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BDR

Why can't I hit qbrew's OG?

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I just did a straight up Bewitched Amber Ale (BAA), hit all the proper marks on the LBK, got everything I could out of the can and it seems the hydrometer only hit 1.046 vs the predicted recipe OG of 1.058 in qbrew. Going by that program, I came in just above the minimum OG. This has been a trend in all my brews and it's just bugging the crap out of me haha. For the size, it's set at 2.13 gallons.

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1.058 is the correct number from QBrew. There is one reason you're not hitting that - it's not possible.

All Mr. Brew refills, both old and new, are overstated as far as ABV. I don't know that anyone has done a study to come up with accurate numbers, but the new standard refills say 3.7 and come in closer to 3.1. I've only done one craft series, BAA same as you, and I came in with an OG of 1.043 (vs. your 1.046) and an FG of 1.007, for an ABV of 4.8%, vs. the stated 5.5%.

In short, it's false advertising. Mr. Beer hasn't ever responded that I know of, but I've seen no one post that they hit the numbers. They do use the word "approximate", probably advised to by legal counsel, to avoid people saying it's false advertising.

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Makes me feel better I'm not messing up somewhere. I do usually try and search for what others on here have gotten for readings just to compare. Be interesting to see where my fg comes out vs yours.

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Interesting. So RickBeer, does that mean Screwy needs to tweak the Qbrew database for the new malts? My understanding of your post is that the liquid malts are not 'thick' enough to give the OG? I guess not all liquid malts are the same density right? And the new MB malts are lower than what QB thinks?

Not critiquing, just trying to understand.

My gravities are all over the map, and I can't explain it. Usually lower, which kind of makes sense, but even higher sometimes. I did 2 batches of Patriot last night, both with an added LME and Booster, one was 1.058 and one was 1.078, with the same hydro. Maybe I am not measuring the water amount right, or have LBK's with not exactly the same water level marks. That would totally explain it if the LBKs water level marks were off. Hmm.. I may calibrate them next time around.

Monty

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"Monsteroyd" post=386747 said:

Interesting. So RickBeer, does that mean Screwy needs to tweak the Qbrew database for the new malts? My understanding of your post is that the liquid malts are not 'thick' enough to give the OG? I guess not all liquid malts are the same density right? And the new MB malts are lower than what QB thinks?

Not critiquing, just trying to understand.

My gravities are all over the map, and I can't explain it. Usually lower, which kind of makes sense, but even higher sometimes. I did 2 batches of Patriot last night, both with an added LME and Booster, one was 1.058 and one was 1.078, with the same hydro. Maybe I am not measuring the water amount right, or have LBK's with not exactly the same water level marks. That would totally explain it if the LBKs water level marks were off. Hmm.. I may calibrate them next time around.

Monty

If you enter in 1.87# for one of the basic cans that are supposed to hit 3.7%, QBrew will give you an ABV of 3.0%. So it appears he has already accounted for MR.Beer cans not hitting their est ABV.

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did you ever check the calibration of your hydrometer? Are your readings taken at the correct temp?

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Yes I always start out checking with water for 1.00, I think my lbks might differ in their water level marks. I am going to start filling them with a known amount (8.5 qt) and seeing if they are marked accurately as they become empty.

Temps would be the same, oh wait, one was at 63 because I used refrigerated water and the second was warmer, like 80, because I used non-refrigerated water. That would account for some of the difference, but 0.20 is a big diff. Would it make that much of a difference?

This was done within a hour of each measurement, and the only thing I can think of that might have varied is the amount of water, since both batches had the same ingredients,

Monty

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not enough of a temp difference to make a change. When I brewer MR B I found their stated numbers to off from the real world. Try measuring the correct water amounts to see if that makes a difference. When I started measuring everything I started hitting my numbers. I hit my numbers easier doing all grain than I ever did with extract.

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QBrew is 3.1% for the standard refills that say 3.7%.

QBrew says 5.6% for the craft refills that say 5.5%. That number is not being hit, so I suspect the craft series, and possibly the seasonals, also need to be lowered in QBrew. I suspect Screwy hasn't been asked, or doesn't have enough data to change them.

To calibrate the levels of the LBKs, use the largest measuring thing you have, because filling a quart once is more accurate than filling a cup 4 times due to human error.

When you carefully measure 8.5 quarts into your LBK, mark it. Then, dump the contents into the next LBK and you've got your mark (assuming you don't spill any). I found a SLIGHT difference in my two LBKs.

To be off on two of the same brew that much, it has to be the water OR you're not mixing them well enough (unless you were drinking while brewing and your eyes are off that much on the 2nd batch :laugh: ).

If you put the BAA in QBrew to get 1.058 at 2.13 gallons, you have to change it to 1.57 gallons to get to 1.078. That's a difference of over 71 ounces of water. I would think if you put them side by side you'd notice that.

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yea I see what you mean with 71 ounces. No way I was that far off. It must have been the beer. :)

The really high one blew me away and I re-checked it and looked for air bubbles etc. But it consistently read high. It must have been the mixing, never thought of that either.

Thanks
Monty

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Another factor to consider is how much water you add to the LBK. If you use water over the mark on the LBK, that will thin the brew out some and drop the hydrometer reading.

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FWIW, I hit 1.046 on my straight up bewitched amber ale.

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"LBK" post=387581 said:

FWIW, I hit 1.046 on my straight up bewitched amber ale.

:chug:

Just to check my hydrometer, it's reading 0.009 from the same water source I used to brew with. All my gravity readings posted here are temperature corrected. Before starting a new one up today (I have 3 LBK to use lol ) I'll see about checking how much the LBK actually holds at the 8.5 quart line.

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"BDR" post=387772 said:

Just to check my hydrometer, it's reading 0.009 from the same water source I used to brew with. All my gravity readings posted here are temperature corrected. Before starting a new one up today (I have 3 LBK to use lol ) I'll see about checking how much the LBK actually holds at the 8.5 quart line.

Your hydrometer should read 1.000 in water. Or 0.999 or 1.001. You may want to recheck.

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Oops .999 lol so used to putting 0's in, nearly 1.000.

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