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Cregar 10-14-2006 10:30 PM

Started my first batch
I know there are threads posted all the time on "My first Batch", but I had to share :)

Just started my first batch about 25 minutes ago, my specialty grains are steeping right now at approx 165-170 degrees. I am going to keep it there for about 30 minutes (actually about 20 mins left). Then take the steeping bag and place in a strainer that I got from Target, pour the tea over the steeping bag and start boiling my water so I can add my LME.

Will keep ya updated...

BTW... its a Nut Brown Ale kit from Northern Brewer

Update 1: Water with specialty grain tea finally boiled, took off heat and stirred in my 6# LME. Now waiting for the water to boil again so I can add my first hops addition and start my 60 minute boil.

Update 2: Water finally can to boil again, took the pot off the heat and added 1oz of challenger hops. started timer for 45 min boil. Will add my last hops & Irish Moss. Then boil for 15 more minutes.

Update 3: Just added my Aroma hops (Fuggle) and the Irish Moss for the last 15 minutes of the boil.

Cregar 10-15-2006 01:44 AM

ok.. finished cooling and transfering the wort to my 6.5 gallon carboy. I did a hydrometer reading and came out with 1.046 @ 75 degrees F. So, adjusted would be 1.048. The box said it should be 1.044, I guess that's pretty close huh?

The only concern I have is after transfering to my carboy, I put the palm of my hand over the opening so I could shake the hell out of it (aerate), I am hoping I didn't contaminate it. I had been putting my hands in a Iodophor solution in my sink when I grab stuff out to use them.

You think I will have any problems?

Also... can fermentation start immediately? I can already see bubbles showing up, 1 every minute or so. Also when I shook the hell out of it, I created alot of foam, which looks like it's settling now because there is stuff on the bottom of the carboy now.

Well... gues I will just RDWHAHB :)

Here's a pic:

Chairman Cheyco 10-15-2006 02:22 AM

Sounds like you're well on your way, and I wouldn't worry about putting your hand over the mouth. Generally, if you're topping up with tap water, it will have enough air in it to get a good fermentation going. Aeration is more important with large or full-volume boils.

Congrats man!


Cregar 10-15-2006 02:29 AM

cool.. thanks :)

Just checked it again, not sure what the bubbles where earlier... but there not showing up now.

MattD 10-15-2006 08:08 AM

Every time I see photos of a carboy full of new wort where the brewer didn't strain the break out, I get sooo soo happy that I use a strainer. That crap in suspension like that looks like someone spilled cola on cadaver fat and bottled it. I don't know that I could drink it if I knew it had looked like that at one point :cross:

But then, it all turns out the same in the end, and as long as you don't TELL me it looked that way...... I'll be more than happy to drink your beer :ban:

How thick of a layer of trub does that wind up being anyway? Do you top off to replace the volume? I know this is your first batch, the questions are more for other readers :)

If your hands have been soaked in iodophor, I wouldn't worry too much about contamination. But I don't know much. As far as the bubbling is concerned, what kind/how much yeast did you use? Did you make a starter? In my very limited experience, dumping a pack of dry yeast in there will give you a lag of at least a day, and not the most vigorous fermentation. Liquid yeast does much better, if you use a starter (I think a vial of liquid yeast actually has a lower cell count than a packet of dry if you DON'T use a starter), and with my 750 mL starters I tend to get overflow out of my 6.5 gal carboy in 12-18 hours (I just default to starting with a blow off tube now). If you had bubbling immediately after putting it in there, I'd be more likely to guess that it's gases dissolved in the wort coming out of solution, especially since it petered out. It'll pick back up again once the yeasties take control :)

Cregar 10-15-2006 06:35 PM

As to the stuff floating... I didn't strain, your right. But I made sure to leave stuff in the bottom of the brewpot. I used a small saucepan to scoop the wort out till I had enough out and felt comfortable in pouring from the brewpot. I think alot that stuff floating is when I poured into the carboy... it foamed alot, then I shook the hell out of which made it foam even more... maybe 3" to 4" of foam on top. After awhile it dropped back down and sunk to the bottom (2"), so there is only about .5" layer of foam on the top now.

I made sure that I topped off to 5 gallons, maybe just a little more.

No starter was used, I decided just to use the smack pac that came with my kit. I smacked it around 12:30 pm yesterday, and let it expand for 3 hours before I started brewing... an hour and half brewing plus time to cool the wort I would say the yeast had about 5 to 5 1/2 hours to expand.

I woke up this morning (7 am) and checked it... and it was bubbling away. :ban:

Once again I want to thank everyone here for the help and advice... you guys ROCK!! :rockin:

BTW.. What do you mean by strain the breakout?

ajf 10-15-2006 07:51 PM


Originally Posted by Cregar
I had been putting my hands in a Iodophor solution in my sink when I grab stuff out to use them.

You think I will have any problems?

If you like Iodophor stains in the sink, you shouldn't have any problems.

It's much easier to siphon the cooled wort from the brew pot to the fermenter than to poor it. That way, you leave most of the break material in the brew pot.


Cregar 10-15-2006 07:55 PM


Originally Posted by ajf
It's much easier to siphon the cooled wort from the brew pot to the fermenter than to poor it. That way, you leave most of the break material in the brew pot.


Yea... I think I will siphon next time. I just wanted to get it into the carboy as soon as I could so it wouldn't be just sitting out in the open.

Cregar 10-22-2006 11:35 PM

Just finished racking my first brew to the secondary fermenter (clearing carboy), everything went pretty well till towards the end when I had just a little beer left in the primary.

I went to tilt it so I could get the rest of the beer out and I lost my siphon, so I had to take the tubing off the racking cane and out of the secondary to fill back up with water to start the siphon again. Had to do that a couple of times cause the damn racking cane would move out of position and I would lose the siphon. Finally got it going again and was able to tilt the carboy to get all of the beer out.

One other mistake I made was when it was about done I took the tubing out of the secondary to fill up my hydrometer jar, then I put the tubing back in the secondary. Hopefully that doesn't contaminate the beer.

Other then that everything was cool. Now in about 2 weeks I will rack to the bottles I have saved up.

The hydrometer reading was at 1.016 adjusted, so here are the numbers so far...

Apparent Attenuation: 64.3%
Real Attenuation: 52.7%
ABW%: 3.10
ABV%: 3.97

Hopefully the Attenuation will come up a little, I think thats kinda low for the yeast I used (Wyeast #1028 London Ale Yeast - Attenuation: 73-77%)

You think it will drop to 1.012 in a couple of weeks?

Cregar 10-23-2006 12:43 AM

Also... should I still keep it around 68 to 70 degrees?

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