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Saying Hi as I await my first batch

Hello to the Forum! New to the forum, and brand new to brewing as well. For my 50th birthday, the wife bought me a deluxe home brew kit, Irish Red Ale w/Specialty Grains, and all the fixings for brewing, reading gravity, and bottling. The VERY first night I had already mixed up that first batch, got it into the initial fermentation carboy, and into the basement. OG was 1.045. Within 12 hours it had already begun to produce enough gasses to move the liquid in the airlock, and by day 3 was pushing big bubbles every 1 to 2 seconds, with a solid 3-4 inches of foam on the surface. During this time it remained about a constant 61 to 62 degrees. Now at day 6, fermentation has greatly reduced, the wort is starting to clarify, and the foam head is all but gone. It still burps the airlock about every 20-30 seconds, so it isn’t completely done fermenting obviously, but I have noticed that the temperature is dropped to 58 degrees. I called the brew-masters with N.B. and they asked if I was trying to “cold-crash” it. I have never heard this term, nor have an inkling of what that means.
I have read through several posts on here, and it looks to be a great forum to get help, advice, and great ideas! Nice to meet you all! Cheers!

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Hello and welcome to the forum and a great hobby! Sounds like your first brew is going perfectly! The best advice I got as a new brewer was to “Be Patient!”. I was never satisfied with my beer when I went by the instructions (2 weeks fermentation + 2 weeks conditioning). I pretty much double those durations and really like the beer I brew.

“Cold Crashing” is putting the carboy in the fridge for a day or two prior to bottling or kegging. This causes all the solids to fall to the bottom. This allows you so siphon off much clearer beer in to the bottling bucket or keg. It is definitely optional. I usually do it, unless the basement fridge has too much stuff in it.

Welcome to the forum.

The ambient temperature has dropped to 58°F or the temperature of the beer?? Either way this is probably too cool for the yeast to finish the fermentation. After the first few days of fermentation with most ale yeasts the beer can be warmed close to the top end of the yeasts range.

I would warm this beer to about 67° to 69°F for the duration. Can be warmed with a water bath or moving the fermentor to a warmer area. Keep the fermentor away from direct or reflected UV light though.

You said “initial fermentation carboy”. It really isn’t necessary to use a secondary vessel to clear the beer. It will clear just as well in the primary given time. I always plan to have my low to moderate gravity beers in the primary for three weeks. Same for an IPA that is dry hopped. I dry hop in the primary.

Be careful moving glass at any time. A sharp bump or irregular surface, especially concrete, can cause stress fractures.

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I forgot to add, ask any question. I would like all new brewers to start out the hobby better than I did.

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Yes, Welcome! Flars is on target with the fermenting schedule… Start cool 63* there about for ales, then when the air locker slows down… once every 30 seconds, or there about… Bring it up to room temp… Heck, I sit mine on a table not too far from the wood stove in the winter… Keep it covered, no sunlight! Sometimes it can sit for a week!! During that time where it sits at room temp is also a good time to dry hop… I will cold crash about 3 days, in the fridge, before racking it into a keg… You have questions… there are alot of knowledgeable peeps here to help! Again welcome and happy home brewing! Sneezles61

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Sounds like your on your way to making a good beer. I wouldn’t bother racking to secondary or cold crashing your first beer. If you can set your carboy on a cart while it ferments then after it’s done roll it to where you can rack to a bottle bucket or keg. I try to limit lifting them

Cherish that wife of yours.

While you’re waiting for your beer to ferment, and eventually carb, you better be thinking very hard; you owe her one hella awesome present the next time HER birthday comes around.

I’m thinking maybe a fermentation temperature controller, maybe a kegging system… lol, no, don’t do that…

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Welcome to the forum Cahoots! Out of curiosity, how are you measuring your temps? Do you have one of those fermometer stickers on your fermentation vessel? These should get you close. In the winter, I put my fermentor on a heating blanket my wife bought a few years back for a back issue to keep the temp up. Typically in the winter my basement runs in the low 60’s. In the summer I use a swamp cooler to keep temps down because fermenting wort can run 10+ degrees above ambient room temp. At some point I"ll break down and set up a proper fermentation chamber to regulate temps year round. I second @flars in that we love to help out new brewers do better than we did when we started. Feel free to ask any questions, lots of helpful brewers on this forum!

:beers:
Rad

Thank you everyone for all of the advice and warm welcomes. Looking forward to playing with different recipes for years to come. As for how I am getting the temperatures, it is from a sticker thermometer on the side of the carboy. As for the racking into another container, I was under the impression it was to get the wort off of the sedimentary left-overs for flavor reasons. As I am sure most brew-noobs do, I have been following directions to the letter. But as a professional artisan bread baker, I know there is more than one way to achieve a great finished product, and I am very grateful for everyone’s advice and experience. No better way to learn a new craft in my opinion. Thank you!

Now it appears you have input for some of us wanna be bread makers! How great is this! Tie 2 hobbies together… The stuff you are wanting to get your brew off of is called trub… I found I made some funky tasting brews by transferring… Since I stopped doing that, my brews have consistently gone up in flavor… And couple that with eliminating as much O2 as possible too… More good stuff for down the line… Get your feet wet, understand brewing is 25% brewing… 75% cleaning/sanitizing… I guess somewhere in there is alot of day dreaming about how equipment will flow together to make for a great brew day! Sneezles61

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Welcome to the obsession @Cahoots. It indeed sounds like your off to a great start and all of the suggestions so far are very solid. There’s tons of knowledge here so don’t be afraid to ask. Your wife doesn’t know what she just started but I agree with @jmck, cherish her. I’m lucky that my wife supports my hobby and actually participates once in a while. She didn’t like bottling so she persuaded me to start kegging. Quite a few guys on here that are in to bread making too, so I’ll bet we get some good threads starting up soon.

Do your research and ask questions before diving in and you will be making good beer in no time, although, patience is a must. Order another kit awhile and get that pipe line flowing…

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Hi everyone. New here to the forum. New to brewing. This will be my 1st time at this with a 1 gal kit. I’m reading through the forums, just trying to get an idea of all of this. Ran across this one. My question is, what is “dry hop”? Thanks.

Dry hop is the process of adding hops to your beer after fermentation is complete or just before fermentation is complete. Typically you leave dry hops in for 3-5 days before bottling or kegging. In my case, I bag the hops in a muslin sack and drop them directing into my keg and leave them there for 3-5 days before carbonating. This adds additional hop aroma to your finished beer. In your 1 gal example, you can drop the hops directly into your fermentation vessel. It may be difficult to bag them depending on the type of vessel you are fermenting in. If you can’t bag them, you can pop your fermenter in the fridge after your dry hop is done for 2 days to cold crash it and drop the hops to the bottom. Then you can transfer to bottles and leave the hop sediment behind.

:beers:
Rad

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Hello @Dan82 and welcome to the forum. @radagast did a good job at giving some option. I wanted to add make sure you have some headspace as it can cause nucleation and beer to foam over.

So then it’s ok to open the bucket or carboy to put them in, all while the fermenting process is occurring? Also, can you do this with any beer, or is there a specific recipe? I enjoy my beer to be dank, very dank. Love that hop to hit me right in the face…

You want to wait until primary fermentation is nearly or fully complete. Typically that’s at least a week but you can monitor your airlock activity and once things slow down, wait another day or so and then drop them in.

:beers:
Rad

I like to add the dry hops before fermentation is complete for a couple reasons. First the fermentation will scrub any yeast and secondly it’s the safest time to open the bucket with a cap off co2.

Columbus hops is a dank, cat pee hop to my taste buds, buddy! :sunglasses: Sneezles61

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I love how dank Columbus hops taste! I just made an IPA with only Columbus! mmmmm

Welcome

Kent

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