Author Topic: Are TILT hydrometers worth it?  (Read 198 times)

Offline Drewch

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Are TILT hydrometers worth it?
« on: September 17, 2020, 01:45:05 AM »
The equipment geek in me really wants one (or two), but they're not exactly cheap.  Are they worth the expense?
Drew

The Malt Bug Homebrewery - Brasserie Punaise d'Orge
Since November 2019.

Offline allenhuerta

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Re: Are TILT hydrometers worth it?
« Reply #1 on: September 17, 2020, 01:56:24 AM »
I use them to track fermentation progress and I love them. I have two. They are fairly accurate for gravity, IMO as well. During and at the end of brewday I'll use my refractometer, from then on out I'll use the Tilt.

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Offline dmtaylor

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Re: Are TILT hydrometers worth it?
« Reply #2 on: September 17, 2020, 02:22:49 AM »
I like my Tilt but I see it more as an optional toy than an essential item. It is useful but yes it is expensive. I would not buy one myself so I asked my wife to get it for Christmas and she did. :)
Dave

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Offline BrewBama

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Re: Are TILT hydrometers worth it?
« Reply #3 on: September 17, 2020, 12:15:38 PM »
I like tracking my fermentation as it progresses but it’s definitely a want vs need.  There are some quirks that you have to get used to.

The Tilt tells me when fermentation starts, how it’s going, and when it stops. It does eliminate the end of fermentation hydrometer samples to see if you’re done.

It does not replace an OG hydrometer or FG hydrometer in my brewery. I take an original gravity reading with an OG hydrometer, adjust the Tilt to that reading, toss it in, and when the Tilt says fermentation is complete I take a finish gravity reading with a FG hydrometer to know where I ended up. I believe the Tilt cannot be trusted for accurate SG measurements.

...but I like it.


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Offline tommymorris

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Re: Are TILT hydrometers worth it?
« Reply #4 on: September 17, 2020, 01:25:10 PM »
I like tracking my fermentation as it progresses but it’s definitely a want vs need.  There are some quirks that you have to get used to.

The Tilt tells me when fermentation starts, how it’s going, and when it stops. It does eliminate the end of fermentation hydrometer samples to see if you’re done.

It does not replace an OG hydrometer or FG hydrometer in my brewery. I take an original gravity reading with an OG hydrometer, adjust the Tilt to that reading, toss it in, and when the Tilt says fermentation is complete I take a finish gravity reading with a FG hydrometer to know where I ended up. I believe the Tilt cannot be trusted for accurate SG measurements.

...but I like it.


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I agree with all this. I would add that it’s nice for lagers. Lager fermentation can crawl along at a few gravity points per day. It’s nice to have the Tilt to tell you fermentation is moving along fine.  I had two beers fermenting simultaneously recently but I only own one Tilt. I put it in the lager. The ale was done in like 3-4 days. No need for Tilt to tell me that ale was making progress.

I like mine but it’s definitely a luxury item.

Offline dmtaylor

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Re: Are TILT hydrometers worth it?
« Reply #5 on: September 17, 2020, 03:17:23 PM »
I like tracking my fermentation as it progresses but it’s definitely a want vs need.  There are some quirks that you have to get used to.

The Tilt tells me when fermentation starts, how it’s going, and when it stops. It does eliminate the end of fermentation hydrometer samples to see if you’re done.

It does not replace an OG hydrometer or FG hydrometer in my brewery. I take an original gravity reading with an OG hydrometer, adjust the Tilt to that reading, toss it in, and when the Tilt says fermentation is complete I take a finish gravity reading with a FG hydrometer to know where I ended up. I believe the Tilt cannot be trusted for accurate SG measurements.

...but I like it.

I agree with all this. I would add that it’s nice for lagers. Lager fermentation can crawl along at a few gravity points per day. It’s nice to have the Tilt to tell you fermentation is moving along fine.  I had two beers fermenting simultaneously recently but I only own one Tilt. I put it in the lager. The ale was done in like 3-4 days. No need for Tilt to tell me that ale was making progress.

I like mine but it’s definitely a luxury item.

All great points.  It definitely does not replace your trusty old normal hydrometer.

And for lagers or long fermentations of any kind (cider, mead, wine), it is indeed very useful.

Also I forgot to mention earlier, it usually goes on sale probably on Black Friday or whatever, save $15 or something like that.  That's how I got mine, if my wife sees a sale like that, she doesn't pass it up.
Dave

The world will become a much more pleasant place to live when each and every one of us realizes that we are all idiots.

Offline bridenbrau

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Re: Are TILT hydrometers worth it?
« Reply #6 on: September 17, 2020, 09:49:45 PM »
I've had one for a couple of years and just bought a second one since I'm brewing more lately.   I upload to brewstat.us so I can track the progress which is nice if I'm traveling or something.   

Recently started brewing under pressure in a keg, and it helps a lot with that since I can't see what is going on inside.   The bluetooth range is not good when it is in the keg, but I just go right next to it with my phone and it gets a reading.   Recently also setup a Raspberry Pi to read the bluetooth and I can set that right on the keg to receive data continuously.  The TiltPi is very easy to setup, they have a nice SW image that you can install in ten minutes.

I always use hydrometer or refractometer for the official gravity reading, but the tilt graph definitely lets you see how the attentuation is progressing, and easy to see if you bump up the temperature one degree if that affected the fermentation.

Also, Beersmith recently added support to import the tilt data, so there it's nice to keep a record of fermentation gravity and temp there.  I'll be using that from now on.   
   

Offline Drewch

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Re: Are TILT hydrometers worth it?
« Reply #7 on: September 18, 2020, 01:11:37 AM »
Thanks. I think the consensus is they're cool but not essential. I'll keep them on my wishlist 👍. Fun toys are an important part of any hobby.

Cheers.
Drew

The Malt Bug Homebrewery - Brasserie Punaise d'Orge
Since November 2019.