Author Topic: Nylon Bag for hops  (Read 297 times)

Offline Gardengirl59

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Nylon Bag for hops
« on: March 12, 2015, 10:15:45 AM »
My last batch I brewed, I used a nylon bag for my hops during the boil.  I then discarded the hops before racking to the carboy.  I am not having as much activity as I have had with previous batches of the same recipe.  Last time I brewed the recipe it was active for a week after brew day.  Should I have not discarded the hops?  I will be dry hopping this batch as well, should I use the bag or not?

Offline goschman

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Re: Nylon Bag for hops
« Reply #1 on: March 12, 2015, 10:41:06 AM »
The hops should not affect the fermentation. You could have less viable yeast if you did not make a starter. Do you have the ability to take hydrometer readings?

Offline Gardengirl59

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Re: Nylon Bag for hops
« Reply #2 on: March 12, 2015, 12:03:22 PM »
I did use a starter and I can take readings.  What should I be looking for?

Offline goschman

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Re: Nylon Bag for hops
« Reply #3 on: March 12, 2015, 12:06:47 PM »
I did use a starter and I can take readings.  What should I be looking for?

Well it would be helpful to have an OG reading. If you think it is done, take a hydrometer reading, wait a couple of days and take another one. If the reading does not change then the beer is likely done fermenting.

Offline morticaixavier

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Re: Nylon Bag for hops
« Reply #4 on: March 12, 2015, 12:23:26 PM »
How are you defining activity? bubbles in the airlock? or krausen appearance? Staring transfixed at the churning mass of yeast through the side of your carboy?

If bubbles, it could be that it's a bit colder than other batches so things are going slower, or the seal around the bucket lid/carboy stopper might be compromised.

if krausen appearance, I suppose it's possible that less hop utilization would cause less foam formation during fermentation. As Denny says, if you are having issues with head retention try more hops. If you used the same amount of hops but used a bag instead of free range you might well notice a diminution of the hops flavor, aroma, and bitterness because the utilization won't be quite as good.

Offline Gardengirl59

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Re: Nylon Bag for hops
« Reply #5 on: March 12, 2015, 01:02:53 PM »
I did have a issue with the seal on the carboy and it leaked.  I have since replaced the stopper.  The previous batch I made churned for almost two weeks, I brwed this batch on Saturday.  Too early to be done.  I will take some readings the next few days.

Offline Joe Sr.

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Re: Nylon Bag for hops
« Reply #6 on: March 12, 2015, 01:13:39 PM »
If you used the same amount of hops but used a bag instead of free range you might well notice a diminution of the hops flavor, aroma, and bitterness because the utilization won't be quite as good.

I'm not positive that a reduction in utilization has been proven.  I've always heard 10% reduction, but I don't recall anyone doing the old side by side with a blind triangle taste test.

If you jam a bunch of hops in a small bag that doesn't allow them to expand, etc. I can see it.  But a loose bag shouldn't have a big impact.
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Offline Black Sands Brewery & Supply

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Re: Nylon Bag for hops
« Reply #7 on: March 14, 2015, 12:29:22 PM »
My last batch I brewed, I used a nylon bag for my hops during the boil.  I then discarded the hops before racking to the carboy.  I am not having as much activity as I have had with previous batches of the same recipe.  Last time I brewed the recipe it was active for a week after brew day.  Should I have not discarded the hops?  I will be dry hopping this batch as well, should I use the bag or not?

were they nylon or muslin bags? nylon i wouldn't boil as they can melt/scorch if they hit your heat source. most little hop bags are muslin/cheese cloth.

1. IMO always ditch the hops from your kettle before primary fermentation. the less hop particles in the primary the better.
2. we don't use bags to dry hop but no problem w/ using bags makes for an easier transfer as the hops are not getting stirred around. However, we get better results w/ no bags as there is better contact w/ the beer and hops when they are just floating around loose in a secondary.
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