First time brewer with a few questions.

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GtownVZ

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Hey guys. I just bought my first beer kit and started my first brew on Saturday after much anticipation. I'm stoked about this potential new hobby/pastime, and I'm trying to be very patient. From what I read, patience is definitely going to be crucial with this process.

Here are my questions:

1. How do I know this is fermenting? What the heck is the wort supposed to look like during/after fermentation? My brewing handbook had advised me to open my bucket if I didn't think it was fermenting correctly, and when I did, I found a lot of bubbles on top, but no foam like I've seen in other pics. I didn't think it was fermenting correctly because I wasn't getting a ton of bubbles through the 3 piece airlock after the first day or so. Also, there were bubbles rising to the top while I had it open, so I'm assuming that's a good thing. The initial weight was 1.040 and I'm at 1.020 right now.

2. It smells pretty strong. In other words, it smells like beer with a high alcohol content. Am I right to assume that the beer will lose this edge over the next few weeks while it is bottled?

3. This is a stupid question, but I have to ask it. In regards to the double bubble airlock, am I right to assume that you have to take the dust cap off? It makes sense, but then again, I'm not sure why it would have a cap if it wasn't needed.

Thanks guys/gals. I'm sure I'll be back with more questions, but I'm just wanting to make sure that I don't mess my maiden batch up...royally.


:mug:
 

Irish1225

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1. don't worry about bubbles, your gravity readings already depict that the beer has been fermenting.

2. don't worry about smell now either. i've had some beers that smell downright nasty for the first few days if i take a whiff. avoid temptation and keep that lid on.

3. if you have one of those 3 piece airlocks (1 piece goes into grommet, 1 piece inside of the inserted piece, and 1 lid), you need to keep the lid on.

don't worry, it all works out somehow in the end
 

Clonefarmer

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1) The bubbles in the wort and drop in gravity are both signs of fermentation.

2) It will mellow out.

3) The cap slows evaporation.
 
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GtownVZ

GtownVZ

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Thanks fellas! I'm pretty sure things are going as planned, but I just thought I'd ask since I have the ability to find out from others. I'm reading "Joy of Home Brewing" (which I'm sure is a staple around here) and it doesn't specifically answer some of those questions.

Thanks again, and I appreciate the quick response. I'm sure it gets old answering the same questions over and over.
 

StoutFan

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Thanks again, and I appreciate the quick response. I'm sure it gets old answering the same questions over and over.
Pretty soon you will be helping others out. It's a great big circle, welcome to it. :D
 
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