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Old 08-11-2012, 04:46 PM   #1
Wild Duk
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Default Lagering temps help

I have built a fermenting / lagering chest freezer setup. I want to try a lager, but don't want to tie up my freezer for months. Need to ferment more ales.
My question is, how long after the initial fermentation of a lager, does temperature matter. I can lower it to lagering temps, and I have a garage fridge that it can sit in for months and not really be in the way. The fridge gets to probably 40 degrees.
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Old 08-11-2012, 07:48 PM   #2
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The first step in making a lager is to pitch LOTS of yeast--I try to do 1.5 million cells per ml per degree Plato. If you do that, you will have good success fermenting at lager temperatures. Ferment your lager until it is about six or eight points above expected OG, then take it out of your fridge and let it finish at room temperature for anywhere from a few days to a week. After that...put it in your 40 degree fridge. I'm lucky enough to have a fridge that goes colder, but I'd be satisfied with 40 degrees. Lager it about a per gravity point for OG (in other words, about 50 days for a 1.050 lager).

Good luck!


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Old 08-11-2012, 07:59 PM   #3
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Thx. I have been making starters so that's no problem.
Would it benefit at all to put back in ferm. Fridge when I don't have an ale going to get temps lower. Say 32-34 ish. I only have plans for about 1-2 ales so it would be in there all but about 2 weeks here and there.

Or is the constant temp better just in the garage fridge

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Old 08-12-2012, 03:11 PM   #4
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For your primary fermentation you need to hold most lager yeasts in the low 50's They'll take about two weeks at this temperature to ferment. You'll then lager the beer for a while at 10 degrees lower or more. 40's in your garage fridge should be fine. Colder and longer lager temps help to precipitate more proteins out and produce a smoother beer, less chill haze etc. The colder you lager, the longer you need to lager it for so the yeast can finish everything up when theyre colder. If I had your setup, I would primary ferment in the fermentation chamber until it slowed down, then rack to a secondary and leave it in the garage fridge for a few weeks or a month.
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Old 08-12-2012, 03:34 PM   #5
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As was mentioned, fermentation for lagers happens at 48-52 degrees or so (depending on yeast strain).

For lagering, I like the "colder and longer" method. That is, I like to lager at near freezing for about a week for every 8 points of OG. For example, for a 1.068 lager, I'd lager at 32-34 degrees for 8-9 weeks.
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Old 08-12-2012, 11:13 PM   #6
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So to say lager for 2 months. Would it be beneficial to keep at about 32 degrees for all but about 2 weeks here and there do I can ferment a few ales. It would be at about 40 - 42 during those 2 weeks


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