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Old 09-22-2012, 06:33 PM   #1
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Default Foam for the entire boil!!

Quick question, this was my first double batch (10gal)... just a nice easy pale ale.

I had to baby sit it in my 23gal e-kettle to keep it from foaming over. It was foamy the entire boil. What causes this?

I fermented it a week, smells like rotten eggs. DMS?

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Old 09-22-2012, 06:40 PM   #2
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Rotten eggs can be easily just the smells of your fermentation, I had fermentations smelling like farts and wet dog... and even like a wet dog farting. DMS is more a cooked vegetable aroma.
Foam it´s your hot break proteins mostly. Never had to deal with boilover for the intire boil tough.

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Old 09-22-2012, 06:58 PM   #3
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I'll happily send you some, cuz it tastes like crap. I can't really describe it... maybe cardboard/bitter?

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Old 09-22-2012, 09:58 PM   #4
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I had a similar problem with my e-kettle, it looked like this and that's after a double dose of Fermcap.



It was the direct result of running my 5500W element at 100%. When I switched to PWM control and backed it down to 55% power once it came to a boil, I got a normal boil with a more realistic boil off rate and no foam after hot break. No fermcap needed.

What yeast and what fermentation temp did you use? I'd let it set at least another week before you judge it. Raise the fermentation temp to 65F if you were lower than that.

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Old 09-23-2012, 02:07 AM   #5
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Is that a jar twist top with a paint strainer bag for a hop spider?

Brilliant! I have a million of those rings laying around.

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Old 09-23-2012, 02:47 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by tgmartin000 View Post
Is that a jar twist top with a paint strainer bag for a hop spider?

Brilliant! I have a million of those rings laying around.
LOL, yeah ring from a canning jar and some spring clips I've upgraded since then. I bought a galvanized splice for clothes dryer tube. It comes with two worm clamps. I use one clamp to attach the paint strainer bag around the splice and for the time being, I've been using a c-clamp to attach it to the kettle. I'm going to build a proper attachment when I have time.

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Old 09-23-2012, 06:07 PM   #7
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Very nice, I'm going to give that a go.

Sorry for the thread jack.

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Old 09-23-2012, 06:22 PM   #8
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It was fermented at 66F with Notty. I can't see that being the issue?

I did a batch of a pilsner yesterday, got the hot break and ran my element at about 80% with a pretty hard boil. Ended up 2 gal short, so had to top up. I guess it could just be a case of boiling it too hard with too much power to the element. I'll try and dial it back next time and see. I didn't realize that too hard of a boil could cause so much foam. That said, the foam wasn't like typical with tiny bubbles, the bubbles were much larger which now makes me think it was just boiling too hard.

Thanks! Nice hop spider, I need one of thems.

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Old 09-23-2012, 07:16 PM   #9
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It was fermented at 66F with Notty. I can't see that being the issue?

I did a batch of a pilsner yesterday, got the hot break and ran my element at about 80% with a pretty hard boil. Ended up 2 gal short, so had to top up. I guess it could just be a case of boiling it too hard with too much power to the element. I'll try and dial it back next time and see. I didn't realize that too hard of a boil could cause so much foam. That said, the foam wasn't like typical with tiny bubbles, the bubbles were much larger which now makes me think it was just boiling too hard.

Thanks! Nice hop spider, I need one of thems.
Haven't had any rotten egg smell with Notty. I ferment at Notty @ 65 so that shouldn't be an issue. The lager yeasts ferment in the 50's and rotten egg smell is common. Might check your thermometer accuracy just to cya. Give your fermentation 2 weeks and then sample, Knotty ferments fast, typically 3 days for me but it takes a while to clean up so I always give it 2 weeks.

I'd say your heat is your problem, when I got mine dialed in I came out to near 1.3 gal/hr, my first foamy run pictured at 100% was 2 gal/hr boil off.
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Old 09-24-2012, 01:08 AM   #10
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I would cut back power to the element once it's boiling. I just did a 12 gal batch in my e keggle with a 5500w element. Even with 14 gal pre boil, after it came to a boil I cut back power to 60% and still had a very vigorous boil.

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