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Old 12-05-2011, 06:13 PM   #1
Sctbkr
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Dec 2011
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Hi guys, I apologize in advance for my newbie-ness but I have a quick question... Brewed the Midwest clone kit for furious IPA this past weekend and my initial gravity reading was 1.06 instead of the 1.068 that it was supposed to be, what factors may cause a lower starting gravity?

 
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Old 12-05-2011, 06:42 PM   #2
commonsenseman
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Well, the only thing that can cause a low O.G. reading for an extract batch is a higher volume. Is it possible you had a little over 5 gallons? Did you cool the sample to 60 degrees before you took the reading?

Otherwise, your hydrometer may be off. Have you tried it in 60 degree water to be sure it reads exactly 1.000?
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Old 12-05-2011, 06:49 PM   #3
ChadChaney
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Extra volume is not the only thing that can cause lower OG readings. For example, if some of the extract was not fully emptied into in the wort, if you did not mix well, you will NOT get an accurate reading, etc. My guess was that the OG was just fine as long as you got all the fermentables in the wort at the right amounts, probably just not mixed well with the top off water.

 
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Old 12-05-2011, 07:37 PM   #4
commonsenseman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ChadChaney View Post
Extra volume is not the only thing that can cause lower OG readings. For example, if some of the extract was not fully emptied into in the wort, if you did not mix well, you will NOT get an accurate reading, etc. My guess was that the OG was just fine as long as you got all the fermentables in the wort at the right amounts, probably just not mixed well with the top off water.
Sorry, I worded that poorly. I meant the only thing that can actually cause the O.G. to be low is a higher volume. I guess I made the assumption that all of the extract made it in.

As you said, there are several things that could cause the reading itself to be off.

Silly me.
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Old 12-05-2011, 08:44 PM   #5
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Yup, previous posters are right. In extract brewing, if you added all of the extract the recipe called for, and you filled up to exactly 5 gallons (or whatever the recipe was) your original gravity IS the expected OG.

Things like not mixing the top-off water completely (which is very difficult- concentrated wort and water are extremely different in density) can affect how the hydrometer reports the gravity, though.
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Old 12-05-2011, 09:43 PM   #6
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Actually I brewed Midwest's Hophead double IPA this past weekend too and my gravity was about 10 points lower than what it should have been. Being that it was extract, I was at a lost on how I could lose 10 whole points since I filled up to exactly 5 gallons. I wonder if it could have been the extract? I've never been off on an extract OG before (when I've even bothered to check it)

 
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Old 12-05-2011, 10:06 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MN_Jay View Post
Actually I brewed Midwest's Hophead double IPA this past weekend too and my gravity was about 10 points lower than what it should have been. Being that it was extract, I was at a lost on how I could lose 10 whole points since I filled up to exactly 5 gallons. I wonder if it could have been the extract? I've never been off on an extract OG before (when I've even bothered to check it)
I have the same kit (HH IIPA) in a secondary and my OG was right at 1.072 with exactly 5 gallons. It was the first brew I meaasured the OG and I expected it to be right on.
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Old 12-05-2011, 10:13 PM   #8
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You should always make sure you get the wort & top off water mixed well. I pour the chilled wort & top off water through a fine mesh strainer into the FV. It also aerates them well. I then stir roughly for 5 minutes straight. That usually mixes them pretty well,& gives 3-5" of foam from aerating it.
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