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wepeeler

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ya I had no clue about the top off water part. It was so far my biggest mistake.
It's not even a mistake, per se. This was your first attempt, so you can only get better! The biggest thing I can say from my earlier brewing days, is don't become obsessed with numbers. They are a guideline and as you learn your system, and get better at the actual brewing process, you'll be able to close the gap. The biggest issue for me when I started was I was constantly butt hurt when I didn't hit my numbers exactly. It's mostly about volume in the beginning, especially with extract, because you basically get 95% efficiency from the extract. Top off water is usually a thing for extract brewers who don't do full volume boils (due to a smaller kettle). That would have diluted the wort a bit and brought your OG down, depending on how much water you added.
 
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rsieck1

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So update. I had to leave home the last three days. Looks like most the action has ceased. My temp while the yeast was active was constant at 68 with a towel wrapped around it in my closet. My house temp has stayed the same, but the temp on my carboy is reading close to 64 now. I wrapped another blanket around it overnight but it seems to be staying down there.

should I be worried? Would the yeast being active make the temp higher and then when it dies off decrease like this?

Hoping I don’t ruin my first batch...
 

wepeeler

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So update. I had to leave home the last three days. Looks like most the action has ceased. My temp while the yeast was active was constant at 68 with a towel wrapped around it in my closet. My house temp has stayed the same, but the temp on my carboy is reading close to 64 now. I wrapped another blanket around it overnight but it seems to be staying down there.

should I be worried? Would the yeast being active make the temp higher and then when it dies off decrease like this?

Hoping I don’t ruin my first batch...
Your most likely fine as long as your sanitation was good. 68 is fine for ale fermentation. With the activity slowing the temp will decrease until it reaches your ambient temp. Active fermentation can raise the wort up to 10 degrees higher than ambient! After my fermentation is complete my beer evens out right around 60, which is what my basement temp is at.

On the flip side, if you fermented at 64, you would need to raise temps closer to 70 (or at least high 60s) for a few days to cleanup any off flavors produced by the beer. They call this the diacetyl rest. Diacetyl tastes like movie popcorn or butterscotch.
 
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rsieck1

rsieck1

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Well all done. Will see how sanitary I was. Tried my best I think. Fist gravity reading was 1.072. Target was 1.063. So not sure if that super bad or not. Added the yeast when the wort was about 72 degrees. Got her sitting in the dark now...
Took a FG reading today, day 15. 1.014 right on target. Clearing up nicely and flavor seemed good. Gonna take another reading Tuesday. Then cold crash and keg... so far seems like a successful first batch!!
 

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Well all done. Will see how sanitary I was. Tried my best I think. Fist gravity reading was 1.072. Target was 1.063. So not sure if that super bad or not. Added the yeast when the wort was about 72 degrees. Got her sitting in the dark now...
well today I kegged the beer. FG 1.014. Only ended up with about 3 gallons of beer though. Lost during boil and fermentation. So my next kit I plan to boil 6 gallons instead and hope that compensated for the loss. Beer is gonna be strong OG was 1.072. But it’s for sure drinkable, so success!!! Lol on to batch #2
 

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kh54s10

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well today I kegged the beer. FG 1.014. Only ended up with about 3 gallons of beer though. Lost during boil and fermentation. So my next kit I plan to boil 6 gallons instead and hope that compensated for the loss. Beer is gonna be strong OG was 1.072. But it’s for sure drinkable, so success!!! Lol on to batch #2
So, you never topped up? You could have even the day that you transferred to the keg.

With an extract kit most will boil in about 2-3 gallons of water then top up.

6 gallons may work or may not. You need to figure out your boil off rate. It will change based on your heat source and the geometry of your pot. My 10 gallon pot on my propane burner boils off almost 2 gallons per hour so I need to start with just over 7 gallons.

A couple of notes. It is not necessary to rehydrate any dry yeast. At least Fermentis is now recommending that you don't. Others may still recommend rehydration for best results, but it will be OK either way.

For US-05 I prefer to ferment at about 64 - 65 degrees. Some say that anything over 70 degrees will give you off flavors.

Most dry yeasts are coated with nutrients and sterols so aeration is not so important. With liquid yeast it is important.

My first batch I misread the instructions and fermented too warm the first day. I cooled it and let it ferment longer. My second I controlled the fermentation temperature and that one remains in my top ten of all my 109 batches. Both were extract kits from Northern Brewer.

That was also the worst mistake I made other than a couple of radical experimental brews that didn't turn out good. That was recipe...
 

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I guess I am yet to make a beer. I make a Brut from an off the shelf beer. A concentrated beer from an off the shelf with or without brut.
My first few gallons were Kombucha. In fact that's why I joined this forum. I ended up not needing kombucha after all for a symptom I was having. So I stopped brewing and posting (asking stupid questions) here for a few years.
Then onto alcohol - My first few gallons were apple, grape and grapple wines. Much of which I didn't even post about.
Then mid 2019 I started my first gallon of mead. Boom, the bug had bit me, on its heels came freeze concentrating beer, then hyper fermenting it then freeze concentrating that etc.
So 2019 is the year I went down the rabbit hole, and in a sense yet to even make a beer from scratch.
Cool.
Srinath.
 
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rsieck1

rsieck1

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So, you never topped up? You could have even the day that you transferred to the keg.

With an extract kit most will boil in about 2-3 gallons of water then top up.

6 gallons may work or may not. You need to figure out your boil off rate. It will change based on your heat source and the geometry of your pot. My 10 gallon pot on my propane burner boils off almost 2 gallons per hour so I need to start with just over 7 gallons.

A couple of notes. It is not necessary to rehydrate any dry yeast. At least Fermentis is now recommending that you don't. Others may still recommend rehydration for best results, but it will be OK either way.

For US-05 I prefer to ferment at about 64 - 65 degrees. Some say that anything over 70 degrees will give you off flavors.

Most dry yeasts are coated with nutrients and sterols so aeration is not so important. With liquid yeast it is important.

My first batch I misread the instructions and fermented too warm the first day. I cooled it and let it ferment longer. My second I controlled the fermentation temperature and that one remains in my top ten of all my 109 batches. Both were extract kits from Northern Brewer.

That was also the worst mistake I made other than a couple of radical experimental brews that didn't turn out good. That was recipe...
Ya I did not top off. Totally missed that step. I didn’t think I could top off prior to kegging. Will make corrections for the next batch. Thanks for the advice!
 

Stand

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Mr. Beer.

What I made came out undrinkable. Immediately went to LHBS and bought an extract kit.

Way better, although I boiled over and it ended up taking like 5 hours.

Never looked back
 

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Stand - You're in Indian Trail ? By Charlotte NC ?
Rs1eck - Clover ? By Charlotte ?

You guys wanna taste my concoctions and critique them ?

Cool.
Srinath.
 
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rsieck1

rsieck1

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Stand - You're in Indian Trail ? By Charlotte NC ?
Rs1eck - Clover ? By Charlotte ?

You guys wanna taste my concoctions and critique them ?

I don’t know much about what you brew, but heck I would try it and give ya my opinion for sure.

Cool.
Srinath.
 

Jokester

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Oh, cool. I am starting with a Jai alai or a blend of jai alai, bell ringer and Thomas creeks doppel bock, ferment it further, then freeze concentrate it. Likely hitting 30-35% abv. To get it to beer levels of abv, put 2oz of it with 10 oz of club soda, I've neem hitting 10+ abv and shooting for 5 or less gm carb per 12 oz. Low carb and high abv but still a "beer" I'll bring you a bit of these and you let me know. I'll message you. In any case - 704 724 3878 is my number. Text me if the message thing fails - I've never done a PM so far.
Cool.
Srinath.
 
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rsieck1

rsieck1

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Well all done. Will see how sanitary I was. Tried my best I think. Fist gravity reading was 1.072. Target was 1.063. So not sure if that super bad or not. Added the yeast when the wort was about 72 degrees. Got her sitting in the dark now...
1st pour today. Tastes pretty good for my first time. Wife likes it as well and says has a good aftertaste. Having some issues with my pour. Lots of head. Running 6 ft lines at 8psi. Carbed at 30 psi for about 30 hours and then 10 for about 20. Not sure if maybe I over carbonated at 30?
 

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jjw5015

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1st pour today. Tastes pretty good for my first time. Wife likes it as well and says has a good aftertaste. Having some issues with my pour. Lots of head. Running 6 ft lines at 8psi. Carbed at 30 psi for about 30 hours and then 10 for about 20. Not sure if maybe I over carbonated at 30?
Did you pull the pressure relief valve at all when changing your pressures?
 

str1p3s

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You may have over carbed if you didn't relieve the pressure in the keg before moving down from 30 to serving pressure. Also, 6th of line seems kind of short. I think I use 10 ft.
 
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rsieck1

rsieck1

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You may have over carbed if you didn't relieve the pressure in the keg before moving down from 30 to serving pressure. Also, 6th of line seems kind of short. I think I use 10 ft.
Thanks. I let some pressure out now and it’s set to 12. Gonna let it sit for a few days and try it. The hoses came with it, I may have to get longer ones if it’s the problem.
 

rritterson

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My first brew was a extract plus steeping grain brown ale the local store put together to go along with the equipment kit. I was expecting something like Newcastle, but instead it came out somewhere between Fat Tire and a west coast pale. It was pretty good as far as beers go, just was well outside the style we were aiming for. We were disappointed, but my friends loved the free beer we were handing out.

Next brew after that was an Americans hefe that still ranks as one of the top 5 beers I’ve ever had (commercial or homebrew), and I think it was so good largely because I could drink it fresher than anything I could buy from the store. From then on, I was hooked.
 

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First time outdoors and doing BIAB, from doing all extract brewing indoors. I did not have my propane burner set up properly for the kettle, and it was not efficiently heating my water. I resorted to heating a gallon or so on the stove (much faster), then adding to the kettle to bring up temps. Then took hot water from kettle, and kept heaing it on the stove. Got my temps to 160 for the mash. My ground water is 45 degrees brrrr!

While mash was in progress, I rigged a stand for my kettle from an old grate off a barbecue (jeez I hope that is ok to use), then increased my flame distance to the kettle. This worked like a charm.

During this stand building phase, I quickly realized I never adjusted for the added water volume. I managed to empty out a bit of the wort into a bucket, but I still overshot my water volume. My OG and resultant SG were lower than expected. The beer tasted pretty decent in the fermentor, but My ABV will proabably only be around 4-4.5%. If my beer tasted decent, then that is all I care.

On a positive note, I plugged my grain bill and resultant "Higher" fermenter volume into brewers friend and my Brew House efficiency was 75%, so at least I know I am on the right track. At least, it looked that way to me.

This was yesterday - My Lockdown "light" Amber!
 

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