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First brew today!

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JBrew

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Hi all,

Popped my brew cherry today with a special home brew mix from my local HB store that should yield a tasty Golden Ale.

Was very easy - mix hops with hot water and pour in to fermenter, add mixture (The Cube), add water, sprinkle yeast. Done.

I pre bought an old freezer and temp controller and have taped temp controller node to fermenter and set to 18. Was shocked to see that temp of fermenter was almost 30 degrees when i first strapped on the node. took 2 hours to get to 20! Hopefully haven't ruined the batch but only time will tell!

One question - i know i should take a glass of mixture from the fermenter when i take a hydro reading. Do i literally insert the hydro in to the glass like a thermometer to get a reading?

Cheers all. Any advice much appreciated - and happy brewing!

JBrew
 

Yob

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NO!! dont do your readings in the Fermenter.. did your hydrometer come in a tube? 3/4 fill the tube from the tap (and spray clean the tap) and take the measurement from that..

try to avoid opeing the fermenter unless required for a preocess.. like dry hopping etc..
 

JBrew

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Cheers guys-took a hydrometer reading last night and is def not in the bottling range. Drank the contents of the tube and was pleasantly surprised at how good the wort tasted after only 3 and a half days of fermenting! Good signs..

Yob - what did you meAn by saying I should spray clean the tap? With sanitizer before taking the sample?
 

Kudzu

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No, the tap doesn't need to be sanitised before taking a sample, but it does need to be clean and santised before bottling so you don't get an infection in your bottles. Easiest to clean it straight away after taking a sample to stop any nasties growing in the wort residue left on the tap.
 

GalBrew

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I spray my fermenter tap with Starsan everytime I use it. Takes 3 seconds and better safe than sorry right? :D
 

wbosher

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Might just want to limit the amount of readings you take or you'll end up wasting a lot of beer. Sure the first few brews it useful to periodically taste the difference as the beer progresses, but later on with some brews under you belt best to wait until your pretty sure the fermentation has finished, then take a couple of readings two or three days apart.

Also good to get an OG reading before you pitch the yeast to get the alc/vol once done.

Welcome to your new obsession. :)
 

Yob

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JBrew said:
Yob - what did you mean by saying I should spray clean the tap? With sanitizer before taking the sample?
As Galbrew has said, clean it every time after you have your sample by getting a spray bottle with your sanitiser of choice, preferably a no rinse type, hell, even warm water would do in a pinch, give the tap a good squirt or 3 or 6 to get the residual sugars out of there. It's a perfect spot for microbes to get into your brew.

I recently lost a cube to a tap with a poor seal and was a good reminder to me to always clean the taps on FV's which I had been getting a bit lazy with.

For me losing that 1 brew was enough and Im much more vigilant on Taps on the FV and have gone back to bungs on the cubes.

Cheers
 

wbosher

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I've become a little OCD with sanitising since I got starsan, it's just so damn easy to give everything a squirt. I guess better to be a little over cautious than not cautious enough.
 

Florian

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Yob said:
NO!! dont do your readings in the Fermenter..
LOL, where did he say that he wanted to take the readings in the fermenter?
 

Econwatson

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Slightly off-topic question, where did you guys get your measuring cylinders for taking your hydrometer readings? I know people say to use the tube the hydrometer came in but I would like to be more accurate than that!
 

wbosher

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Econwatson said:
Slightly off-topic question, where did you guys get your measuring cylinders for taking your hydrometer readings? I know people say to use the tube the hydrometer came in but I would like to be more accurate than that!
Not sure what you mean by "more accurate", it's the hydrometer that does the reading, the tube just holds the beer. You could use a very tall glass if you wanted.
 

Econwatson

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Well my hydrometer case doesn't stand without me supporting it which brings a risk of me holding it at an angle, and getting an inaccurate reading.
 

wbosher

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I've got ya, you've got one of those cases with a round bottom? Just get the sampling tube from a home brew store, their pretty cheap.
 

Crusty

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Econwatson said:
Slightly off-topic question, where did you guys get your measuring cylinders for taking your hydrometer readings? I know people say to use the tube the hydrometer came in but I would like to be more accurate than that!
I got mine from here out of stock though at the moment.
 

Econwatson

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Crusty said:
I got mine from here out of stock though at the moment.
That's exactly what I want Crusty! Will keep a look out! :) Thanks!
 

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