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Fermentation Fridge and bottle conditioning

Discussion in 'General Brewing Techniques' started by Mick Bourke, 12/11/18.

 

  1. Mick Bourke

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    Posted 12/11/18
    Hey guys, my inkbird is due to arrive tomorrow so I am very excited to put down my third brew and know I can precisely manage the temperature.

    Can anyone please confirm the ideal temperature for fermentation? My last brew stayed at 22, but after reading as much as I can on here, that seems too high.

    I'm also looking to cold crash for the first time, before bottling. I know I need the FG to be stable before bottling, but what temp do I crash it to (2 degrees?) and for how long should I keep it at set temp to effectively cold crash? Also once I have bottled what temp should I condition the bottles?

    Finally, I have been using two fermenter thus far to rack and clear (as well as using finings). If I'm cold crashing should I just add the finings to the primary fermenter and then cold crash?

    Sorry for so many questions and a massive thank you to anyone that can assist. I am so excited about my new found hobby and I'm sure it's only a matter of time till I get into all grain brewing.
     
  2. altone

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    Posted 12/11/18
    Well give us some info.
    What are you brewing - what yeast etc.

    As a rule of thumb I do 18C for ales and 10 or 12 for lager yeasts depending on what I'm brewing.
     
  3. Mick Bourke

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    Posted 12/11/18
    Sorry mate. It'll be a pale ale, using the yeast included (back rock), as the bloke at the home brew shop told me to use the generic yeast until I get the hang of it.
     
  4. Richard williamson

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    Posted 12/11/18
    I've done two brews with my inkbird and the beer is a hundred times better. I've set mine to 19° as the fermentation creates heat anyway. I've set the tollerances to 0.5 + and - so as soon as it gets to 19.5 the fridge turns on and when it hits 18.5 it turns it off. I've used the thinning a but not noticed it do anything so don't bother any more. Cold crashing will help with making your beer clearer but is a must if you dry hops as it makes all the hops fall to the bottom. I've found that when I cold crashed then my beer takes a full 3 weeks to carbonate so don't bother opening any earlier as its flat. If I don't cold crashed it's good to go in a week. You can set your inkbird to 2° and leave the tollerances alone so cools to 1.5° and fridge comes on when it hits 2.5°. I don't need a heat pad so just run the thermostat wire through the seal of the fridge. Good luck buddy
     
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  5. Diddlez

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    Posted 13/11/18
    This might be a basic question but is the main point of cold crashing to do it just before bottling / kegging so you get as little of the sediment as possible in the transfer process?
     
  6. NegimaTorikawa

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    Posted 13/11/18
    Correct, cooler temps drop things out of suspension faster and compact the cake at the bottom of the Fermenter a bit more.

    Still have enough yeast hanging about after cold crashing to bottle though.
     
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  7. Bonenose

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    Posted 14/11/18
    Also means if you are kegging beer is already cold so you can force carb straight away.
     
  8. Rocker1986

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    Posted 14/11/18
    Richard, if you set the difference to 0.5 with a set temp of 19, it kicks in the fridge when it warms to 19.5 to cool it back down to the set temp of 19 then turns the fridge off, it doesn't keep going til it gets to 0.5 under the set temperature before it turns the fridge off (if it did, what would be the point of the set temperature in the first place?). If there is a heat source plugged in in addition to the fridge, that will kick in if it drops to 18.5, to warm it back up to 19.

    In other words, it only allows the temperature to drift 0.5C away from the set temp in either direction before kicking in the cooling or heating to get it back to 19.
     
  9. Tones91

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    Posted 14/11/18
    How long is long enough to cold crash a brew prior to bottling?
     
  10. Diddlez

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    Posted 15/11/18
    This might be an obvious point but if the ambient temp is above what you're trying to ferment at, you can have no heat source inside the fridge, so the temp stays cooler for longer.

    If you have a heat source inside the fridge it's just going to cause the temp to bounce back up past 18 degrees unnecessarily whenever the fridge drops down to 17.5 or whatever you have the limit set to.
     
  11. Rocker1986

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    Posted 15/11/18
    I know, I don't use heat in mine either because it isn't necessary here. On the rare occasions that it is I use an Erlenmeyer flask of boiling water in there.

    In any case, I measure the temp of the brew by taping the probe to the side of the fermenter underneath some packing foam, rather than the ambient temperature of the fridge, which of course will change quite rapidly compared to 25 litres of liquid.
     
  12. NegimaTorikawa

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    Posted 15/11/18
    I've had good experiences starting the cold crash on a Friday and bottling Sunday, I think 24 hours is probably enough time to settle stuff out to siphon off the top into a priming bucket. Obviously going to depend on beer and how much stuff you've added that's floating around. YMMV
     
  13. Rocker1986

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    Posted 15/11/18
    I normally go at least a few days. Preferably a week. As above experiences will vary but I find it takes at least a few days to drop out most of the stuff I want dropped.
     
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  14. normanfisher

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    Posted 18/11/18
    I am new t home brewing. I am using a Coopers fermenter with good results but can see a problem coming as the ambient temperature rises. What ways are recommended for keeping the brew cool?
     
  15. altone

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    Posted 19/11/18
    A refrigerator with a temperature controller eg. STC1000 (just check ebay) or the inkbird ITC308 - already cabled up and ready to go.
     
  16. normanfisher

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    Posted 25/11/18
    Many thanks. The refrigerator I have is too small for the Coopers fermenter. I have bought a 15 litre fermenter. The do-it-yourself packs all seem to be for 23 litre fermenters. Any advice on buying supplies for the 15 litre fermenter? (Or what is the downside on using all the ingredients for the larger fermenter in the smaller one?)
     
  17. Lionman

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    Posted 28/11/18
    You can brew a kit at 15L if you wanted too, it will be higher ABV (more alcohol), and higher IBU (more bitter) as it will be more concentrated. This may or may not work for you dpending on your tastes.

    Instead of buying the pre bittered kits you could do extract brews and do your own bitterign by boiling a small amount of wort and add hops to it. The spreadsheet here is a great tool for working out how much malt extaract and hops to use to meet a given style of beer.

    Its not hard to do, if you can boil a pot and set a timer, you can manage to brew extract beer without kit tins. You will need about 2KG of DME to make a round a 5% ABV beer.


    Nice simple recipe

    15L
    2KG LDME
    10g Galaxy 10mins
    20g Galaxy 5mins
    70g Galaxy Dry hop
    US-05 yeast

    5.2% ABV in bottle
    20IBU

    Bring 8L of water to the boil, stir in 850g of the malt extract, add 10g of galaxy hops, after 5 mins add another 20g of galaxy hops, after another 5 mins remove from heat and pour the wort into the fermenter, straining off the hops. Add teh rest of the malt and top up with cold water to 15L. Once its cooled to 20c pitch yeast. After 5 days add dry hops, after another 5 days bottle.
     
  18. Malcohol

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    Posted 28/11/18
    Ales are generally in the range of 20-22C. Lagers anywhere between 7 and 12C. Everyone has a different opinion about this and never the twain shall meet. Historically, cold crashing has been get it down to 4C (or lower) as quickly as you can. However I have been reading lately that it's better to bring your beer down slowly (1C. per day), rest at 4C. for a week then continue down to 0C. at 1C. increments per day. Lager at this temp for a minimum of 8 weeks. I am currently in the process of experimenting with this on a lager I brewed some time ago. It's a long time to wait for a beer...
     
  19. Rocker1986

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    Posted 29/11/18
    There's no need for the ramp down to be that slow. That'd take half a fkn year.

    After I do a rest at 18 degrees towards and after the end of fermentation, I drop lagers down to 12, then 2.2/2.3 degrees per day down to 3, where it sits for another week or so and is then kegged and lagered for another month or two at around zero. No need to leave it in the fermenter that long. If bottling, allow to carbonate then lager in the bottles if possible.
     
  20. normanfisher

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    Posted 29/11/18



    Thank you - I look forward to doing that.
     

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