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Rubbish Head Retention

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acarey

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Hi all,
I'm just continuing my comedy of errors with a particular batch of brew. Is a Wals pale ale from the outcry brewer. I suspect I didn't let it ferment long enough because it has a sweetish taste and it doesn't seem to get me drunk. OG was only 1.03 for some reason and FG was 1.01 after 8 days at a constant 21.5C. I thought I might have a dicky hydrometer but it reads 1 in water so go figure. Anyway....
I force carbed it and let it sit for a week and it pours with a standard amount of head and the right level f carbonation (to my taste) but the head just disappears. I'm wondering if its got to do with it possibly not being fully fermented or something.
Is there any ay I can 'fix' it? I'm new at all this and aware I probably need to provide more info. If anyone has a suggestion please let me know. Cheers
 

stux

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Hi all,
I'm just continuing my comedy of errors with a particular batch of brew. Is a Wals pale ale from the outcry brewer. I suspect I didn't let it ferment long enough because it has a sweetish taste and it doesn't seem to get me drunk. OG was only 1.03 for some reason and FG was 1.01 after 8 days at a constant 21.5C. I thought I might have a dicky hydrometer but it reads 1 in water so go figure. Anyway....
I force carbed it and let it sit for a week and it pours with a standard amount of head and the right level f carbonation (to my taste) but the head just disappears. I'm wondering if its got to do with it possibly not being fully fermented or something.
Is there any ay I can 'fix' it? I'm new at all this and aware I probably need to provide more info. If anyone has a suggestion please let me know. Cheers
1.030 is a very low OG unless you're making a light beer, and 1.010 is a very high FG for such a low OG.

Your attenuation has been crap, or maybe your OG Reading was bad.
 

yum beer

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Will help to give full gravity readings, 1.01 is only part of the answer, could be 1.011 or 1.018, 2 very differnet readings. Same with 1.03, what is the full number.

If your numbers are correct then you have about 3-3.1% abv in the bottle, will take a bi to get you drunk, especially if your seasoned.


Get your readings right and list all your ingredients, it would appear you have not added enough 'sugars' or 'malts' to the kit, but its only guesswork without the info.
 

acarey

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Thanks all for your replies.

Yob: Its a kit from the Country Brewer called Wals Pale Ale. I was a victim of auto correct in my original post. damn iPads...

Stux: Thats what I thought. Maybe my OG reading was bad. I definitely put all the sugars etc that I was told to do and aren't aiming for a light beer

Toper01: Well done, thats the one. I see you read 'autocorrect' well.

YumBeer: I see what you mean. My hydrometer doesn't give that kind of accuracy. Its just 1.01, 1.02, 1.03 etc with five markings for 0.002 between each one. It was v close to the values I mentioned though i.e. closer to 1.03 than to 1.032 if you get my meaning. Maybe its screwed, I don't know.

The exact ingredients used were:

1.7 Wals Pale Ale kit
1 kg Ultra brew (500g Lt Malt, 250g Dextrose, 250g Multidextrin)

I'm kegging and force carbing, so no priming sugars were used.
 

Yob

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next time add 250g of dry what malt... for kit brews... or any brew in fact, it can add wonders for a gread lacing head..

I cant really comment on the brew exept to say I always found that when I went away from 'brew enhancers' and formed my own additions my head improved.. be it grain additions or dry.



Cheers
 

acarey

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next time add 250g of dry what malt... for kit brews... or any brew in fact, it can add wonders for a gread lacing head..

I cant really comment on the brew exept to say I always found that when I went away from 'brew enhancers' and formed my own additions my head improved.. be it grain additions or dry.



Cheers
That sounds like a plan. Sounds like I need to do some research. I love pale ales but I'm not ready to go past kits yet. Can you suggest what type of grains I should steep or malts I should add to make additional deliciousness with my kit brews?
I guess there are resources out there but I haven't found anything to help with 'pimping' kit home brews.
 

bignath

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My hydrometer doesn't give that kind of accuracy....

Yes it does.....

Its just 1.01, 1.02, 1.03 etc with five markings for 0.002 between each one. It was v close to the values I mentioned though i.e. closer to 1.03 than to 1.032 if you get my meaning. Maybe its screwed, I don't know.
Agree with comments regarding giving us all the info regarding hydro reading. As you've posted above, if it was closer to 1.030 than 1.032 that's all fine, but the first thing i thought of too from your original post was "it could be anything from 1.030-1.039. Big difference to the answers you'll get.

What was your batch size? - keg size batch i know, but that could be 18/19/20/21lt's..(i keg and my standard size batch is 21lt even though the kegs only hold 19ish..)
 

carniebrew

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That sounds like a plan. Sounds like I need to do some research. I love pale ales but I'm not ready to go past kits yet. Can you suggest what type of grains I should steep or malts I should add to make additional deliciousness with my kit brews?
I guess there are resources out there but I haven't found anything to help with 'pimping' kit home brews.
Love your pale ale, want to stick to kits for now, but want to jazz it up? Try this:

1 x Coopers Real Ale can (1.7kg)
1 x Coopers Brew Enhancer 2 (1kg)
1 x Coopers Light Dry Malt (.5kg)

Put the Real Ale can (without the lid/yeast/label) into a pot of boiling water (so it's less than half way up the can), leave it on the boil while you do the below;
Boil 2 litres of water, pour it into your fermenter.
Add the Light dry malt, pick up your fermenter and swirl it around for a couple of minutes 'til it's all blended in.
Add the BE2, do the same swirl 'til it's all blended in.
Using gloves or a tea-towel, remove the Real Ale can from the pot, open it up and pour it into the fermenter. Add half a litre of boiling water to the can, swirl it around and pour that in too, so you've got most of the can contents in the FV.
Fill your FV up with tap water (if that's what you're using, otherwise cool store water) to 18 litres. Check the temperature. If it's close enough to 23 degrees, keep filling it up to 21 litres. Otherwise get it between 18 and 23 degrees, then top up to 21 litres.
Take an OG reading, should be around 1.050. Sprinkle (pitch) the US-05 yeast all over the top, seal it up and put it somewhere where it can ferment at around 20 degrees +/- 2 degrees.
When it reaches around 1.015 and stays there for a couple of days, bottle it with carb drops (or however else you want to prime it). You should end up with a 4.9% Pale Ale with around 33 IBU's.

If that's not an impressive home brew Pale Ale for you, i'll go he. Once you've done this, start reading up on using unhopped malt extract and doing your own hopping, with specialty grains. But that may just be a good enough beer that you never bother....
 

Hippy

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If your head "just disappears" , sounds like your washing your glassware with detergent. Glass + detergent = no head
 

acarey

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Fast Nath: The batch was 21 litres, although the can suggested 22. I did this because i did the same brew before but over filled with water by about a litre by accident, with similar results. Whats that they say about people doing the same thing over again and expecting different results? Oh well. The sample the guy gave me in the shop was just so nice and miles away from what I've got. Now I've got close to 40 litres of unimpressive beer to get through before I can try again (only have 2 kegs). Its not that bad though. Average beer on tap in ones home is still pretty good.

Maybe my temperature measurement method is off. I have an control that turns the keezer on and off to keep a constant temperature. I tape the probe to the side of the fermenter under a piece of styrofoam and set it to 21.5. Could the vessel temp Vs the wort temp be much different? I'm brewing in one of the old style coopers fermenters.

Carniebrew: Cheers for the recipe, I'll give it a shot. I added amarillo hops to this batch as I like a hoppy beer (my favourite beer ATM is Murrays Icon 2 IPA, its definitely a BIG beer) and i'm happy with that aspect of my current brew. I might hop up your recipe unless you think thats a terrible idea. like i said, I'm a noob at home brewing :)
 

acarey

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If your head "just disappears" , sounds like your washing your glassware with detergent. Glass + detergent = no head
You know, I never thought of that. Its definitely true that I am.

Once a glass is washed in detergent, is it doomed forever or can you cleanse it somehow?
 

dammag

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If you are disolving a kit in a fermenter then I wouldn't worry about an OG reading, Just calculate it. It's pretty hard to disolve a kit even in boiled water. FG is more important. You've got to know when it's finished.

Damian.
 

sp0rk

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If you are disolving a kit in a fermenter then I wouldn't worry about an OG reading, Just calculate it. It's pretty hard to disolve a kit even in boiled water. FG is more important. You've got to know when it's finished.

Damian.
20 seconds to take an OG reading sounds a lot easier than figuring out the calculation for your OG just based on how much sugaz you put in
I think your kettle is faulty, I've never had problems with dissolving a kit in boiled water...
 

Hippy

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You know, I never thought of that. Its definitely true that I am.

Once a glass is washed in detergent, is it doomed forever or can you cleanse it somehow?
If you wash in detergent you have to rinse thoroughly in very hot water and then dry with a clean tea towl. Don't use the tea TOWL YOU USE TO DRY YOUR DISHES WITH as it will have absorbed a shitload of detergent. Don't even sit the glasses on the sink where you put the rest of your dishes, as the slightest amount of detergent will sodomise your beautiful head( oxymoron isn't it). The best way to clean your glassware has been well discussed on previous threads, but sodium percarbonate is the shit. It has to be pure, don't use napisan because it contains fillers which include detergent.
I usually wash mine with detergent with the above regime for around ten uses, then soak them in sodiumpercarbonate overnight and start the cycle again.
I hate losing head to detergent and will pour a full pint down the sink before drinking it, ask my wife who is too scared to touch my glassware these days.
Hope this helps :icon_cheers:
 

acarey

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If you wash in detergent you have to rinse thoroughly in very hot water and then dry with a clean tea towl. Don't use the tea TOWL YOU USE TO DRY YOUR DISHES WITH as it will have absorbed a shitload of detergent. Don't even sit the glasses on the sink where you put the rest of your dishes, as the slightest amount of detergent will sodomise your beautiful head( oxymoron isn't it). The best way to clean your glassware has been well discussed on previous threads, but sodium percarbonate is the shit. It has to be pure, don't use napisan because it contains fillers which include detergent.
I usually wash mine with detergent with the above regime for around ten uses, then soak them in sodiumpercarbonate overnight and start the cycle again.
I hate losing head to detergent and will pour a full pint down the sink before drinking it, ask my wife who is too scared to touch my glassware these days.
Hope this helps :icon_cheers:
Cheers man, I wish my wife was scared of me http://www.aussiehomebrewer.com/forum/styl...icon_cheers.gif
 

Punkal

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I have seen similar post before and the solution was to stir the wort more as the sugars are not dissolved properly, that may not be your problem but string the wort more cant hurt as extra oxygen around pitching time is a good thing.
 

dammag

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20 seconds to take an OG reading sounds a lot easier than figuring out the calculation for your OG just based on how much sugaz you put in
I think your kettle is faulty, I've never had problems with dissolving a kit in boiled water...
When you are planning your brew you should calculate your OG and FG so you know where you are going with the brew. If you dump the kit and sugars in the fermenter with 2 litres of boiling water as per instructions then fill with cool water I bet you'll see the kit settle out in the bottom of the fermenter after a while. There are plenty of calculators available online to calculate these things.
 

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