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Old 09-06-2012, 12:07 AM   #1
jlillie
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Default Looking for some advice

Hello there,
Just brewed my first all grain, this past weekend; however, it was a BIAB brew. I had problems reading my hydrometer, and also need some advice on fermentation.
First my recipe:
12 lb Pilsner
0.5 lb Munich - Light 10L
0.5 lb Wheat
1.5 lb cane suger (i substituted 1lb blonde beet candi suger and .5lb cane suger)


0.75 oz Styrian Goldings 90 min
1 oz Styrian Goldings 30 min
1 oz Saaz 0 min
Wyeast - Belgian Ale 1214
8.2 gallon total water
Mash @152Degrees 60 minutes
Boil 90 min.

After chilling down to about 78degrees, i took sample, put in mason jar and cooled to 69degrees then poored into my hydrometer tube and set the hydrometer in. The hydrometer floated at about an inch below the 1.000 mark. in other words the liquid line was about in inch below the scale.
Previous to this i tested the hydrometer in tap water and it floated true at 1.000. Why would it do that. (I've never used a hydrometer before so it was probably my stupidity.

Ok, so i then drained the wort from my keggle tap into my plastic 6.5 gal fermenter bucket, aireated for 30 mins with battery powered aireator and then after following direction on wyeast pack, pitched and stored in closet. Unfortunatly, i live in south Florida and my house is usually at constant 78 degrees (the wyeast wanted max of 75 degrees).
After about 48 hours i got about another 48 hours of good strong bubbling.
This morning it has subsided to maybe a bubble or 2 every 5 or 10 minutes.

The advice i'm lookin for is this; do you think i should go about a week in the primary, then go to secondary in one of my corny kegs to get the beer off the trub? Should i put the secondary in the kegorator for another week and then rack to keg for another week or?

One of the "how too's" i read says to leave in primary for week, then kegorator for week, then rack to keg for week. But it doesn't say what the temp should be in the kegorator.
Any advice would be appreciated.
Thanks,
~John

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Old 09-06-2012, 01:23 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jlillie
Hello there,
Just brewed my first all grain, this past weekend; however, it was a BIAB brew. I had problems reading my hydrometer, and also need some advice on fermentation.
First my recipe:
12 lb Pilsner
0.5 lb Munich - Light 10L
0.5 lb Wheat
1.5 lb cane suger (i substituted 1lb blonde beet candi suger and .5lb cane suger)

0.75 oz Styrian Goldings 90 min
1 oz Styrian Goldings 30 min
1 oz Saaz 0 min
Wyeast - Belgian Ale 1214
8.2 gallon total water
Mash @152Degrees 60 minutes
Boil 90 min.

After chilling down to about 78degrees, i took sample, put in mason jar and cooled to 69degrees then poored into my hydrometer tube and set the hydrometer in. The hydrometer floated at about an inch below the 1.000 mark. in other words the liquid line was about in inch below the scale.
Previous to this i tested the hydrometer in tap water and it floated true at 1.000. Why would it do that. (I've never used a hydrometer before so it was probably my stupidity.

Ok, so i then drained the wort from my keggle tap into my plastic 6.5 gal fermenter bucket, aireated for 30 mins with battery powered aireator and then after following direction on wyeast pack, pitched and stored in closet. Unfortunatly, i live in south Florida and my house is usually at constant 78 degrees (the wyeast wanted max of 75 degrees).
After about 48 hours i got about another 48 hours of good strong bubbling.
This morning it has subsided to maybe a bubble or 2 every 5 or 10 minutes.

The advice i'm lookin for is this; do you think i should go about a week in the primary, then go to secondary in one of my corny kegs to get the beer off the trub? Should i put the secondary in the kegorator for another week and then rack to keg for another week or?

One of the "how too's" i read says to leave in primary for week, then kegorator for week, then rack to keg for week. But it doesn't say what the temp should be in the kegorator.
Any advice would be appreciated.
Thanks,
~John
Congratulations on your first AG! You made beer!

So the hydrometer an inch below means the number Gould have been higher than 1.000, like 1.060, perhaps? This is because instead I plain water you have wort which is full of sugars and much denser than water. This reading was to be your starting gravity read or OG/SG.

Your warm fermentation temperature caused a pretty quick take off and btw, great job on the aerating!!!

Active fermentation at too high a temperature can cause off flavors but Belgian yeast will tolerate the higher temps. Off flavors are a possibility. IMO I would leave the beer for 2 weeks primary to complete fermentation, verify final gravity and allow the beer to clear. Then rack to keg and condition.

FYI, your FG reading will read closer to the 1.000 number now since the sugars are now alcohol. Perhaps 1.010 as an example.

Hope this helps! Cheers!
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Old 09-06-2012, 03:03 PM   #3
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duboman nailed it. I second the practice of letting your beer stay in primary for two weeks. For me, a two week primary is a minimum requirement. After primary, you can rack to a secondary if you want to dry hop/spice, or add anything else to your beer, or let the yeast flocculate on their own (in secondary). If you decide to keg it, for cold crashing or carbonating. I try and get my beer as close to 34F if I am cold crashing or carbonating.

Keep up the good work.

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Old 09-06-2012, 08:50 PM   #4
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I think I found out the problem I had with my hydrometer. This is the one i purchased: http://www.cornykeg.com/catalog.asp?prodid=750220&showprevnext=1

Their discription calls it a Hydrometer but the directions that come with say its used to measure Proof or Tralle and is only used with distilled alchol products.
Looking on Northern Brewer i see one of these but they refer to it as a Proof/Tralle Alcoholmeter.
I guess i need to get something like this from NB: http://www.northernbrewer.com/shop/brewing/beer-brewing-equipment/testing-measuring/hydrometers-refractometers/lab-grade-hydrometer-1-000-1-070.html

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Old 09-07-2012, 12:08 AM   #5
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The hydrometer from cornykeg.com which you've linked to appears to be a standard triple scale homebrew hydrometer. I wonder if they sent you the wrong one?

Reading the hydrometer is pretty straightforward. You read the gravity scale marker at the top of the liquid and adjust for temperature. This link may assist you, http://www.homebrewtalk.com/wiki/index.php/Hydrometer. You mentioned testing the hydrometer with distilled water, reading the scale with wort is the same process. Also, there are cheaper hydrometers out there if you don't want to spend the extra money of the lab grade version.

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Old 09-23-2012, 12:50 PM   #6
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Yesterday, after 3 weeks in primary, I moved the beer from primary to secondary (corney keg), very careful to not introduce any oxygen.
My gravity check shows 1.011. The aroma was fantastic as was the taste test. I think i actually made some really good beer. I'm thinking I'll condition in the secondary for maybe 3 more weeks at 78*f ( don't have a fermentation chamber -YET) then put some c02 pressure on (12lbs?) for the forced carbonization, chill, wait few more days and pour tall glass. My next brews WILL be done with fermentation chamber.
Thoughts anyone?

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Old 09-23-2012, 01:02 PM   #7
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Correction on my fg reading in last post. At 60*f, i read 1.009. I'm thinking thats pretty good, right?

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