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Thread: trying to avoid hand grenades

  1. #1
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    trying to avoid hand grenades

    Actually, this is a brewing question. In the past when I've made mead I've let it sit in the carboy for the better part of a year. I put together a new batch about a month and a half ago to share with Larry and the Thoits during the Tour deWood this year. How much bubbling in the carboy is going to be acceptable to bottle without risk of making a hand grenade? (For those of you who don't brew, we homebrewers often use the term hand grenade to refer to prematurely bottling a still fermenting beverage, leading to potentially quite exciting bottle failure later on).

    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    prematurely bottling a still fermenting beverage

    Happened to my Grandpa. I was visiting at the time. It happened in the dead of night. I was awakened by angry German words delivered in an intense, no-nonsense manner by my Grandma. I did not understand German, but I do understanding cussing.

    There was also popping noises coming from somewhere.

    I am not certain if Grandpa was ever totally forgiven by Grandma. I do know that I was given chores away from the house that day. Seems Grandpa was busy cleaning out the cellar and declared I would get underfoot.

    Ya, right!

  3. #3
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    with my experience in making mead, and porter, the only ways you would wind up with bottle bombs, are bottling prematurely, or adding too much corn sugar to prime carbonation prior to bottling. i usually wait until after the second or third racking, after all fermenting had died down, before bottling anything. i have both a batch of mead, and porter that i've bottled, the mead is still, and nothing has gone boom yet.

    if you're grandma said anything like donnerwetter nochmal, yes, she was cussin grandpa out pretty good...
    benedictione omnes bene

    www.burroviejowoodworking.com

    check out my etsy store, buroviejowoodworking

  4. #4
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    Generally you wait until the bubble all but stop (they never completely stop) and you rack off to another carboy or bottling bucket. For up to 5 gallons of beer you add 1/4 cup of corn sugar and stir it in good. Siphon off to your bottles and cap put them in a dark corner for about 14 days if I remember correctly and then refrigerate. Usually you don't drink home brew from the bottle because of the dead yeast at the bottom of the bottle. Carefuly decant the beer into your glass so there is no "chugging" to stir up sediment. Pour the beer just until the "trub" reaches the lip of the bottle. Drink beer and enjoy!

    Another method to use if you don't like the yeast bodies in your bottle is to rack off the beer when it is through frementing into a 5 gallon "soda" keg. Bring the temperature of the beer down to about 33 degrees. Charge the keg with Co2 by rocking the keg back and forth on your lap while the Co2 is on. This rocking action will cause the gases to go into "saturation" faster than just tuning the bottle on and walking away. At this point the beer is ready to drink by just tapping the keg. If you have a back pressure bottle filler you can have bottled beer with the fizz and with out the trub in the bottom.

    Cheers!.... and drink one for me!
    Aloha,

    What goes around, comes around.

  5. #5
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    whew, ya scared me with the thread title mark.
    I thought the canadians finally decided to invade us and were coming down south from the border.
    I was going to PM you and tell you to only fire short bursts and check your targets.

  6. #6
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    Well, I'm intending it to be either a still mead, or at most a slowly crawling mead. I have considered sulfiting it, but I don't even sulfite my musts for plain meads anymore and it'd be a shame to add sulfites just at the very end. Normally it doesn't matter, as I let it sit for quite some time with one or two rackings before bottling.

    This one I'm hoping to bottle much earlier than usual to share with the upcoming Tour de Wood. I usually go about 8 months in carboy before bottling. This one will be closer to 3 - 4 months if done in time for Larry's arrival. I do have one bottle remaining from a previous batch, so I guess I could fall back on that if I have doubts about bottling the current batch. <sigh> This one is my first time using orange blossom honey and was really hoping to share some of this one.

    I'll keep you posted with what I decide to do. Need to rack it soon and add my clarifiers anyhow if I want to bottle it soon too.

  7. #7
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    I just had a bottle of Cyser that has probably been sitting for over 10 years suddenly become 'active' again....

    Very 'hot' smelling. and just plain nasty tasting.
    Programmer - An organism that turns coffee into software.
    If all your friends are exactly like you, What an un-interesting life it must be.
    "A door is what a dog is perpetually on the wrong side of" Ogden Nash


  8. #8
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    clarifiers?! i usually let nature and gravity do the work...
    benedictione omnes bene

    www.burroviejowoodworking.com

    check out my etsy store, buroviejowoodworking

  9. #9
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    When I used to bottle condition, I'd add a little gelatin to help clear the beer and make the sediment a little firmer.

    I switched over to kegging and forced carbonation and never looked back....
    Programmer - An organism that turns coffee into software.
    If all your friends are exactly like you, What an un-interesting life it must be.
    "A door is what a dog is perpetually on the wrong side of" Ogden Nash


  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Brent Dowell View Post
    When I used to bottle condition, I'd add a little gelatin to help clear the beer and make the sediment a little firmer.

    I switched over to kegging and forced carbonation and never looked back....
    sounds good to me ,,,a bigger bottle is all.. lets see, 12 oz or 5 gallons ahhh yup 5 galls and a glass
    If in Doubt, Build it Stout!
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