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Old 11-26-2008, 04:32 PM   #11
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When beer is near its FG, how susceptible is the beer to infection given its alcohol content?

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Old 11-26-2008, 04:44 PM   #12
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I wash my hydrometer under the cold tap and drop it directly into the 6 gallons of wort. Then I spin it to shake off air bubbles, then I take the reading. Then I remove it, wash it under the tap, dry it with a kleenex tissue and put it back into its packaging tube. Don't think I have ever contaminated the brew that way. I often don't even sterilise the brew bucket, other than rinsing it under the hot water tap (50 deg C)

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Old 11-26-2008, 05:02 PM   #13
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Originally Posted by Kilted Brewer View Post
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.
Since the thief is a tall, thin cylinder, I just put my hydrometer in the thief and take my reading.
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Old 11-26-2008, 05:40 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by BOBTHEukBREWER View Post
I wash my hydrometer under the cold tap and drop it directly into the 6 gallons of wort. Then I spin it to shake off air bubbles, then I take the reading. Then I remove it, wash it under the tap, dry it with a kleenex tissue and put it back into its packaging tube. Don't think I have ever contaminated the brew that way. I often don't even sterilise the brew bucket, other than rinsing it under the hot water tap (50 deg C)
I'm glad that works for you, but that is simply irresponsible, and bad brewing practice.
I would caution anyone against trying your metod.
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Old 11-26-2008, 05:59 PM   #15
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I use a large 100ml pre-sterilized hospital needle (withouth the sting). You can buy them at the Pharmacy, they're extremely cheap, easy to clean and sanitize and come in very big sizes (So you can pull the sample in one go).

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Old 11-26-2008, 06:16 PM   #16
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I'm assuming the main purpose of checking gravity is to A) Make sure fermentation is done and B) Calculate alcohol content
You assume correctly. It is good brewing practice to ensure the ferment has reached its end before disturbing the beer by racking to a clearing vessel or packaging. The only way to ensure the ferment is complete is by observing at least two like gravity readings over the span of several days.

For example, the beer has been in the primary for fourteen days, and you'd like to see if it's finished. You lift off the loose lid - because it's really unnecessary to install it tightly, but that's another post - take a sample as described above, and take a reading. That's your base reading to compare to your OG reading. If your OG was, say, 1.044 and your SG was 1.012, chances are your ferment is complete (dependent on strain of yeast, ferment temp, and other factors, but for the sake of this example...). Now, you can take another reading next day and the day after that. If all those are the same, your ferment is complete (or stuck; again, outside the scope of this brief tutorial). Alternately, you can take a base reading then wait a few days before taking another. If there's no change, your ferment is complete. From the difference between OG and FG can ABV be calculated.

It isn't difficult. Your hydrometer is the most important tool you have as a brewer. Without it it's impossible to know exactly what's going on.

Cheers,

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Old 11-26-2008, 06:48 PM   #17
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Somewhere I saw a U-tube video where a guy took his initial reading (after pitching the yeast), but instead of dumping the sample he saved it in an extra beer bottle. Whenever he wanted to check his progress, he simply poured the sample from the bottle back into the flask and took another reading. When done, put the same sample back in the bottle. I think he called it "Satellite frementation".

Seems really convienent. Will it work?

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Old 11-26-2008, 06:54 PM   #18
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Somewhere I saw a U-tube video where a guy took his initial reading (after pitching the yeast), but instead of dumping the sample he saved it in an extra beer bottle. Whenever he wanted to check his progress, he simply poured the sample from the bottle back into the flask and took another reading. When done, put the same sample back in the bottle. I think he called it "Satellite frementation".

Seems really convienent. Will it work?
Yeah that's one of those ridiculous old theories that hasn't died....It's idiotic to think the 12 ounces and 5 gallons of liquid are going to ferment at the same rate....

People who come up with BS ideas like that forget one little thing...This isn't making Coolaid, mixing inert ingredients together...We're dealing with LIVING ORGANISM here...
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Old 11-26-2008, 06:56 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnny9 View Post
Somewhere I saw a U-tube video where a guy took his initial reading (after pitching the yeast), but instead of dumping the sample he saved it in an extra beer bottle. Whenever he wanted to check his progress, he simply poured the sample from the bottle back into the flask and took another reading. When done, put the same sample back in the bottle. I think he called it "Satellite frementation".

Seems really convienent. Will it work?
That seems like a good idea. I think the main problem would be to try and mantain the same temperature in both the vessel and bottle aswell as make sure the yeast is very well mixed with the wort so you don't end up with an underpitched bottle.
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Old 11-26-2008, 06:59 PM   #20
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Yeah that's one of those ridiculous old theories that hasn't died....It's idiotic to think the 12 ounces and 5 gallons of liquid are going to ferment at the same rate....
Maybe i'm being naive, but if the Yeast amount in each is proportionate to the amount of liquid, doesn't the wort end up taking the same time to ferment (assuming all other conditions are identical).
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