Hello I am looking into buying a refractometer I am tired of Breaking hydrometer’s. An what the best place to buy refractometer. I know to Measure Final gravity’s you have to take into Account the alcohol that present in the solution an put that into some mathematical formula. But how accurate are refractometer?
I do use one only for the first. Og. Once done brewing. For the rest i do use. The hydrometer.if you do use the refractometer. Use brix. And than the refrato meter calculator. O bye the way. Did drop my hydrometer. Yesterday.
I got my refractometer on Amazon. You can get a decent one there between $22-$29. You can calculate final gravity accurately within 0.001-0.002 if you always use Sean Terrill’s calculator:
I don’t have a refractometer and I’m curious why you need one other than they are not glass and as breakable. I try to always have two hydrometers on hand in case of mishap.
Like wilco I only use mine for OG and the runoff of my mash. I noticed my FG would be all over the place and ended up not trusting it. For example using the refractometer calculator I ended up with a 7.5 abv beer one day and two weeks later at bottling it was 6.5. I went back to hydrometer because of that. Had the readings been the other way around I probably could have trusted it but since I LOST a percent…it has been really consistent pre fermentation.
Never felt a need for one…hydrometers are cheap…accurate and easy to use. I think I’ve broken one in 4 years. After that I bought 3 and still have them all.
I use a refractometer almost exclusively. Just so much easier to use. It’s not perfect, but the dozen or so times I’ve tested it against a hydrometer it’s been accurate within one or two gravity points. Close enough for me.
I am not one for fancy gadgets or equipment, but since I received a refractometer as a gift, I’ve got to say, I love the thing. Instant results with just 3 drops of wort instead of a full tube full, and no need for temperature correction as it literally only takes a few seconds for 3 drops to reach reasonable temperatures.
I’m with DM on this. It is important to notice his comment: “…it only takes a few seconds for 3 drops to reach reasonable temperatures.”
I got an ATC (Automatic Temperature-Correcting) refractometer thinking I could grab a small sample, drip it onto the refractometer prism, and read the scale. It doesn’t work quite that way. The sample must cool to the approximate temp of the refractometer to get a good reading. I pull a tiny sample with a baster and let it sit in a thick-walled glass for a few seconds to get it near room temp before dripping it onto the refractometer.
Refractometers are a little tougher than hydrometers. But, it’s possible to ruin one if you drop it just right! It may take a few tries, just as it did for me, but with a little persistence you can break a refractometer!
I don’t sweat a couple of points here and there, but I do sweat the pints here and there… meaning I accept that with conversion, my refractometer is probably not entirely accurate. But I also don’t miss filling a test jar with beer that won’t make it into the bottle.
I almost exclusively use a refractometer too. Ebay has them pretty cheap. I use NB’s refractometer calculator, and it hasn’t failed me yet. I would highly suggest you get yourself a small squirt bottle filled with distilled water to rinse the wort / beer off after use. After a good rinse and wipe with a soft cloth, I add a few more drops of distilled water and look through the eye piece to make sure I am still calibrated. Distilled water should have a zero reading. If not, I recalibrate by turning the screw. I find it’s very easy to bump the screw and screw up the calibration. Of course if I need to recalibrate, I test my wort again. I would never go back to a hydrometer. I love my refractometer.
Now I might need a refractometer. I’ll have to look up user manuals for a few different models.
Spent some gift money on beer glasses and sheaves for my kitchen knives.
Got a birthday coming up? You may need to request cash instead of gifts, unless its a refractometer. I use mine to find my staring gravity, then to the hydrometer to finish. With that being said, I would almost certainly be able to for go the ending as I am certain I can tell where it will land and since I keg, a little extra fermenting/keg conditioning is just fine. Sneezles61
I’ll have to find someone around here that has one. I might not be able to read the scale too well with my eyesight getting weaker.
Even with weak eyesight @flars I think you should be able to read the scale well. My 22$ refractometer is easy to read assuming I shine it right at good lighting.y eyes aren’t that great without glasses
I did buy the refractometer from nb. Nice to use. Easy to read. Even me i got glasses. Can read it clear. It gives you brix as well. Or specific grav. The calubrate nut nice protected with a cover. It was money well spent
Do not trust the specific gravity scale, it may not be correct. Brix is what it is designed to read, so only use Brix, in conjunction with Terrill’s calculator.
I’m sorry to hear that, er read that… I have to move my glasses out of the way and it seems I have the eye piece about maxed out… Its adjustable, like binocular… Sneezles61
Another source for refractometer Brix reading adjustments & calculations…please read instructions at bottom of page though…also methods/spreadsheets for collecting your wort correction factor if you want to get even more precise
I enjoyed that disclaimer! Don’t see you much SunfishBrew, but you bring alot of tech stuff when you do show up! Sneezles61