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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > General Techniques > Tips to monitor water temp without a thermometer?
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Old 07-25-2012, 03:48 AM   #1
Han_Solo
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Default Tips to monitor water temp without a thermometer?

I have been "eyeing" it when I do it. Supposedly the water is approx 155 when steam starts to rise off of the water, and around 190 when the pot begins to make some noise.

Any other tips that may come in handy? I often worry the grains are steeping at too high a temp. If that were to happen, how does it affect the taste of final product?

Signed, brew n00b


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Old 07-25-2012, 04:35 AM   #2
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Is this a joke? Buy a friggin thermometer, there is no substitute and it's mandatory for this hobby.


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Old 07-25-2012, 04:38 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by g-star View Post
Is this a joke? Buy a friggin thermometer, there is no substitute and it's mandatory for this hobby.
QFT (quoted for truth)

Seriously, take a couple beer bottles to the recycling station and buy a cheap thermometer and calibrate with ice water and boiling water.
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Old 07-25-2012, 05:54 AM   #4
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Research decoction mashing, no need for a thermometer.
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Old 07-25-2012, 12:56 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by omokoro View Post
Research decoction mashing, no need for a thermometer.
Don't you still need to mash in at a certain temp. and then know when to mash out when decocting?

Plus, decocting was a solution to poorly modified grain (and maybe not having readily available thermometers). It takes at least twice as long to do as a traditional infusion mash, so if your time is worth anything at all, a thermometer is a MUCH better solution.

I agree with everyone else - buy a thermometer - There is a reason that every brewery in the world probably uses them. However, here is an article that touches on temp. control in brewing hundreds of years ago in the absence of thermometers if you are interested in making your brew day more difficult and far less accurate, or simply recreating a historical brew day.

http://www.breweryhistory.com/journa...bh-121-066.htm
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Old 07-25-2012, 02:31 PM   #6
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Any tips to measure final gravity without a hydrometer or refractometer? I'm trying to create a formula using airlock bubbles per minute to pin down FG.




j/k
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Old 07-25-2012, 03:42 PM   #7
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Pretty exact mashing temps are pretty darn important in the brewing process!

Stem thermometers are $5.99 at Target/WalMart. If you can't save up $5.99 to make better beer, you might be in the wrong hobby!!

Oh, and my pot has NEVER started to "make noise" at 190F!!
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Old 07-25-2012, 03:50 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrewThruYou View Post
Any tips to measure final gravity without a hydrometer or refractometer? I'm trying to create a formula using airlock bubbles per minute to pin down FG.




j/k
This made me LOL for real!
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Old 07-25-2012, 05:34 PM   #9
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also essential to know the temp when you are cooling your wort and pitching your yeast

next time you pick up brew supplies your lhbs or online retailer will have a cheap thermometer avail

if you are steeping at too high of a temp you can start to extract tannins - if you pitch to hot you will get all sorts of unwanted esters and off flavors
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Old 07-25-2012, 05:54 PM   #10
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