High Final Gravity

What went wrong? Was this supposed to happen? Should I throw it out? What do I do now?

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High Final Gravity

Postby KBrau » Tue Aug 28, 2001 8:05 am

I just determined the final gravity on my latest pilsner to be 1.018, which is much higher than I had anticipated. Especially since this beer was supposed to be a dry beer. I imagine my problem occurred during my Saccharification Rest. I think that my mash temp may have been too hot causing less fermentable sugars to be produced, although I beleive the temp was only 154 degrees. Is there anything else that would cause such a high F.G.? I have also considered the possibility of a stuck fermentation. Should I try pitching more yeast? When I took the hydrometer sample I noticed that the beer was very bubbly. I don't know if that might be related. Anyway I just thought someone else might be able to offer some insight. Thanks
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What Type of Yeast?

Postby BillyBock » Tue Aug 28, 2001 5:01 pm

I always mash around 153F also and haven't had a problem with final gravities. I'm assuming by your description, that your final gravity hasn't changed over the course of a few days. If it's still changing, then your yeast are still at work. If it isn't changing, then alot depends on the type of yeast used, the amount pitched, and whether the wort was aerated well. What type of yeast did you use and what was your starting gravity? Some yeasts are better suited to making sweeter beers while others are better suited for making drier beers due to their varying levels of attenuation. Depending on the type used, this higher than expected final gravity might be "normal", ie. a yeast that makes sweeter beers. I've discovered through trial and error that liquid yeast is by far superior. Was your yeast liquid or dry? I've never had a problem achieving the proper gravity with Wyeast liquid yeasts. As far as the bubbles in your beer, that's probably just CO2 coming out of solution since fermentation saturates the beer with it. Of course there's always the possibility of an uncalibrated thermometer--which happened to me, it read 8 degrees high, so when I thought I was mashing at 153F, I was REALLY mashing at 145F. This produced the opposite of your dilemma--I had created an extremely dry IPA, it had a final gravity of 1.004. So if you're using a dial thermo, check it's calibration and make sure it's not reading low on you. Stick it in a glass of ice water and let it sit for a few minutes for everything to equalize. Then check to make sure it's reading 32F. I hope some of this helps you, good luck.
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Bavarian Lager

Postby KBrau » Tue Aug 28, 2001 6:10 pm

Thanks for the reply. I used a 500ml starter of Wyeast 2206 Bavarian Lager. The starting gravity was 1.048 and I aerated the wort well. I kept the beer in primary fermentation for 14 days and then transferred into a secondary and gradually reduced the temp from 54 to 46 degrees. I guess it is not that big of a deal and I will just try to keep the mash temp a little cooler in the future when trying to create a drier beer. This all grain process is still very new to me and I have a lot to learn, but at least I will get to drink good beer along the way. Thanks again
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Maybe the mash temp.

Postby jeff » Thu Aug 30, 2001 5:25 am

154
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