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Bomber fridgmenter

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Hi ladies and gents first time posting.
just wanted to gain some advice and opinions.
ive sorted my fridge fermentation cabinet and have it running with my stc1000, and now ready for my first brew. Currently only looking at doing extract kits. I have a pilgrims hope ready to go this week.
couple of questions have arisen.
1. Do you guys short brew these kits. And if so by how much.
2. How much of a temp swing of the wort during fermentation is considered on. Currently I have a bottle of water in the fridge for test purposes and have a swing of around 1.4 deg. Making adjustments to the setting to see if this can be narrowed.
3. Do you brew a temp profile, start low and increase through fermentation or just keep a constant. And if anyone has brewed this before what fermentation temp gave best results.
im sure there will be plenty more questions, but hopefully this will get me started.
many thanks.
 

doogie

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1. I don't do kits and have no idea what 'short brew' means.
2.&3. That amount of temp swing should be fine. Initially the yeast will raise the temp of the wort significantly, you will be keeping the temp rise in check. The actual temperatures that you want to ferment under will be dictated by your yeast. Typically for US-05, I have my chamber set to 68 or so until it gets rolling, then I dial it down a little to 62 or so. This gets my wort to the mid 60's after about a week I will ramp it up to the high end of recommended temperatures to encourage the yeast to finish up, then I drop to serving temperatures to encourage the beer to drop clear before transferring into my serving keg.

Best thing to do is try it out and take notes.

Good luck
 
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Bomber fridgmenter

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I’ve seen guys on YouTube brewing videos that don’t make up the full 23lts and only brew the kits at 21lts. Supposedly to improve body and ensure the ABV is reached. Hopefully as I’m going to use the wort temp to control the fermentation fridge temp, it should keep the initial temp increase under control. So much interesting stuff to learn.
 

3 Dawg Night

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1.4 deg F is fine. I keep mine +/-0.5F of my set temperature. You can expand that a bit if you want to reduce compressor cycles.

I pitch at my fermentation temperature (+/-5F). I start raising my temperature 1-2F per day during the last third of fermentation, until I reach the lower of 6F above initial fermentation temperature or the top end of the manufacturer's recommended range. This encourages the yeast to finish up the last bit of fermentation, clean up after themselves, and it helps eliminate diacetyl (at least in my setup). I judge the last third of fermentation as approximately peak krausen.

Example: I just brewed a porter. I pitched at ~67F and fermented for about four days at 67F. Once airlock activity slowed and the krausen just started to drop, I cranked up my temperature controller by 1F per ~12 hours until I hit 73F. I left it there until I hit stable final gravity (i.e., two identical gravity readings a couple of days apart). After terminal gravity, I always give my beer 2-4 days to finish cleaning up before bottling.

Welcome to the hobby! You're starting out right, focusing on fermentation temperature. That will have a bigger impact on the quality of your beer than almost anything else. I say almost, because the most important thing is patience. Don't rush your beer. Let your yeast do their thing!
 

eric19312

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welcome @Bomber fridgmenter

An always on computer fan or similar inside the chamber will really help with temperature swings. I got tired of splicing wires and got one of these plug in muffin fans. https://www.amazon.com/AC-Infinity-...ocphy=9004533&hvtargid=pla-314819640925&psc=1

The temp probe from your ATC should be taped to the fermentor, with something like a piece of foam insulation bungie corded over it. That way you are measuring the temp of the beer not the air in the fermentor.

Where I live it can get cold and my chamber can be in a 40-50F garage some days so I have a heat source in the chamber too. I use a reptile lamp it should last forever.
 
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Bomber fridgmenter

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1.4 deg F is fine. I keep mine +/-0.5F of my set temperature. You can expand that a bit if you want to reduce compressor cycles.

I pitch at my fermentation temperature (+/-5F). I start raising my temperature 1-2F per day during the last third of fermentation, until I reach the lower of 6F above initial fermentation temperature or the top end of the manufacturer's recommended range. This encourages the yeast to finish up the last bit of fermentation, clean up after themselves, and it helps eliminate diacetyl (at least in my setup). I judge the last third of fermentation as approximately peak krausen.

Example: I just brewed a porter. I pitched at ~67F and fermented for about four days at 67F. Once airlock activity slowed and the krausen just started to drop, I cranked up my temperature controller by 1F per ~12 hours until I hit 73F. I left it there until I hit stable final gravity (i.e., two identical gravity readings a couple of days apart). After terminal gravity, I always give my beer 2-4 days to finish cleaning up before bottling.

Welcome to the hobby! You're starting out right, focusing on fermentation temperature. That will have a bigger impact on the quality of your beer than almost anything else. I say almost, because the most important thing is patience. Don't rush your beer. Let your yeast do their thing!
Thanks for the info. I set up a min/max thermometer yesterday and checked it tonight whist running a pre brew test with a bottle of water. I get a 1.2degC swing with the stc1000 set with a deviation of 0.5degC. Currently the prob is in the water so that I can measure the temp of the heat mass. This will become the wort when I brew tomorrow. Not sure if setting the differential to say 0.3degC would improve anything or just cause the system to cycle too hard. The temp swing may reduce dramatically when the liquid mass increases from 500ml to 23lts. I would imaging this may become very stable.
 
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Bomber fridgmenter

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My fermentation process is pretty close to 3 Dawg Night.

What do you mean by short brew?
I’ve seen some that only top up their wort to 21lts instead of the stated 23lts in the kit instructions. Just wondered if others recommend this.
 
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Bomber fridgmenter

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welcome @Bomber fridgmenter

An always on computer fan or similar inside the chamber will really help with temperature swings. I got tired of splicing wires and got one of these plug in muffin fans. https://www.amazon.com/AC-Infinity-...ocphy=9004533&hvtargid=pla-314819640925&psc=1

The temp probe from your ATC should be taped to the fermentor, with something like a piece of foam insulation bungie corded over it. That way you are measuring the temp of the beer not the air in the fermentor.

Where I live it can get cold and my chamber can be in a 40-50F garage some days so I have a heat source in the chamber too. I use a reptile lamp it should last forever.
Thanks for the info.
yep the prob will be attached to the FV and insulated. Just been running some test prior to starting brewing by placing the prob in a heat mass to replicate the wort later. The air temp in the fermentation fridge is cycling by 4.3degC. I suspect when taped to the side of 21-23lts of wort that the swing will be fairly negligible.
 

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Topping up to a slightly smaller volume will raise the OG by the same percentage. That generally translates into slightly higher FG and ABV. IBUs will also be higher, but BU:GU (bitterness units to gravity units) will be the same, so it bitterness perception should be the same. Completely up to you.
 
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Bomber fridgmenter

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Topping up to a slightly smaller volume will raise the OG by the same percentage. That generally translates into slightly higher FG and ABV. IBUs will also be higher, but BU:GU (bitterness units to gravity units) will be the same, so it bitterness perception should be the same. Completely up to you.
This is certainly serious chemistry that requires learning. Very interesting. Thanks for the reply. Would you consider the 2lt reduction to be significant and would you think there would be a change to body.
 

eric19312

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This is certainly serious chemistry that requires learning. Very interesting. Thanks for the reply. Would you consider the 2lt reduction to be significant and would you think there would be a change to body.
There will be a slight change but I doubt it would be perceptible in a fair test. Putting some numbers in a calculator for fun...if your 23L batch was supposed to have original gravity of 1.050 and you made it as a 21L batch you would expect an orignial gravity of 1.057.

If your yeast would ferment the 1.050 wort to 1.010 (for example) final gravity that would be 5.3% ABV and 79.3% apparent attenuation.

Applying same 79.3% apparent attenuation to the 1.057 wort your final gravity would end up at 1.011 and your ABV would be 6.0%.

You could measure the difference between 1.010 and 1.011 FG I am sure but nobody would be able to detect it as higher body...

... in a fair test. But if you tell them you did this they will probably compliment you on the body of the beer. You will probably notice the higher body and is much more flavorful too. This is pretty much 100% confirmation bias. It is a real thing and will likely enhance your enjoyment of the beer.

Personally I'd rather have the extra two liters of beer.
 
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Bomber fridgmenter

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There will be a slight change but I doubt it would be perceptible in a fair test. Putting some numbers in a calculator for fun...if your 23L batch was supposed to have original gravity of 1.050 and you made it as a 21L batch you would expect an orignial gravity of 1.057.

If your yeast would ferment the 1.050 wort to 1.010 (for example) final gravity that would be 5.3% ABV and 79.3% apparent attenuation.

Applying same 79.3% apparent attenuation to the 1.057 wort your final gravity would end up at 1.011 and your ABV would be 6.0%.

You could measure the difference between 1.010 and 1.011 FG I am sure but nobody would be able to detect it as higher body...

... in a fair test. But if you tell them you did this they will probably compliment you on the body of the beer. You will probably notice the higher body and is much more flavorful too. This is pretty much 100% confirmation bias. It is a real thing and will likely enhance your enjoyment of the beer.

Personally I'd rather have the extra two liters of beer.
There will be a slight change but I doubt it would be perceptible in a fair test. Putting some numbers in a calculator for fun...if your 23L batch was supposed to have original gravity of 1.050 and you made it as a 21L batch you would expect an orignial gravity of 1.057.

If your yeast would ferment the 1.050 wort to 1.010 (for example) final gravity that would be 5.3% ABV and 79.3% apparent attenuation.

Applying same 79.3% apparent attenuation to the 1.057 wort your final gravity would end up at 1.011 and your ABV would be 6.0%.

You could measure the difference between 1.010 and 1.011 FG I am sure but nobody would be able to detect it as higher body...

... in a fair test. But if you tell them you did this they will probably compliment you on the body of the beer. You will probably notice the higher body and is much more flavorful too. This is pretty much 100% confirmation bias. It is a real thing and will likely enhance your enjoyment of the beer.

Personally I'd rather have the extra two liters of beer.
Thanks for the info. Just completed my first kit. Festival pilgrims hope.
I think everything went ok. Went for the full 23l for my first attempt.
OG was 1045. The kit doesn’t say what it should be, but does give a target FG 1011.
It’s supposed to be a 5% ale so I think according to my calculations the OG needed to be 1049 with FG of 1011 to give the 5%.
If It gets down to the 1011 I believe that gives me around the 4.5%.
On my next batch I may test the OG @ 21l and then adjust the volume until I get 1050. That may put me nearer the 5% target.
 

ncbrewer

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On my next batch I may test the OG @ 21l and then adjust the volume until I get 1050. That may put me nearer the 5% target.
I would advise against that. With extract, you can count on OG being what it should be as long as you use the correct amount of extract and the correct total volume. Any difference you see in OG is probably due to the wort not being mixed thoroughly. I stopped taking OG samples on extract batches several years ago.
 

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I would advise you do your first couple of batches as spec. Once every thing else works out you can fiddle with the recipe. I O.G. check each batch as a matter of habit for note taking and possible fault finding. Even though extract kits are hard to mess up with most every thing pre-measured, I just like the comfort level of knowing my numbers are right or at least very close.
Cheers, :mug:
Joel B.
 
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Bomber fridgmenter

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I would advise against that. With extract, you can count on OG being what it should be as long as you use the correct amount of extract and the correct total volume. Any difference you see in OG is probably due to the wort not being mixed thoroughly. I stopped taking OG samples on extract batches several years ago.
I bear that in mind on the next batch. The extract comes in pouches and both were rinsed out with hot water. There is also a bag of brewing sugar that all went In. It felt like I mixed it to death. Lol. I just wondered if the markings on the bucket aren’t as accurate as I thought.
Any idea how much difference in water volume would be needed to make the 4 point deficit in the OG.
When I checked the calibration of the bucket the marks appeared to be 1L out at the 23l mark.
Just checked the fermentation cupboard and the wort is holding a very constant 21degC and appears to be getting going as the level in the bubbler is no longer even.
 

kartracer2

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A very common error in measuring OG when adding H2o top off water is incomplete mixing of the wort after wards.
You are on the right track with doing a accurate check of the volume markings. I remarked both my fermenter and bottling bucket as they were both off, 1 1/2 to 2 quarts. (or liters if you measure that way). A little bit here and a little there and you have a couple of points.
That's why i try to take good notes of values and such. It might be too late to fix it this time but you'll know what to look for next time.
Cheers, :mug:
Joel B.

(PS. I really need to get used to metric measurements and such, it really makes so much more sense.)🤔
 
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Bomber fridgmenter

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When this batch is bottled I will do another calibration check. Would you think 1lt would be enough to move the OG 4 points. Of course the other thing is how accurate is the hydrometer. I may find I’m 4 points under the FG. will be interesting to see in a couple of weeks.
 

kartracer2

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Go ahead and check your hydro with water and it should be pretty much "1.000" at a specific temp that should be stated with the hydro. (my cal temp is 68* F. or 20*C.) Then you know if there is any deviance with it.
Also 2qt (1.89L.) difference from 5.0 gal to 5.50 gal (18.9L to 20.8L) can take a 1.065 beer to 1.059 OG. for an example according to my quick (often flawed) math. (LOL).
Cheers, :mug:
Joel B.
 
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Bomber fridgmenter

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Go ahead and check your hydro with water and it should be pretty much "1.000" at a specific temp that should be stated with the hydro. (my cal temp is 68* F. or 20*C.) Then you know if there is any deviance with it.
Also 2qt (1.89L.) difference from 5.0 gal to 5.50 gal (18.9L to 20.8L) can take a 1.065 beer to 1.059 OG. for an example according to my quick (often flawed) math. (LOL).
Cheers, :mug:
Joel B.
That’s a good idea. I’ll check tomorrow.
Interesting too that a 2lt increase in water can have a 6 point drop in gravity.
Thanks for the info.
 

IslandLizard

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That’s a good idea. I’ll check tomorrow.
Interesting too that a 2lt increase in water can have a 6 point drop in gravity.
Thanks for the info.
10% decrease in volume will increase gravity by the same 10%.

Remember this:
Gravity and volume are like a rubber band: shorter and thicker, or longer and thinner. ;)
Same amount of rubber (sugars).
 

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I wouldn't count on a bottle of water replicating temperature for a batch of beer for a couple reasons. One, the volume is going to be larger so you will see slower temperature changes with a greater mass. Two, during fermentation the beer is exothermic (gives off heat) so early in fermentation you'll have a battle between the fermenting wort and the cooling mechanism to maintain temperatures.

For your first batch or two you should try to track the changes in beer temperature as best you can to see how much the temperature fluctuates during early fermentation and later as fermentation winds down. Then use that data to determine where to set temperatures, the variance ranges and when to change temperatures. You will want to keep your beer in a suitable temperature range but also balance beer temperature against how often the compressor is kicking on. Frequent short cycles will reduce the lifespan of the compressor.
 
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Bomber fridgmenter

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Hi, thanks for the reply.
I don’t think I explained myself well in the OP.
I placed the temp probe in a bottle of water while carrying out some pre brew testing. The 1st batch was made yesterday and the temp probe for the STC1000 and my min/max thermometer are both strapped to the side of the FV and covered with bubble wrap. The temp is currently holding an extremely tight 21C. And fermentation is nice and active this morning after 18hrs.
I’m using the min/max digital thermometer to track how well the system is working.
In 5 days I have some hop pellets to add. Not sure if at this point I increase the temp a little just to help with the later stages of fermentation, or for this first batch just leave the temp constant.
Thoughts would be great.
 

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White and Zainashef's Yeast book recommends raising the temperature 4 - 10 degrees F over a day or two - for the last 1/4 - 1/3 of fermentation.
 
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Bomber fridgmenter

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I may look at increasing the temp a little after adding the hops. What do you recon.
 
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