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Old 09-12-2013, 11:25 PM   #1
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Default Gravity readings using the "thief"

I'm embarrassed to ask this question since it's off the scale on the noob-o-meter.....
The starsan bubbles are preventing me from getting a read on my hydrometer.
How the h.. do you guys use this thing after sanitizing?

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Old 09-12-2013, 11:54 PM   #2
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Have you tried spinning the hydrometer with your fingers while dropping it into the thief, as if you were spinning a top? It will come to a rest and should float around the center, sometimes needing a few flicks on the side of the thief to get it there. I use iodophor, but that usually gets rid of any bubbles that may throw the readings off for me.

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Old 09-13-2013, 12:14 AM   #3
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I do give it a spin, but the sanitizer bubbles remain on top of the sample preventing a read. The only thing that works so far is overfilling the thief and pouring some out, which kinda defeats the purpose of this gadget.

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Old 09-13-2013, 12:40 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SEndorf
I do give it a spin, but the sanitizer bubbles remain on top of the sample preventing a read. The only thing that works so far is overfilling the thief and pouring some out, which kinda defeats the purpose of this gadget.
I've had excessive bubbles before (not from starsan, just from beer). Instead of wait for the bubbles to go away, the impatient maniac in me grabbed a drinking straw and sucked up the bubbles, leaving as much beer as possible behind. If you hold the straw at a bit of an angle, it will pull in a bunch of air (making that annoying sound your younger brother used to make when drinking milkshakes), which is the perfect technique.
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Old 09-13-2013, 12:44 AM   #5
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Are you saying that you have all these StarSan bubbles from right after you but the wort in the fermenter?

You could either:

1. Wait an hour or so for the bubbles to dissipate, or

2. Take the sample such that you don't take any of the liquid (and bubbles) from the surface. If it's the type of thief that has a hole in the top to put your finger onto to trap the liquid in the cylinder, put your finger over it before you stick it thru the StarSan layer, and only release it when it's submerged. That should make it so that you don't get any (or much) bubbles in the hydrometer tube. If it's a baster, just squeeze the ball before you insert it.

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Old 09-13-2013, 01:02 AM   #6
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I rinse my thief after starsan if that's what I use. When I bottle it's Iodophor which doesn't give any bubbles.

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Old 09-13-2013, 01:11 AM   #7
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Do not rinse starsan.

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Old 09-13-2013, 01:19 AM   #8
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Quote:
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Do not rinse starsan.
Are you sure Dawg? You don't think he should be rinsing a no-rinse sanitizer?
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Old 09-13-2013, 01:22 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ResumeMan View Post
just squeeze the ball before you insert it.
What she said...
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Old 09-13-2013, 01:27 AM   #10
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but for real... ;-)

Just "steal" an inch of beer, then use it to rinse the starsan by shaking the thief... starsan will go into the little sample of beer... toss it away, then take your sample...

It's called conditioning and very common when taking environmental samples... you rinse the container with the same stuff you want a sample from...

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