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Old 04-19-2010, 11:56 PM   #1
supermetroid
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Default Just brewed my first batch--a few minor concerns/questions:

My buddy and I finally got around to brewing, and we spent friday afternoon leafing through what seemed like ten sets of instructions and making our way through an IPA recipe.

We got through it intact, and after high-fiving and putting the carboy into the closet, we began cleaning up. To our dismay, we found a whole oz of magnum bittering hops amidst our bottling supplies.

My question: is our negligence going to make our beer bad by default? We ended up boiling .5 oz's of Magnum when the recipe called for 1.5 ozs. We boiled 2oz of Cascade at the end for 10mins, and another 2oz (of cascade) for the final minute. Will our beer be too sweet? Has anyone else had any success with a recipe similar to our foul-up? Should we dry hop with the remaining oz of magnum?

Also: I'm confused as to how I'm supposed to get samples for hydrometer readings when the airlock is on. I'm assuming I should take both it and the stopper off--but I'm afraid of exposing it to oxygen. Similarly: when we bottle and rack from the carboy to the bottling pail, is it okay for the beer to be exposed to the air?

All in all it was a great experience and I can't wait to bottle and drink the fruits of our labor. I'm buying another carboy tomorrow so that my buddy and I can have another go. http://i.imgur.com/rynS8.jpg here's a mock-up label I made today. I'm not excited or anything. Thanks everyone.



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Old 04-20-2010, 12:15 AM   #2
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Airlock questions....I have the same issue but I can see another way...you got open that top to get to the beer.

You could consider dry hopping with the remaining hops. Ive never done this but from what I read you might only want to do about half the remaining hops in the 2ndary.



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Old 04-20-2010, 12:16 AM   #3
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I'll bet it will come out fine. It might not be perfectly balanced, but it'll be ok. Dry hopping will not increase bitterness.

If you want to add bitterness, you can make a hop tea and add it to the beer. I'd see how it comes out first, though.

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Old 04-20-2010, 12:17 AM   #4
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leaving out the hops in this type of beer will change the beer completely, instead of an IPA you will have a pale ale, beersmith calculates about 100 IBU's with the whole 1&1/2 oz of magnum, but only 45 IBU's with 1/2 oz. the beer will still probably be good and drinkable. I would just save the extra oz of magnum for a future brew.

to take hydro samples, you do need remove the airlock. the CO2 made by fermenting yeast, will blanket the beer and no oxygen will get it. just make sure whatever you are using to pull a sample out with is sanitized.

When racking and bottling, just try to splash the beer as little as possible to minimize exposure to air.

let us know how it turns out.

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Old 04-20-2010, 12:17 AM   #5
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Oh, and for the airlock, go ahead and take it off to pull a sample. There will be a good blanket of co2 sitting on top of that beer and you won't have any oxidation issues.

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Old 04-20-2010, 12:24 AM   #6
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Thanks everyone, sounds great. I'm happy this first batch isn't necessarily a complete wash...

Our beer is currently fermenting at ~65 degrees F with an inch and a half krausen. Airlock is bubbling approximately every three seconds. It's making a muffled "whistle" sound every time it bubbles--is this alright?

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Old 04-20-2010, 12:43 AM   #7
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Get a wine thief for the hydro sample.

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Old 04-20-2010, 12:52 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by businesstime View Post
Get a wine thief for the hydro sample.
I'm currently using a turkey baster and it seems to be working fine. Do wine thieves work better? Seems like the same concept.
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Old 04-20-2010, 01:37 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by supermetroid View Post
I'm currently using a turkey baster and it seems to be working fine. Do wine thieves work better? Seems like the same concept.
I imagine they both work just fine. The wine thief is pretty long and can get right down inside the glass carboy. I don't know how long turkey basters can get.
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Old 04-20-2010, 02:55 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by supermetroid View Post
Thanks everyone, sounds great. I'm happy this first batch isn't necessarily a complete wash...

Our beer is currently fermenting at ~65 degrees F with an inch and a half krausen. Airlock is bubbling approximately every three seconds. It's making a muffled "whistle" sound every time it bubbles--is this alright?
Relax, it will be fine! You are making beer, and probably pretty good beer too!


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