So I thought I'd share this with anyone interested.
I have a friend that is getting into homebrewing and doesn't have the money to get set up yet, so I've been letting him brew with my gear. Normally I supervise when he's brewing, but this last time I let him fly solo. Well, it seems he forgot to strain out the wort when he dumped a 5 gal batch into the fermenter. It all went in there, break, pellet hops and all. I go downstairs to check on things the next afternoon and the pellet hops had clogged up the blow off tube and the whole bucket lid popped off! I'm not sure how long it had been sitting like that. Didn't make as much of a mess as I would have imagined. Just strew some hops around, no big deal. I quickly sanitized a new bucket lid, blow off tube, racking cane and a gallon starter jug. I siphoned off about a half gallon to the starter jug and replaced the lid. No more blow off and the fermentation seems to have proceeded normally. Only time will tell if there is an infection. I have a few fruit flies floating around and I'm hoping that none of them made it into his fermenter. Oh, well. I'm just glad it wasn't one of my batches