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Emma's Ale

Ok you brewers, I smacked my pack and it burst. I have back up yeast, but only S-05, that is what we used. We had a stall on the kettle and the grains stayed in about 45+ min but @ lower temp…I returned with a warm S-05 as our back up was ice-cold…Boil & hop additions were right on schedule. My Wort was @ 100 degrees we put it in the carboy & added the 2+ gallons to top it off. The Gravity on this beer is off any chart…1.106, I have a +3 hydro and the wort temp was 85 at measuring which is +3. This beer Measures up to nearly 14%…

That is probably a bad reading, make sure the wort is throughly mixed up after topping off.

I did measure twice, the second time did measure a fuzz lighter at 1.103. I use corrected figures as the temp was almost 60 when the second measure happened. I have yet to check for fermentation, Should I take a reading if it is not happening???

drawn and prepping to read

its reading about 1.060 and the temp has risen a bit… this will be ok…First reading in only 2.5+/-gallons. 2nd after topping off, 3rd after 2 hrs with yeast=1.060

that kit is supposed to be 1.046. how much extract did you boil?

2.13 gallons with 6.3lb malt extract syrup will give you 1.106. i assume you topped off with 2.87 gallons and got a false reading from the wort and top off water not being mixed thoroughly

unless you used 14.75 pounds of liquid extract for a 5 gallon batch, your original gravity is not 1.106

we began steeping w/3gallons, steeped for ever while I ran to lhbs for some S-05, During the lhbs trip the burner went out. We got every last drop of 6.3 lbs gold malt, I rinsed the jugs w/hot wort (the lil jugs were clean enough to return for filling!) after returning the flame to the boil kettle…

I do not know why I tried to read the concentrated wort. I did get a good 3rd reading after yeast pitch. The uncorrected reading was1.051 + 3 for cheapy hydro, +1 for temp above 65 for a more accurate, corrected reading of 1.055 2 hrs after pitching yeast, This is still more than the 1.046. I also squeezed every drop of life from the 1.25 lbs of steeping grains. Our last beer came up way short of O.G. & this one has overshot it. Good thing these are here for reference. I’m not worried, and nearly convinced that the readings are the least of the worries a brewer can have.

The smak pak I started yesterday began to swell and burst at the side seam squirting yeast all over. Since this was before I had sanitized the pak I figured it was all contaminated and I dumped it down the drain…

I popped the top of a smack pack when I made the Cali Common kit, and the slurry spit out onto the counter. I went ahead and pitched it, noticed that it took a little while longer to kick off, but the brew turned out fantastically. Unless you have a really contaminated brew room (kitchen) I would have pitched it into the wort. My assumption is that I was still pitching enough yeast to crowd out the nasty bugs that might happen to be there and hoped that I still had enough yeast left.

At one time I received the advice to smack on the counter, using one hand to trap the pillow and then whack it with the other. What happened in my case was that I trapped the pillow at the top of the pack, and smacked the heck out of it, and that put too much stress on the foil and caused the blowout. Now I try to hold the pillow in the center and give it just one sharp shock.

Good luck.

Yeah our kitchen is not a trash heap so we could have used it. Good to know info tho. If I had some yeast starter flasks & stuff I may have tried to do something w/it…

I panicked, and ran around in a circle saying curse words among others. Drove to the lhbs for new yeast, so the rest of our boil was also a bit off. I obviously got way too ‘mellow’ during the boil, that went smooth with on time, measured hop additions & nearly spotless lme jugs after we rinsed them w/wort. Sipping IPA’s and that ‘mellow’ brew session may be the reason I took hydro readings before I topped off & before I agitated?? It is of course doing well now bubbling like mad, we will wait for the signs before racking as we will be brewing Friday the 13th Wheat™ in 13 days.

I see that the old sheet for Emma’s ale that was in the box is showing Danstar windsor dry yeast and the out side list on the box says S-05!!

if your ending volume was correct at 5 gallons. and used 6.3 lbs of liquid malt extract, your OG was 1.046. if you got a higher reading it is because it wasn’t mixed thoroughly enough with your top off water (very common, and very hard to mix completely), or because you ended with less than 5 gallons. its impossible for that much specialty grain to boost your gravity that much; unless maybe you mashed it with some 2-row. you can safely assume your true gravity reading was 1.046

US-05 is a good yeast, should be fine

[quote=“S.Scoggin”]if your ending volume was correct at 5 gallons. and used 6.3 lbs of liquid malt extract, your OG was 1.046. if you got a higher reading it is because it wasn’t mixed thoroughly enough with your top off water (very common, and very hard to mix completely), or because you ended with less than 5 gallons. its impossible for that much specialty grain to boost your gravity that much; unless maybe you mashed it with some 2-row. you can safely assume your true gravity reading was 1.046

US-05 is a good yeast, should be fine[/quote]
true statements.

So I should just toss out these $6 hydros, forget about the technical crap, because no matter what I do the gravity will always be the same, It cant be lower or higher even if We shook the 6gal carboy w/cap held on by hand till it had a foamy froth on it (about 4 min) then pitched yeast and air-locked for 2 hrs in closet. Then realizing I took a gravity reading of a partial boil(2+gallons + 6.3 lbs lme + 1.25 lbs grains which basically mashed for nearly 60 min @ 139 degrees) then I grabbed up the equipment & we sanitized it all again and drew 1 last sample, the yeast had begun but just barely this is where the cheapy hyrdro read 1.051. Now understand that if I have mis-corrected the hydro at +3 points because in 60 degree plain day old water it was showing 1.003 then adding the +1 point for temp above 68 degrees to get 1.055. Reverse the total 4 points and this becomes 1.047 so much closer to this box identified 1.046???

I believe this is the issue, I need to re-check the hydros, if The reading is +3 in H2O then I must add 3 points to the reading to correct it correct?? or as I stated at the end of the previous paragraph, do I subtract 3 points from the actual reading to get back to 0??

I usually just hold the smack pack in my left hand, and smack with the right. It’s worked every time for me except once. The one time, I smacked it, and it exploded, covering me with yeast. My wife said I smelled disgusting, but I kinda liked it. NB overnighted another one to me. I always have some Saf-ale and Danstar in the fridge just in case.

Paul

This is correct. you subtract the points to get back to 0.

you don’t need to toss your hydros. for extract batches, you don’t need to take an OG reading because you can calculate the OG simply by volume and amount of extract used. but you will need your hydro for FG readings to make sure your beer has finished out.

I’ve heard/seen more than one person realize that they forgot to add some/all the extract because they measured the OG.

It’s not a total wasted process.

You should check your hydrometer with RO/DI water. Mineral content can throw the reading off.

With a very fine file you can shave off some of the glass to make it read correct. Or add some nail polish if reading low.

It only makes sense now. This IS why I like forums, those that know can fill in those that seem/feel clueless. I did use tap water that had been boiled & cooled for 24 hrs open to allow the oxygen escape…THANK YOU fellow brewers!

And so the true variable in OG becomes apparent when mashing in all-grain batches and possibly in a partial mash… We will be attempting a few of the partial mash batches & BIAB/all-grain batches later this year. We have to update the new brewhouse/home where we will be living /brewing in the coming months to summer…THANKS AGAIN BREWERS!

pretty much. Your OG readings would be correct if you did full boils with extract (boiled 6+ gallons, added extract, and boiled off to your desired volume, 5 gallons) partial boils are really hard to mix with the top off water causing false readings. there is no such thing as efficiency in extract batches because efficiency has to do with extracting sugars from the grain. In extract, all that sugar is already extracted. When you boil your wort, the water and other stuff is boiled off, and the sugar remains.

good luck and happy brewing :cheers:

Forget the hydometer. Extracts kits are already figured out. Beer brewed for hundreds of years before the invention. I don’t really care about FG as long as I had a good 3 days or more of fermenting. Total time to bottles is 2 to 3 weeks. Never had a bomb and if FG is a little high I can’t go back and re-ferment. If it tastes good and fizzes… drink it. Gave up 2 years ago on secondary. Rack to bottle bucket and fill bottles. Neighbor brewer and I have same theory… KISS principal. He only uses his on AG batches.

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