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Old 04-09-2010, 05:21 PM   #1
mattdnyc
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Default Converting Recipes Down to 1 Gallon

So my first home brew ever (1 gallon AG IPA via a kit) is going into the bottles, and I'm getting set to brew a 5 gallon batch of Saison from another ingredient kit. However this will leave my 1 gallon carboy empty and lonely. Can't have that happen now can I?

I want to try putting together one of the many recipes I've found online, but most of them I've seen are for 5 gallon batches. Is there a formula to convert a recipe down from 5 gallon (or 10, etc..) to a 1 gallon batch?

Also, my LHBS stock Wyeast Activators. Since they are designed for 5 gallon batches, is there a way to just measure out what I need for 1 gallon?

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Old 04-09-2010, 05:31 PM   #2
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The way I understand it is that you simply divide everything exactly down by 5 to go from 5G to 1G.

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Old 04-09-2010, 05:55 PM   #3
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+1. And a Wyeast Activator is probably about the right amount of yeast to be pitching into a 1 gallon batch. I haven't used one in a long time, but I'm sure someone can chime in with the cell counts for the Activator packs. Then plug in your OG into this site http://www.mrmalty.com/calc/calc.html and see how close you come.



Edit: sorry, I mistakenly confused the Activator for the Propagator. The Activator has 100 billion cells and the Propagator has 25 billion. So the Propagator would be around the right amount to pitch for one gallon of 1.040 beer, the Activator could handle one gallon of 1.150 which is bigger than any beer I've ever seen.

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Old 05-13-2010, 05:07 AM   #4
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I was going to ask about yeasts, too. I also plan on brewing 1-gallon kits for a while (not much space in my studio apartment, and I'm not sure my electric stove can handle 5-6 gallon boils). I have two kits on their way and I plan on brewing this weekend.

These are 1-gallon kits so I'll be able to use all the yeast in it. In the future, though, should I be sticking to dry yeast and carefully measuring it out, or are there any other solutions? I like the idea of pitching dry yeast (making starters sounds like a hassle for a beginner/small batch brewer, especially since I don't intend on using extracts or having spare wort around) so I'm wondering what my options are for future batches. Does it depend on the yeast? Should I be able to find suitable dry-pitching yeasts for most recipes then just cut the portion down to 1-gal measurements? Should I at least be dissolving them in some pre-boiled and cooled water? Should I just go by what recipes tell me?

One possible solution are those Wyeast packs you mentioned above. Think I could get by with dry-pitching the Propagators? I found a cheap source for them and though they're designed to be used with starters, the cell count is kind of proportional to what I'd need for 1-gallon if pitched dry....

I browsed the yeast forum but I couldn't find a "Yeast for Beginners" kind of post. Thanks for any advice anyone can give me!

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Old 05-13-2010, 11:08 AM   #5
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just pitch the propagator it should work.

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Old 05-13-2010, 07:52 PM   #6
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Awesome, thanks - that's what I was hoping to hear. Makes my life easier for small-batch brewing.

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Old 05-13-2010, 08:07 PM   #7
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Make your life even easier and brew min. 5 Gal batches

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Old 05-13-2010, 08:21 PM   #8
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This post has made me think I might also want to brew a few smaller batches...there's always room for more buckets! But, here's a question...

If your recipe says to add the ingredients to 2.5 gal of water for the boil on a 5 gal batch, would you then add your correctly weighed ingredients to a half gallon of water for the 1 gallon batch boil?

Seems like a silly question, but I'm wondering if there is a point when you don't have enough water. It may be harder to control the boil consistency on a smaller batch, but can you have too little water when making the wort from extracts?

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Old 05-13-2010, 09:42 PM   #9
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Yes, you can have too little water in your extract based wort - basically too thick and it won't mix easily, will want to scorch and carmelize sugars.

honestly on a little batch, boil the full volume. 2.5 gallons or 3 gallons isn't much...easy to do on a stovetop.

I don't go under 2.5 gallon batch sizes, as a 1 gallon batch...after racking losses and such...you don't even end up with a 12 pack. Unless its a highly experimental batch or uses costly ingredients in the 'trial recipe', I wouldn't drop down to 1 gal batches for All grain. Extract is a little different since its a lot less work.

Still I'd be mad if I made a great beer and only had 8 bottles.

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Old 05-13-2010, 10:40 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by giligson View Post
Make your life even easier and brew min. 5 Gal batches
Wish I could... I don't have the space for carboys or huge pots anywhere in my studio, though! Plus, I've brewed with a friend once and it seems like fun, so I have no problem with putting time into brewing, even for less beer. The first few recipes I have lined up start at 1.25-1.5 gal, so I end up with 1.0 in the end. I have two 1-gal jugs so I can have two brews going at once, and to be honest I love sampling different beers. I don't mind putting 2-3 hrs of work in for a 12-pack as long as I enjoy it. Plus, if I had 50 bottles of one kind of beer, I'd get sick of it soon and would likely be prevented from buying more beers (my other favorite pastime). If I can have 2-3 brews staggered at a time I can likely spend Sunday afternoons brewing and bottling and end up making 30-40 beers a month once I get going. That's definitely enough for me considering I also plan on buying new beers all the time.

If I end up moving or getting rid of some stuff, though, I'll likely start some 5-gal brews and never look back!
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