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Old 01-14-2010, 12:21 AM   #1
Ottis
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Default First batch, equipment questions.

I bought a Midwest Homebrewing kit on ebay, unused but the instructions were missing, my friend bought a "this Buds for you" recipe kit from Midwest and we followed the instructions that came with the recipe kit, so far so good. Bubbles in the air lock and everything seems ok.

Most of the questions I had just got answered by reading the stickies, but a few remain.

It was 17įF in my garage when we brewed on the old electric range we had set up for that purpose, because someone told up it would stink the house up to high heaven. Is that true? It didn't smell all that bad, but our noses were half frozen off....

The equipment kit has two 6.5 gal buckets, one with a spigot on it, the kit has a siphon, so what's the spigot for??

After cooling, aerating and pitching the yeast, we slapped the lid on (the bucket with no spigot) and the air lock and waded the snow back to my house. After two days at room temperature, it's now bubbling nicely under my kitchen sink. (temp in the 50s)
I forgot to get a specific gravity reading when we brewed, should I risk contamination by opening the bucket to check it now? I'm not really sure how that works, the instructions for the recipe kit doesn't say anything about the specific gravity so I'm not sure what to look for besides the rate of change.
Do you just drop the floating thing (hydrometer?) in the bucket? or how do you use it? (why yes, I am a n00b)

I just read in the stickies that transferring between buckets isn't really necessary, so to kis I'll skip that part.

I have a Midwest Red Lager kit for our next batch, once we make sure we know enough to get it right. I plan on buying a couple of glass carboys out of my tax return but till then we're stuck with the plastic buckets.

Any tips would be appreciated! Thanks!

Ottis


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Old 01-14-2010, 12:28 AM   #2
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Its too late to get an OG reading,as long as its sterile its good.Yes it floats.The bucket with the spigot is your bottling bucket


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Old 01-14-2010, 12:35 AM   #3
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Im still a newbie, but i wouldnt worry about your gravity since you didnt measure it, it was probably within the guidlines that were in the instructions that were missing. Im on my 2nd kit from MW, and my gravity was within .001 on starting and finishing, so it is pretty accurate with what they say it will be. Next time make sure you do it though so you can keep it in your notes.
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Old 01-14-2010, 12:40 AM   #4
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Ok thanks, but I thought the siphon was for bottling(?)

I also just read in another thread that you shouldn't us a super clean alum pot, the only one we had was an old (very old) cast alum pot that we scrubbed out and then boiled water in twice, we're on a real tight budget, should we invest in a ss pot before doing more brewing?

This is more complicated then I thought, I have some reading to do....
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Old 01-14-2010, 12:45 AM   #5
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The aluminum is fine as long as it is conditioned, which you said you did. Did you not get the free DVD from Midwest? It has a full tutorial on how to brew and has all the parts shown that you got with your kit.

You dont want to use the siphon to fill your bottles. It'd probably work, but it'd be messy and hard to stop the flow when your bottles got full. You should have gotten a bottle filler which you'll hook to your spigot on your bottling bucket with a piece of tubing, its a hard plastic tube with a valve on the end that allows flow when it hits the bottom of the bottle.
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Old 01-14-2010, 12:55 AM   #6
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No DVD, but everything else was there and unused.

I just noticed that the instructions that came with the ingredient kit DOES mention specific gravity, it's in a box in the top corner of the page and I overlooked it, my bad...
SG: 1.038-1.040
FG: 1.010-1.014

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Quote:
Originally Posted by verotik View Post
...snip... You should have gotten a bottle filler which you'll hook to your spigot on your bottling bucket with a piece of tubing, its a hard plastic tube with a valve on the end that allows flow when it hits the bottom of the bottle.
Yep! it's there. thanks for the tip!

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Old 01-14-2010, 01:04 AM   #7
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Well, that'll give you a clue. Just shooting at the middle, 1.039 - 1.012 = .027 * 133 = 3.59% ABV. Next time you order a kit from Midwest, check the box on your order for their free DVD. Its fairly informative.


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