Ill start off by saying im at a complete loss as I just had my second big beer batch go the way of acetobacter 10 days ago I racked a wee heavy into the secondary. Yesterday I noticed the dreaded film starting to appear on top of my carboy, I tasted yesterday and I knew immediately that it was aceto. This is the 2nd batch of mine to go the way of acetobacter since last november. I racked it to a keg, hopefully I will be able to salvage a few days worth.
Let me explain a little about my situation and hopefully someone with more experience could shed some light on my problem as my frustrations are at an all time high right now.
Last Nov, I had a batch of Kate the Great go the way of aceto, I discovered that I had a leaky keg. My first tip that something might be in the air. Prior to this point I was using some alchol in my air locks. I noticed an abnormal amount of fruit flys in the airlocks so I switched to just water from than on.
A few weeks ago I brewed the wee heavy and a kate the great clone plus I partiglyed each. I had 6 carboys totaling roughly 15 gallons of beer. 10 days ago I racked the beers in this order. Wee Heavy small beer to keg, wee heavy (2 carboys) to secondary carboy, Kate the great small beer to keg, Kate the great (2 carboys) to secondary.
This brings me back to the acetobacter tainted wee heavy. I find it weird that I racked 1 beer before and 2 after that are showing no signs of aceto infection. I also racked to a carboy and purged with co2. I was extra cautious with my sanitation using more iodophor than usual just to be safe with the loss of the kate the great on my mind.
In between the first aceto infection and this recent one I have brewed between 40-50 gallons of beer with no problems whatsoever.
If anyone could provide any ideas on what to do from here I would greatly appreciate it!!!
Since acetobacter requires oxygen to grow, I would start by stopping the transfers to secondary ferementers. Also, saying that you had 15 gallons in 6 seperate carboys makes me wonder if you had a significant headspace, is this correct?
I did have more head space than usual during the primary, however during the secondary I had 7 gal in a 6.5 gal carboy so less than usual. Could the issue be oxygen introduction from the transfer, say splashing the wort subtly when lifting to the table to rack, or the wort splashing the bottom of the carboy? I was thinking about it some more and the only time I've had this problem is with a secondary which I usually don't do. I usually go primary for 3 weeks straight to the keg, but the bigger beers I was bulk aging hence the issue.
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