Spike Brewing 12.5 Conical Fermenter Giveaway - Enter Now!

Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Beginners Beer Brewing Forum > Checking Gravity

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 11-24-2008, 07:18 PM   #1
Deacon240
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Southern Oregon
Posts: 271
Default Checking Gravity

Now I ran a search on this but found next to null on what I was looking for. So sorry if it's a repost of a repost...etc.

As far as checking the gravity of your beer's progress how do most of you do it? Do you just pop the lid and get beer out of there or siphon some? Place some in a different fermenting container? Also do you check it a couple days in a row? These are questions I've done some research on but cant quite figure out...

__________________
Deacon240 is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 11-24-2008, 07:34 PM   #2
ShortSnoutBrewing
Kwanesum Chinook Illahee
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
ShortSnoutBrewing's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Portland, OR
Posts: 3,266
Liked 12 Times on 11 Posts
Likes Given: 1

Default

Most will use a tool called a wine thief, or just thief. Remember as a kid (or maybe you still do this) you would put your finger on the end of a straw and lift it up and drop the fluid back in the glass, your mouth, whatever? Think of the thief as a big straw. Use it to extract some of the beer, put the sample in a tall, thin cylinder and then add your hydrometer to take the reading.

ShortSnoutBrewing is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 11-24-2008, 07:35 PM   #3
Revvy
Post Hoc Ergo Propter Hoc
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Revvy's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: "Detroitish" Michigan
Posts: 40,804
Liked 2728 Times on 1636 Posts
Likes Given: 3485

Default

I sanitize a turkey baster and fill a hydromter test tube about 3/4's of the way full.

__________________

Like my snazzy new avatar? Get Sons of Zymurgy swag, here, and brew with the best.

Revvy's one of the cool reverends. He has a Harley and a t-shirt that says on the back "If you can read this, the bitch was Raptured. - Madman

I gotta tell ya, just between us girls, that Revvy is HOT. Very tall, gorgeous grey hair and a terrific smile. He's very good looking in person, with a charismatic personality... he drives like a ****ing maniac! - YooperBrew

Revvy is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 11-24-2008, 07:40 PM   #4
imaguitargod
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: Local Mind Expander of Cleveland, OH
Posts: 1,046
Liked 8 Times on 8 Posts

Default

I too have been wondering how tften to do this. I take the OG reading and near when I think it should be bottled, I take a reading the day before bottling and the day of bottling to check to see if it's drastically changed....does this sound right? Or should I be checking every few days to get an acrate reading and create a graph of the fermentation? At 5 gallon batches, this seems like alot of beer stolen...

__________________

Brewer for Hoppin' Frog Brewery.
"I am not an alcoholic, I’m a drunk. An alcoholic means that I have a problem and when I drink all my problems go away."

imaguitargod is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 11-24-2008, 07:42 PM   #5
Deacon240
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Southern Oregon
Posts: 271
Default

I like that idea Revvy. Thanks all for the quick responses

__________________
Deacon240 is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 11-24-2008, 08:52 PM   #6
Kungpaodog
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Lafayette, CO
Posts: 494
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

Default

It's not the most picky method, but I just check when I go to secondary after 2 weeks, and then 2 weeks later at bottling. There is maybe a one or two point drop during that period, but it is enough data points for me to get a fair estimation of the alcohol content, and enough to know if something has gone horribly wrong (hasn't happened yet, knock on wood).

__________________

Kelpie Home Brewery, Lafayette Colorado
Primary: Creek Dog Stout x2, Two Dogs IPA, Grinning Kelpie Wheat
Secondary: empty :(
In Bottles: Belgian Wheat

Kungpaodog is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 11-26-2008, 02:26 PM   #7
bhughes
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Fayetteville, NC
Posts: 92
Liked 3 Times on 3 Posts

Default

I'm new to this also and my first batch has been fermenting for about 4 days. I'm kind of worried about the whole process of opening the lid of my fermentor and sticking something in there to take a gravity reading. Is there much risk of affecting the fermentation process when I open the lid, and also when I scoop some beer out with a measuring cup or something (sanitzed)?

__________________
bhughes is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 11-26-2008, 02:52 PM   #8
Choguy03
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Schaumburg, IL
Posts: 446
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts
Likes Given: 2

Default

As long as you sanitize your turkey baster you will be fine. Unless you sneeze in your beer or dump some mold in you will be fine. And even then you never know. Just remember to sanitize and you will be a happy brewer.

__________________
Mad Scientist Brewing Co.

:Fermentation Cabinet:

Primary: Bee Cave Bavarian Hefe
Secondary: Nothing
Bottled: Nothing
On Deck: Gumball Head Clone (Jekster)
Choguy03 is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 11-26-2008, 04:15 PM   #9
TJ-Bill
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 214
Default

I just bougth a hydrometer and will be using on my next batch.

I was also concerned about opening the lid and letting air in.. I guess if you open it and it's not done fermenting then the air will be pushed out while it continues to ferment. And if it's done fermenting when you take your reading then you should move it into the secondary..

What about if you only keep you beer in the primary? If you leave it for 3-4 weeks then go staright to the keg do you really need to check the FG? fermintation should be done by then so why bother checking and risk letting something in there?

__________________
TJ-Bill is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 11-26-2008, 04:21 PM   #10
Deacon240
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Southern Oregon
Posts: 271
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by TJ-Bill View Post
I just bougth a hydrometer and will be using on my next batch.

I was also concerned about opening the lid and letting air in.. I guess if you open it and it's not done fermenting then the air will be pushed out while it continues to ferment. And if it's done fermenting when you take your reading then you should move it into the secondary..

What about if you only keep you beer in the primary? If you leave it for 3-4 weeks then go staright to the keg do you really need to check the FG? fermintation should be done by then so why bother checking and risk letting something in there?
That was my concern as well.

I'm assuming the main purpose of checking gravity is to A) Make sure fermentation is done and B) Calculate alcohol content
__________________
Two Raven Brewery
[Is finally brewing again!]

Primary1: Envy - Green Tea Wheat (4/11/09)
Secondary: Schwarzbier Kit (1/11/09)
Bottle Conditioning: None ATM
Drinking: None ATM
Up Next: Lemon Honey Pilsner (est. unknown)
Deacon240 is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Reply


Quick Reply
Message:
Options
Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
checking gravity when racking to secondary mr jones Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 7 11-04-2008 02:44 PM
Checking Original Gravity AnOldUR General Techniques 3 10-12-2008 01:56 PM
checking gravity after beer carbonated moger777 General Techniques 1 03-25-2008 01:40 PM
Gravity checking a lager SAS98M General Techniques 1 01-28-2007 01:32 PM
Checking gravity out of a carboy, o2 and sanitization. Mike-H General Techniques 14 09-08-2006 04:14 PM