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Old 01-11-2010, 05:21 PM   #1
knelson
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Default My first primary Fermentation

I brewed my first batch on Sunday January 3rd. It was an EPA extract kit from Northern Brewer. I pitched my yeast at around 75 degrees and the next morning I was getting quite a bit of action in the fermentor.

after about 24 hours, I counted the number of times it bubbled and was about 45 times per minute. after about 3 days there was no more bubbling in the ferementor and the head/krausen? started to sink back into the fermentor.

It has now been 8 days since brew day and it seems as if there is no more action in the primary. i.e. the krausen has completely sunk, no more bubbling in the airlock.

Is it time to rack to secondary? The instructions called for 1-2 weeks in primary so I am within that time frame.

Also my OG was 1.042 (the instructions called for an OG of1.045) Yesterday when I tested it it was at 1.011. Is there a specific gravty that I am looking for or is that pretty much out of my control at this point? Will I be losing more ABV during secondary and bottle conditioning. If I calculated correctly I am below 5% ABV at this point. Am I going to end up with water?

Thanks

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Old 01-11-2010, 05:43 PM   #2
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1011 should be fine for your FG.
I'd let your beer sit a minimum 2 weeks in primary. The yeast does more thatn just ferment, it goes back and "cleans up after itself" scrubbing any off flavors it may have left behind. Lots of brewers, myself included" don't secondary. I leave my beers in Primary for ~1month, then rack to keg.

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Old 01-11-2010, 06:21 PM   #3
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I second what IrregularPulse said^. Let the yeasties clean up after themselves. I tend to leave my brews in the primary 3-4 weeks then bottle.

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Old 01-11-2010, 06:42 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by knelson View Post
Also my OG was 1.042 (the instructions called for an OG of1.045) Yesterday when I tested it it was at 1.011. Is there a specific gravty that I am looking for or is that pretty much out of my control at this point? Will I be losing more ABV during secondary and bottle conditioning. If I calculated correctly I am below 5% ABV at this point. Am I going to end up with water?

Thanks
You are not going to be losing ABV (alcohol by volume) now - that would require that the alcohol got turned back to sugar, or all evaporated. Your beer should be around 4.5% ABV, and you are not going to end up with water!

Do you mean losing gravity (which would further increase the ABV of the beer)? The only way to know that would be to take another reading. In general, 1.011 sounds pretty closed to done, if not finished. Depending on the attenuation of the yeast you used, it might lose another point or two, or not.

But, as the others have said, there is certainly no harm (other than having to have an extra ounce of patience) in leaving the beer on the yeast for another week or two.
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Old 01-11-2010, 06:49 PM   #5
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FYI for your next batch, 75F is a little high to pitch your yeast, especially considering that it probably came with an English strain. You want to pitch your yeast at least as low a temp as you're going to ferment it at and ideally a degree or two lower.

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Old 01-11-2010, 06:58 PM   #6
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Cool, thanks for your help everyone. A lot of great information!!!

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