Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Beginners Beer Brewing Forum > Specific Gravity, help!
Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 04-20-2011, 03:25 AM   #1
potosky36
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: cherry hill, New Jersey [NJ]
Posts: 10
Default Specific Gravity, help!

I am currently brewing my first home-brew. I accidentally forgot to take an original gravity reading before i began fermentation. It has been fermenting for almost ten days. According to the recipe the original gravity should have been between 1.040 and 1.045 (since i never took the initial reading i have no clue if this is what it actually was). For the first 4-6 days the airlock was bubbling almost every 5-15 seconds. The bubbles began to slow to every 30 seconds to 60 seconds in the following days. I took a hydrometer reading on the 8th day and it was about 1.010, i took another reading over a day later and got the same result. the recipe says that the final gravity should be between 1.012 and 1.020. This is causing me to think that my gravity is too low.

What does this actually mean?
Do I have a lower than expected gravity because my initial gravity (which I never took) was probably lower than expected?
What should I do now?

btw the samples i tasted after taking the reading were very good and tasted surprisingly close a finished beer, does this mean its time to bottle?


potosky36 is offline
 
Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-2011, 03:33 AM   #2
Suthrncomfrt1884
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Location: Rockford, Illinois
Posts: 4,079
Liked 25 Times on 23 Posts
Likes Given: 3

Default

Relax...don't worry...have a homebrew (or commercial in your case).

No big deal on not taking a gravity reading. A lot of us failed to do this for our first few beers. It's really only important if you're trying to duplicate a beer, use brewing software, or determine alcohol strength. When you get into all grain brewing, then it becomes a big deal.

It's VEEEEERY hard to screw up your original gravity when doing extract (I'm assuming you started with extract). As long as you used the right amount of water and boiled for the right amount of time, you should be good.

As for the final gravity... being a few points under isn't a big deal either. All fermentations will act a bit differently, and there's nothing we can do about it other than monitor temps as closely as possible. Yeasts are tricky little things.

I'm actually suprised that you're final gravity was that low, though. Extract beers usually finish a bit higher. Did you adjust the hydrometer reading for the temp of the beer?

Either way...you'll be fine. Check it in another few days, and if it's still the same, go ahead and bottle.

A little tip though.... letting the beer sit for another 2 weeks will do wonders for the final product. Just leave it where it's at and forget about it. I know it's hard with your first beer...but if you have the patience, trust me.


__________________
He who drinks beer sleeps well. He who sleeps well cannot sin. He who does not sin goes to heaven.

Another HERMS rig...
Suthrncomfrt1884 is offline
 
Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-2011, 03:33 AM   #3
Whut
Mmmm, beer
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 2 reviews
 
Whut's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: Peoria, AZ
Posts: 8,615
Liked 1694 Times on 1584 Posts
Likes Given: 8631

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by potosky36 View Post
I took a hydrometer reading on the 8th day and it was about 1.010, i took another reading over a day later and got the same result.
Bottle away. Oh, and RDWHAHB!

Edit: Welcome to HBT and the OBSESSION!
__________________
- Trace
Whut is offline
 
Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-2011, 03:35 AM   #4
Shaneoco1981
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Shaneoco1981's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Rochester, MI
Posts: 584
Liked 12 Times on 12 Posts
Likes Given: 4

Default

The OG from kits are just estimates. That's why they give you a range. Obviously, without knowing your starting point, it's impossible to tell exactly how much alcohol you have in your beer, but it should be a fair assumption that it was close to what the kit said it should be. I would just take a middle number, like 1.042. I am also assuming you did top off the volume to 5 gallons like most kits call for. They can roughly predict FG by previous batches, but every batch will be different and have different attenuation. Being below the predicted FG means nothing.

As far as bottling goes, that's up to you. Time is your friend. If you are happy with the way it tastes now, then go for it, but remember, aging some more might make it even better, but it also might not. I can say that it shouldn't get worse. So when to bottle is kind of up to you. Enjoy!
Shaneoco1981 is offline
 
Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-2011, 03:46 AM   #5
potosky36
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: cherry hill, New Jersey [NJ]
Posts: 10
Default

Thanks for the tips. Yes, I used extract and topped the water off to 5 gallons. the only problem i had in the entire process was a slight boil over, not sure if this could have contributed to a lower gravity though. Depending on my mood tomorrow I will either bottle or wait until it reaches the 14 day mark, or maybe even the 21 day mark....I am just impatient since this is my first batch, and I am ready to start the next one asap I am going to go with a partial grain dunkel weizen.
potosky36 is offline
 
Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-2011, 03:48 AM   #6
Shaneoco1981
HBT_LIFETIMESUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
Shaneoco1981's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Apr 2011
Location: Rochester, MI
Posts: 584
Liked 12 Times on 12 Posts
Likes Given: 4

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by potosky36 View Post
Thanks for the tips. Yes, I used extract and topped the water off to 5 gallons. the only problem i had in the entire process was a slight boil over, not sure if this could have contributed to a lower gravity though. Depending on my mood tomorrow I will either bottle or wait until it reaches the 14 day mark, or maybe even the 21 day mark....I am just impatient since this is my first batch, and I am ready to start the next one asap I am going to go with a partial grain dunkel weizen.
Yea, I know what you mean. We all needed to fill our pipeline at one point. It will get easier with exp. The more you do, the easier it will be to wait. Good luck!
Shaneoco1981 is offline
 
Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-2011, 03:58 AM   #7
BrewKnurd
Formerly discnjh
HBT_SUPPORTER.png
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
 
BrewKnurd's Avatar
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Location: Prairieville, LA
Posts: 2,765
Liked 242 Times on 201 Posts
Likes Given: 112

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by potosky36 View Post
Thanks for the tips. Yes, I used extract and topped the water off to 5 gallons. the only problem i had in the entire process was a slight boil over, not sure if this could have contributed to a lower gravity though. Depending on my mood tomorrow I will either bottle or wait until it reaches the 14 day mark, or maybe even the 21 day mark....I am just impatient since this is my first batch, and I am ready to start the next one asap I am going to go with a partial grain dunkel weizen.
Technically, a boilover will decrease your OG and hence your FG (as long as you were still making up with water for a set end volume of wort).... but it would have to be a pretty significant boilover for you to be able to measure the impact.
BrewKnurd is offline
 
Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-2011, 06:33 AM   #8
CABeerMaker
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: Modesto, CA
Posts: 88
Default

Your gravity is what it is, using extract you really can't do much to affect your OG. As far as the lower than expected FG, that is not unusual as most of my beers end up with lower than expected FG's, it just means that your yeast did a little better job of attenuating your beer. For some styles this may be a concern as some might percieve a slightly watery taste since there is less sugar to add to the percieved body, but there is nothing you can do now to change that. As far as bottling that is more of a personal decision. I used to rush my beer to bottles but am now letting them set in primary for a month before bottling and have seen a much better cleaner and clearer beer because of it. Have fun, relax and welcome to your new obsession.
CABeerMaker is offline
 
Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-2011, 09:43 AM   #9
hector
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Last Station
Posts: 667
Liked 8 Times on 8 Posts
Likes Given: 5

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by CABeerMaker View Post
Your gravity is what it is, using extract you really can't do much to affect your OG.
What do you mean exactly by that ?!

Hector
hector is offline
 
Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-2011, 10:23 AM   #10
Scruffy1207
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Recipes 
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: San Diego, CA
Posts: 605
Liked 3 Times on 3 Posts
Likes Given: 1

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by hector

What do you mean exactly by that ?!

Hector
I'm pretty new but I'm going to take a stab at this. From what I understand brewing with extract is kind of like taking the basic root. Like if you were installing a program on the computer. It comes in a nice little package ready to go. Not much varience possible in that aspect. All grain is like installing a program on advanced. You can customize out however you like. Get your beer exactly how you want them how you want it


__________________
Quote:
Originally Posted by cvstrat

Maybe if your boil kettle was a sheet pan, and your heat source was satan's a**hole, then you could possibly boil off 60 percent of your batch in an hour.
Scruffy1207 is offline
 
Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Specific Gravity jambafish Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 20 02-13-2011 09:11 PM
Specific Gravity?!?! cmorgan Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 8 12-30-2009 02:46 AM
Specific Gravity?? when and how much Eepa Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 7 02-05-2009 12:56 AM
Specific gravity Turkey Man Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 11 06-13-2007 04:25 AM
Specific Gravity Evets Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 4 07-19-2006 04:38 AM


Forum Jump

Newest Threads

LATEST SPONSOR DEALS