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Old 03-19-2006, 06:21 PM   #1
Bills Brew
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Default High FG -> 1.030

I have an IPA that has been in the secondary for 2 wks. No visible air lock activity, and the gravity has been at 1.030 for the last two days.

Here are the brewing particulars:
9 lbs of ultralight malt extract
1.5 lbs crystal grains
OG: 1.048 - (75^F) which is lower than the estimated gravity of 1.060-1.065
Yeast: (1) packet of Nottingham dry yeast. I made a starter by taking about a cup of the wort (cooled to 80^F) and rehydrated the yeast.
Aeration: I poured the cooled wort from the brew pot to the fermentor, back to the brew pot and then back to the fermentor. Looked like lots of aeration.
Fermentation: Lag time was a matter of hours, with a two three inch high Krausen.
Temperature: 68^F - raised to 72^ the last couple of days to try to get some fermentation activity to lower the gravity.

Seems like it has a long ways to go. Do I add more yeast?

A sweet beer at 2.4% alcohol doesn't seem worth saving.

Thanks for any suggestions.


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Old 03-19-2006, 06:32 PM   #2
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Sounds like your hydrometer or your measuring techniques might be off. 9 lbs of malt extract will give you 1.063 in a 5 USG batch or 1.055 in a 6USG batch. The crystal malt might add another .05 if done correctly.

A 1.030 beer will taste quite sweet- does your?


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Old 03-19-2006, 06:42 PM   #3
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Yes it is pretty sweet. I tested my hydrometer in tap water, and it was at 1.000.
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Old 03-19-2006, 06:43 PM   #4
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I agree with Mikey...your OG was a lot higher than 1.048. My guess would be you took your sample right after topping off before stirring well, so you ended up testing a diluted sample.

How long did you steep the crystal for? It might very well be that you got a lot of unfermentables out of the crystal malt, thus accounting for the high FG. My guess is you're done...go ahead and bottle it. It'll be sweet for an IPA, but still drinkable...definately not something you would consider dumping.
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Old 03-19-2006, 07:04 PM   #5
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Make a hop tea and add it to the secondary.

Instead of me repeating myself, do a search on "hop tea". Be sure to boil the water for 1 hour to get the bitterness out of the hops.
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Old 03-19-2006, 07:16 PM   #6
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Even if it started around 1.060, 1.030 is way too high in my book. I'd give the fermenter a good swirl to rouse the yeast a bit, and see if you can get them re-started. I'd even contemplate re-pitching.

Also, the process you listed above isn't making a starter. Basically all you did was rehydrate with wort. To make a starter, you'll want to do it a few days in advance so the yeast have a chance to really multiply before pitching.
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Old 03-19-2006, 07:17 PM   #7
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The grains were steeped for 30 minutes at 160^F.

So with a OG of around 1.060+, or so, my alcohol will be around 3.9. Just have to drink more of them.

Thanks for all of your inputs.
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Old 03-19-2006, 09:13 PM   #8
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I had this happen with my first three batches. I used different yeasts, made starters, did everything my LHBS suggested. It turned out the extract manufacturer (Alexander's) had screwed up and mashed at too high a temperature, resulting in lots of unformentable sugars. Might be something to check.
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Old 03-19-2006, 10:02 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by flingdingo
It turned out the extract manufacturer (Alexander's) had screwed up and mashed at too high a temperature, resulting in lots of unformentable sugars.
Not that I'm doubting you, but how would you know that? Does Alexanders publish that info on a batch by batch basis?

It does make sense tho...I've had several batches lately end up way too sweet with a high FG, and I used Alexenders LME in all of them.
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Old 03-20-2006, 01:32 PM   #10
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It sounds to me, that the LME would be a very likely culprit for this (as the others already pointed out). Even if there was 100% extraction efficiency on the crystal, the FG should not be that high. And fermentation seemed to be healthy. Especially the warm temps make a stalled ferment unlikely.

Maybe you guys should start a new thread and see who else uses Alexanders LME.

Kai



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