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General Category => General Homebrew Discussion => Topic started by: woody on November 11, 2009, 01:31:08 AM

Title: How long for your lagers to drop clear?
Post by: woody on November 11, 2009, 01:31:08 AM
How long cold conditioning does it take for your lagers to drop clear?   Not necessarily "filtered" looking clear, but clear...
Usually after 2-3 weeks at 32, my ales are brilliantly clear, but my lagers tend to hold onto the haze for a bit longer.    I had a Czech pils this summer that refused to clear (until I persuaded it with gelatin)   
My Oktoberfest (with WY 2206) was brilliantly clear within 5-6 weeks.   The last German Pils (Wy 2124) I did still hung onto a tiny bit of haze even after 4-5 weeks.   
fwiw, my cooler is set at 32 (perhaps a degree or two lower-  the beer doesn't freeze, but the condensation tends to ice up on the bottom of the freezer)   

Just curious what others experiences are
Title: Re: How long for your lagers to drop clear?
Post by: crabber on November 11, 2009, 02:22:02 AM
Do you brew all grain (can't remember)?  It sounds like your haze shows up in Pils based malts.  Do your Pils malt based beers show a lot of protein coagulation in the boil?  Mine do - like a big bowl of egg drop soup.  Do you do a 90 minute boil?
Title: Re: How long for your lagers to drop clear?
Post by: woody on November 11, 2009, 02:29:48 AM
Yeah, all grain and I do 90 minute (vigurous!) boils.
Title: Re: How long for your lagers to drop clear?
Post by: blatz on November 11, 2009, 02:39:03 AM
generally two weeks for it to clear, 3 for crystal almost filtered looking.

here's my recent german pils after 3 weeks lagering:

(http://i661.photobucket.com/albums/uu338/pblatz/pils-1.jpg)

you said you have not gotten into water chem yet - that might be your culprit!
Title: Re: How long for your lagers to drop clear?
Post by: woody on November 11, 2009, 02:44:09 AM
Yeah I need to get a sample off to ward labs. 
Title: Re: How long for your lagers to drop clear?
Post by: ryan6458 on November 11, 2009, 06:49:27 AM
Yep, I'd put my money on water chemistry as well. I always had this problem with lighter beers. If your O-fests are clearing fairly quickly, then hopefully this means your water is only moderately alkaline. FWIW, here's my boston lager clone next to the real thing after 5-6 weeks of lagering. 8)
(http://i157.photobucket.com/albums/t71/ryan6458/IMG_0499.jpg)
Title: Re: How long for your lagers to drop clear?
Post by: woody on November 11, 2009, 10:07:07 AM
if its moderately alkaline, what measures am I going to have to take for the lighter beers?
Title: Re: How long for your lagers to drop clear?
Post by: dbeechum on November 11, 2009, 10:08:45 AM
Either cut down the water with RO to reduce the akalinity or if it's not that far off you can probably bounce it closer in line with acidification.
Title: Re: How long for your lagers to drop clear?
Post by: drf255 on November 11, 2009, 10:43:51 AM
+2 to water chemistry.

Once I got my mash pH correct, cloudy/hazy beers have all but been eliminated.  I never thoght it would make the difference that it did.
Title: Re: How long for your lagers to drop clear?
Post by: bluesman on November 11, 2009, 05:56:29 PM
Water chemistry and time.

I use bottled water...Poland Spring water with no additions and my O-fest is pretty clear after 2 months of lagering.

I could add some gelatin and get it to clear faster but I'm fine with it clearing in due time.
Title: Re: How long for your lagers to drop clear?
Post by: smurfe on November 11, 2009, 07:57:21 PM
Another vote here for H2O chemistry. I normally lager for a minimum of a month and normally have clear beer.
Title: Re: How long for your lagers to drop clear?
Post by: woody on November 11, 2009, 10:07:50 PM
water chem it is!   I'll have to package up a sample and ship it out.  Hopefully Friday.   

So the water being a bit alkaline would cause this?  What other problems could this be causing that I'm not noticing?   

First I was happy with extract brewing and said I had no need to do all grain...   then I went all grain and said my beer was fine and I wasn't gonna worry about the ph.    A few colorphast strips later I said I wasn't gonna worry about water chemistry.....    ha ha what's next?   
Title: Re: How long for your lagers to drop clear?
Post by: Thirsty_Monk on November 12, 2009, 12:28:33 AM
A few colorphast strips later I said I wasn't gonna worry about water chemistry.....    ha ha what's next?  
Open fermenters and wild (spontaneous fermentation)

Check this out:
(http://pivovar.kozel.cz/images/fotogalerie/foto2_32_thumb.jpg)
This one is from Czech brewery.
Well they do not do spontaneous fermentation there.
Title: Re: How long for your lagers to drop clear?
Post by: woody on November 12, 2009, 12:41:12 AM
No open fermentations in my basement until I get rid of mamas cat ha ha.  I don't even wanna open the carboy to take a hydro sample with the litter box down there
Title: Re: How long for your lagers to drop clear?
Post by: wzl46 on December 09, 2009, 03:36:15 PM
1 year lagering:

(http://i307.photobucket.com/albums/nn303/wzl46/bockglass2.jpg)

I thought the beer was pretty clear going into the secondary, but this is what was left after that year:

(http://i307.photobucket.com/albums/nn303/wzl46/emptycarboy.jpg)
Title: Re: How long for your lagers to drop clear?
Post by: slimsparty on December 09, 2009, 11:39:42 PM
my lafers have all come out clear.  most of my beer does.  unibroue yeast does a nice job on belgian/farmhouse brews and lagering seems to work well for me.  I lagered the last batch 6-7 months and it was amazing.