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Old 07-10-2009, 12:50 AM   #1
Feb 2009
Chicago, IL
Posts: 76

first, the gravity: I havn't been testing for pre-boil gravity because the wort is hot, which is obvious. Do you let it cool??? I've been fine so far, but today the FRUSTRATION!! hit me. Did a batch of blond ale today, thinking everything went smooth, and missed my OG by 10 points! oh well - it will be drinkable.

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Old 07-10-2009, 01:09 AM   #2
Jan 2009
Lincoln Park, MI
Posts: 299
Liked 1 Times on 1 Posts

Well you can always add DME if you are a little short. By a 2-3 lb bag and throw it in the fridge, it will come in handy.

Regarding taking a gravity reading, one of the greatest inventions is a refractometer. It allows you take a reading with only a drop of wort, and I take multiple readings through the whole boil.

If you are using a hydrometer, yes you need to let it cool. I would figure out how much liquid your hydrometer tube holds and then fill it half with wort, and for the rest use (chilled) distilled water. Whatever reading you get you will need to double, but it will allow you to take a reading much sooner.

Typically I brew to a certain gravity (by taking a preboil reading), not a volume. I always hit my SG, but the volume is a little higher or lower.

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Old 07-10-2009, 01:40 AM   #3
Nugent's Avatar
Sep 2008
Vancouver, BC, Canada
Posts: 692
Liked 9 Times on 9 Posts

+ 1 for the refractometer. Just got one for 30 bones off of eBay.

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Old 07-10-2009, 04:31 AM   #4
Sep 2008
Wilmington, NC
Posts: 246
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Beersmith can also adjust the gravity for you

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Old 07-10-2009, 05:13 AM   #5
Jul 2008
New Orleans, LA
Posts: 80

I've never had an issue using a hydrometer in hot wort. I just drop it in when its between 160 and 180 and correct for temp. Just make sure your hydrometer can take the heat and wont shatter on you. Just don't leave it in for more than a min or two and make sure to let it cool before washing it in cool water.


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