Incorrect Scale Hydrometer Blues

Incorrect Scale Hydrometer Blues

Hi, I thought I had already posted this, but I hear no one else but me can see it so I post again.

I wonder if you can help me again?

I was talking SG / PA with the guy that turned me on to wine making and he had to correct me on what I thought I knew

Here is a shot of my hydrometer.  I rotated it to show the markings for SG and PA and drew lines across as a visual
guide at each major graduation.  Is my triple scale hydrometer wrong?  It shows the 1.110 as being 'above 17%' etc as
you can see.  How can a hydrometer be wrong?  Or am I missing the point again...

http://img440.imageshack.us/img440/9934/rotatedhydrometer7qj.jpg

Jim

Incorrect Scale Hydrometer Blues

Yes, that's incorrect. If the sg scale is right, then the PA scale
overestimates by about 2-2.5% at this level, it should be 14.5-15% or
so. I'd get a better hydrometer because if one scale is wrong to such a
degree, the other ones might be as well.

The PA scales are more trouble than anything else, once you get the
hang of things, just go by the sg or Brix scales.

Pp

Quote:
> Hi, I thought I had already posted this, but I hear no one else but me can see it so I post again.

> I wonder if you can help me again?

> I was talking SG / PA with the guy that turned me on to wine making and he had to correct me on what I thought I knew

> Here is a shot of my hydrometer.  I rotated it to show the markings for SG and PA and drew lines across as a visual
> guide at each major graduation.  Is my triple scale hydrometer wrong?  It shows the 1.110 as being 'above 17%' etc as
> you can see.  How can a hydrometer be wrong?  Or am I missing the point again...

> http://img440.imageshack.us/img440/9934/rotatedhydrometer7qj.jpg

> Jim

Incorrect Scale Hydrometer Blues

Wow, according to the paper scale in both my hydrometers, 1.110 = ~14%PA =
~24Brix. At 17% the SG corresponds to 1.130 -- on my scale.  The two
instruments were purchased from different sources, about two years apart.
Also, the PA and Brix should both be zero at 1.000SG.  Is it on your scale?

Quote:
> Hi, I thought I had already posted this, but I hear no one else but me can
> see it so I post again.

> I wonder if you can help me again?

> I was talking SG / PA with the guy that turned me on to wine making and he
> had to correct me on what I thought I knew

> Here is a shot of my hydrometer.  I rotated it to show the markings for SG
> and PA and drew lines across as a visual guide at each major graduation.
> Is my triple scale hydrometer wrong?  It shows the 1.110 as being 'above
> 17%' etc as you can see.  How can a hydrometer be wrong?  Or am I missing
> the point again...

> http://img440.imageshack.us/img440/9934/rotatedhydrometer7qj.jpg

> Jim

Incorrect Scale Hydrometer Blues

That is a bit odd.   I wonder if the PA scale on that is calibrated for
*** by weight instead of volume?   It can't be for beer; (beer does
not consume all of the dissolved solids but they expect that actually
and just subtract final gravity from original gravity to calculate
gross ABV). Maybe the Scots report *** in a method other than V/V?

Th PA scale in general is more trouble than it's ever been worth either
way as I see it.

Joe

Quote:
> >http://www.FoundCollection.com/

Incorrect Scale Hydrometer Blues

It's definitely VV, but I did find 5 different ways of calculating PA and some scales weren't too far off what the
hydrometer said.  I told the retailer about the problem and their reply was that they didn't use PA and it was better to
use SG.

I mostly go by SG, but if you buy a triple scale hydrometer, my view is that all the scales should be correct!  Oh well,
I'll print out some other charts to have for quick reference...

Thanks all for your replies, Jim

Quote:

> That is a bit odd.   I wonder if the PA scale on that is calibrated for
> *** by weight instead of volume?   It can't be for beer; (beer does
> not consume all of the dissolved solids but they expect that actually
> and just subtract final gravity from original gravity to calculate
> gross ABV). Maybe the Scots report *** in a method other than V/V?

> Th PA scale in general is more trouble than it's ever been worth either
> way as I see it.

> Joe

>> >http://www.FoundCollection.com/

Incorrect Scale Hydrometer Blues

Quote:
> (SNIP)... I told the retailer about the problem and their reply was that they didn't use PA and it was better to use SG.

> I mostly go by SG, but if you buy a triple scale hydrometer, my view is that all the scales should be correct!  Oh well,
> I'll print out some other charts to have for quick reference...

My view is that if all the scales should be correct, you should insist
on having the retailer provide you with triple scale hydrometer with
all the scales correct!

Guy

Incorrect Scale Hydrometer Blues

I agree totally, but stupidly its a trip right across town to a place I don't really use anymore.  I suppose I am going
to continue to use it for its SG readings (which are the same as my other hydrometer) and buy a new one when I am at the
store I go to now.  It would cost me as much money to take it back and get it returned for free as to buy a new one
annoyingly.  The store won't pay return postage as they are basically saying that to all intents and purposes, the PA
scale is arbitary at best and pointless at worst - many here would probably agree.

They won't fess up and accept it is wrong and the copyright notice is from 1983.  It must be right by someone's
reckoning or they would surely have changed it years ago.   I am sure that there are many here who'd agree.  Though I'd
have to say that I don't have enough experience or memory yet to judge the starting SG of a must and say "Oh yes, with
an OG of x and so much sugar, this wine will be y% at finishing without refering to charts.  Seems like the internet
wins over my recent real world chart!

Jim

Quote:

>> (SNIP)... I told the retailer about the problem and their reply was that they didn't use PA and it was better to use
>> SG.

>> I mostly go by SG, but if you buy a triple scale hydrometer, my view is that all the scales should be correct!  Oh
>> well,
>> I'll print out some other charts to have for quick reference...

> My view is that if all the scales should be correct, you should insist
> on having the retailer provide you with triple scale hydrometer with
> all the scales correct!

> Guy

Incorrect Scale Hydrometer Blues

It really isn't worth the effort, the hydrometer is clearly marked as
reading PA in V/V and is also clearly wrong for what you intend it for.
It must be ignoring the non sugar solids or something silly like that
but it would clearly overestimate your *** content so should be
ignored.  If you want a lot of detail on these scales  see Pgs 193-195
of Principles and Practices of Winemaking by Boulten et al.  (I looked
at it an after reviewing your jpeg I have no idea what the maker was
thinking on this scale but maybe you will have better success).

More important than anything, check zero by placing the hydrometer in
20 C distilled water; see if it reads 1.000.  If not, either pitch it
or compensate, but keep in mind the SG scale is only roughly linear.

You could contact the MFG, I'm sure they have a good reason for using
that curve.   The Scots are very good instrument makers.  Those scales
have not really changed for at least 60 years; no one considers
hydrometry a very precise measure of *** content given the advances
in other methods.

Joe

Incorrect Scale Hydrometer Blues

Cheers Joe, sounds like a good idea!

Jim

Quote:

> It really isn't worth the effort, the hydrometer is clearly marked as
> reading PA in V/V and is also clearly wrong for what you intend it for.
> It must be ignoring the non sugar solids or something silly like that
> but it would clearly overestimate your *** content so should be
> ignored.  If you want a lot of detail on these scales  see Pgs 193-195
> of Principles and Practices of Winemaking by Boulten et al.  (I looked
> at it an after reviewing your jpeg I have no idea what the maker was
> thinking on this scale but maybe you will have better success).

> More important than anything, check zero by placing the hydrometer in
> 20 C distilled water; see if it reads 1.000.  If not, either pitch it
> or compensate, but keep in mind the SG scale is only roughly linear.

> You could contact the MFG, I'm sure they have a good reason for using
> that curve.   The Scots are very good instrument makers.  Those scales
> have not really changed for at least 60 years; no one considers
> hydrometry a very precise measure of *** content given the advances
> in other methods.

> Joe

Incorrect Scale Hydrometer Blues

This whole thread seems to be full of nonsense.  It's a printing error
plain and simple.  Probably another example of "out sourcing".  ;o)
Throw it away.

Like Joe said,  the hydrometer scales haven't changed in living memory.
Seems a pretty good indication that they got it right the first time !!  And
it still provides the best available information for general purpose
winemaking.

Those that work only with grapes will tell you that all you need is a single
scale (Brix) hydrometer, and for them this is true.  And those that work
only with kits and fixed recipes will tell you that all you need is SG, and
for them this is also true (in most cases) because that is what is most
often used in the instructions that come with kits/fixed recipes.  But
anyone that works with"country" wines knows that a triple scale
hydrometer and a sugar table are indispensible tools of the craft !!
And PA is where you most often _start_ when designing your own
recipes !!

It shouldn't surprise anyone that the internet is full of misinformation.
Or that many of the books on the subject also have errors.  Makes it
hard for begginers to sort thru all this stuff and make sense of it all....

Get yourself a standard hydrometer.  Find a hydrometer/sugar table that
agrees with your hydrometer, and you are well on your way to learning

Frederick

Quote:
> Cheers Joe, sounds like a good idea!

> Jim

>> It really isn't worth the effort, the hydrometer is clearly marked as
>> reading PA in V/V and is also clearly wrong for what you intend it for.
>> It must be ignoring the non sugar solids or something silly like that
>> but it would clearly overestimate your *** content so should be
>> ignored.  If you want a lot of detail on these scales  see Pgs 193-195
>> of Principles and Practices of Winemaking by Boulten et al.  (I looked
>> at it an after reviewing your jpeg I have no idea what the maker was
>> thinking on this scale but maybe you will have better success).

>> More important than anything, check zero by placing the hydrometer in
>> 20 C distilled water; see if it reads 1.000.  If not, either pitch it
>> or compensate, but keep in mind the SG scale is only roughly linear.

>> You could contact the MFG, I'm sure they have a good reason for using
>> that curve.   The Scots are very good instrument makers.  Those scales
>> have not really changed for at least 60 years; no one considers
>> hydrometry a very precise measure of *** content given the advances
>> in other methods.

>> Joe

Incorrect Scale Hydrometer Blues

I found 5 different ways PA calculations here: http://www.FoundCollection.com/
Jim
Quote:

> This whole thread seems to be full of nonsense.  It's a printing error
> plain and simple.  Probably another example of "out sourcing".  ;o)
> Throw it away.

> Like Joe said,  the hydrometer scales haven't changed in living memory.
> Seems a pretty good indication that they got it right the first time !!  And
> it still provides the best available information for general purpose
> winemaking.

> Those that work only with grapes will tell you that all you need is a single
> scale (Brix) hydrometer, and for them this is true.  And those that work
> only with kits and fixed recipes will tell you that all you need is SG, and
> for them this is also true (in most cases) because that is what is most
> often used in the instructions that come with kits/fixed recipes.  But
> anyone that works with"country" wines knows that a triple scale
> hydrometer and a sugar table are indispensible tools of the craft !!
> And PA is where you most often _start_ when designing your own
> recipes !!

> It shouldn't surprise anyone that the internet is full of misinformation.
> Or that many of the books on the subject also have errors.  Makes it
> hard for begginers to sort thru all this stuff and make sense of it all....

> Get yourself a standard hydrometer.  Find a hydrometer/sugar table that
> agrees with your hydrometer, and you are well on your way to learning

>        Frederick

>> Cheers Joe, sounds like a good idea!

>> Jim

>>> It really isn't worth the effort, the hydrometer is clearly marked as
>>> reading PA in V/V and is also clearly wrong for what you intend it for.
>>> It must be ignoring the non sugar solids or something silly like that
>>> but it would clearly overestimate your *** content so should be
>>> ignored.  If you want a lot of detail on these scales  see Pgs 193-195
>>> of Principles and Practices of Winemaking by Boulten et al.  (I looked
>>> at it an after reviewing your jpeg I have no idea what the maker was
>>> thinking on this scale but maybe you will have better success).

>>> More important than anything, check zero by placing the hydrometer in
>>> 20 C distilled water; see if it reads 1.000.  If not, either pitch it
>>> or compensate, but keep in mind the SG scale is only roughly linear.

>>> You could contact the MFG, I'm sure they have a good reason for using
>>> that curve.   The Scots are very good instrument makers.  Those scales
>>> have not really changed for at least 60 years; no one considers
>>> hydrometry a very precise measure of *** content given the advances
>>> in other methods.

>>> Joe

Incorrect Scale Hydrometer Blues

Quote:
> I found 5 different ways PA calculations here:http://www.brsquared.org/wine/CalcInfo/HydSugAl.htm

Jim,
That is a very good reference, Ben is very well informed.  Those
references I was talking about in 'Principles and Practices of
Winemaking' are very similar to what Ben describes. The reason I
mentioned 60 years was that one of the last good references written (in
the US) was by Bates called Polarimetry, Saccharimetry  and the Sugars
in 1943 or so.  NIST still used that reference to calibrate hydrometers
last time I checked.  I got a used copy (because I'm a geek and had to
know...)  :)

Joe.

Incorrect Scale Hydrometer Blues

Thanks Joe, your input helps validate another source of information for me.   I'm not after n'th degrees here, just a
reasonable 'likely PA' to help me make easy decisions.  I will indeed be after a hydrometer which matches some published
scales at least.  The SG readings make the grade thankfully for now.

That just leaves me claculating residual sugar in my cranberry-currant wine which is looking dangerously high this close
to transfer to secondary at 1060 with two days to go (out of 7 projected at 20C or so) at an average temperature of 21C
.  Damn my attempts to convert and scale up US Pints to UK litres from a 1 - 6 gallon (US quantities) My maths will let
me down even ifmy hydrometer doesn't.

As Terry Garey tells me, 'time is on your side'!  A good job, since this newbie in the UK is wishing that they bought a
triple scale hydrometer at the other shop...  Seriously, thanks to everyone who replies as well as reads (and without
prejudice) you help a very new winemaker to learn by his mistakes...

Jim

Quote:

>> I found 5 different ways PA calculations here:http://www.brsquared.org/wine/CalcInfo/HydSugAl.htm

> Jim,
> That is a very good reference, Ben is very well informed.  Those
> references I was talking about in 'Principles and Practices of
> Winemaking' are very similar to what Ben describes. The reason I
> mentioned 60 years was that one of the last good references written (in
> the US) was by Bates called Polarimetry, Saccharimetry  and the Sugars
> in 1943 or so.  NIST still used that reference to calibrate hydrometers
> last time I checked.  I got a used copy (because I'm a geek and had to
> know...)  :)

> Joe.

Incorrect Scale Hydrometer Blues

Quote:
> That just leaves me calculating residual sugar in my cranberry-currant wine which is looking dangerously high this close
> to transfer to secondary at 1060 with two days to go (out of 7 projected at 20C or so) at an average temperature of 21C
> .  Damn my attempts to convert and scale up US Pints to UK litres from a 1 - 6 gallon (US quantities) My maths will let
> me down even if my hydrometer doesn't.

Hi Jim,
Well, it turns out I'm a metrologist so I can help with those
conversions.  To begin, throw out logic as to why there are two
different gallons.

1 US gallon = 128 US ounces
1 US gallon = 4 quarts or 8 pints.
5 UK (Imperial) gallons = 6 US gallons.

metric conversions:
1 US ounce =  29.6 ml
I US gallon = 3.785 litres

I would suggest you not transfer that wine until the ferment slows
considerably, at 1.060 you still have a lot of sugar in there.  To be
honest I never understood this step unless the goal is to get the wine
'more' protected from oxidation by transferring it to a better sealed
container as the fermentation slows down.  I ferment in pails and
carboys; whites go into the carboy sooner for me for that reason.

Joe

Incorrect Scale Hydrometer Blues

Jim wrote "I'm not after n'th degrees here, just a reasonable 'likely PA' to
help me make easy decisions."

Jim, if you just want a reasonable *** prediction here's a pretty simple
approach.  These equations assume a wine ferments to dryness.  Even though a
hydrometer will display a negative number for a dry wine, I assume the end
point is 1.000 because you can't ferment anything that wasn't there in the
first place.  And, the negative hydrometer reading for a wine at dryness is
due to the influence of ***. By using only the starting specific gravity
value there is no influence of ***.   Therefore, I use the difference
between starting specific gravity and 1.000 in the calculation.

*** By Volume Calculation
Reference;  "Homebrewing, Volume 1", by Al Korzonas, pg 31
og = original specific gravity
fg = final specific gravity (in the case of wine 1.000)

Calculation of *** by weight;
%ABW = (og - fg) x 105

Calculation of *** by volume;
%ABV = %ABW x 1.25

Combined method for %ABV;
%ABV = (og - fg) x 131.25

It's simple to set up the "Combined method for %ABV" equation in a
spreadsheet...then just plug in the starting specific gravity and get your
answer.  All you need is a hydrometer that reads in specific gravity...no
charts, no tables.

Bill Frazier
Olathe, Kansas USA

I will indeed be after a hydrometer which matches some published

Quote:
> scales at least.  The SG readings make the grade thankfully for now.

> That just leaves me claculating residual sugar in my cranberry-currant
> wine which is looking dangerously high this close to transfer to secondary
> at 1060 with two days to go (out of 7 projected at 20C or so) at an
> average temperature of 21C .  Damn my attempts to convert and scale up US
> Pints to UK litres from a 1 - 6 gallon (US quantities) My maths will let
> me down even ifmy hydrometer doesn't.

> As Terry Garey tells me, 'time is on your side'!  A good job, since this
> newbie in the UK is wishing that they bought a triple scale hydrometer at
> the other shop...  Seriously, thanks to everyone who replies as well as
> reads (and without prejudice) you help a very new winemaker to learn by
> his mistakes...

> Jim

>>> I found 5 different ways PA calculations
>>> here:http://www.FoundCollection.com/

>> Jim,
>> That is a very good reference, Ben is very well informed.  Those
>> references I was talking about in 'Principles and Practices of
>> Winemaking' are very similar to what Ben describes. The reason I
>> mentioned 60 years was that one of the last good references written (in
>> the US) was by Bates called Polarimetry, Saccharimetry  and the Sugars
>> in 1943 or so.  NIST still used that reference to calibrate hydrometers
>> last time I checked.  I got a used copy (because I'm a geek and had to
>> know...)  :)

>> Joe.