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General Category => Kegging and Bottling => Topic started by: sdevries42 on March 12, 2014, 12:39:18 AM

Title: priming sugar
Post by: sdevries42 on March 12, 2014, 12:39:18 AM
How do you decide the type of priming sugar and amount to add? I have 5 gallon batches of an irish red ale and cream ale in fermenters now which I will be bottling in the near future. I'm having a hard time figuring out what priming sugar to add and how much.
Title: Re: priming sugar
Post by: Stevie on March 12, 2014, 12:47:58 AM
Use software or an online calculate to figure out the amount of sugar needed. You will need to enter the desired carbonation level in volumes of co2. Most beers will fall between 2 and 2.5.

http://www.northernbrewer.com/priming-sugar-calculator/   - 1 of many out there.

What you use is your preference or what you have on hand. I use corn or table sugar.

Title: Re: priming sugar
Post by: morticaixavier on March 12, 2014, 04:23:19 AM
I'm with steve on this one. Plain old table sugar will be your friends for those beers. you can have a lot of fun playing with priming sugars. if you find one with a really strong and distinctive flavor you can get a little hint of that in the finished beers.
Title: Re: priming sugar
Post by: ynotbrusum on March 12, 2014, 11:50:28 AM
Use software or an online calculate to figure out the amount of sugar needed. You will need to enter the desired carbonation level in volumes of co2. Most beers will fall between 2 and 2.5.

http://www.northernbrewer.com/priming-sugar-calculator/   - 1 of many out there.

What you use is your preference or what you have on hand. I use corn or table sugar.



Nice link - but use a scale as the fractions of a cup are a real crapshoot!
Title: Re: priming sugar
Post by: Jimmy K on March 12, 2014, 12:29:13 PM
Nice link - but use a scale as the fractions of a cup are a real crapshoot!
I've also seen corn sugar density vary by manufacturer. Some are more granular and dense. Others are fluffier.
Title: Re: priming sugar
Post by: euge on March 12, 2014, 12:38:26 PM
Good old neutral table sugar! Which is either beet or cane based. Doesn't matter which though for some reason I always buy cane.

As mentioned before go by weight to be more precise. The American tradition of measuring by volume has its roots in our history but shouldn't be applied here.

I like using this one for ease of access: http://tastybrew.com/calculators/priming.html (http://tastybrew.com/calculators/priming.html).
Title: Re: priming sugar
Post by: dmtaylor on March 12, 2014, 01:42:41 PM
I've used nothing but volume measurements for my 100+ batches and haven't had any carbonation problems.  You need about 5/8 cup cane sugar per 5 gallons.  If you only have 4.5 gallons, then use closer to 1/2 cup.  If you have 5.5 gallons, use more like 2/3 cup.  It sounds swaggy but it works like a charm.
Title: Re: priming sugar
Post by: ynotbrusum on March 13, 2014, 03:06:08 AM
My math sucks but aren't you saying .625 for 5 gallons and .667 for 5.5 gallons?  If so, I would undoubtedly screw up the volume of beer or the volume of sugar.  But that is just me Dave!  But if both are accurate volume measurements, I think you nailed it!
Title: Re: priming sugar
Post by: klickitat jim on March 13, 2014, 03:42:16 AM
I've found that bottle conditioning is an artful science all to itself. The best thing is to be precise all along the way. Know that your fermentation is totally done. Not even 1 point left, because 2 volumes of CO2 is only 3 points... Then you ought to weigh your sugar on a scale capable of tenths of a gram. Then you need impeccable sanitation and stable conditioning temps. If all you want is fiz but not bombs, you can be a little sloppier
Title: Re: priming sugar
Post by: Steve L on April 05, 2014, 01:37:11 AM
I use corn sugar when I carb. For some reason whenever I target a specific vol, say 2.3 for instance, My brews came out a bit under carbed. I got into the habit of adding 2 tenths above the carb level I want and they do better. I'm definitely a proponent of weighing. It takes the guesswork out of the equation.
I found this little (and I do mean little, it's tiny) gram scale. It's perfect for priming sugar, hops, water additives, finings and such. It's accurate, works in grams or ounces and is CHEAP (the best part)! ;)

http://www.oldwillknottscales.com/proscale-lc300.html

(http://www.oldwillknottscales.com/assets/images/proscale/lc-closed.jpg)
Title: Re: priming sugar
Post by: euge on April 05, 2014, 01:53:08 AM
I certainly wouldn't pay more than $10 for a small scale like that. Found one on amazon with a 0.01 resolution that can handle 100g for that price. A fantastic investment!
Title: Re: priming sugar
Post by: Steve L on April 05, 2014, 02:00:34 AM
I certainly wouldn't pay more than $10 for a small scale like that. Found one on amazon with a 0.01 resolution that can handle 100g for that price. A fantastic investment!
Definitely one of my most used tools! You're completely right about the price. There are a bunch out there between $6-10 dollars that are a bargain.