- Lagers: 10-14 degrees
- Pilsner is a type of pale lager.
- Ales: 18-21 degrees
Understanding what your fermentation is doing will help ensure a successful brew and encourage improvement in your brewing. A hydrometer to measure the gravity before, during and after fermentation is part of that process. If nothing else, it will help you work out the amount of alcohol in the beer and you’ll know when the fermentation has finished.
They measure: specific gravity, potential alcohol and approximate sugar per liter.
At its most basic scientific purpose, a hydrometer is an instrument that measures the specific gravity of liquids, that is to say, it measures the ratio of the density of the liquid to the density of water.
- Clean your drum with a sterilizing agent
- Brewing, 2 hours
- Dissolve your brew in 2-4 liters of very hot water
- Add 1kg of sugar or dextrose
- Put about 10 liters of cold water in your fermenter
- Add the hot mixture, and mix well.
- Top it up to 23 liters and sprinkle with brewers’ yeast when the temperature is below 30°.
- Fermenting about a week
- Seal the fermenter and partly fill the airlock with boiled, cooled water.
- Once the airlock stops bubbling and the brew clears, leave it for another 48 hours
- If the hydrometer reading is close to the expected reading and static for more than 24 hours then it’s ready for bottling.
- Sterilize your bottles and caps with a sterilizing agent
- Add a teaspoon of sugar or dextrose to each bottle
- Fill each bottle to 40mm below the top
- Cap the bottles, tilt them a few times to help dissolve the sugar
- Store them in a warm place for five days
- Move them somewhere a bit cooler for another five days
- Give them another week, and try your beer
Sample at three weeks, three months, and six months if you don’t get rat-assed with your mates and smash them all.