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Old 04-16-2007, 06:18 PM   #1
Mar 2007
madison wi
Posts: 52

ok, i know i posted about this some time ago but im asking it again. i have a 5 gal batch of california golden ale in the secondary it has been there for 8 days and i want to take a hydrometer reading (mmmmMMMMMMmm and tast it) to see where im at my last one i took was when i racked and it was 1.011 (og of 1.047) any wayzzz my question is if i open my carboy to take the reading will i risk contaminating my brew coz my air will not be purge from the head space?(there is NO bubling) or is that not somthing to worry about once i have a abv of 3.75% ( thats if i did my math right haha)

any help would be sweet


thanks all this forum has helped alot cheers

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Old 04-16-2007, 06:51 PM   #2
zoebisch01's Avatar
Nov 2006
Central PA
Posts: 5,182
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No worries fleas. Contamination at that stage is usually rare for mainly two reasons. One is that you now have a preservative, namely alcohol. Secondly, the things that tend to prey on your wort are usually a concern pre-fermentation when they have access to fresh sugary wort. Once the process is complete there is less chance of anything happening that would ruin you, but they do still exist so caution is always in order but that doesn't mean you should worry. What it does mean is to make sure you sanitize what comes in contact with your product and to mess with it as infrequently as possibly, only taking readings/etc when necessary.

Fwiw, once you become more familiar with the process (and specific recipes) you should be able to not interfere in the interim period but rather let the wort fully ferment before taking a reading. Racking is always a good time to take one as you have, but just wait until all activity stops and record the FG when you are ready to bottle.
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Old 04-16-2007, 07:52 PM   #3
Ale's What Cures You!
Yooper's Avatar
Jun 2006
UP of Michigan, Winter Texan
Posts: 70,016
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Yeah, what he said. But, I wanted to let you know about how to calculate ABV:

(OG-FG) x .131= ABV (approx)


(1.047- 1.011) x .131=

36 x .131= 4.7 ABV.

So, I figure 4.7%!
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Old 04-16-2007, 08:14 PM   #4
Maniacally Malty
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Apr 2007
Oakland, CA
Posts: 21,790
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if that's the reading you took when it went in the secondary, it sounds like it's done to me!
Easy Partial Mash Brewing - Stovetop All-Grain Brewing

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Old 04-16-2007, 09:54 PM   #5
Mar 2007
madison wi
Posts: 52

thank you guys\girls i took the reading and got 1.011 ill post some pictures soon.

yooper chick the book that i read said to subract FG from the OG and then multiply by 105, but your way seems more accurate thanks alot

cheers fleas

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