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Old 07-13-2010, 05:30 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by Shrewd_Alchemist View Post
Have you looked to see exactly where the bubbles are coming from? I would be more inclined to think that you are pulling up gases trapped by the yeast cake on the bottom. I don't think you are pulling a strong enough vaccum to degass any liquids that quickly.... Plus very little CO2 (or any other gas) can dissolve in water (or beer) at room temp. If your batch has been sitting in the carboy for a couple of weeks now then I'd say that very little gas is dissolved in there.

I'm a QC scientist by trade and I have to degass mobile phases regularly before using them in analysis. Our house vaccum is fairly strong and I've never seen any gas come rushing out like that. We have to stir whatever liquid we are degassing and then hold it under the vaccum for at least 5 minutes. Interesting for sure, maybe try it again and watch your yeast cake at the bottom?
Interesting. If so, OP can call it Lake Nyos Eighty Shilling Ale.
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Old 07-13-2010, 05:44 PM   #12
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Why do you assume that?
Because the gravity hadn't changed at all during the time this was occurring.
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Old 07-13-2010, 05:44 PM   #13
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Here is an update:

After my vacuum experiments, I let the thing sit since I haven't had time to bottle. The first 2 days it was still. Then day by day the bubbling started up again and now has progressed to a point where there is a 1/4" ring of fizz around the perimeter of the beer surface; the bubbling resembles what you'd see in a glass of beer where the head has fallen and only the perimeter ring remains. There is no krausen/trub/protein/pellicle; just fine, white, short-lived bubbles.

Which makes me curious, since a week ago (when it was not bubbling) I came to the same realization that SpanishCastleAle and SumnerH noted today: there was no knowing how much CO2 was in solution... Then it starts bubbling again, this time much more actively. So maybe it still hasn't reached equilibrium, though going by past thread history I'll probably get blasted for saying that.

The gravity has still not changed from 1.015, according to my FG-only hydrometer, 0.998-1.020 range.

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Old 07-13-2010, 05:55 PM   #14
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It may be saturated again, all the 'extra' gas might just be just gassing off.

Shrewd,
I had forgotten but OP said he primaried this beer for 3 weeks and then transferred clear beer to a secondary and that's where it is now. So I doubt there is much of a yeast cake at all.

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Old 07-13-2010, 06:13 PM   #15
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Have you looked to see exactly where the bubbles are coming from? ...
I've shined a flashlight and don't see them originating from the [very small amount of] yeast that has settled.

Additionally, the ones forming now seem to become visible near the top, are in straight lines, and are perfectly spaced apart like marching ants, which leads me to believe they're nucleating somewhere.
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Old 07-13-2010, 06:30 PM   #16
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Because the gravity hadn't changed at all during the time this was occurring.
Right, but the barometric pressure could have changed, the air temp could shift, there could be a slight pressure differential between the headspace and outside air that's slowly releasing, etc. Barometric pressure in particular causes my airlocks to bubble quite frequently. There's no particular reason to assume that you're losing dissolved CO2.
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Old 07-13-2010, 09:38 PM   #17
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Additionally, the ones forming now seem to become visible near the top, are in straight lines, and are perfectly spaced apart like marching ants, which leads me to believe they're nucleating somewhere.
That's probably a decent assumption although I still don't know what gas would be nucleating out of your beer If you never had it under pressure then it really shouldn't be doing this, I need answers!!!
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