KaijuBrew

First Partial Mash Recipe Brewed!

52 posts in this topic

I have my probe taped hanging from the top of the inside of the fridge, not touching anything, but close to the two kegs that are fermenting.  The reasons I have it outside and not inside is 1) I have two kegs, and 2) I have thermometers that tell me the temp of what is going on inside.  For the first 3-5 days, I keep a close monitor (check on it 3-4 times per day) and adjust the temperature controller accordingly to get the keg as close to and as consistent to 55 as possible.  After about the 5-7th day, things stabilize, and I'm able to keep the temp controller at 55 and the kegs stay at 55.

 

Don't get me wrong, I don't disagree with your method of putting the probe next to the keg.....the question is...which one?  So far, my method has worked for me.

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26 minutes ago, MiniYoda said:

The trick to lagers (assuming this is what you made), is that you have to use a dedicated fridge or freezer dedicated to fermenting, and add this device.

 

http://www.mrbeer.com/digital-temperature-controller-outlet-thermostat

 

Put the probe in fridge, plug the fridge into the controller, and the controller into the outlet.  Then, program the controller for the temp you want inside the fridge.  I start a bit colder (say 53) than the 55 recommended for fermentation temperature, then bring the fridge up to 55 or 56 once the main part of fermenting is done. 
 

Note I said "dedicated".  You can't use your main fridge in your kitchen, or the normal food will spoil.

 

 

 

Mini - do you have a heating element in there too or just the fridge?

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15 minutes ago, RickBeer said:

Actually, the probe should be taped to the side of the fermenter, below the liquid line, with a pad of material (folded rag works) between the probe and the air.  This insulates the probe from the air temp, giving a more accurate reading.

 

Piece of duct tape, cloth, probe, side of fermenter.

 

I am seeing some folks suggest placing the probe in cup of water in the fridge and putting the probe in that.

 

Also Rick, do you use a heater too or just the fridge?

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28 minutes ago, MiniYoda said:

The trick to lagers (assuming this is what you made), is that you have to use a dedicated fridge or freezer dedicated to fermenting, and add this device.

 

http://www.mrbeer.com/digital-temperature-controller-outlet-thermostat

 

Put the probe in fridge, plug the fridge into the controller, and the controller into the outlet.  Then, program the controller for the temp you want inside the fridge.  I start a bit colder (say 53) than the 55 recommended for fermentation temperature, then bring the fridge up to 55 or 56 once the main part of fermenting is done. 
 

Note I said "dedicated".  You can't use your main fridge in your kitchen, or the normal food will spoil.

 

 

 

Thanks - ordered the temp controller.  I do have a mini fridge (thanks to advice earlier this year from the group).  This is turning into an expensive batch!  :-)

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For now, just the fridge to keep it cool.  The unit is set to be plus or minus 1 degree of my target, so it kicks on at 56, turns off at 54, and naturally warms back up to 56 over time.  Understand that I'm in an upstairs apartment, so it doesn't take long for the fridge to get back to 56.  I'm not sure if there is a need to have a heating element in the fridge, but if I were running a tropical aquarium, I would use both the heater and the chiller parts of the device.

 

 

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The one that would be hotter.  If you put in both at the same time, then it doesn't matter.  If one is a week ahead of the other, put it on the new one.

 

I also put the newer kegs down low, so when they ferment actively and get warmer, the frig runs more, but the kegs up top are a tad warmer and that's good as they are past peak fermentation.  

In the air, the probe will cause the frig to run more.  

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3 minutes ago, RickBeer said:

The one that would be hotter.  If you put in both at the same time, then it doesn't matter.  If one is a week ahead of the other, put it on the new one.

 

I also put the newer kegs down low, so when they ferment actively and get warmer, the frig runs more, but the kegs up top are a tad warmer and that's good as they are past peak fermentation.  

In the air, the probe will cause the frig to run more.  

 

probably true on the frig running more.  Both times I made lagers, I made two batches of the same thing, so they were both put in the frig at the same time.  It's something to experiment with, but probably won't make another lager until after September, once the weather turns colder and I don't have to worry about the apartment being sweltering hot

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10 minutes ago, MiniYoda said:

For now, just the fridge to keep it cool.  The unit is set to be plus or minus 1 degree of my target, so it kicks on at 56, turns off at 54, and naturally warms back up to 56 over time.  Understand that I'm in an upstairs apartment, so it doesn't take long for the fridge to get back to 56.  I'm not sure if there is a need to have a heating element in the fridge, but if I were running a tropical aquarium, I would use both the heater and the chiller parts of the device.

 

 

 

No real need for heating unless you are doing something like a Belgian where they ferment at higher temperatures. 

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1 hour ago, efdbrian said:

 

No real need for heating unless you are doing something like a Belgian where they ferment at higher temperatures. 

That depends on where you are fermenting.  I ferment in my basement and in the winter during fermentation my fermentation chamber never gets above 64 even without ice.  The temperature of my basement at floor level is 60 to 61 degrees (sometimes cooler).  I use heat in my chamber to ramp the temperature up to somewhere between 66 and 68 as the krausen begins to fall (usually day 4 or 5) and then let it go to ambient temperature after about 10 days. 

 

Things change in the summer because ambient is around 68.  Also, Belgians need much more heat.  I keep them below 68 at first and then I begin to heat them after day 4 and let them get to 75 to 78 by day 8 or 9.

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On 4/1/2017 at 5:44 PM, Stroomer420 said:

you also wanna make sure you don't tie the grain bag to tight ,,,you wanna make sure the water can get thru all the grains...looks good 😊

 

Quick question - I have been tying off the grain bag / muslin sack to itself.  Are you guys using something else to tie it?

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11 minutes ago, KaijuBrew said:

 

Quick question - I have been tying off the grain bag / muslin sack to itself.  Are you guys using something else to tie it?

I tie it to itself.

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4 hours ago, KaijuBrew said:

 

Quick question - I have been tying off the grain bag / muslin sack to itself.  Are you guys using something else to tie it?

Tying it to itself is fine, just make the knot at the top of the bag instead of right on top of the grains :)

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Well today was the day to bottle the El Gordito and I am super impressed.  It tasted very clean with no weird after taste.  Also, it had nice color that was very light and pretty.

 

I put the sample I pulled in the fridge so the glass was a little frosty for the photo.  But this should be a great beer once conditioning is complete!

 

I am feeling good about the first partial mash recipe!

 

To celebrate, I immediately brewed a 1776 Ale in hopes it would be ready for the 4th of July!

IMG_2594.jpg

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Looking at my wort color, I am really impressed with how this turned out such a light color.

 

I also only kept the brew chilled via ice packs and had not yet used a temperature control system with a fridge.  I kept it under 60 the whole time, I think. I hope it turns out.  Lagers are tough maybe?

 

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Lagers, to me, are a challenge. You have to ferment at or about 55F, carb at about room temp, then condition again at 55F.  I have to dedicate my fridge to fermenting and a freezer I have for condition, both times using the temp regulator.  Great product when done, but a pain in the hinny to get there

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Posted (edited)

I did not think it possible for brewing to lighten the color of the beer.  But the wort went in the coppery color of Sam Adams and came out a light yellow color like Bell's Oberon.  I was really suprised by this!

Edited by KaijuBrew

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59 minutes ago, RickBeer said:

Because you poured it into a gallon of water? 

 

Not to be dense but is that all there is too it?

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5 minutes ago, KaijuBrew said:

 

Not to be dense but is that all there is too it?

Yep.  Just like putting some Seagrams in a glass and adding some Sprite makes the whiskey look lighter. :)

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48 minutes ago, Shrike said:

Yep.  Just like putting some Seagrams in a glass and adding some Sprite makes the whiskey look lighter. :)

Well don't I feel silly!

 

Dilution - not some magic yeast thing!  :-)

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Fermentation also makes the color get lighter.  My blonde starts with that copper color (full boil all grain) and finishes with a nice yellow color.

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12 minutes ago, BDawg62 said:

Fermentation also makes the color get lighter.  My blonde starts with that copper color (full boil all grain) and finishes with a nice yellow color.

Say it ain't so! :blink:

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