Refractometer re-visited

Discussion in 'General Beer Brewing Discussion' started by David Woods, Aug 13, 2019.

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  1. Aug 13, 2019 #21

    Honk

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    This sums up my approach too, I also find the refractometer easier to read.
     
  2. Aug 13, 2019 #22

    PhilBrew

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    Hi GerritT
    ... sorry, should have been more precise ... I didn't mean that calibration, I meant the wort correction factor (link) re-calibration ... at least I think of that as a calibration. Is there a different word for that, "re-factoring" maybe :?:

    Anyways, with my refractometer (an eBay cheapie) different worts seem to need different correction factors, so it's been relegated from taking "meaningful" measurements, and its only function is to test for gravity stability :?:... but it's fine for that wink...

    Cheers, PhilB
     
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  3. Aug 13, 2019 #23

    David Woods

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    Just had a panic - an earlier post asked me to check the fridge temp just in case - and it suddenly come to me that as I have the probe taped to the bin covered with insulation that I am obviously measuring the liquid temp not the ambient fridge temp - this is 15.2 c

    is this ok or should I raise the temp - the brew seems to be doing ok if taking a bit long to finish.

    A little off topic but does anyone know how to set the font when posting replies to be the same without have to change it every time - not keen on Times Roman!
     
  4. Aug 13, 2019 #24

    David Woods

    David Woods

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    Sorry done it again - wrong topic - I really must pay attention!
     
  5. Aug 13, 2019 #25

    GerritT

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    Well I'll be... ashock1

    never used it, and the brewmaster that taught classes in homebrewing neither, or any of the other microbrewers I know.
     
  6. Aug 14, 2019 #26

    aamcle

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    RI isn't the way to go, it's more of less Ok for sugar solutions and solutions were the dominant component is sugar but pretty much worthless on solutions with little sugar and containing an unknown quantity of ethanol.

    If you want to follow the fermentation you need either a Tilt or an iSpindle, I have an iSpindle it was fun the first time I used it and it generated a lot of information including the time when I would consider the fermentation finished. If your trying to push batches through your fermenter as fast as you possibly can then 'finishing day' is important even essential information if your not then not so much.

    I give them 14 days and check the SG if it's at my expected finishing gravity I bottle, I've never had a bottle bomb and because I make sure I pitch enough yeast into a temperature controlled fermentation I very rarely find that 14 days is not long enough.

    My 2 pence worth :-

    pitch plenty of good yeast.
    control the temperature
    BE PATIENT!!

    Aamcle
     
  7. Aug 14, 2019 #27

    RichK

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    I have a cheap refractometer & find it's a useful bit of kit to have in the toolbox. Where I've tested against a hydrometer, I've got "good enough" (for me) correlation between the results. For an ABV calculation, I use "BrixCalc" (android). You do need to note & keep the original value though. I just find it easier & quicker to use than a hydrometer in a jar but still use the latter from time to time as a reference.
     
  8. Aug 14, 2019 #28

    David Woods

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    Hi, I have looked for BrixCalc did you mean Brix Calculator? as this is the only Brix Android app I see there - or am I not looking properly!!

    Cheers
     
  9. Aug 14, 2019 #29

    davidfromUS

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    @David Woods
    If someone's already said this then "plus one" to your idea.
    You can put a hydrometer directly in the fermenter at the beginning just before pitching to get OG. Then if you leave it alone for two or three weeks, you can check it the same way with a sanitized hydrometer two days in a row to make sure it's stable/finished. No jar need and far fewer incursions in this method so less exposure to air.
    If I know the FG and it's three weeks later and I hit it that number, I go right into bottling. I'm not recommending this; it's just what I do and there are a few things to know if someone does it this way.
    I recommend checking at least twice at the end.
     
  10. Aug 14, 2019 #30

    David Woods

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    Hi David, thanks for the comments - I did think about doing this but was very nervous about keep opening the lid to let the bugs in - I take my sample from the tap - but also in my last brew the foam head was so huge it would have meant I wouldn't have been be able to see the hydrometer! May consider this on the next brew!

    Thanks for your input
     
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  11. Aug 14, 2019 #31

    RichK

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  12. Aug 14, 2019 #32

    David Woods

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    For some weird reason this wont install on any of my Android devices - incompatible! emailed the author to see why - strange.
     
  13. Aug 15, 2019 #33

    David Woods

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    So I decided to give the refractometer a go - I checked the calibration - spot on and did a reading - 7 Brix - I then found this site https://brucrafter.com/convert-brix-to-sg/ where they have a converter allowing for alchohol and the reading was 1.016 - so I then did a hydro reading which was 1.020 - so a fair bit out.

    Is this what you would expect? maybe there is a better site for conversion. No matter as I said I am only using it to check for stable reading. Just would be interested in comments. Cheers
     

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