Hello Everyone from Daytona Beach!

Discussion in 'Introductions' started by siconic, Oct 17, 2016.

  1. siconic

    siconic New Member

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    Hello guys and gals,

    I have many hobbies, from model airplanes, to cars, and beer has been a growing passion since my first sip of a beer that wasn't Budweiser. I am new to brewing beer, but have brewed several meads, so I am not new to the "process" of brewing itself. I recently just brewed my first batch, 1 GAL to be exact, of a simple Nut Brown Ale, as I want to start small, and see how I like it. I started it on Saturday, and already the bubbling is slowing drastically and the beer is beggining to get clearer. I have already run into my first snag: I need a refractometer for such a small batch! I have several hydrometers, but they are practically useless on a 1 gallon batch! *sigh*

    I just created my first recipe as well! In my mind, these ingredient sound good, but in practice, I dont know. The link is below, and any comment or feedback would be great! http://www.brewersfriend.com/homebrew/recipe/view/409679/earl-s-nut-brown-ale

    Thanks everyone, and I am glad to be here!
     
  2. jeffpn

    jeffpn Well-Known Member

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  3. siconic

    siconic New Member

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    Thanks! I have something similar, but my concern with such a small batch is loss and in order to keep from losing soooo much product, I would put it back in, a big no no.... unless beer is different and wont contaminate as easily?
     
  4. jeffpn

    jeffpn Well-Known Member

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    It is advised not to replace the sample. I see your point. 2 ounces out of an gallon is 5x as much lost product than I lose! Just keep in mind that refractometers don't read correctly when alcohol is present. You'll have to adjust for it.
     
  5. siconic

    siconic New Member

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    The idea of the refractometer for me, and correct me if I am wrong in my thinking, is that I could use a drop or two, every couple days, to check if the gravity is changing and determine when the fermentation is complete.

    I would still use my hydrometer for the FG reading, so I wouldnt need to convert. That way I am only using a full sample size 1 time at bottling.
     
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  6. jeffpn

    jeffpn Well-Known Member

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    You could definitely do that. When I started brewing, I used a 6.5 gallon bucket. I checked it every few days for the first several batches.

    I use carboys now, so a hydrometer is not really going to work with direct submersion. Not unless I left it in there! I'm sure gunk would form on it, throwing it off. Anyway, I don't sweat whether it's fermented out anymore. When the bubbling stops, I rack to secondary (and check the gravity) where it sits for 2 weeks. It's always done by then. For lagers, flat 3 week primary fermentation followed by a diacetyl rest. I've never had one not be done fermenting by then.
     
  7. Endeavour Brewing

    Endeavour Brewing New Member

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    I usually make 1 to 2.5 gallon batches and I love my refractometer which was a Christmas present from my husband. I still have to use my hydrometer for the final gravity but usually pour it into bottle marked sample. This is the first bottle I open to check if bottle conditioning is done but I have never had a problem using the sample.
     
  8. Trialben

    Trialben Well-Known Member

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    I end up drinking half my hydrometer samples:rolleyes: I like to taste the flavour changes I don't advise on doing this on lagers as that yeast can throw an egg fart flavour into the sample so I toss them:eek:. But I've found from fermentation to the time it's ready to drink a lot changes in flavour. I certainly don't pitch back in my sample as I know my test tube definitely isn't sterile it's even got some mouldy stuff at the bottom in them side recesses even sodium per carbonate can't move! i also ferment in bucket so have a tap on fermentor but I give it a spray before and after sampling with sanitizer as I'm paranoid of wild yeast traveling through tap recesses.
     

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