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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Beginners Beer Brewing Forum > Bottling conditioning - does it help to swirl bottles?
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Old 02-09-2012, 09:15 PM   #11
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To the OP; If you swirl the yeast up you'll get cloudy beer. Try an experiment: swirl half a batch of bottles accordoing to whatever schedule makes sense to you. Leave the other half alone. put them in 6pack racks in pairs, and taste them in pairs to see if/when a difference is apparent. Good excuse to brink more beer !!!
Sounds like a good experiment but after reading the "bottle bomb" thread I'm hesitant to shake any conditioning bottles for fear of one exploding in my hand! Perhaps I'll just let the yeast do it's job, unmolested.


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Old 02-10-2012, 12:48 PM   #12
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The usual culprit in bottle bombs is either incomplete initial fermentation (due to low temps?) or excessive priming sugar. Once the sugar is gone the yeast cease eating, regardless of how many there are in suspension.


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Old 02-10-2012, 02:17 PM   #13
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The usual culprit in bottle bombs is either incomplete initial fermentation (due to low temps?) or excessive priming sugar. Once the sugar is gone the yeast cease eating, regardless of how many there are in suspension.
Exactly. Bottle bombs DON'T happen unless something is wrong. And it's usually what Bill said, not letting a beer actually finish fermenting before bottling (That's why we recommend using a hydromter to determine completeness, and NOT airlocks or a calendar.) Infection (Rare) or adding too much priming sugar.

Am I the only one who see's the Irony in someone with the name "SHAKES BEER" advising someone NOT to do it?

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To the OP; If you swirl the yeast up you'll get cloudy beer. Try an experiment: swirl half a batch of bottles accordoing to whatever schedule makes sense to you. Leave the other half alone. put them in 6pack racks in pairs, and taste them in pairs to see if/when a difference is apparent
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Old 02-10-2012, 02:31 PM   #14
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Am I the only one who see's the Irony in someone with the name "SHAKES BEER" advising someone NOT to do it?
bahahaha. Good catch.
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Old 06-03-2014, 07:57 PM   #15
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Default Swirl

If yeast didn't like help in doing their jobs we wouldn't need a stir plate to quickly and more effectively make big starters, I have bottled thousands of beers and in my opinion it absolutely cuts the conditioning time.. I swirl not shake the bottle just enough to kick the yeast up, like 4 or 5 quick spins, and I do this every few days... Happy brewing
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Old 06-04-2014, 06:06 PM   #16
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If yeast didn't like help in doing their jobs we wouldn't need a stir plate to quickly and more effectively make big starters, I have bottled thousands of beers and in my opinion it absolutely cuts the conditioning time.. I swirl not shake the bottle just enough to kick the yeast up, like 4 or 5 quick spins, and I do this every few days... Happy brewing
In a starter you're not making beer, you're making yeast.

I'd be interested if anybody actually did the side by side comparison with shaking/not shaking. My guess is the only difference would be one was cloudy and one was clear.

signed william doesn't shake beer
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Old 06-04-2014, 06:47 PM   #17
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Funny that this post came back to life because I just did an experiment whilst bottle conditioning.

I typically don't crack a beer until after the 3 week mark but on the IPA I decided that I was going to try and run a little test.

I took the beer and set aside a six pack at room temp and let them sit for a week, on one side of the six pack I would tilt the bottle upside down once per day to suspend the yeast, the other side I did not touch.

At one week I opened one bottle from each side. The bottle that I suspended the yeast in had a decent amount of carbonation after 7 days and even retained a head in the glass. The bottle from the side I did not mess with was still flat although the bottle did hiss when I opened it.

I waited another 3 days and tried them again with the same result only the bottle that I suspended the yeast in was fully carbed at this point and the other bottle was still flat with only slightly better carbonation than the first taste.

At that point I suspended the yeast in the last untouched bottle and waited another 3 days to try it. At that point the, 13 day mark, both bottles were fully carbed. I wish I hadn't messed with that 3rd still bottle but I felt like I had enough anecdotal evidence to draw a conclusion.

As far as being clear there was no noticeable difference after chilling in the fridge for a day. However this was a fairly dark IPA with an SMR around 12 so with a lighter beer you may notice something.
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Old 06-04-2014, 07:11 PM   #18
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It sounds like what was happening was the co2 produced up to that point was getting mixed in by swirling/tilting or shaking. Like when you try to quick carb a keg.
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Old 06-04-2014, 08:43 PM   #19
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Interesting experiment Heavy.
When carbing in the winter where the temp in my basement is in the low 60s, I put my bottles in an insulated box with a heating pad on top. The pad is slightly smaller than the box, so every 3-4 days, I rotate the bottles and while doing that I give them a shake. I've done this for the past 2 years after reading a post from one of the bigwigs(can't remember who) who recommended inverting bottles to restart a stalled bottle conditioning. Is it necessary? I don't know, I've never tried the Heavyweather experiment. Maybe next winter I will. But for now, all I know is...... it works for me.


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