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Old 01-28-2013, 08:03 PM   #11
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Big Floyd, the only reason for that is because the fridge is outside. The temp controller only makes it get colder, but can't heat it up. The weather outside made the temp go down to 62. But otherwise it has been staying right at 66 or 67.
You might want to seriously consider spending the $30-35 needed to build a dual temp control box (using an STC-1000) for that fridge.

That, combined with a DIY Paint can fermentation heater will be the best money you've ever spend on brew equipment. You can set it at the temp you want and not worry about how hot or cold the weather gets.

http://brewstands.com/fermentation-heater.html


http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f51/ebay...-build-163849/[/FONT]
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Old 01-28-2013, 08:06 PM   #12
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I tried to keep the mash at 155, did it for 1 hour. It was 154-156 or so the majority of the time. Couple times it went higher or lower, but not many. I am pretty confident that the brewing techniques we used would be appropriate for the style and we were totally anal about sanitation. I am thinking the lower fermenting temp just may be taking the yeast awhile to do it's thang. I will check again on the brew at the 24 hour mark, and even wait till 36 hours before I start thinking something might be wrong. Sound right?

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Old 01-28-2013, 08:08 PM   #13
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Wow, thanks for that link, Bigfloyd!! My husband will be giddy when he sees that. He loves projects and do it yourself gadgets and could probably do something like that and have a blast.

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Old 01-28-2013, 08:09 PM   #14
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You'll probably be at about 68% attenuation with that mash, yeast, and fermentation.

This is how I estimate it:
http://woodlandbrew.blogspot.com/201...rmulation.html

and the science behind it:
http://woodlandbrew.blogspot.com/201...e-effects.html

(That little red square outlayer at 158°F and 64% attenuation was the too sweet brew I mentioned)

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Old 01-28-2013, 08:27 PM   #15
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Thanks Woodland Brew. Dang, you've got a lot of interesting data and research to back you up. Pretty awesome and i bet my husband would have to change his boxers if he read all that. He is into science, math...pretty much a geek in general. ;-)

I am guessing that based on all this, 68% attenuation may be pretty good for the style. A porter should be sweet...hope it's not cloyingly sweet. Although my husband probably wouldn't mind if it was. He loves malt forward darker beers.

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Old 01-28-2013, 08:32 PM   #16
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Hey all. I am still learning how to brew and have gotten great advice from you guys in the past, hopefully I can use the help I've gotten here to help out a newbie like me someday.

My questions have to do with primary fermentation temp and yeast. My husband and I brewed a taddy porter clone on Sunday. Right now, it is in an outdoor fridge with a temp regulator on it and has been between 62 and 68 degrees.

Question 1: Is this temperature about right? Reason I ask is, it is not vigorously fermenting as fast as other batches have. It has only been about 18 hours, but usually we see the start of activity by now, bubbles and churning and stuff. Seems also the the yeast has dropped to the bottom. Which leads me to my second question...

Question2: Is it possible for yeast to just sink without doing their thing? (We used White Labs WLP005 British Ale Yeast) There is a thin krausen layer on the top of the wort but no real bubbling and the airlock is still. Ahgain, it's only been 18 hours...should I do anything? Should I shake up the carboy, should I change the temp? Thanks so much in advance for any answers to these 2 questions. Any of your knowledge is very helpful.
Maybe think about making a stir plate and adding yeast nutrients. Get the starter yeast going 3 or 4 days before you brew. Thus building strong cell walls for the yeast before pitching. You can build a stir plate for pretty cheap. This should help with the yeast drooping out too soon. The temp change may be stressing that type of yeast
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Old 01-29-2013, 12:07 AM   #17
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When you build the heater for inside your fridge I'd recommend a little personal heater like this instead of the lightbulb idea. I never did the "light bulb in a paint can" but I did wrap a lightbulb in tin foil before and it not only melted the lightbulb itself but burned through the tin foil. I stopped messing with the massive amount of heat a light bulb can put out. That little personal heater has a safety auto-shut off if it gets too hot for some reason.

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Old 01-29-2013, 04:40 AM   #18
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I never did the "light bulb in a paint can" but I did wrap a lightbulb in tin foil before and it not only melted the lightbulb itself but burned through the tin foil. I stopped messing with the massive amount of heat a light bulb can put out. That little personal heater has a safety auto-shut off if it gets too hot for some reason.
When you wrap foil around a light bulb, you aren't leaving anywhere near enough airspace between the bulb and the foil, not to mention the foil reflecting back much of the radiant energy.. The heat builds up quickly and causes the kinds of problems you experienced. There's plenty of airspace inside the paint can. I've had no issues with mine. When needed, it warms the chamber 0.5*C and then turns off.

You have watch out when using a small heater connected to a dual controller. Many (probably most sold now) heaters don't come on automatically when you plug them in (or when the controller powers their plug). You also have to push a power button each time to activate it. We have two such heaters at home. They simply will not work in this sort of application. It does look like the "MyHeat" heater may be one of the few that has an "old fashioned" power switch and would work.

MsJones - tell your husband that he needs to DIY a stirplate while he's doing all these fun science projects. My wife thinks that my stir plate is the neatest thing I've built so far.
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Old 01-29-2013, 03:05 PM   #19
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The stir plate is for a starter yeast, right? We have never used a starter but I see how highly they are regarded on here and I guess we should do that with the next batch. I will probably be asking about how to do that when we are about to brew again. ;-)

We have done two 1 gallon all grain batches (a brown and a porter) and used dry yeast on those. Got the kits from Austin Homebrew and just used the yeast from the kit, pitched it directly. Those beers were both very good. :-D So we decided to do bigger batches. I wanted to get creative because I love to cook, so I researched a bunch of different recipes and we did a two gallon batch of ESB, a Jones original. (Hopefully will be close to Fuller's :-)). The one I am asking questions about now is a 2 gallon batch of porter (another Jones original...and can you tell we like English styles?) We wanted to put some cocoa nibs in the secondary and also some raspberrry flavoring at bottling.

Update: Fermentation is still slow going, but steady. I looked this morning at about 38 hours and it seems to be on the down slope? There was an inch of krausen but that has settled down a bit to maybe 1/2 inch. Airlock is still bubbling pretty good and there are certainly bubbles popping on the krausen. Thinking about swirling it again to get some more of that yeast in suspension. Next time I will make sure to pitch at a temp more appropriate for the yeast, and perhaps make a starter. I am learning so much and having so much fun with this.

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Old 01-29-2013, 03:16 PM   #20
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Don't mess with swirling it,it's fermenting just fine as it is. The fast bubbling will slow down or stop when initial fermentation is over. It'll then slowly,uneventfully creep down to FG. Then another 3-7 days to clean up & settle out clear or slightly misty.
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