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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Fermentation & Yeast > Mystery? Pitched US-05 Two Days Ago...Nothing (and I mean nothing) Happened
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Old 01-05-2012, 01:17 AM   #1
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Default Mystery? Pitched US-05 Two Days Ago...Nothing (and I mean nothing) Happened

Hey guys,

I am a relatively new brewer and decided to brew up an IPA on Monday afternoon. I had a few packets of US-05 in the fridge (from MoreBeer- its fresh with a 06/13 date) and started a thread the day before about whether I should pitch one packet or two (for a 1.071 beer). I went with 1 packet since it was US-05.

Now I have used US-05 before, for every brew. It works well, has a great profile, hits numbers, etc.

Let me just say that I rehydrate my dry yeast. I have done it the same exact way (according to the Palmer book) every time. It works and produced good beer. I have seen this yeast take off vigorously in a few hours, and as long as about 30+ hours to finally get some bubbles out of the airlock. Now I know the true measure of fermentation is not airlock activity (always check the hydrometer).

Pitched at 4PM on Monday. I woke up around 6 AM the next morning (after 12 hours) and nothing. Not too worry, I go to work and am home before 4PM...(24 hours) and still nothing. Well I figured it was going to be another 24-36 hour lag like the last time, which is no big deal. Check it again this morning (36 hours) and nothing...I mean nothing. So after work today, +48 hours and zero airlock activity I rehydrated my last packet of US-05. When I popped the lid on the bucket, it smelled syrupy sweet without the slightest hint of krausen--I pitched it again, but did not take a reading. With zero activity, at least I can take pride in my good sanitation practices. But I am baffled by this.

I am trying to figure out what it could be?

First thing...temperature? I live in Santa Barbara so its not that (past few days have been in the low 70s outside and about 66 inside). The temperature here is fairly constant all year except for November and early December.

The yeast were rehydrated and pitched when the wort had cooled off for almost an hour, so I don't think the wort was too hot, and even then it wouldn't have killed all of the yeast off would it? The fermenter felt a little warm, but not what I would remotely call hot (and I had cooled + aerated most of the wort before I pitched).

The only thing I can think of is maybe residual star-san from rehydration zapped the yeast (unlikely) or the yeast was DOA (even more unlikely).

Anyone want to chime in on what it could be? Has something like this ever happened to anyone else?

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Old 01-05-2012, 01:22 AM   #2
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Your brew was kind of big so I think pitching the second yeast packet was a good idea. Give it another 24 hours, at least another 48 before you start to panic. If she really hasn't started fermenting, that's a lot of sugar, so keep her well sealed!
Good luck I'm sure it's fine!
PS Definitely take a gravity reading soon!

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Old 01-05-2012, 01:28 AM   #3
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Yeah, I have seen it go slow before, but this is different. Like I said, sometimes its a few hours, sometimes it has been 30+ with relatively light airlock activity.

But I have never seen US-05 not take off after 48 hours.

Everything I have read suggests if you don't see even the slightest bit of minimal activity within 2 days, pitch again.

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Old 01-05-2012, 01:35 AM   #4
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I pitched some Notty 6 days ago with zero looking activity throughout. First ferment I've ever had that had zero bubbles, no noticeable Krausen. Checked gravity on day 5 and it was 1.018 down from 1.069 . Sometimes things just go very weird.

I do recall recently reading a thread on a suspected bad batch of US05, but I don't think it turned out that the batch was really bad.

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Old 01-05-2012, 01:38 AM   #5
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I'm sure you have probably read this but I go back to it from time to time...even it it is about the final product, it still makes me think about all the processes of homebrewing.

http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f39/neve...en-beer-73254/

Thanks Revy for this BTW.

A similar thing happened to a friend of mine when he did the Brewer's Best Octoberfest kit, although in his case it was two weeks, and I am pretty sure the yeast were dead. Anyways from my experience I pitched Wyeast California Lager once, and it was slow to react 36 + hours. Took a gravity reading with a wine thief. Went to the store to get more yeast. Came home and slapped the slap pack. Went to pitch it three hours later, and Krausen was forming. Sometimes it just takes a while for the yeast to get moving, and I guess they just needed some rousing.
Hope your IPA comes out amazing.

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Old 01-07-2012, 06:33 PM   #6
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Well....

so I pitched the second packet of US-05 and the beer took off around the 20 Hour mark (or 68 hour mark from the first pitch). Think everything is back on track. I am going to wait a week or so and then take a reading.

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Old 01-07-2012, 06:49 PM   #7
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I think you should have taken a gravity reading before pitching the second packet. Every fermentation is different and to not see signs until the 68 hour mark really isn't too unusual. The general consensus on here is to wait 72 hours before repitching.


Never trust your airlock.... that guy is a jerk and a liar and licks all of your silverware while you're out of the house. Your hydrometer is your friend and only real way of indicating fermentation.

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Old 01-07-2012, 06:49 PM   #8
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have you taken a gravity reading? sometimes fermentation can happen very quickly, and without much signs of activity. a gravity reading is the only way to tell what's really going on.

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Old 01-08-2012, 07:36 AM   #9
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He said he didnt. So I would assume no.

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Old 01-08-2012, 04:30 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Reno_eNVy View Post
Never trust your airlock.... that guy is a jerk and a liar and licks all of your silverware while you're out of the house. Your hydrometer is your friend and only real way of indicating fermentation.




OP, you need to take hydrometer readings to know anything about your fermentation. it can happen over night while you're sleeping, or during the day while you're out and leave NO visible signs. not only is your airlock an a$$hole, it's only purpose in life is to serve as a VENT for your fermenter.
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can i drink this? I mean. Im gunna. But is it fine?
Quote:
Originally Posted by yeoitsmatt View Post
it's not a barley wine. it's an ale.
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Originally Posted by bottlebomber View Post
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