I can't make small beer. - Home Brew Forums

Register Now!
Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > General Techniques > I can't make small beer.

Thread Tools
Old 02-11-2008, 04:27 PM   #1
PseudoChef's Avatar
Apr 2007
West Chicago 'Burbs, IL
Posts: 3,406
Liked 110 Times on 81 Posts

Stupid good efficiency. I had been having problems, so I designed my latest recipe (A Belgian Specialty) around 65%. I ended up at 77%, and after two weeks in the primary (because was pitching Brett in half of it), checked the O.G. at 1.012 from 1.065. I had aimed for an O.G. at around 1.054-55. I was expecting decent attenuation from the starter as well as the use of candi-sugar. But I wanted it to be at least <6%.

Same happened with my Pale back in October. That one attenuated more than I had imagined (to 1.010) and clocks in >6%.

My next recipe is going to aim for 1.040 at 75% eff. Blargh.

Reply With Quote
Old 02-11-2008, 04:36 PM   #2
May 2007
Cary, NC
Posts: 2,176
Liked 36 Times on 31 Posts

I have this problem too. This is why I take a gravity reading before the boil. If pre-boil gravity is too high there is no way you'll hit your target OG so ABV will be too high and the IBU/OG balance will be off. The last time this happened to me I used the Dilution tool in BeerSmith to figure out how much water to add to the boil. I ended up hitting my target OG right on. I bottled that batch this weekend so I'll know how it turned out in a few weeks.

Primary/Secondary: #133 Scottish 80/-
Kegged: #132 American Wheat
Planned: IPA, Brown, Pale Ale

Reply With Quote
Old 02-11-2008, 08:03 PM   #3
david_42's Avatar
Oct 2005
Oak Grove, Oregon, USA
Posts: 25,595
Liked 153 Times on 144 Posts

My efficiency is generally good, but it varies with the weather. I just water a small beer down before pitching & put the extra in 1.5L bottles when I keg it. Since I design towards the middle of a style, the IBUs will still be on. The bottles can be handy for test dry hopping.
Remember one unassailable statistic, as explained by the late, great George Carlin: "Just think of how stupid the average person is, and then realize half of them are even stupider!"

"I would like to die on Mars, just not on impact." Elon Musk

Reply With Quote
Old 02-11-2008, 09:01 PM   #4
jdoiv's Avatar
Mar 2007
Nashville, TN
Posts: 1,152

Don't forget to keep an eye on your hops additions too if you dilute. You'll have more beer, so you'll need to up the hops a little to compensate.
Drinking on the keg: BPA, Brown Ale, Dry Mead, Wee Heavy aged on Oak, CAP
Drinking in the Bottle:

Reply With Quote
Old 02-11-2008, 09:09 PM   #5
Jun 2006
South River, NJ
Posts: 2,587
Liked 21 Times on 17 Posts

Whats wrong with big beers?? Don't hate... appreciate!!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ~~~~~~
~~~~~~~~~~~___//_ ____________________________~~~~~~~~~~~
~~~~~~~~~_/ [][]| | /```\/```\/```\/```\/```\ |~~~~~~~~~~
~~~~~~~_/_______| |____NOW TRIPLE HOPPED______|~~~~~~~~~~
~~~___/[_]| 00 /| | \,,,/\,,,/\,,,/\,,,/\,,,/ |~~~~~~~~~~
~~|___|___|___/_| |___________________________|~~~~~~~~~~
~~|=(*)[________]==(*)(*)=| \________/=(*)(*)=|~~~~~~~~~~

Reply With Quote
Old 02-12-2008, 03:30 AM   #6
Steel Comma Ale & Lagery
sause's Avatar
Oct 2004
Menomonee Falls WI
Posts: 1,866
Liked 18 Times on 13 Posts

I had the same thing happen yesterday. I designed a mild to be 1.038 but then I looked and saw it was at 75% eff. I changed it to the 87% I normally design at and it changed to 1.044 well good bye mild hello bitter. I ended up with 1.048 into the fermenter so it would be a special bitter but I didn't have enough finishing hops to make it one to a big bitter it is.
Originally Posted by Strange Brewer
Had some Bud Light analyzed once. They told me my dog had diabetes... And was pregnant

Reply With Quote
Thread Tools

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Brew Pot too small, can I make an AG? (cheapskate post) Rubberband All Grain & Partial Mash Brewing 15 04-15-2009 05:01 AM
Questions about how to make small batches Mellman Cider Forum 2 03-30-2009 03:24 AM
using open small fridge to cool small insulated closet? Budzu Fermenters 16 03-18-2009 10:05 PM
wanting to make a small expansion alex_wilkosz Beginners Beer Brewing Forum 8 12-07-2008 02:51 AM
Small beer, done? Matt Up North General Techniques 3 08-07-2008 11:04 PM

Forum Jump