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Old 09-12-2005, 01:31 AM   #1
Doug
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Default More yeast or more sugar?

So, I'd like to hear opinions on general ways to ensure a happy level of carbonation. The last two batches I made never fully got to where I wanted them. I used 5 ounces of priming sugar boiled in one cup of water both times. Before that, I was just dumping the sugar in the bucket. Probably a bad idea, but it was working...

For my next batch, I'm considering adding more priming sugar, but maybe I should just be more aggresive with my stirring when I rack from the secondary to the bottling bucket to ensure more yeast? What do you guys think?

Also, I've sat both of the last two batches in 70-78 degree temps for upwards of 4-5 weeks, so I'd imagine that's enough time for carbonation to be happening.

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Old 09-12-2005, 02:27 AM   #2
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That's lots of time for carbonation. My storage is cool and takes about 3 weeks for total carbonation.

The reason to boil things is sterility. Not sure about the weight, but I'm using about a cup of dextrose for ales and about 1 and 1/4 for lagers, boiled in about a cup of water.

If you are getting some very carbonated bottles and some not so, then you need to stir a bit more before you bottle.

I'm pretty sure there's basically always enough yeast left over to do the job. Even if your beer goes into the bottle crystal clear, there's probably still a ridiculous number of yeast floating around in it.

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Old 09-12-2005, 02:07 PM   #3
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Ya, boiling definitely makes sense. I can't imagine it's changing my process much either.

That's a good point about the fact that some bottles would be really carbonated if I wasn't stirring enough. That hasn't been the case for me, so maybe I will try using more sugar? I feel nervous about changing my kit, but I guess you've got to try things to know what the effects are.

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Old 09-12-2005, 11:46 PM   #4
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My last batch I was forced to use table sugar (yummay) and it was my first batch where there was very little carbonation. Never had a problem with any batch since then where I used priming sugar.

It probably wasnt the table sugar, but I'm never touching the stuff again.

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Old 09-13-2005, 12:13 AM   #5
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One of the things I practice is gently stirring while bottling. OK, actually stir bottle 5, stir, bottle 5, etc.

This keeps the sugar mixing with the beer.

I know what you mean about using 5 oz of priming sugar and gettin zilch! Very disappointing.

Sometimes when it's conditioning over 75F it'll carbonate faster in the summer, and slower in the winter. Then you'll need to use extra sugar.

I have some beers that don't get carbonated for months. But they get there. I usually only have about a case left when they are ready.

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Old 09-13-2005, 06:17 PM   #6
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> I usually only have about a case left when they are ready.

You mean Im not the only one?

The BIGGEST mistake I first made was adding the Priming Sugar at the start of my Secondary and not my bottling. I think I has about 3 bottles left by the time it actually has some good FISS on the opening of the bottle

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Old 09-13-2005, 08:18 PM   #7
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No, you're not alone.

I know I am always recommending that you guys should be a little more patient in all your steps, but I have been guilty myself on occasion of not following my own advice.

I've overcome that for the most part by having several brews going at the same time. This way you have to stagger your racking and bottling times as well as your conditioing times.

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Old 09-20-2005, 09:09 PM   #8
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This thread pretty much answers exactly what I was asking. My second batch, a stout, was bottled a week ago, and has very low carbonation. Maybe I should just wait longer. If that doesn't solve the problem, what else can I do? The good news is that it tastes awesome.

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Old 09-25-2005, 04:52 PM   #9
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I believe stouts don't have much carbonation to begin with.

Are you by any chance trying to make all your beers have the same carbonation level? That's wrong.

Some beers don't even require carbonation, some ales for instance, while some brewers try to overcarbonate some Weizens.

I've had no/low carbonated Czech Budvar in Ceske Budejovice (Budweis in German) as well as Guinness in Dublin, and hundreds of well-carbonated Hefe Weizens all over Bavaria.

Your carbonation levels should also meet the requirements of the style you are brewing.

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Old 09-25-2005, 10:42 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by homebrewer_99
I believe stouts don't have much carbonation to begin with.

Are you by any chance trying to make all your beers have the same carbonation level? That's wrong.

Some beers don't even require carbonation, some ales for instance, while some brewers try to overcarbonate some Weizens.

I've had no/low carbonated Czech Budvar in Ceske Budejovice (Budweis in German) as well as Guinness in Dublin, and hundreds of well-carbonated Hefe Weizens all over Bavaria.

Your carbonation levels should also meet the requirements of the style you are brewing.
I would have to diagree. His carbonation levels should meet HIS requirements. I like my stouts with more carbonation than the style usually has, others don't like it that way.
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