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Refractometer vs. Hydrometer

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VulgarCelt

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My hydrometers are frustrating me.
I have a difficult time making accurate readings with my aging eyes.
I also seem to break them rather often.

With that in mind I am considering switching to a refractometer.

Anyone out there have any thoughts, suggestions or advice?
 

DonMagee

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I use both and I've found that my refractometer is 'close enough' for my purposes. My biggest problem is I forget to write down both the brix and SG so it makes me backtrack when it's time to do the math for the FG.
 

helibrewer

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I primarily use a refractometer and only use the hydrometer for an accurate OG value once the refractometer tells me fermentation is complete (no more drop in Brix). Once alcohol is present you need to use a converter to get an SG value based on the Brix reading, to do this you need the OG so don't forget to take an OG reading :)

The converters are readily available (MoreBeer spreadsheet, BeerSmith software, numerous phone apps, etc). I find refractometers very convenient on brew day for taking kettle readings as I approach post boil volume.
 
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