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Old 05-02-2012, 02:34 PM   #1
Hophead04
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Default First time going all grain, almost 4 days later and no bubbles in airlock

Hey all,

I just did my first All-grain batch saturday night, I pitched/added the yeast, and so far I have not seen any bubbles in the airlock. I do not have a hydrometer and my refractometer has not shown up yet, so I am not sure if I will be drinking a beer or just hopped up tea.

Is there any way to test for alcohol without a hydrometer? Should I add more pitched dry yeast to the fermenter? Any help would be greatly appreciated, thanks in advance.

Cheers

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Old 05-02-2012, 02:42 PM   #2
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Default I only have an observation

I brewed a stout that showed no bubbling at all. Hydrometer told the story and all was fine. I think just wait for your refracto to show up.

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Old 05-02-2012, 02:58 PM   #3
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Keep in mind that you need a converter to have any hope of an accurate refractometer reading after there is alcohol in solution.

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Old 05-02-2012, 02:59 PM   #4
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There may not be any refractometer for a few months, any other way?

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Old 05-02-2012, 03:00 PM   #5
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No, you need a hydrometer or refractometer to see if the gravity has dropped...preferably a hydrometer

EDIT: I suppose you could look at/smell the wort to get some kind of idea as to whether it's fermenting. You could also taste it. If it tastes like beer, it's probably been fermenting.

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Old 05-02-2012, 03:18 PM   #6
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What temp did you pitch? What temp is it now? If it's in a bucket you could have a bad seal so you may not see activity in the airlock. Buy a hydrometer they are cheap.

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Old 05-02-2012, 03:25 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by idahobrew View Post
What temp did you pitch? What temp is it now? If it's in a bucket you could have a bad seal so you may not see activity in the airlock. Buy a hydrometer they are cheap.
Right now I am at 19C, which is 66F. I have about 6 liters of free headspace in the fermenter. The fermenter is new so there should not be a bad seal.
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Old 05-02-2012, 03:43 PM   #8
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Don't sweat it...with that much head space and possibly not airtight, bubbling airlock is the worst indicator of fermentation. Krausen forming on top? Get that hydrometer, and relax...it'll work out.

Cheers!

Would love to visit Chile sometime!!

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Old 05-02-2012, 04:02 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jmprdood View Post
Don't sweat it...with that much head space and possibly not airtight, bubbling airlock is the worst indicator of fermentation. Krausen forming on top? Get that hydrometer, and relax...it'll work out.

Cheers!

Would love to visit Chile sometime!!
Thanks! Chile is great, I just moved here from North Carolina and while I miss the availability of Malt Extract, I am loving the move to going All Grain (a lot more available here). I just got used to having a bubbling airlock, so I need to look at Krausen? I have not noticed any forming yet, I am thinking about adding more yeast just in case. Will it be a problem if I add a different type of yeast (I started with champagne yeast, would probably use ale yeast tonight due to availability).
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Old 05-02-2012, 04:09 PM   #10
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Quote:
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The fermenter is new so there should not be a bad seal.
not true. fermenter's leak unless you have a stainless conical with rubber seals.

Buckets leak. Carboys with a cap/bung...leak.

How were you brewing before you went all grain, with no hydrometer?

You NEED to get a hydrometer.
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