homebrew anyone?

Discussion in 'The Club House' started by UrbanNinja, Feb 4, 2012.

  1. UrbanNinja

    UrbanNinja New Member

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    Ive recently got into brewing my own beer and wine. Had good success with beer but, ive just finished bottling my first batch of wine.

    I took a sample and tested it with my hydrometer to test the alcohol content. I am getting a reading of specific gravity 1.000. Basically it is telling me there is no alcohol. The wine has not been aged yet except for the fermentation. It is supposed to age for at least 3 months.

    My question is for anyone familiar with home brewing. Is my reading correct and the alcohol content will change after aging? Or should there be some percentage now? I tested the hydrometer with an open bottle of store bought wine and it is reading correct.
     
  2. cfraga1978

    cfraga1978 New Member

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    well a reading of 1.000 means that there is no sugar left in your beer. what was your original gravity (before fermentation) it should be like 1.050 or something depending on style of beer. a reading of 1.000 is the same as water and if that is correct your beer will have no body. a 5% beer should start at like 1.055 and finish at somewhere around 1.010. Hydrometers can not tell you the alcohol without two reading one at the start and one after fermentation.
     

  3. UrbanNinja

    UrbanNinja New Member

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    The original reading was at 1.100. Then after the first fermentation It was at 0.998 now it stands at 1.000
     
  4. cfraga1978

    cfraga1978 New Member

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    i have no idea how you got down to 1.000 there should be some non-fermentables left in there beer unlike wine doesn't usually drop below 1.005. but at those reading you are looking at 13.33% ABV. that is way high for anything except like a barley wine but your FG would be like 1.020.. i would double check your recipe because even when i make a Double IPA with 8% my OG is like 1.075-1.085 and FG of 1.015-1.010. are you taking your readings at 60 deg? you should try posting on homebrewtalk lots of homebrewers on there.
     
  5. UrbanNinja

    UrbanNinja New Member

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    I wish i knew myself. My temperature was at 68F. I have a chart that explains how to adjust for temperature differences. As I said, this is my first batch of wine. Maybe I screwed up somewhere.
    Im going to try and bring the temperature down and take another reading. At worst, ill leave the bottles to age for a few months and check it again after the aging. I did a taste test, and it has that alcohol "taste" and slight "burn" to it when it goes down. Which is why I am so puzzled.
     
  6. cfraga1978

    cfraga1978 New Member

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    I am sorry i misread your first post i thought this was the beer. your readings are right on for wine 13.3% is about right. yes it will taste "hot" at first. my wine starts to loose its burn at about 6 months but i age at least a year. the saying holds true it gets better with time. 4 - 5 years you will get the true balance with the slight fruity flavors and tannins.
     
  7. UrbanNinja

    UrbanNinja New Member

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    I thought you were just using the beer for an example. Lol. Thanks for clearing that up. Id hate to have thrown away 6 gallons of this stuff (not to mention the wife would be very upset with me). I used a wine kit with step-by-step instructions and thought to myself "how the heck did I mess this up?".
     
  8. cfraga1978

    cfraga1978 New Member

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    Is your hydrometry a triple scale ( SG, brix, and PA)? if so use the PA "potential alcohol" scale when taking readings for wine. for example your first reading may be 15% and your final reading might be 1%, then you take the first and subtract the final 15% - 1% = 14% ABV
     
  9. UrbanNinja

    UrbanNinja New Member

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    Yes it is a triple. I did not know you could calculate it lie that. I appreciate all this information (as does my wife) she had just warned me that I "better not go to sleep tonight". Lol. You may have just pulled me out of a cold watery grave. Lol.
    Kidding aside, that is good information to have, something like that is not explained in the basic instructions I have. I would like to get away from the pre-made kits and venture into my own recipes, but I guess I have a lot more researching to do.
     
  10. Minionsram

    Minionsram New Member

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    Hey brother the one book that I loved for anything is this, and dont let the name fool you it talks about beer, wine and shine making and has some really good recipes. I would say this is a must have for any homebrewer.
    http://www.happymountain.net/index.html check out the site and then buy the book!

    If I can not get my stuff local or the brew shop cant get it I go here for supplies, careful you will see a lot of wants. lol.
    http://www.eckraus.com/
     
    Last edited: Feb 5, 2012
  11. UrbanNinja

    UrbanNinja New Member

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    Good stuff. Ill have to give a good look at that. All the input is appreciated, thanks guys.
     
  12. cfraga1978

    cfraga1978 New Member

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    Some other great books are "the Joy of homebrewing" and "the joy of home wine making" i think i found both on amazon.
     
  13. jjfuller1

    jjfuller1 New Member

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    if you want really good wine... rack your wine every six months and add more suger each time. i ket mine sit 2 to 3 yrs before bottling. racking is simply changing the container and leaving all the dead yeast and sediment. helps alot with flavor and higher alcohol content. i find siphoning leaves the most sediment without disturbing it or mixing it back up
     
  14. UrbanNinja

    UrbanNinja New Member

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    Ive racked it twice during the fermentation. I was not aware it could sit that long before bottling (still new to the wine). I use a carboy and "vino vessel" fermentation bucket, would you suggest I purchase another carboy and let my next batch stay there longer? Or is the bucket good enough?
     
  15. jjfuller1

    jjfuller1 New Member

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    ive never used a bucket so im not sure how those work. i have 20 carboys. one is for racking so its always empty. i just bottled a few others so i have like 3 empties. anyway. yes we have akways stayed on the six months plan. going back 20 plus years or so with my uncle. we start the wine keep it warmish. 66 to 70 for about 2 weeks to make sure the fermentation starts good. then we wait.. down to the root celler for 6 months for around 60deg. you will notice quite a bit of silt on the bottom. this is where siphoning comes into play. we dont want to mix all that up. we boil water and suger to get kind of a syrup. and add this each time we rack. around the 18 to 24 month mark. we may stop adding suger depending on the batches flavor. but mostly by that time we no longer need suger. as long as you keep a good tempature and attend to it, it will last just fine... we have one gallon jug left of a rhubarb from 1998.. its so smooth you wouldnt know you were drinking anything.