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Old 11-03-2012, 03:27 PM   #1
kf4ocj
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Hey guys,new to the forum from tennessee.I made my first batch of beer abot 2 months ago and I am not impressed with the outcome,so I lucked up on a deal for a new complete true brew all malt amber kit it came with everything but the bottle's and water.Now to my problem.As I have seen posted here the truebrew instructions are extremly fauge,it says to pitch the yeast after the temp is below 90F,its been about 14 hours in fermenter and I am getting good activity from the airlock but the temp on the bucket is 78F I would really like to get the temp down to about 72F,I have put a fan blowing on it to see if that will work.The question is,am I setting myself up for a skunky brew.I really like beer and will keep working at it till I get it right,any suggestions will be greatly appreciated

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Old 11-03-2012, 03:47 PM   #2
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Hey guys,new to the forum from tennessee.I made my first batch of beer abot 2 months ago and I am not impressed with the outcome,so I lucked up on a deal for a new complete true brew all malt amber kit it came with everything but the bottle's and water.Now to my problem.As I have seen posted here the truebrew instructions are extremly fauge,it says to pitch the yeast after the temp is below 90F,its been about 14 hours in fermenter and I am getting good activity from the airlock but the temp on the bucket is 78F I would really like to get the temp down to about 72F,I have put a fan blowing on it to see if that will work.The question is,am I setting myself up for a skunky brew.I really like beer and will keep working at it till I get it right,any suggestions will be greatly appreciated
If you want to reduce the fermentation temperature by a few degrees, you can set up a swamp cooler with the stuff around your house. Put your fermentation cooler in a large baking pan, fill it about 2/3 full of cool water and wrap a wet towel around the bucket so it wicks the water from the pan up around the bucket. With that and your fan it should reduce your temp a few degrees (probably down to around 72+F), just be sure to keep it stocked with water and you can always add some of those reusable ice cooler blocks to help. Your yeast may prefer to ferment at those higher temperatures (check to see if the kit mentions anything about that in the instructions or their website), but you may get some off flavors.
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Old 11-03-2012, 04:19 PM   #3
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Thanks for the advice,I went straight away and made the swamp cooler you suggested and the tempature dropped from 78-76 in about 20 minutes> I put a small container of water in the freezer and when it freezes I will put it in.Do you think the 14 hours at 78+ will hurt me now or that getting the tempeture down for the remainder of the fermentaion process will save it,thanks again and sorry about all the newbie questions

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Old 11-03-2012, 04:40 PM   #4
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Thanks for the advice,I went straight away and made the swamp cooler you suggested and the tempature dropped from 78-76 in about 20 minutes> I put a small container of water in the freezer and when it freezes I will put it in.Do you think the 14 hours at 78+ will hurt me now or that getting the tempeture down for the remainder of the fermentaion process will save it,thanks again and sorry about all the newbie questions
I imagine you'll probably be fine. 78F in your primary isn't too bad, though in the future you may want to look into other temperature control options, especially if you brew in an area prone to wide temperature shifts (like a drafty garage or warm utility room). One of the best investments I've made was converting a small dorm fridge I had into a fermentation chamber (http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f51/mini...-build-343372/). There are a ton of DIY posts on here that I used to build mine and it's pretty cheap if you already have an old refrigerator. And you certainly don't need to be an electrical engineer to wire it up properly (and trust me, I'm not ).
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Old 11-03-2012, 08:46 PM   #5
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A temperature controlled fridge or freezer is certainly ideal as you can just "set it and forget it". Many temperature controllers only require you to plug the fridge/freezer into the the temp controller than the temp controller into an outlet. In your case, I'd add enough ice bottles to your swamp cooler to bring the temperature down to your desired temp.

Most people seem to agree that pitching on the cooler side of your yeast's temperature range is preferred to pitching warm than cooling. Your beer will be fine because you addressed the issue quickly. Temperatures that are too warm for several days during the intial phases of fermentation can cause off flavors, like a "hot" alcohol taste.

Cooling my wort to temperature this low is tricky for me since I live in Florida and ground water temperature stays pretty warm most of the year. What I've been doing is cooling the wort down to about 80-85 with my wort chiller than racking into my carboy. I then cover the opening of the carboy with several layers of paper towel dampened with Starsan and secure with a rubber band (I avoid the airlock initially because the cooling wort can suck the air lock liquid in the wort). I place the carboy in my temperature controlled fridge until the wort reaches the low end of my yeast's temperature range. I then pitch my yeast, aerate, and place a blow off tube or airlock on the carboy. In your case, I would put the lid over the bucket and cool your wort in the swamp cooler, then pitch your yeast, aerate, and place the airlock on your bucket.

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