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Cleveland013

Too Cold?

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Hey guys, tried researching this question with previous threads and found varying answers, so I thought I'd ask directly for some advice.

My "perfect" spot for my first brew in the LBK appears to be perhaps too cold in this wonderful Cleveland, Ohio weather.

1st day into fermentation and there was lots of activity, krausen layer was forming nicely and lots of bubbles.

But as the temps seemed to get cooler activity seems to have slowed down.

I just got my MB free thermometer in the mail today, slapped it on and it says "too cold". A separate probe style thermometer says the temps vary from around 63 to 65 degrees.

I've placed a few blankets on top of the LBK to try to vary temp differences. Plus I know the inside temp tends to be a bit higher due to fermentation.

My question is it too cold to work well? Have I put my yeasties to sleep? I believe MB states this yeast works best between 68 and 75. Other things I've read online here state lower end of 60's work better.

I can try moving the LBK to a cooler to insulate it better but am afraid to areate the wort too much with the insides sloshing around during the move.

I know, I know RDWHAHB, but being this is my first home brew I don't have any to relax with :) Any insight, suggestions or ideas would be appreciated! Thanks!

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Guest System Admin

My Abbey Dubbel is cooking away at 64*F right now in my basement with no problem.

I used 3 packs Fromunda yeast and pitched at 69*F before bringing to basement 35 min later

Looking at it this morning I could see active movement in the keg and Krausen still and the Brew ometer says 64*f (mine is from LHBS and has 64 listed)

Also my Lazer thermo gun reads 64 also

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Your temps are good. Anywhere in the 60s is good. Most of mine are in the mid 60s. Cooler is better, though slower, than higher as there is less chance of off flavors at lower temps. Consistentcy is the key. You can help with that by putting the LBK in a cooler. The heat from fernemtation will keep it from getting too cool. The time to watch the temp in a cooler is at initial fermentation when the yeasties are most active. I have had to put a frozen water bottle in to bring the temp down a little. Also, helpful is pitching the yeast in the 64-66* range.

Hope this helps.

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Gotcha, :) So basically stop worrying, plan my next brew and give this one the full 3 weeks to do its thing :) Thanks guys! ;)

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When that Mr Beer stick on you get for registering says "too cold" then I figure it's just about right!

Jokes aside, if you are 63-64, you're making beer.

If you switch to Nottingham or S-05 in the future, 59 isn't too low. Different yeasts like different temps.

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Cleveland013 wrote:

Gotcha, :) So basically stop worrying, plan my next brew and give this one the full 3 weeks to do its thing :) Thanks guys! ;)

Thumbs_up-20120104.jpg

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The lower temp will make a better product ....
Just will take a little longer for it to do so..
It is well worth the wait to brew on th cooler side of the temperature range..

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Appreciate all the replies guys! Knowing everything's ok I'm just going to pertend I meant to ferment my LBK at that lower temp. ;)

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hey cleveland, Im in Northern ohio too and was worried about the same thing. I have my lbk in a cupboard in my kitchen. I had the krausen layer, then good bubbling later on. I was worried that It had gotten too cold Because the activity stopped, but I have a nice thick layer of trub on the bottom of the keg. also some bubbles, but no real activity as of now. I also have a sweatshirt wrapped around the keg to regulate temps. Everything Ive read on here says that as long as you had the krausen at the start and trub on the bottom, your making beer!

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Hey Brew-tality. East side of Cleveland here. You exactly described my experience. Krausen layer on top, good bubbling, cloudyness, then I thought it got too cold because everything seemed to stop like you said. But my trub layer is building up so I'm making beer too! :)

Great to meet a fellow Ohioer! :)

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Krausen is not the best indicator of progress. Some beers have a ton of it, some have very little. It will usually fall in a couple of days, and make it appear that nothing is going on, even though it is. Even if you make the same recipe a second time, doing everything the same way, you may get different krausen activity. It doesn't mean anything is wrong; it's just the way this stuff behaves.

The better indicator is the trub. If you've got that forming, you know you're on the right track.

One of the best things you can do for yourself, though, is to get a hydrometer and learn how to use it (it's really easy). They're inexpensive, but one of the most valuable tools a homebrewer can have.

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I've found a solution that works for me if temps start getting really low. My linen closet is about 1.5' by 2', and is the perfect place for brewing in the summer! Problem is it gets a little nippy in the colder months.
I've found that in an enclosed space using a hair dryer for about 5 minutes will bring the temp up just enough to keep the yeast active and happy, and the temp will keep stable for the better part of a day.

Just dont heat the LBK directly! ;)

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Cleveland013 wrote:

Hey Brew-tality. East side of Cleveland here. You exactly described my experience. Krausen layer on top, good bubbling, cloudyness, then I thought it got too cold because everything seemed to stop like you said. But my trub layer is building up so I'm making beer too! :)

Great to meet a fellow Ohioer! :)


Not to hijack the thread, but what are part of cleveland you from? Wadsworth, Ohio here.

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Guest System Admin

Just to jump in on the band wagon sort of is 62 to cold? I am not really seeing any action so I just wrapped it in a blanket just in case.

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