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Old 05-13-2012, 12:59 PM   #1
donjonson
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Default priming sugar calculator question

Hello I am slightly confused let me explain.

I bought beersmith which I love. however the priming sugar calculator confuses me a bit. it asks for the storage temperature of the beer and it defaults to 68F This would lead me to believe that it is asking what temp I am going to store the beer while it is carbonating. But then when I cool it down it will no longer have the same volumes of CO2. so then should I actually put in the serving temperature instead of the storage temperature?

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Old 05-13-2012, 01:03 PM   #2
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Hello I am slightly confused let me explain.

I bought beersmith which I love. however the priming sugar calculator confuses me a bit. it asks for the storage temperature of the beer and it defaults to 68F This would lead me to believe that it is asking what temp I am going to store the beer while it is carbonating. But then when I cool it down it will no longer have the same volumes of CO2. so then should I actually put in the serving temperature instead of the storage temperature?

Neither. Use the fermentation temperature, or the highest temperature the beer sat at during/after fermentation.
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Old 05-13-2012, 01:04 PM   #3
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Neither. Use the fermentation temperature, or the highest temperature the beer sat at during/after fermentation.

ooooohhhhhh so it is to calculate how much co2 is already in the solution ok. I get it
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Old 05-13-2012, 01:27 PM   #4
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Hmmm, I don't know about beersmith, but I was always under the impression priming sugar calculators wanted the temp you planned to store the beer during bottle conditioning... I usually plug in 70 degrees. I guess I was wrong! Ooops.

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Old 05-13-2012, 03:58 PM   #5
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I've been using this one. It specifies "tempurature at time of bottling".

http://hbd.org/cgi-bin/recipator/rec...rbonation.html

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Old 05-13-2012, 04:41 PM   #6
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I've been using this one. It specifies "tempurature at time of bottling".

http://hbd.org/cgi-bin/recipator/rec...rbonation.html

But that would be wrong, actually. It's probably ok for most of the beers, but let me give an example where this would be wrong. Say I brew an ale at 68 degrees, let it sit at room temperature of 72 degrees for a week, and then stick it in the fridge to three days to "cold crash" and bottle it when it's 40 degrees.

If I plug in "40 degrees" into that calculator, it tells me to use 2.79 ounces of corn sugar.

If I plug in "72 degrees" (the post-fermentation temperature), it tells me to use 4.47 ounces of sugar.

That's a HUGE difference, and is the difference between flat beer and carbonated beer.

Those calculators "guestimate" the amount of dissolved co2 still in solution at bottling. Colder liquids hold onto more co2. But more co2 doesn't appear after fermentation, and more is released at higher temperatures especially during a diacetyl rest for lagers, or anytime a higher temperature is reached during or after fermentation.

That's why I'm not a big fan of those calculators, as they give you "to style" carbing that can be flat (1.5 volumes for an oatmeal stout) or incorrect due to errors with entering the correct temperature.
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Old 05-13-2012, 05:02 PM   #7
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I'm sort of confused now...

What temp should I plug into the calculator? Like I said, I usually put the hottest temp I expect my beer to reach in the conditioning closet after bottling (around 70 degrees). But then based on what you mentioned earlier, I thought I should note the hottest temp on the bucket once fermentation ceased, and use that (which is usually around 64 degrees for me).

Also, Yooper, you mention not being a fan of those calculators. How do you usually calculate how much priming sugar to use? If there's a better/more efficient way, I'd like to use it.

Thanks!

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Old 05-13-2012, 05:09 PM   #8
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I'm sort of confused now...

What temp should I plug into the calculator? Like I said, I usually put the hottest temp I expect my beer to reach in the conditioning closet after bottling (around 70 degrees). But then based on what you mentioned earlier, I thought I should note the hottest temp on the bucket once fermentation ceased, and use that (which is usually around 64 degrees for me).

Also, Yooper, you mention not being a fan of those calculators. How do you usually calculate how much priming sugar to use? If there's a better/more efficient way, I'd like to use it.

Thanks!
Use the highest temperature the beer reached while airlocked (when the c02 can leave the beer) during or after active fermentation.

I like my beers to be decently carbed, so I use .75 ounce per gallon for the lowest amount, and 1 ounce per gallon for the highest carb that I like. Usually 4 ounces (corn sugar) total for 5 gallons for oatmeal stout, and up to 5 ounces total for IPAs. This works for all beer styles for me, but I never make weizens which some people like more highly carbed.
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Old 05-13-2012, 05:12 PM   #9
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Use the highest temperature the beer reached while airlocked (when the c02 can leave the beer) during or after active fermentation.

I like my beers to be decently carbed, so I use .75 ounce per gallon for the lowest amount, and 1 ounce per gallon for the highest carb that I like. Usually 4 ounces (corn sugar) total for 5 gallons for oatmeal stout, and up to 5 ounces total for IPAs. This works for all beer styles for me, but I never make weizens which some people like more highly carbed.
Great, thanks, Yooper!

I've actually taken to using regular sugar recently, since I have it on hand. When I use those calculators, I always mess it up anyway because I tend to guess how many gallons I'll have to bottle, and I'm always wrong.

Yesterday I bottled a cream ale, and I guessed I'd have 4.8 gallons, but ended up with 4.5. Not to mention I put the wrong temp in the calculator (70 degrees) instead of the correct 64 degrees.

I'm hoping at worst it will be a little over-carbed, and not have any bottle bombs.
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Old 05-17-2012, 12:18 PM   #10
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Ok so just to be clear. We should enter the highest temp reached because this will set the amount of c02 in the solution. Right?

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