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Watery Beer - Forgot To Measure Og, Think I Added Too Much Water

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lael

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Hi ,

First 'real' beer after a coopers ginger beer kit. making a paulaner hefe weize clone using: http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f70/paulaner-s...e-weizen-32811/

I forgot to measure OG. Think I added too much water - I'm at 21L instead of 20L.
Into the third / fourth day of fermentation now, getting a large bubble through the airlock every 6-7 seconds, the hydrometer reading today was 1010, which is below the target :( and the beer tasted a little watery - not as full a mouth feel as I would have expected.

Is there anything that can be done?

Thanks,

Lael
 

carniebrew

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Yes, find your nearest bottle of chill pills and take two!! :icon_drunk:

1 litre extra of water won't make much difference, maybe .2 of a percent off your final alcohol content...just means you can drink more of it during each session!

The current gravity of 1.010 is terrific, it means your yeast is doing's its job...and honestly you want it to be as low as you can now 'coz every point drop means another point added to the final abv....

Leave it a few more days, then take daily hydro readings to make sure it's completely finished fermenting. I bet it'll come out a treat, especially if you used the yeast from that link.
 

lael

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Thanks Carnie - yeah, used the weihenstephan yeast as it had some good write ups. Tastes great so far - just upped the temp to 20 to pull a little more clove / banana out of it. Had it at 18 and then 19 for the first few days.

I don't want to use a secondary - is it ok to bottle immediately after primary? should I leave it in longer? any suggestions for priming it?
 

Punkal

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You have temp control so leaving it in the fermenter a few extra days wont hurt and will do wonders to clean up some of the off flavors. If you can be patient 2 weeks total is a good amount of time especially with the yeast you are using. You are doing the right thing in bringing the temp up a few degrees it will help the yeast stay in solution and clean up after themselves, about 2 days before you bottle try bring the temp right down to almost freezing that will clear the beer up and drop most of the yeast, you only need a really small number to carb up a bottle.

Carbonation has a little to do with mouth feel, once its carbed up a it will improve. One thing you could to is cheat a little is use LDME instead of dex to prime the bottles, LDME is not as fermentable so will leave a few extra sugars behind (not much) being less fermentable you will need to use more I find around 1/3 more is a safe range.
According to beersmith2
21L at a carbonation level of 2.4 needs approx 128g of corn sugar or
21L at a carbonation level of 2.4 needs approx 200g of LDME

If you don't bulk prime this gets a little difficult to break up into single portions but its possible.

LDME will also take a little longer to carb up the bottles leaving them for a month should work (I know more waiting) and tipping them up and over themselves a few times once or twice a week will speed things up a little. Try to store them in a temp controlled environment too if at all possible.

Good luck it sounds like you have been doing your research and you should get some fine beer at the end. The question you have to ask yourself is how patient can you be? I know I find it hard to wait...
 

carniebrew

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Thanks Carnie - yeah, used the weihenstephan yeast as it had some good write ups. Tastes great so far - just upped the temp to 20 to pull a little more clove / banana out of it. Had it at 18 and then 19 for the first few days.

I don't want to use a secondary - is it ok to bottle immediately after primary? should I leave it in longer? any suggestions for priming it?
Mate that's gonna be a ripping brew at those temps. Personally I wouldn't bother with a secondary, I never have for any of my weizen brews, they're usually 7-8 days in the primary and straight into bottles. I use carbonation drops for my weizens 'coz I like the way they give them a little extra carbonation, true to the style. But i'm sure you could get that out of bulk priming correctly too....something like 175 grams of dextrose for 20 litres.
 

carniebrew

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You have temp control so leaving it in the fermenter a few extra days wont hurt and will do wonders to clean up some of the off flavors. If you can be patient 2 weeks total is a good amount of time especially with the yeast you are using. You are doing the right thing in bringing the temp up a few degrees it will help the yeast stay in solution and clean up after themselves, about 2 days before you bottle try bring the temp right down to almost freezing that will clear the beer up and drop most of the yeast, you only need a really small number to carb up a bottle.
All good advice, but to be honest I don't bother with the cold crash as I don't like to clear up my weizen beers, and I invert/rotate the bottle before pouring to get the yeast back into suspension so there would be no use anyway. I love 'em full of yeast and cloudy as hell.
 

Punkal

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All good advice, but to be honest I don't bother with the cold crash as I don't like to clear up my weizen beers, and I invert/rotate the bottle before pouring to get the yeast back into suspension so there would be no use anyway. I love 'em full of yeast and cloudy as hell.
Very true I was not paying attention to the style when I posted that...
 

carniebrew

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Oh and I forgot to add that when i've used carbonation drops in my brews to date they've all been ready to drink after 5 or 6 days, from a carbonation standpoint. And the weizen brews haven't changed much at all after weeks and months. Mind you I haven't had one last longer than 3 months anyway. Others indicate they're best consumed fresh, within 6 months or less.
 

lael

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Carbonation has a little to do with mouth feel, once its carbed up a it will improve. One thing you could to is cheat a little is use LDME instead of dex to prime the bottles, LDME is not as fermentable so will leave a few extra sugars behind (not much) being less fermentable you will need to use more I find around 1/3 more is a safe range.
According to beersmith2
21L at a carbonation level of 2.4 needs approx 128g of corn sugar or
21L at a carbonation level of 2.4 needs approx 200g of LDME

If you don't bulk prime this gets a little difficult to break up into single portions but its possible.

LDME will also take a little longer to carb up the bottles leaving them for a month should work (I know more waiting) and tipping them up and over themselves a few times once or twice a week will speed things up a little. Try to store them in a temp controlled environment too if at all possible.

Good luck it sounds like you have been doing your research and you should get some fine beer at the end. The question you have to ask yourself is how patient can you be? I know I find it hard to wait...
Thanks Punkal - with the bulk priming - I'm assuming that would mean making up a wort with the LDME? or just put the powder straight in each bottle portioned out. How much difference does it make between carbonation to use sugar vs dme? how important is bottle fermentation temp? once they have bottle conditioned do they need to be kept at a low(ie 18-20, not summer) temp?
 

lael

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Oh and I forgot to add that when i've used carbonation drops in my brews to date they've all been ready to drink after 5 or 6 days, from a carbonation standpoint. And the weizen brews haven't changed much at all after weeks and months. Mind you I haven't had one last longer than 3 months anyway. Others indicate they're best consumed fresh, within 6 months or less.
Thanks Carnie!

How much difference is there between using carbonation drops and table sugar? I have some chunks of belgian candi sugar that I made for a Delirium Clone that I really got into homebrewing to make- but haven't successfully harvested the yeast from that one yet - should get some flasks today! :). Apart from obvious portion control issues - is Belgian Candi Sugar a good / bad idea / make any difference?

In your above post you mentioned temps - how high would you ramp it up to over the next few days? is 20 high enough (i set the stc-1000 to 1 degree tolerance, so really its currently probably somewhere between 18.something to 20.9 temp range) to finish off fermenting?
 

carniebrew

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Thanks Carnie!

How much difference is there between using carbonation drops and table sugar? I have some chunks of belgian candi sugar that I made for a Delirium Clone that I really got into homebrewing to make- but haven't successfully harvested the yeast from that one yet - should get some flasks today! :). Apart from obvious portion control issues - is Belgian Candi Sugar a good / bad idea / make any difference?

In your above post you mentioned temps - how high would you ramp it up to over the next few days? is 20 high enough (i set the stc-1000 to 1 degree tolerance, so really its currently probably somewhere between 18.something to 20.9 temp range) to finish off fermenting?
The short answer is bugger all, there's so little of the priming sugar that it doesn't really impart much in the way of flavour. Although i've never used belgian candi sugar so i'm flying blind there. If you can taste a difference between carb drops and table sugar then you're likely a super taster...

You do need to be very careful when bottle priming, if you significantly over prime a bottle they can explode from the pressure produced. So chunks of candi sugar may not be a great idea. Maybe offer it to random children passing your house instead? Always entertaining...

As for your temps, 20 is fine, my first hefe was fermented at 21-22 and I loved the flavour personally, although some found it too strong. My latest dunkel was done at a constant 19.5 and it's spot on. Best bet is to leave this one at 20, then next brew try it a little higher towards the end and see if you think it makes a difference.
 

lael

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The short answer is bugger all, there's so little of the priming sugar that it doesn't really impart much in the way of flavour. Although i've never used belgian candi sugar so i'm flying blind there. If you can taste a difference between carb drops and table sugar then you're likely a super taster...

You do need to be very careful when bottle priming, if you significantly over prime a bottle they can explode from the pressure produced. So chunks of candi sugar may not be a great idea. Maybe offer it to random children passing your house instead? Always entertaining...

As for your temps, 20 is fine, my first hefe was fermented at 21-22 and I loved the flavour personally, although some found it too strong. My latest dunkel was done at a constant 19.5 and it's spot on. Best bet is to leave this one at 20, then next brew try it a little higher towards the end and see if you think it makes a difference.
ok - great! just the standard measuring thingys? - small for 330ml and large for 750ml bottles?
 

Punkal

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Thanks Punkal - with the bulk priming - I'm assuming that would mean making up a wort with the LDME? or just put the powder straight in each bottle portioned out. How much difference does it make between carbonation to use sugar vs dme? how important is bottle fermentation temp? once they have bottle conditioned do they need to be kept at a low(ie 18-20, not summer) temp?
You can put the priming sugar in individually but a process called balk priming if done correctly will give you better results, it is also less work and quicker than putting sugar into each bottle individually.

LDME is about 70-75% fermentable (approx) so 30-25% (approx) deference would be technical answer. There is no difference to carbination level you just have to use more DME then sugar.

Storing at the correct temp will help with aging the beer, the beer will taste better for longer if stored at the correct temp. To hot is bad and will cause the beer to go bad quickly as this is one of your first batches this will probably not happen as it will not last long. Fermentation temps are required for carbonation after a month cooler temps are good but you really don't want the bottles above 25c max (people do it and it works for them but its not ideal so avoid it if you can.

Quick and dirty bulk priming guide (if it sounds like something you want to do try searching for a better guide)

Extra things you will need
A extra fermentation fermentation bucket
PVC hose 1.5m

Process

Sanitize the extra fermentation bucket and PVC hose.
Bring 250ml of water to boil in a medium sized pot.
Measure out your priming sugar/DME.
Turn off heat and add priming sugar to boiled water and mix until all sugar is dissolved.
Add the priming solution to the bottom of the extra fermentation bucket.
Put the hose onto the tap of your primary fermentation bucket (bucket on the bench) place the hose into the extra bucket (bucket on the floor), there should be enough hose to leave a coil at the bottom of the bucket.
Drain the wort from the primary bucket into the bottling bucket, the coil should cause a little whirlpool this will help mix the sugar evenly. Avoid splashing, if you have a cardboard flavor after a few months you splashed to much.
Allow it to sit for 1 to 2 hours, this allows the priming sugar to mix more evenly. Good time to get the bottles ready and sanitize them.
Bottle as normal.

You can find out how much sugar or DME to use by using a calculator there are plenty of free ones on the intertubes, I use the calculator in beersmith2 (not free but has a trial).
 

lael

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...

You can find out how much sugar or DME to use by using a calculator there are plenty of free ones on the intertubes, I use the calculator in beersmith2 (not free but has a trial).
Awesome - that is super helpful. Thanks!

With the beer software - have you heard of or used BrewMate? I've heard of beersmith and a few others mentioned. Why did you pick beersmith?
 

Punkal

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I did use BrewMate but beersmith is just a little more nice (I really like the sliders telling you if you are in style) and has a android app with a timer on it.
 

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