Top Tip for Aerating

Homebrew Talk - Beer, Wine, Mead, & Cider Brewing Discussion Forum

Help Support Homebrew Talk:

Orfy

For the love of beer!
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Sep 27, 2005
Messages
11,732
Reaction score
118
Location
Cheshire, England
I know.....O2

But for those that don't have it then I thought a few tips in one place may be good.

Shaking the crapolla out of a glass carboy is not good.
I try to get as much air in along with the wort by what ever method.

Then take a tennis ball, place it on the counter, put the carboy on top and you can shake it for as long as you need without having to risk dropping the thing or holding the weight of the carboy and 5 gallon of wort.

Any other tips?
 

wild

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jun 14, 2005
Messages
1,476
Reaction score
6
Location
Surprise, AZ.
If you have a carboy, why can't you aerate in your boil pot before racking/straining your wort into it? Then all you'd need is a whisk. Or put a diffusser on the end of your siphon hose.

Wild
 

dougjones31

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 23, 2006
Messages
349
Reaction score
1
I have been brewing for 12 years.

I use carbon filtered water for my boil and I also put a few gallons in the freezer until they start to freeze. I use this water to cool the wort and bring it up to 5.5 gallons.

I always just put the wort into the carboy, and stretch a balloon over the mouth and lay it on its side on the carpet floor. Then I just roll it away from me and then back toward me in short quick motions. I get a good foam doing this. I let it sit for a min then I remove the balloon and add the yeast(this lets more air into the carboy) and then replace the balloon and repeat the roll.

I have never had any problems at all with stuck or slow ferments. I always pitch 1 quart starters.
 

Evan!

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 9, 2006
Messages
11,835
Reaction score
104
Location
Charlottesville, VA
I'll say it before and I'll say it again: the cheap, easy and effective solution here is the $32 aeration kit that AHS sells. It's much easier than all these various shaking/rolling methods, and much more effective at getting oxygen infused into the wort. Plus it has a HEPA filter built in.

I sound like a goddamned AHS commercial, but I'm just a huge fan of this product. It's the most hassle-free method short of having to actually buy O2 tanks all the time, and since I started using it, my attenuation has increased, on average, by about 10%. Sometimes, I even surpass the listed attenuation...
 

zoebisch01

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 15, 2006
Messages
5,180
Reaction score
13
Location
Central PA
The method I use, is I have an aluminum strainer that sits nicely on my bucket. It is not a mesh strainer, but the kind of thing you use to strain tomatoes for sauce (usually comes with a conical dowel). I just take my kettle, rest it on my hip and pour down into the strainer. The wort comes spraying out of the hundreds of little holes in streams. It leaves a big frothy wort and helps filter the hops and break. I have had great success, I even pitched a vial of WLP550 straight into a 1.07 wort with zero problems (FG was 1.009). This is the method I will always use, if it aint broke don't fix it :D



Like this w/out the legs
 

Bobby_M

Vendor and Brewer
HBT Sponsor
Joined
Aug 3, 2006
Messages
25,352
Reaction score
4,412
Location
Whitehouse Station
dougjones31 said:
I have been brewing for 12 years.

I use carbon filtered water for my boil and I also put a few gallons in the freezer until they start to freeze. I use this water to cool the wort and bring it up to 5.5 gallons.

I always just put the wort into the carboy, and stretch a balloon over the mouth and lay it on its side on the carpet floor. Then I just roll it away from me and then back toward me in short quick motions. I get a good foam doing this. I let it sit for a min then I remove the balloon and add the yeast(this lets more air into the carboy) and then replace the balloon and repeat the roll.

I have never had any problems at all with stuck or slow ferments. I always pitch 1 quart starters.
Hey doug,
I like the fact that you mention how long you've been brewing because it does add a level of credibility, but you know as hobbiests that we should always be open to alternate techniques to improve things. Never having a stuck or slow ferment is all relative. If you're happy with how things progress, that's great. In my short brewing lifespan of only 9 months, I've tried your method and then tried pure O2 and didn't take 12 years to see the difference.

In your case, you're using a starter which somewhat negates the need for a perfect yeast propagation environment. You also are not doing full boils so your top up water is already bringing O2 back into the batch.

I'm actually thinking about trying an experiment to remove any bias. The only problem is, I don't have two similar small 1gal fermenters. Once I get some, I'm going to boil up 2 gallons of 1.050 wort and split it. I'll pitch equal amounts of dry yeast then shake the heck out of one and inject pure O2 in the other. Then I'll do a time lapse video of both and test the gravity at certain intervals. Hopefully the results will put this debate to rest at least temporarily.

What do you guys think?
 

the_bird

10th-Level Beer Nerd
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
May 21, 2006
Messages
20,968
Reaction score
597
Location
Adams, MA
Evan! said:
I sound like a goddamned AHS commercial, but I'm just a huge fan of this product. It's the most hassle-free method short of having to actually buy O2 tanks all the time, and since I started using it, my attenuation has increased, on average, by about 10%. Sometimes, I even surpass the listed attenuation...
The O2 tanks are supposed to last like twenty batches, though, which I guess for you would last you a good two or three months.... :D

How long do you use the pump for? Personally, I'd rather be buying tanks once or twice a year and only having to aerate for a couple minutes. I want to get the yeast pitched and the fermenter sealed up ASAP.
 

dougjones31

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 23, 2006
Messages
349
Reaction score
1
I guess you are right. I may be an old timer stuck in my ways, but my recipies are fine tuned to my technique and I really do not want to screw with attenuation and cause me to have to tweak my recipies because my brew turns out too dry.

The only thing good that could result from me switching to bottled O2 or pumps is that the attenuation will increase. I get fermentation usually in a few hours and it usually lasts 2-3 days, so I cannot improve on that.

I guess I could increase attenuation and lower the calorie content of my beer, if I was concerned about that type of stuff.

Taste is everything....I have that perfected and I think I will stick with what I have spent 5-6 years trying to perfect. If I was starting out now....I might go with O2 ariation and build my system around it, but back when I started that was unheard of. But I do not have the energy to start all over from scratch.
 

Hardball

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 29, 2006
Messages
130
Reaction score
0
Location
Nipomo, CA
I use the dump and splash method to aerate.....

....I also use the same method to clean my a$$ sometimes.
 

Bobby_M

Vendor and Brewer
HBT Sponsor
Joined
Aug 3, 2006
Messages
25,352
Reaction score
4,412
Location
Whitehouse Station
Good points Doug. Obviously the level of attenuation is a preference thing otherwise yeasts like Windsor wouldn't be sold. We need to clarify for those interested that "IF" you want greater attenuation, oxygenation is probably a good idea. My experiment results should add some validity to that, unless I've been hallucinating during the last few batches.
 

dougjones31

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 23, 2006
Messages
349
Reaction score
1
the_bird said:
.... and you're aware of his ass-scent how, exactly?;)

With an ass washing technique of "Dump and Spash", I would assume that some funk is left behind. Ass wahing needs "scrubbing" to be effective.:D

I have no doubt that using pure oxygen to pump up your oxygen content is going to increase attenuation and the speed of fermentation. How much and is it worth the trouble are the questions to answer.
 

Evan!

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 9, 2006
Messages
11,835
Reaction score
104
Location
Charlottesville, VA
the_bird said:
The O2 tanks are supposed to last like twenty batches, though, which I guess for you would last you a good two or three months.... :D

How long do you use the pump for? Personally, I'd rather be buying tanks once or twice a year and only having to aerate for a couple minutes. I want to get the yeast pitched and the fermenter sealed up ASAP.
I use it for 30-60 minutes, depending on the size of the boil. I actually pitch before aerating, so it can get a head start...and I have a technologically advanced method of protecting from contamination, wherein I use tape to secure the square inline HEPA filter to the top of the carboy so that no falling airborne bacteria find their way into my fermenter.
 

Evan!

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 9, 2006
Messages
11,835
Reaction score
104
Location
Charlottesville, VA
Bobby_M said:
Good points Doug. Obviously the level of attenuation is a preference thing otherwise yeasts like Windsor wouldn't be sold. We need to clarify for those interested that "IF" you want greater attenuation, oxygenation is probably a good idea. My experiment results should add some validity to that, unless I've been hallucinating during the last few batches.
IMHO, you shouldn't be adjusting the performance of the yeast to determine how sweet/dry your finished beer is. The better way to go about controlling it would be to get your attenuation as high as is reasonably possible, and then control/adjust the fermentable/unfermentable sugars ratio in your wort. This can be done by adjusting your specialty grains, or by adding complex sugars like maltodextrin (my choice for fuller beers) or lactose.
 

the_bird

10th-Level Beer Nerd
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
May 21, 2006
Messages
20,968
Reaction score
597
Location
Adams, MA
Why "better," though?

As an example, I think using pure O2 is "better" than using an aquarium pump, but since you have a system that works for you, that's great, no need for you to change.

If it works for the man...
 

Evan!

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 9, 2006
Messages
11,835
Reaction score
104
Location
Charlottesville, VA
dougjones31 said:
I have no doubt that using pure oxygen to pump up your oxygen content is going to increase attenuation and the speed of fermentation. How much and is it worth the trouble are the questions to answer.
Like I said above, since I started using my aeration kit, my attenuation on average has gone up by about 10%. My beers have gotten better as a direct result---prior to purchasing the kit, I honestly could not get ANY of my brews to ferment below 1.020.

And it's no "trouble" really, just a one-time $32 investment.
 

Evan!

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 9, 2006
Messages
11,835
Reaction score
104
Location
Charlottesville, VA
the_bird said:
Why "better," though?

As an example, I think using pure O2 is "better" than using an aquarium pump, but since you have a system that works for you, that's great, no need for you to change.

If it works for the man...
If it works. It just seems to me that controlling the yeast performance level is alot harder than controlling your grain bill. But, yeah, if it works...go for it.
 

dougjones31

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 23, 2006
Messages
349
Reaction score
1
Bobby_M said:
Hey doug,
In your case, you're using a starter which somewhat negates the need for a perfect yeast propagation environment. You also are not doing full boils so your top up water is already bringing O2 back into the batch.
Correct! But the thread starter appears to be doing the same. I thought my experiences were relative to his.
 

dougjones31

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 23, 2006
Messages
349
Reaction score
1
Evan! said:
Like I said above, since I started using my aeration kit, my attenuation on average has gone up by about 10%. My beers have gotten better as a direct result---.

Better is a very individual concept. If your attenuation goes up then your alcohol content goes up and your beer is dryer. That is ok if the style of beer matches the dryness that you get. But if you are not brewing a dry style then you may go too far with your attenuation.

MORE is not always better.
 

dougjones31

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 23, 2006
Messages
349
Reaction score
1
I do not really like dry beer. I tend to like Porters and stouts and brown ales that have a little residual sweetness. I have brewed some dryer beers and never had a problem with attenuation. I usually always reach my goals within a small margin of error.

I can see why someone who can never reach final gravity goals would want to try this to get their attenuation up and gravity down.

There are soooo many variables though......
 

zoebisch01

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 15, 2006
Messages
5,180
Reaction score
13
Location
Central PA
dougjones31 said:
Better is a very individual concept.

Better is also relative to what you are shooting for. As long as my beer attenuates in the neighborhood of what I am shooting for, it's all good and as long as I can do it consistently I am happy. My strainer works great for me. If one desires to tweak and push the limits of the yeast attenuation that is a personal preference as well.

This is a good discussion in general because it helps to know that if you want to tweak your recipe and get a drier beer, then possibly aeration is a variable to mess with.
 

Spyk'd

Well-Known Member
Joined
May 29, 2006
Messages
1,085
Reaction score
34
Location
Waveland
Bobby_M said:
I'm actually thinking about trying an experiment to remove any bias. The only problem is, I don't have two similar small 1gal fermenters. Once I get some, I'm going to boil up 2 gallons of 1.050 wort and split it. I'll pitch equal amounts of dry yeast then shake the heck out of one and inject pure O2 in the other. Then I'll do a time lapse video of both and test the gravity at certain intervals. Hopefully the results will put this debate to rest at least temporarily.

What do you guys think?

I like the idea of an experiment, but what exactly are we trying to prove? That O2 injected beer ferments "better", faster, or more complete than sloshed and frothed or that the beer that has been injected tastes "better", closer to style, or is a more refined end product?


I, for one, am interested in the latter.
:)
 

Bobby_M

Vendor and Brewer
HBT Sponsor
Joined
Aug 3, 2006
Messages
25,352
Reaction score
4,412
Location
Whitehouse Station
Well, I'm not sure everyone here is convinced of the actual difference in end result between the methods ranging from doing nothing, to sloshing, to oxygenating. That's what I'd like to test.

Getting O2 back up to near saturation is just one way to increase consistency in my opinion. Other methods are adding O2 back in for sure, but I bet the levels are all over the map so you'll get different results. Some people are fine with variation and just fly by the seat of their pants on every batch, but I like to play beer god and control as much as I can.

As others mentioned, it seems a lot easier to tweak end results by adding/reducing fermentables or choosing yeast strains with known higher/lower attenuation rather than try to control the environment perfectly to alter their inherent tendencies.
 

Evan!

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 9, 2006
Messages
11,835
Reaction score
104
Location
Charlottesville, VA
dougjones31 said:
Better is a very individual concept. If your attenuation goes up then your alcohol content goes up and your beer is dryer. That is ok if the style of beer matches the dryness that you get. But if you are not brewing a dry style then you may go too far with your attenuation.

MORE is not always better.
To each his own, of course---I'm not trying to set any hard and fast "rules" here.

If I'm not brewing a dry style, then I'll just include unfermentable sugars (such as maltodextrine) in my grain bill. As I said elsewhere, your grain bill (and, specifically, your ratio of fermentable to unfermentable sugars) is much easier to control than the performance of your yeast. As such, unless I'm brewing all sweet beers (which I don't), it seems that the easiest thing to do (especially in terms of consistency from batch to batch, which is important to me) is to achieve the highest possible attenuation (within reason), and then adjust the grain bill from batch to batch to achieve the style I want.

But like I said, to each his own. If you would rather try to control the yeast performance rather than the grain bill, more power to you. :)
 

dougjones31

Well-Known Member
Joined
Aug 23, 2006
Messages
349
Reaction score
1
I agree with you, but my point is that I started brewing before the technology of oxygenation existed for the homebrewer. I have spent years adjusting recipies to get them to taste the way I wanted them to based on my techniques.

I agree that perfecting oxygen saturation and adjusting the grain bill to alter the fermentable-to-nonfermentable sugar ratios is the correct thing to do if you are starting out in this hobby.

What I am unclear of is the difference it will make in the end. Maybe I save a little money on ingredients.....maybe I spend more because I have to add more unfermentables. Maybe the attenuation difference is alot....maybe not. I guess I agree with the idea of testing to see. Will I change my technique....probably not.
 

clayof2day

Well-Known Member
Joined
Dec 10, 2005
Messages
564
Reaction score
10
Location
Madison, WI
I ferment in buckets and I pour the work between my fermentation bucket and my bottling bucket about 10 times before I pitch my yeast. I get lot of pretty foam on the top and my fermentations start nicely. I think that is seems to work OK. I would use an aquarium pump aeration system if I had one though, less lifting/possible spilling of the wort.
 

Bobby_M

Vendor and Brewer
HBT Sponsor
Joined
Aug 3, 2006
Messages
25,352
Reaction score
4,412
Location
Whitehouse Station
I wouldn't suggest this is bad or wrong, but the column of air between your buckets isn't exactly sanitary. We're always paranoid about wild yeast "settling" down on our open buckets/chilled wort and your method is definitely increasing your risk. You might get through 20 batches before you get an off flavor, but I'm all about minimizing risk.
 
OP
Orfy

Orfy

For the love of beer!
Lifetime Supporter
Joined
Sep 27, 2005
Messages
11,732
Reaction score
118
Location
Cheshire, England
I had a batch start going ape in 45 minutes and get to 1010 in around 12 hours (That was on a yeast cake). Now there is no way I'd use 02 in that. Most of my batches are going realy well in 12-24 hours and slowing within 48-36 hours. I don't make full starters I just hydrate the yeast with a little food at the start of a brew and let it sit in a warm place for around 3-4 hours.
I don't normally need a blow off tube but get a good 1 to 2 inch krausen.
 

Bobby_M

Vendor and Brewer
HBT Sponsor
Joined
Aug 3, 2006
Messages
25,352
Reaction score
4,412
Location
Whitehouse Station
I'm not 100% certain but I think the O2 is really only critical for yeast propagation (reproduction). When you pitch on a cake, I think it's safe to assume there are already enough viable cells to get the job done (which you've empirically witnessed).
 

lostnfoam

Well-Known Member
Joined
Nov 28, 2006
Messages
145
Reaction score
0
This is such a fun topic because we all brew a little bit different. I’m still new to brewing well I think so. Right now I'm on my 6th batch and every time I find new ways to do stuff. In my last three batches have been using the mix stir witch really get the job done. I mix the wort like crazy for about 15- 20 minutes. Then I pitch and the yeast and plug it up. I also started make starters for my beers. Normally only a two cup starter unless the OG is over 1055 then I make a half gallon. Well the are many different methods we use and I think soon when I start to do full 5 gal boils then I’ll switch to O2.
 

Latest posts

Top