Ambient temperature advise for brewing..

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Datanode101

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I personally would just leave it, looks fine to me. Once the reaction starts to take place I never take the lid of, (You don't want to introduce oxygen to the fermenter as it can make the beer taste funky) I always go by the air lock and the amount of bubbling it does.

Also note the date the batch was made can give you a good indication of course of how long it's got left, and then it's a hydrometer reading at the end to make super sure the sugar has all been consumed.

Curious, did you hydrate your yeast first? or did you sprinkle it on top/mix it etc.
 

terrym

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So I’m about 43hours into the 1st fermentation of my Amber Ale.
While there clearly is bubbles and I can see the activity in the FV I’m just wondering if there should be more foam forming? It’s gone cloudy as expected, Temperature is steady, hovering around 21deg.
View attachment 35838See the picture attached - is this normal level of foam or does it look like something is wrong?
Its fine. Now put the lid on and leave it alone until about day 10 when an SG reading might be in order to see how it has performed. Every time you take the lid off there is a danger of nasties getting in, however miniscule this risk may actually be.
 

RustyV8

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Phew! Thanks guys, that’s a relief. I didn’t take off the lid, I took the photo through the plastic lid so no air has gotten in anyway.

@Datanode101: Batch was good until March 2022, so it’s ok. I just pitched the yeast dry on the top as per instructions.

@terrym: Should I leave the Krausen collar on until day 10 also or remove sooner? Instructions say around day 3, then lock on the lid.
 

terrym

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@terrym: Should I leave the Krausen collar on until day 10 also or remove sooner? Instructions say around day 3, then lock on the lid.
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Leave it alone on the understanding that the krausen collar is sealed like the lid
 

Datanode101

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I've just googled and searched youtube for the Krausen collar, I've never seen them before... athumb..
 

RustyV8

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So I’m now at Day 11 of my Coopers Amber Ale brew and so far so good I think. Have been pleasantly surprised that I’ve been able to keep the FV temp bang on 20deg in the outside storeroom (Thank you Finland for your super building insulation 😊)

So I took an SG reading yesterday and today and it seems to be spot on 1.010 both days. However is that it’s final SG or is this meant to go down to 1.006?? I’ve struggled to find a solid answer.... if it was that then I guess it would put the ABV around 5.4% (OG was 1.038) which might be higher than expected for this?

I’ll be leaving it for 3-4 more days anyway and then bottle.....
 

terrym

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So I’m now at Day 11 of my Coopers Amber Ale brew and so far so good I think. Have been pleasantly surprised that I’ve been able to keep the FV temp bang on 20deg in the outside storeroom (Thank you Finland for your super building insulation 😊)

So I took an SG reading yesterday and today and it seems to be spot on 1.010 both days. However is that it’s final SG or is this meant to go down to 1.006?? I’ve struggled to find a solid answer.... if it was that then I guess it would put the ABV around 5.4% (OG was 1.038) which might be higher than expected for this?

I’ll be leaving it for 3-4 more days anyway and then bottle.....
Your beer has probably finished if its at 1.010. That's not far off for what you have brewed, especially if you have used the kit yeast. My experience with this type of Coopers kit is that going down below 1.008 would be exceptional. My suggestion is to now leave it until day 12/13 and then put your FV in a cool place (but above 0*C) for two more days which should help clear your beer ready for bottling.
And use this to calculate ABV. Which shows your beer will turn out at just under 4% since priming sugar adds about 0.2 to 0.3%ABV to the beer.
 

RustyV8

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@terrym : good to know thanks for that.
A quick bottling question also. How much air gap should I leave at the top of the bottle? (Ill be using the Coopers supplied 0.75l PET/plastic bottles + 2 carbonation drops)

So far, i'm really enjoying this new hobby and the learning curve! (although I'm not sure I have the patience for it :-) hopefully that will get better after the 2nd brew)
 

GhostShip

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@terrym : good to know thanks for that.
A quick bottling question also. How much air gap should I leave at the top of the bottle? (Ill be using the Coopers supplied 0.75l PET/plastic bottles + 2 carbonation drops)

So far, i'm really enjoying this new hobby and the learning curve! (although I'm not sure I have the patience for it :-) hopefully that will get better after the 2nd brew)
I also use the Coopers PET bottles. What I do (using a bottle wand), is fill the bottles up to within about 20mm of the top of the bottle. However, I then give the bottle a gentle squeeze to bring the liquid to the top, hold it there, and then screw the cap on. This removes any air, reducing the risk of oxidation. The fascinating thing is watching the bottles regain their original shape over the next few days. It's a clear visual indication that carbonation is taking place. Not something you can do with glass bottles!

Two carbonation drops for a 75ml bottle should be perfect! Good luck with it.
 

RustyV8

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Thanks again guys - After I cold crash it, do I have to take it back up to 20again before I bottle?
 

terrym

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Thanks again guys - After I cold crash it, do I have to take it back up to 20again before I bottle?
I don't. Never noticed any different. Within a few hours your beer will be back up to carbing temperature. And the usual tip for new brewers is two weeks carbing at 18/20*C, then two weeks conditioning in a cool place at which point you sample the first one to see if its drinkable. Darker beers in my experience take a bit longer to condition to their best so it might take six weeks before it comes good. If you try one every so often along the way you will find out how the beer changes.
 

RustyV8

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Deadly! So, finally I think I have everything I need to finalise my first brew! :-) I seriously cant wait to crack a bottle.... and to start planning Brew # 2 ..... which will probably be a Lager of some sort for the wife.. shes not an Ale fan, at all :cool:
 

terrym

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Deadly! So, finally I think I have everything I need to finalise my first brew! :-) I seriously cant wait to crack a bottle.... and to start planning Brew # 2 ..... which will probably be a Lager of some sort for the wife.. shes not an Ale fan, at all :cool:
Ah, kit lagers! They can be the poor relation of homebrew kits. Most come with an ale yeast because that's easier for homebrewers than fermenting at say 10-13*C which is what 'proper' lager yeasts require to give the clean taste. Some folks substitute the kit yeasts with others like a Kolsch yeast and ferment at ale temperatures and that is said to give a better result.
My experience is with Coopers Euro Lager with extra hops and which comes with a lager yeast, and was OK, although I am not normally a lager drinker. There is a big review here. If you do go ahead with this kit and brew at lager yeast fermenting temperatures its advisable to use more lager yeast as the 7g pack might struggle.
This might also be useful
 

RustyV8

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From what i've read I definitely don't have the patience for the Euro Lager...... 12 weeks in bottles :-)

The Lager I have is the one that came with the kit, so I just don't want to waste it - it wouldn't be my immediate choise for Brew #2. But will try to play around by additional LDM instead of the BE1 maybe and perhaps a mild hop tea at the end to make it a bit more interesting. Wife doesnt like the bitter taste... so im hoping a mild ho could give a nice fruity/hoppy nose without too much bitter on the pallet.... but I need to do a little more research I think, I dont know yet how to get aroma or taste into the beer versus bitterness. And also because Ive read that this Lager is actually an ale not a lager... so I dont want to make it even more hoppy that it may be out of the box!
 

terrym

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From what i've read I definitely don't have the patience for the Euro Lager...... 12 weeks in bottles :-)

The Lager I have is the one that came with the kit, so I just don't want to waste it - it wouldn't be my immediate choise for Brew #2. But will try to play around by additional LDM instead of the BE1 maybe and perhaps a mild hop tea at the end to make it a bit more interesting. Wife doesnt like the bitter taste... so im hoping a mild ho could give a nice fruity/hoppy nose without too much bitter on the pallet.... but I need to do a little more research I think, I dont know yet how to get aroma or taste into the beer versus bitterness. And also because Ive read that this Lager is actually an ale not a lager... so I dont want to make it even more hoppy that it may be out of the box!
Unless you boil them for more than two or three minutes you are unlikely to extract much bitterness from hops, so most kit brewers usually go with what's in the can, relying on the manufacturer to get that right for the style. However as you have found out you can improve a kit by adding a hop tea for mostly flavour, or a dry hop for about half aroma and half flavour (based on my experience). I have used Saaz and Hallertau in the past for the few lagers I did, and found about 30g max in 20odd litres is about right on the basis that I didn't want to overwhelm the beer with hoppiness just enhance it.
 

RustyV8

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Good tip on the 50/50 benefits with dry hop, thanks for that.

Sorry but another question on sanitizing my PET bottles - again varying opinions I read. After I sanitize, should I rinse them out again with water or just let the sanitizer dry off? My gut tells me to rim down away the stuff in case it taints?

Thankfully tap water is super clean in Finland, so that wouldn’t worry me... but should it be cooled boiled water instead?

And how long can I leave the bottles then before filling?
 

RustyV8

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*that should have said rinse away the stuff.....
 

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