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Old 09-25-2012, 05:03 AM   #1
lousybeer
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Default FG stuck at 1.029??

Hi all

I have been searching the forum and haven't been able to find quite the same situation. I have seen some people stuck at 1.020 but i am stuck at 1.029.

Here are the details:

It's my 2nd all grain batch and I was trying to make a honey beer for the swmbo. Base grain was 2-row, had some honey malt in it. Mashed at 151-152F. OG was 1.053, pitched at ~72F (a little high) with wlp041 yeast. I read that it's a slow yeast, but I checked it after about a week and it's at 1.029 so I'm thinking it's slow, just give it more time. So I check at 2 weeks and it's still at 1.029... I am using a refractometer and I know the alcohol alters the readings, but it can't be that far off can it? 7 days later and no drop in gravity?

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Old 09-25-2012, 05:41 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lousybeer
Hi all

I have been searching the forum and haven't been able to find quite the same situation. I have seen some people stuck at 1.020 but i am stuck at 1.029.

Here are the details:

It's my 2nd all grain batch and I was trying to make a honey beer for the swmbo. Base grain was 2-row, had some honey malt in it. Mashed at 151-152F. OG was 1.053, pitched at ~72F (a little high) with wlp041 yeast. I read that it's a slow yeast, but I checked it after about a week and it's at 1.029 so I'm thinking it's slow, just give it more time. So I check at 2 weeks and it's still at 1.029... I am using a refractometer and I know the alcohol alters the readings, but it can't be that far off can it? 7 days later and no drop in gravity?
Relax, give it another week or 2. Let the yeast do their work.
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Old 09-25-2012, 06:17 AM   #3
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Curious how you measure your mash temp. i.e. are you sure your thermometer(s) is really accurate?

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Old 09-25-2012, 06:23 AM   #4
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Yea I figure I would wait it out, but I thought the gravity would at least move a bit after 7 days. Strange thing is that the airlock started to bubble after I took a sample, did the yeast just need to get woken up? I tried not to move it too much to not introduce any oxygen.

In response to the thermometer I don't know if it's accurate but it's a pretty new digital thermometer so I assume it's at least close to accurate.

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Old 09-25-2012, 06:24 AM   #5
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Grain bill (crystal malts?)? Mash length? Did you drop the temp from 72F after pitching (how much? how fast?)? What did you pitch for yeast? Just a vial? Starter? AND...how's it taste?

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Old 09-25-2012, 06:42 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lousybeer View Post
Yea I figure I would wait it out, but I thought the gravity would at least move a bit after 7 days. Strange thing is that the airlock started to bubble after I took a sample, did the yeast just need to get woken up? I tried not to move it too much to not introduce any oxygen.

In response to the thermometer I don't know if it's accurate but it's a pretty new digital thermometer so I assume it's at least close to accurate.
When you think a beer's stuck I doubt it hurts to jiggle it a bit to rouse the yeast (though you probably just caused some CO2 to come out of solution which caused some airlock activity)... as for the temp, it's an important factor and you may want to check your thermometer - there's a lot of variability apparently, some are good at the high end, some good at the low end, and some are just terrible all around (you can check the low end in an ice bath, and the high end in a rolling boil; 32F and 212F, respectively). Doesn't hurt to have multiple thermometers when brewing. [OR JUST GET YOURSELF A THERMAPEN]
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Old 09-25-2012, 10:49 AM   #7
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"I am using a refractometer and I know the alcohol alters the readings, but it can't be that far off can it? 7 days later and no drop in gravity?"

Did you use a conversion calculator? It can be way off. You are at a sg of 1.014 right now.

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Old 09-25-2012, 11:49 AM   #8
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Refractometers are pretty useless for a FG reading.

It lets you know the beer is done, since the reading doesn't change. But it's not even close to accurate once alcohol is in the mix.

You can use correction calculators, but in my experience even they aren't accurate.

Use a hydrometer. Your beer is done, and probably 1.010-1.016.

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Old 09-25-2012, 02:17 PM   #9
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Wow that is great info! Thanks for the help! I guess I will be bottling soon then.

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Old 09-26-2012, 02:13 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lousybeer
I am using a refractometer and I know the alcohol alters the readings, but it can't be that far off can it? 7 days later and no drop in gravity?
I didn't catch that before... yeah, get yourself a hydrometer.
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