hydrometer reading....

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cghinds

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So I brewed a true brew red ale kit tonight but I was adding to it and think I may have screwed the pooch if you know what I mean.

1st. I cooled my Wort for about an hour and a half I added it to the fermenting bucket where I cooled it a little more with some cold water from the tap... thinking that was cool enough (and having a few to many HB's) I pitched my yeast. My wife being the sober one in the family checked on it for me while I was cleaning up. She thought it was to warm.

2nd. when I took a hydrometer reading it read well over 1.170 which is the final number on my hydrometer. The hydrometer reading was taken after the wort was added to 3 gallons of cool water.

So here's what I did, I used everything in the True brew kit
Hopped Light Malt Extract (1 can)
Unhopped Light Malt Extract (1 can)
Melanoidin Malt Grain (4 oz)
Grain Steeping Bag
Hop Pellets (1 oz)
Nottingham lg pack
Priming Sugar (5 oz)

on top of this I added a 3/4 pound of muntons extra light.
and a pound of Honey...

I did my boil as normal but I added the honey and the mutons late in the boil (the last 3 min) I also added my priming sugar to the boil (as suggested by my LHBS owner)

should I be concerned about
A) the temp at the time I pitched
or (B) the Hydrometer reading
 

Nurmey

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I doubt your water was too hot or you would have felt it. It takes 120° or above to hurt your yeast. Nottingham is a very tolerant yeast but get get your brewed cooled down soon.

Your hydrometer was probably off due to lack of mixing wort and top off water thoroughly. It takes a lot of shaking to get the heavier wort and water mixed.
 

oswiu

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Re: the wort temp

As long as your wort was no more than about 90-100, and so long as it cooled down to 70 or so soon afterwards you should be fine. If it was much above 100 when you pitched you may have killed the yeast and might need to add more.

If the wort was up around 80 when you pitched and it stays that warm during fermentation you'll end up with drinkable beer, but it will probably have some off flavours (esters, giving banana-y taste and smell; fusel alcohols giving a "hot alcohol" aspect to your beer and leading to hangovers.)

Re: the hydrometer reading:
That sounds like a very high reading for those ingredients and a 5gal batch, but a bit more info is needed to answer your questions conclusively.

1. What was the volume of wort when you measured the OG?
2. Did you add any more water to it afterwards?

EDIT: Ah, yeah, Nurmey's explanation for the high hydrometer sounds like the most likely one :)
 

Stratotankard

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Just looking at the recipe I can tell you there's no way that 1.170 is a good reading. I'm guessing that your wort was not well mixed. It takes a few minutes of good stirring to get a good mix.

As far as you pitching temp goes, not having a actual temp makes that difficult. an hour and a half is a fairly long time to cool, were you using an ice water bath or anything, or just letting it sit in the boil pot covered with no external cooling? I'd recommend buying a Fermometer stick-on temperature strip for a few bucks to be sure next time, but the worst that will probably happen this time is a few off flavours from the high pitching temp (if it was). If it was WAY too high, you may have killed off your yeast, but I'm thinking that is unlikely. Give it at least 48 hours before you start worrying too much. If you haven't seen any activity by then, you might consider picking up a new pack of yeast and re-pitching.

Terje
 

carnevoodoo

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Re: the wort temp

As long as your wort was no more than about 75-80, and so long as it cooled down to 70 or so soon afterwards you should be fine. If it was above 80 or so when you pitched you may have killed the yeast and might need to add more.
Yeast can live at 100+, but you're going to stress the hell out of them. Pitching too hot is really not good for alcohol production, but they'll likely live.
 

oswiu

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Yeast can live at 100+, but you're going to stress the hell out of them. Pitching too hot is really not good for alcohol production, but they'll likely live.
Yup, that's right... messed up my C to F conversion while I was working that out :)
 
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cghinds

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I didnt cool my wort with an Ice bath or anything like that it was cooled in the boiling pot with a lid on it.
 

rtichota

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While we're on the subject, how do you guys stir your wort after you've added water to a carboy?
 

zombie

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While we're on the subject, how do you guys stir your wort after you've added water to a carboy?
I use a 28" plastic spoon that has a mixing paddle on the oppisite end that's narrow enough to fit down the neck of the carboy.
 

phatuna

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I pour my wort through a strainer and into my primary, this aerates it. then i stir the hell out of it with a spoon. then i put the lid on, put the primary on top of a tennis ball and swirl everything around for a few minutes. My primary has a thermometer on it which I use to make sure that temp is 65 to 70. Then take a hydrometer reading and pitch yeast.
 
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cghinds

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ok so I checked on the brew this afternoon and fermentation is underway. I feel better now.
 

LaurieGator

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While we're on the subject, how do you guys stir your wort after you've added water to a carboy?
Portable drill and a lees stirrer. I am not strong enough to be shaking the heck out of a glass carboy with 5 gallons of wort in it, so I use the lees stirrer for about 5 mins on each batch. (Lees stirrers are found at your LHBS with the wine stuff).
 
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