My dad bought me a hydrometer and then left the country. Now I don't know how to read all measurements.

1st scale: 1-13% (I presume this is the potential alc scale) 2nd scale: 1-26 3rd scale: 1-28 (this one starts a little higher than the previous but ends on the same place)

Any clue what the 2nd and 3rd scale represent?


  • 2
    I wish i could upvote you 100 times for the opening sentence. Dostoyevsky couldn't do better. Could you include a picture, perhaps, or something online that looks similar?
    – dax
    Sep 24 '13 at 20:51
  • 1
    Is there any point where two of the three scales line up? I'm guess you've got Brix, Baume, and Plato. Take a look at this calculator and maybe you can figure it out. Sep 25 '13 at 1:07
  • So, I tried out the calculator, but none of the values correspond with the scales I have. Since I have absolutely no idea how to make a picture of a round hydrometer I made a video of it. I hope it can shed a little more light on the meter. youtube.com/watch?v=eiO4c26-Pko&feature=youtu.be
    – liekele
    Sep 25 '13 at 7:06
  • 1
    if you drop it in a vial of room temperature water, what do you get (on each of the three scales)?
    – dax
    Sep 25 '13 at 11:20
  • @liekele - did you try Tobias' suggestion about making a sugar solution and checking the reading against that? Some more information or feedback would help, or please accept the answer if it helped you figure out which scale to use.
    – mdma
    Oct 25 '13 at 16:28

My best guess is that the scale that goes to 26 is degrees Brix, and that one marked in % is potential alcohol. You can test the first guess by making a solution of 10% table sugar. Add 10g of sugar to 90g of water and mix well. The Brix scale should read 10.

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