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Belgian Tripel how to measure OG?

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opXus

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I plan on brewing a Belgian Tripel in the not too distant future. If I brew and place wort in the primary and add the yeast, then wait a few days to a week and then add in candi sugar, how to I measure the OG?

I mean I know how to measure the gravity, however how do you calculate the ABV if you have an OG let it go for a few days then add more sugar?

Im curious as to how to figure out the ABV. Not sure how this works, please help!

Thanks,

opXus

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A pound added to a 5 gallon batch increases it by about .009 or so. So if your wort going into the fermentor was 1.080, it would be about 1.089 after adding one pound of candi sugar. Or 1.098 if you added two pounds.

For your ABV question...
In the example above, we'll assume the final gravity will be 1.014.

Your beer was 1.080 before adding sugar, that beer would have been about 8.8% abv.

Once you add a pound of candi sugar, it would go to 1.089, and have an ABV of about 10%.

I tend to use this calculator ( http://www.rooftopbrew.net/abv_calculator.php ) for a quick online calculation.
 

nameless

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I'm just curious for my sake: why add the candi sugar after the boil? Generally I add ingredients post-boil to preserve aromatic qualities and certain tastes that a boil won't be kind to.
 

ResumeMan

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The reason would be to reduce the overall gravity the yeast is faced with (and therefore reduce the stress it faces) and to ensure that the yeast attacks the more complex sugars before it goes after the glucose/fructose of the candi sugar.

That's not essential, but they're little hints and tricks that are recommended by some experts to ensure good yeast performance.
 
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opXus

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My reason for adding to primary is exactly what ResumeMan has stated. That is just some info from what I have read. He added more science to my reason, but like was stated to reduce stress on the yeast.

Ok, so in my situation stated in the OP the best thing to do is just add the .009 per lb to the measured OG?

Thanks. I was just confused thinking if I measure the OG and then ferment then add more sugar there was no way to measure that. But what you have said makes sense since basically you just melt the sugar down so there is no loss as you may have with efficiency.

Love this forum, all questions answered so quickly!
 

Qhrumphf

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I'm just curious for my sake: why add the candi sugar after the boil? Generally I add ingredients post-boil to preserve aromatic qualities and certain tastes that a boil won't be kind to.
He's not talking about immediately after the boil. He's talking about after a few days of fermentation.

The reason being that with a high gravity beer with a high percentage of sugar (like many Belgian strong ales) if all the simple sugar is there from the beginning the yeast will go after the simple sugars first, and end up not attenuating the malt sugars fully, leaving a beer nowhere near as dry as a Belgian beer should be. But if you add the sugars after fermentation has started, the yeast will go through the maltose before the sugar.

I usually wait until maybe 4 days into fermentation, ie when it's mostly done, but not quite at FG and the yeast are still active.

If you've got that hard candi sugar already, might as well use it. But if you haven't bought the sugar yet, just use corn sugar instead. It's essentially the same thing, just a lot cheaper and you'll get more bang for the buck. If you're going to use an actual candi SYRUP, that'd be a lot better. That's what the Belgian brewers use.

As far as how to calculate, take the ppg of the sugar you're using (I believe candi syrups are usually roughly 32 ppg, where the sugars are closer to 38 ppg) and multiply by the number of pounds. Then multiply the post-decimal original gravity reading of the batch, and multiply that by the volume of the batch. Then add those numbers together, and divide that by the total volume of both the original batch plus whatever volume you increased with the sugar addition.

For example, you're adding 2 lb of 38 ppg candi sugar into 5 gallons of 1.070 OG wort. 2*38 + 5*70 = 426. If after boiling those two pounds of candi sugar in some water, you're adding an additional .25 gallons of sugar/water solution into the 5 gallons of wort, then it's 426 / 5.25 = 81.14, or an adjusted OG of 1.081.

With sugars I boil them briefly in as little water as possible before I add them back into the batch. I'm partial to the syrups, since I think they add a lot of great flavor, and I figure since they were boiled during manufacture and packaged sealed, I just dump em right in without boiling (YMMV). In that case, I assume the volume increase is pretty much negligible, and I calculate as such.

Hope that helps.
 
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opXus

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Yes definately some good info. However I just did brief research and it appears that the syrups are even more expensive than the candi sugar. Are the flavors that much better?

Im not looking to brew with a bargain basement budget, but I'm also not looking to spend $1,000 per brew day. haha.

If the flavors are much better than it might definately be worth the extra few dollars.
 

Qhrumphf

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For a Tripel I would just use corn sugar. Theres also threads on here (as well as in books) on how to make your own candi syrup.

With darker Belgians (Dubbel, BDSA, Quad etc.) absolutely use a syrup.
 
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opXus

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Qhrumphf thanks for the input! Much appreciated.
 
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