
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How often? Depends really. For example, I don't use a secondary so I just leave my brews in the primary for 3+ weeks. Sure I check the reading right before I syphon out to bottle but by then I am already sure that fermention is done. Of course, if I had no indications of airlock activity I'd probably crack open the fermentor after 5-7 days. If there was any krausen then I'd leave it alone. But if there was none I'd take a reading.

If you are using a secondary then definitely take a ready before racking if not before.

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Old 11-29-2008, 06:23 PM   #10
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Yeah I am putting it in a secondary. I read somewhere, i forget the source now, that you can take a sample of the wort from the primary and fill a beer bottle with it, put a paper towel in the top of the bottle and use that to take hydrometer readings. I did that, and the SG is down to 1.020 already, making the ABV approx 3%. Should I be worried about low alcohol content beer, or is the hydrometer ABV scale inaccurate? Sorry for all the newb questions, I just want to get this right.

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