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RickBeer

Are you a new brewer? Then read this.

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Couldn't have been put any better, Rick. Just thinking back the whole month that I have been brewing here, noob myself, I found that there is plenty of time to read and learn from these forums from the time the wort is added to the LBK and time to bottle! My first taste of the Powerful Patriot Ale is due to be had next Sunday, week 4 of conditioning and from there I will be able to see the taste difference as it conditions further!

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great stuff. I knew I would be one of the impatient ones, as with everything else in my life, so I have 4 LBKs going and am contemplating getting a 5 gallon kit as well. luckily my first two batches, although green, were still quite enjoyable and I learned a lot from them and plan to learn something from every batch I do in the future. 

I am a part of a handful of communities and have a couple of projects rolling so I don't have time to visit every beer forum but this one has been a great asset so far, great community here at Mr. Beer. 

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Very good advice Rick.  I did the 2-1 method, but only put in one bottle after one week of conditioning.  I have been reading this forum since i got my kit for christmas.  I know it is my impatience & curiosity that is to blame for cidery beer. I still have the rest f the bottles conditioning.  Have an american porter in the lbk now.  On week 2. I will wait one more week to bottle as recomended by the masses. And condition for 4.

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The ability to search the forums is a great thing. Lots of information can be found that way. But for many it helps to have an actual interacting conversation. I'd rather encourage questions by answering them than continually push the search feature. Sure, for some it's just a lazy way to find the answers. But for many it is a more interesting approach. Lets them get to know others and lets others get to know those asking.

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Great post, Rick.  Your advice about reading and searching is good.  Having 1840 posts about what temp to ferment at means that a lot of experienced brewers have spent time answering the same question, which is answered in Mr Beer's basic instructions, probably at the expense of spending time giving good answers to other questions.  On the other side, besides the repeated questions, I do see people doing good searches, finding posts from a couple of years ago, and reviving the topics, which are often full of good info.  One catch, though: the original people might not be here now, so may not respond to questions. 

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A couple of other good points from Rick's post:  You will learn the most, fastest, by trying a basic recipe straight first, then making incremental changes.  If you change multiple things (ingredients, procedures, etc.) all at once, you won't know what doesn't give you the expected results.  For me, some of my 41 LBK batches have been refinements on previous recipes, and many of my 33 1-gallon batches have been to try ingredients, compare ingredients (like several that used a simple recipe and varied just the type of yeast), and test recipes before committing to a larger batch.  Another interesting learning experience is to bottle in 12-oz bottles, and try one per week to see how the beer conditions during the 4 weeks after fermenting.  That's harder to do during fermentation, but with a refractometer, you only use a small sample to monitor the progress.  As your palate gets refined, you can start to taste the cidery acetaldehyde and the buttery diacetyl, and taste how they disappear later in the 3-week fermentation even when your OG drops within days.  These are initial yeast byproducts that you don't want in your final beer. 

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I fully agree with what Rick says. Knowledge is power. I still a newbie at this,( 3batches undery belt ). And I wish I had joined and read the forums earlier. Made my first batch (cal ) & rushed it by the forum standards . It was ok, it was neer thst I made . After readinh the posts om the forum, I learned ALOT !! So enjoy the hobby & learn all you can . If you have a question ask it . There are no dumb questions , just people like myself wanting to get better at the hobby . Also PATIENCE is your friend . Thanks again Rick & Cheers everyome . Brew On !!

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3-2-2 and 3-4 are the same.  All at room temp.  Since you do nothing different between carbonation (the middle 2) and conditioning (the last 2), we call it 3-4.

Edit - shouldn't have replied early before coffee...  What I meant to say is that 3-2-2 and 3-4 are the same.  Two weeks carbonating and 2 weeks conditioning, all at room temp, is the same as 4 weeks.

Some state 2-2-2, meaning 2 weeks fermenting, 2 weeks carbonating, and then 2 weeks conditioning.  While the first "2" could be ok, if the last "2" is in the frig, then no, it's not ok.  You want to be at room temp for the entire period, and 3-4 is the safest method without a hydrometer.

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Recommended formula,  3-4 = 3 weeks in the LBK fermenting and 4 weeks bottle conditioning. The 2-2-2 is Mr Beer's formula 2 fermenting, 2 carbonating and 2 conditioning, which is not completely recommended. Should ferment for 3 weeks if you don't use a hydrometer for OG and FG readings.

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RickBeer said:3-2-2 and 3-4 are the same.  All at room temp.  Since you do nothing different between carbonation (the middle 2) and conditioning (the last 2), we call it 3-4.





Edit - shouldn't have replied early before coffee...  What I meant to say is that 3-2-2 and 3-4 are the same.  Two weeks carbonating and 2 weeks conditioning, all at room temp, is the same as 4 weeks.





Some state 2-2-2, meaning 2 weeks fermenting, 2 weeks carbonating, and then 2 weeks conditioning.  While the first "2" could be ok, if the last "2" is in the frig, then no, it's not ok.  You want to be at room temp for the entire period, and 3-4 is the safest method without a hydrometer.

Thanks for a better explanation of this as I was a little lost on the difference between -3-4, 2-2-2

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Rick, your the man and thank you. I am one of those moons but I have done my research through these forums beforehand. I even have a notebook of notes and advice I picked up throughout the forum but it's nice to have a one stop shop for it all

Thanks again and I can't wait to share the results of my first beer (if only it wasn't still 6 weeks away from being done

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As a new Christmas brewer with my first batch going, I am glad you took the time to share this information.  I am going to go with the 3-4 instead of the 2-2-2.  Wish me luck and I have so much more to read!

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Welcome!

I agree with Rick 100%.

After 50 or so LBKs I still am learning, I still am impatient and try stuff before it is ready but I like to experiment so that is how it goes.

Sometimes I am lucky, sometimes not but in general, following instructions and sanitizing to instructions I have not had anything undrinkable.

Times the flavors have been a bit harsh (e.g. spices or vanilla), I have waited another couple months and they smooth out.

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