Right Temp?

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djphillies
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Joined: Wed Jan 21, 2004 10:06 pm

Right Temp?

Post by djphillies » Wed Jan 21, 2004 10:23 pm

I am just getting started and I would like to know the proper temperature range for fermenting ales, ambers, and porters. The area I would like to do this is my basement which is about 65 degrees. Do I need to get around 68 or higher. If so, any suggestions? I did see one device in the BYO mag. but is was powered by a light bulb as a heat(in a storage box made of wood and foam). I thought that light was a not good in the fermentation process.

Dr Strangebrew
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Can't say for sure but...

Post by Dr Strangebrew » Wed Jan 21, 2004 10:48 pm

During fermentation yeast will produce heat. For example, I keep the ambient temp of my fermentation area at 65 degrees F. My ales ferment at 68-70 degrees which is great for the yeast strains that I use. The temperature that you use should depend on the yeast company's reccomendations for the specific strain of yeast you are using. Many companies, Wyeast, Whitelabs, and I think Danstar have the temps for their strains on the web.

Off the top of my head, I think that just about all Wyeast and whitelabs yeasts ferment around your temp. You are probably fine, but I would find the temp reccommendations from your yeast company to know for sure, but remember yeast will produce their own heat, so you will probably want the ambient temp a few degrees colder than the reccommended temp. Hope I helped.

nate

Bowhunter
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Light Bulb

Post by Bowhunter » Thu Jan 22, 2004 11:00 am

I agree with Brewers Ody. You will find the recommended temperatures on the yeast package. In reference to beer not liking light, thats correct. I built a fermenting box that will hold four six gallon carboys. I installed a heat control using two 100 watt BLUE light bulbs and a muffin fan to circulate the heat. Works great.

Tom

djphillies
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Joined: Wed Jan 21, 2004 10:06 pm

Ok

Post by djphillies » Thu Jan 22, 2004 5:02 pm

Thanks Nate for the advice! I will look at the yeast packets. Thanks Tom for the advice using blue lights. Cheers!

Brewer2001
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Excess heat is usually the problem.

Post by Brewer2001 » Thu Jan 22, 2004 9:11 pm

DJ,

If you pitch the correct amount of viable yeast the active fermentation will generate 5 or 6 deg. F. of heat. This adds to the fermentation temperature and must be removed. So if your ambiant temperature is 65 deg. F. during primary you should be fine. The times that you may need to add heat is when fermentation slows down at the end of the primary phase. During the diacetyl rest the yeast may need some extra thermal energy to carry out the chemical conversion, experiment with your yeast(s). The second time that the beer should be 'warmed' is after packaging, if you are naturally carbonating, this gets the small amount of yeast in solution working again.

About light struck problems (skunk), it is not a problem with the yeast or fermentation but the hops. The problem is the chemical breakdown of the alpha-acid humulone that frees carbon atoms that combine with hydrogen sulfide (H2S) to produce mercaptan (3 methyl-2-butene-1-thiol). You can use that to impress your friends or local craft brewer! I would not use blue bulbs and not high intensity light. The 'catalist' of this reation is blue-green light of 400-520 nanometers in wavelength. this is why amber glass not clear or green should be used in packaging, there are ways around this problem - left for a different topic.

So keep it cool and dark.

Good brewing,

Tom F.

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