Quantcast

First batch, questions

HomeBrewTalk.com - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Community.

Help Support Homebrew Talk:

Mr. Awesome

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 7, 2008
Messages
86
Reaction score
0
Paranoid first time home brewer here asking the inevitable questions after putting his first batch in the carboy.

I was brewing the Irish Red Ale bought from a kit at Northernbrewer.com. The OG called for is 1.040. However, my hydrometer gave a reading of 1.030. Is this possibly because I added too much water to top the carboy up to five gallons. It took a LONG time for the water to get back to a boil after I added the malt extract and the extra water to top up my 20 quart pot, so by the time the boil was over it had reduced quite a bit (my best guess would be about one inch of reduction).

My other question. I pitched the yeast at about 9:30 PM, and by 6:30 am the next morning the batch had already started fermenting. Is this a good problem to have? This could have been because I pitched the yeast when the wort was still a little warm. Also, I used one of those slap packs and let it go for about 8 hours before pitching it (my day didn't quite go as planned, started brewing later than I wanted, and the boiling/cooling took forever.

Last question, the recipe says the brew is ready in 6 weeks. The directions say to germent it for approximately a week then bottle and wait for about two more weeks. These are general directions however, so will it just take longer to finish once bottled, or should I leave it in the fermenter for longer than what is called for.

Thanks for the help.
 

RICLARK

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 6, 2007
Messages
2,532
Reaction score
14
Location
Grand Ledge, Mich
Mr. Awesome said:
Paranoid first time home brewer here asking the inevitable questions after putting his first batch in the carboy.

I was brewing the Irish Red Ale bought from a kit at Northernbrewer.com. The OG called for is 1.040. However, my hydrometer gave a reading of 1.030. Is this possibly because I added too much water to top the carboy up to five gallons. It took a LONG time for the water to get back to a boil after I added the malt extract and the extra water to top up my 20 quart pot, so by the time the boil was over it had reduced quite a bit (my best guess would be about one inch of reduction).

My other question. I pitched the yeast at about 9:30 PM, and by 6:30 am the next morning the batch had already started fermenting. Is this a good problem to have? This could have been because I pitched the yeast when the wort was still a little warm. Also, I used one of those slap packs and let it go for about 8 hours before pitching it (my day didn't quite go as planned, started brewing later than I wanted, and the boiling/cooling took forever.

Last question, the recipe says the brew is ready in 6 weeks. The directions say to germent it for approximately a week then bottle and wait for about two more weeks. These are general directions however, so will it just take longer to finish once bottled, or should I leave it in the fermenter for longer than what is called for.

Thanks for the help.
Sometimes when You top off with water it doesn't get mixed together very well unless you stir the crap out of it, When this happens you will get a dilluted reading I wouldn't worry too much about it. As far as your fermentation...It sounds like everything is going as planned. Good Luck:D
 

eddie

Well-Known Member
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Aug 24, 2007
Messages
1,083
Reaction score
8
Location
Hermon, Maine
Mr. Awesome said:
Paranoid first time home brewer here asking the inevitable questions after putting his first batch in the carboy.

I was brewing the Irish Red Ale bought from a kit at Northernbrewer.com. The OG called for is 1.040. However, my hydrometer gave a reading of 1.030. Is this possibly because I added too much water to top the carboy up to five gallons. It took a LONG time for the water to get back to a boil after I added the malt extract and the extra water to top up my 20 quart pot, so by the time the boil was over it had reduced quite a bit (my best guess would be about one inch of reduction).
Like RICLARK said, your wort probably wasn't thoroughly mixed. If this is the case, your gravity measurement would be inaccurate. It won't affect the final product though.

Mr. Awesome said:
My other question. I pitched the yeast at about 9:30 PM, and by 6:30 am the next morning the batch had already started fermenting. Is this a good problem to have? This could have been because I pitched the yeast when the wort was still a little warm. Also, I used one of those slap packs and let it go for about 8 hours before pitching it (my day didn't quite go as planned, started brewing later than I wanted, and the boiling/cooling took forever.
That sounds about right. It's best to pitch your yeast cooler than your intended fermentation temp, though. For example, if you intend to ferment your beer at 68F then pitch your yeast between 60-65F and let it come up to fermentation temps.

Mr. Awesome said:
Last question, the recipe says the brew is ready in 6 weeks. The directions say to germent it for approximately a week then bottle and wait for about two more weeks. These are general directions however, so will it just take longer to finish once bottled, or should I leave it in the fermenter for longer than what is called for.

Thanks for the help.
Leave it in the fermenter for at least a week (two is better) after active fermentation ends then check your gravity once and once again two days later. If they are the same then you are ready to bottle or transfer to a clearing vessel for bulk conditioning.
 

Joker

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 13, 2007
Messages
1,951
Reaction score
36
Location
Orygun
Time won't tell you when to bottle unless you wait a really long time of course. You need hydrometer readings over a couple of days to be sure you aren't making bottle bombs.
 

Brett0424

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2008
Messages
265
Reaction score
1
Location
dallas, tx
Diluting too much will reduce your gravity. Taking a reading at a higher temperature than it's calibrated for will cause your hydrometer reading to need adjustment. Taking a reading from a freshly whipped up, not thoroughly mixed up batch could only be reading one portion of the wort. Using a hydrometer that doesn't read 1.000 in water is no good. Could be any of those things.
 
Top