Take the 2-minute tour ×
Homebrewing Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for dedicated home brewers and serious enthusiasts. It's 100% free, no registration required.

How could I pull out a little from my carboy to take gravity readings during fermentation?

I tried to use a auto-siphon but it was a mess.

share|improve this question

3 Answers 3

up vote 4 down vote accepted

You can use a wine or beer thief and a test jar to grab a sample from your carboy.

I use the following one and it works great: http://www.amazon.com/Fermtech-Wine-Beer-Thief/dp/B00186ADYS This one is nice because the hydrometer fits right inside it so you don't need a test jar.

I never put the sample back in, just scared of contamination. Does anybody put it back in or just drink or dump it? Usually its a good time for me to take a taste.

share|improve this answer
3  
I drink it too. Good to know how your beer's doing. I made a video of my process: youtube.com/watch?v=5DlQgomUc54 –  JoeFish Nov 27 '11 at 20:25
    
I drink it too! I have only seen the glass wine thief, that is a great idea. after watching the video I tried to use the old bottling wand with the one-way at the bottom, it took way to many times to fill the tube, so I ordered one thanks for the link! –  Ryan Shdo Nov 27 '11 at 22:03

I use a sanitized turkey baster dedicated to beer samples. Easy and cheap.

share|improve this answer
    
the neck of one of my carboys is narrower then the rest and can't get a turkey baster in there –  Ryan Shdo Nov 27 '11 at 22:06
    
Wow, that's really narrow! My baster is maybe an inch in diameter. It's hard to imagine a carboy opening smaller than that. A thief is larger than my baster, so you may have problems with it. –  Denny Conn Nov 27 '11 at 22:09
    
I think it's the turkey baster thats weird but i do have a carboy with a slightly smaller opening –  Ryan Shdo Nov 28 '11 at 2:31

Another option is to one end of a sanitized food-grade plastic tube into your carboy and siphon out a bit into your testing tube for the hydrometer. This will work for the narrowest of carboy necks. However, there is some risk of contamination (especially if you suck the end of the tube and that then falls back into the carboy) . A wine-thief or turkey baster are probably safer bets if you can use them.

Another idea: if your wort is deep enough, your carboy has enough head space and you have big, readable letters on your hydrometer, why not just drop the (sanitized) hydrometer into the carboy and leave it there!

share|improve this answer

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.