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Old 05-13-2013, 11:22 PM   #1
mtg4772
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Default pitch more yeast or just be patient?

I'm brewing a golden wheat strawberry ale.

OG: 1.052

fermentation took off well. Left in Primary for 2 weeks. Took gravity reading: 1.018. I decided the ABV was too low. I added 1 pound of DME to boost the ABV (boiled and chilled to 70F, of course).

I transferred the wort to secondary, pitched my 1 pound of DME and now i'm waiting for signs of an active fermentation. So far it has been about 36 hours and no activity. if after 48 hours and no signs of fermentation should I pitch more yeast or wait longer?

Also, I've got an awesome little fermentation chamber keeping a steady 70 degrees.

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Old 05-14-2013, 06:28 AM   #2
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What kind of yeast did you use?

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Old 05-14-2013, 09:50 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtg4772 View Post
I'm brewing a golden wheat strawberry ale.

OG: 1.052

fermentation took off well. Left in Primary for 2 weeks. Took gravity reading: 1.018. I decided the ABV was too low. I added 1 pound of DME to boost the ABV (boiled and chilled to 70F, of course).

I transferred the wort to secondary, pitched my 1 pound of DME and now i'm waiting for signs of an active fermentation. So far it has been about 36 hours and no activity. if after 48 hours and no signs of fermentation should I pitch more yeast or wait longer?

Also, I've got an awesome little fermentation chamber keeping a steady 70 degrees.
Certainly should be no need to add more yeast.
There probably has been activity but with such a small amount of dme for so many yeast you would likely see little sign.
Did you take a SG reading after adding DME? If so what is it now?
I would say it is well finished with the addition.
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Old 05-14-2013, 10:12 AM   #4
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You probably didn't need to add the DME. You need to take gravity readings two or three days apart. Once you get a repeat reading, then fermentation is likely finished. Then you wait a few more days to let the yeast clean up any off flavors produced during fermentation, specifically diacetyl.

In your case, more information is needed: What was your recipe? How much yeast did you pitch? What is your fermentation temperature? How did you oxygenate your wort?

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Old 05-15-2013, 02:34 AM   #5
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1.018 seems too be high for that style, but I remember having a number of extract batches stop right around there. The problem went away when I went all-grain. What do your beers normally finish at?

You don't need to pitch more yeast. The yeast you have in there should be just fine. You may wanna try rousing it by *gently* swirling the fermenter, though I have found this doesn't usually do very much. You may also want to try raising the temp a couple of degrees to see if the yeast go back to work with a little more warmth. You don't need to worry about off-flavors at this point since the bulk of the fermentation is over.

Another option you have is to add some amylase enzyme to the fermenter. This will break down some of the longer chain dextrines into simple sugars that the yeast can metabolize. This will have the effect of thinning out the beer, but I would think you'd want to be closer to 1.008-1.012 with this beer.

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Old 05-15-2013, 03:37 AM   #6
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I think a couple things have gone wrong here. You were way under attenuated at 1.018 for that og. So yes you abv was low but attenuation was your problem. And for some reason, your yeast was petering out or just slow to finish(very possible). So more sugar would not have been my choice.

I will speak from my experience alone. If I had a similar set of circumstances, and had pitched dme in secondary, I don't think I would achieve my desired results. Aside from rousing the yeast, at this point I would ramp up the temp by 5-10 degrees. I brew mostly Belgians and when the yeast shut down, it's hard to wake them back up.

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Old 05-23-2013, 02:02 AM   #7
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After a week in the primary fermenter the gravity was at 1.018. I boiled a pound of DME to increase the alcohol content. Theoretically it should have increased the gravity by .009. A week later the gravity was at 1.015. ABV approximately a 6.01% ABV. And, the flavor is freakin' amazingly good. 2 more weeks and the carbonation should be done, and i'll be one happy sumb!tch.

Thanks for the input fellas.

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