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-   -   stuck fermentation at 1.035! (http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f163/stuck-fermentation-1-035-a-375647/)

orangemen5 12-21-2012 06:03 PM

stuck fermentation at 1.035!
i brewed up the northern brewer bourbon barrel porter extract w specialty grains.
1lb english choc malt
.5 lbs english dark crystal
.5 english black malt
2lb wheat dme
6.3 lbs dark lme
1oz chinook
.5 us golding
.5 us golding
danstar windsor ale yeast

i did a full boil w this recipe because i have a 15 gal pot. i usually start w 6.5 gallons of water and boil down to 5.5. do hop schedule. chill w immersion chiller to 68deg in 20min. areate wort very well pitch reydrated yeast. everything went well till my hydrometer reading read 1.084. it was supposed to be 1.065. i noticed my water volume was lower than 5 gallons.maybe had 4-4.5 gals. i must have messed up my starting boil volume so i added another half gallon of water to fermenter didnt recheck the reading because i figured it was diluted now. i figured its about 1.072 now which didnt bother me me being a little high. left it in primary for 5 weeks and checked reading it was at 1.035. fermented at 66 degrees ambient temp by the way. i know danstar doesnt attenuate well but imwondering how to get this down a little lower. is 5 weeks to late to do anything? can i pitch more yeast? i have a pack of us-05 but i know its a beast and dont want to dry it out? any recommendations. thanks

inhousebrew 12-21-2012 06:28 PM

I've had this problem with liquid malt extract in the past. Especially the dark stuff. I think you need to get that down a bit because 1.035 is pretty freaking high even for a nice chewy dark porter like this one. You could try the US-05. At that point I'd rather risk drying it out than having to drink something resembling molasses.

orangemen5 12-21-2012 07:07 PM

I was thinking of using maybe half a packet of us-05. Just to drop it a few points. But the flat sample didnt taste to bad. Once carbonated it might be thick and sweet though.

CBMbrewer 12-21-2012 07:13 PM

I'd try moving to a warmer location if you can, maybe 69F. Give it a few days then check your gravity every day for a few days. You could also try rousing the yeast with a sanitized siphon. I try that before re pitching. I do think that will come out way too sweet though.

orangemen5 12-21-2012 07:20 PM

I thought about rousing the yeast and warming it up. It's been five weeks not sure if the yeast are dormant and won't reactivate. It had a pretty vigorous fermentation for about 4 days

CBMbrewer 12-21-2012 07:23 PM

Your og may have been high enough for that time to have worn out your yeast but I have had high og beers get stuck then finish after sitting for a few weeks then transferred to a warmer place. This has worked well for carbing some batches that were taking a while too. I'd say its worth a shot. But hey, 05 isn't exactly expensive :)

jkendal 12-21-2012 07:24 PM

Rousing the yeast every day will help it drop, too. Just swirl the fermenter to get the yeast back in suspension. Adding more yeast will help (many people keep a packet of Nottingham on hand for this very reason). Raising the temp will help.

jkendal 12-21-2012 07:26 PM

Did you make a yeast starter? If not, that could have been the reason it stalled. Pitching an adequate amount of healthy yeast is vital to beers with a high OG.

orangemen5 12-21-2012 07:27 PM

It was dry yeast that came with the kit. Rehydrated it

jkendal 12-21-2012 07:47 PM


Originally Posted by orangemen5 (Post 4706022)
It was dry yeast that came with the kit. Rehydrated it

Try these things in this order...

Rouse the yeast and take another gravity reading tomorrow morning. If it's dropping then do it some more.

If no change in gravity, try moving it to a warmer spot and take gravity reading the next morning.

If still no change, add another packet of yeast.

If it still hasn't changed after all that, best I can tell you is to bottle/keg it. It will be a bit on the sweeter side but it won't be ruined. And then the next time you brew a high OG beer like this one, pitch more yeast. I usually use 2 packets if I'm brewing anything over 1.060.

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