The Great Bottle Opener Giveaway

Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Beginners Beer Brewing Forum > Hydrometer

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 05-02-2013, 12:09 PM   #1
rydia131
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 82
Liked 3 Times on 2 Posts

Default Hydrometer

Newbie hydrometer question...I just brewed my first batch yesterday! Beyond excited! I was deep into the brewing process when I remembered that I was at the point of getting a hydrometer reading. I have never used one before but I have one. But I don't have anything to use as a sample "vile", to drop the hydrometer into. Any suggestions on something I could use? Household item or something I could buy in town?

Oh and I might as well ask too...now that the primary fermenter is sealed and workin, can I freely open it to take a hydrometer reading? Or is this something that is recommended to only be done at certain times?

Thanks so much for the help!,

__________________
rydia131 is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 05-02-2013, 12:17 PM   #2
JBOGAN
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Rochester, Michigan
Posts: 347
Liked 39 Times on 31 Posts
Likes Given: 26

Default

On my first home brew day i dropped my hydrometer as i was walking down the hallway.Never did take an OG reading and just made sure i hit my FG from the kit.I would just leave it alone for ten days and then take a reading.Let the yeast do their job and just sit back and relax.

__________________
JBOGAN is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 05-02-2013, 12:28 PM   #3
Demus
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Orlando, FL
Posts: 1,079
Liked 126 Times on 102 Posts
Likes Given: 6

Default

What's the recipe? If it's extract you can calculate the gravity. If the tube your hydrometer came with won't hold liquid you can get one at any home brew supplier, local or on line. Don't obsess! If it's fermenting leave it alone. When it stops, leave it alone for another week. Then, using a sanitized turkey baster or a "wine thief", carefully take a sample to check final gravity. And the best investment I ever made for any of my beers, my home brew books and the time to read them. NOTHING will make a bigger difference in your beer than knowledge....

__________________
Demus is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 05-02-2013, 12:34 PM   #4
rydia131
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 82
Liked 3 Times on 2 Posts

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Demus
What's the recipe? If it's extract you can calculate the gravity. If the tube your hydrometer came with won't hold liquid you can get one at any home brew supplier, local or on line. Don't obsess! If it's fermenting leave it alone. When it stops, leave it alone for another week. Then, using a sanitized turkey baster or a "wine thief", carefully take a sample to check final gravity. And the best investment I ever made for any of my beers, my home brew books and the time to read them. NOTHING will make a bigger difference in your beer than knowledge....
The recipe is an Irish red ale, extract, from Midwest. The tube the hydrometer came in only goes about halfway up the length of the hydrometer so I didn't think that would work for it?
__________________
rydia131 is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 05-02-2013, 01:13 PM   #5
Demus
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Dec 2011
Location: Orlando, FL
Posts: 1,079
Liked 126 Times on 102 Posts
Likes Given: 6

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by rydia131

The recipe is an Irish red ale, extract, from Midwest. The tube the hydrometer came in only goes about halfway up the length of the hydrometer so I didn't think that would work for it?
As long as you brewed it to the volume on the kit, I'd just assume you hit the original gravity this time. Extract is pretty consistent, so unless you went under or over on the gallon-age you'll be very close. The final gravity will be a bit more important to make sure the ferment is finished and went ok. Whatever you use has to be deep enough for the entire length of the hydrometer. Thinner is better since you'll waste less beer. DON'T put the sample back in the batch! I like to drink them to get a feel of the aging process ;-)
__________________
Demus is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 05-02-2013, 05:07 PM   #6
rydia131
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Apr 2013
Posts: 82
Liked 3 Times on 2 Posts

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Demus

As long as you brewed it to the volume on the kit, I'd just assume you hit the original gravity this time. Extract is pretty consistent, so unless you went under or over on the gallon-age you'll be very close. The final gravity will be a bit more important to make sure the ferment is finished and went ok. Whatever you use has to be deep enough for the entire length of the hydrometer. Thinner is better since you'll waste less beer. DON'T put the sample back in the batch! I like to drink them to get a feel of the aging process ;-)
Yeh i stayed on the volume for the recipe. So i wont need to test the volume until the end of fermentation right? So if this is true i could order a sample tube online and get it by the time i need it?
__________________
rydia131 is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 05-02-2013, 06:01 PM   #7
STEVESKI
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Fairfax, VA
Posts: 84
Liked 15 Times on 11 Posts
Likes Given: 1

Default

This was my first kit as well and I had the same exact issue. After reading how most people's hydrometers plastic case could be used to hold the beer I didn't even bother testing it ahead of time. Don't worry about it, it's not needed. I recommend buying a Wine Thief so it makes taking a sample out easy and you can also do a hydrometer reading inside it. Take a sample in about 3 weeks and take a reading then and bottle them up if they're ready.

__________________
STEVESKI is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 05-02-2013, 06:52 PM   #8
DocScott
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Rockland County, NY
Posts: 760
Liked 104 Times on 82 Posts

Default

If you ferment in a bucket, just drop your sanitized hydrometer in, take a reading and remove it. If you use a carboy, you're better off with a turkey baster/wine thief and graduated cylinder or hydrometer tube.

__________________
DocScott is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 05-02-2013, 06:52 PM   #9
LowNotes
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: Alexandria, VA
Posts: 282
Liked 24 Times on 20 Posts
Likes Given: 3

Default

I have always just taken my hydrometer measurements right in the bucket, either just before or just after pitching. Works just fine although sometimes I have to wait awhile (just a couple minutes) for the foam to settle out enough to get an accurate reading.

One thing I found that works in a pinch for measure FG, is if you have a 22oz bottle, but only a taller one like New Belgium uses, not a stubby on like Sierra Nevade, the hydrometer will juuuuust barely fit through the mouth (mine does anyways, check yours carefully). I found out after I accidentally bottled everything and realized I didn't take an FG from my bottling bucket, so instead I took it from one of the bottles, worked like a charm. Really came in handy when I did a 2.5g batch and my hydrometer bottomed-out in the bottling bucket. It isn't the best thing, but it does work, and best part, zero wasted beer!

One thing to note when taking OG readings in the future that a lot of people (myself included) tend to overlook, is that the temperature of your beer can impact the hydrometer reading pretty drastically. I think most are calibrated for 70* but I could be wrong on that. There is also a way to adjust your OG reading based on the temp difference from calibration.

__________________
LowNotes is offline
 
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Old 05-02-2013, 08:51 PM   #10
s4l
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Oct 2012
Location: Killeen/HH/CC, Texas
Posts: 104
Liked 2 Times on 2 Posts
Likes Given: 8

Default

Your OG should be around 1.045-1.050. Mine was 1.050.

__________________
**On Deck**
115th Dream Hopburst IIPA
Caribou Slobber
Winter Warmer

**In Primary**
Empty. :(

**Bottled**
NB Irish Red - 02 Apr 13
BierMuncher's Centennial Blonde - 28 Apr 13

# of Brews: 2 // Total # of Gallons: 10
s4l 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
Using the hydrometer epistrummer Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 4 04-29-2012 06:39 PM
Hydrometer? Some say necessary others not? justinm410 Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 23 04-17-2012 09:40 PM
reading a hydrometer and hydrometer vs. refractometer deanocamino Brew Science 12 09-15-2011 09:04 PM
Hydrometer help... mikeyc Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 7 11-08-2007 03:55 PM
Hydrometer? jjasghar General Techniques 7 02-20-2007 07:32 PM