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Old 01-22-2012, 04:26 PM   #1
DryCowntyBrwr
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Default Very Slow Fermentation - High Gravity

I am now 15 days from pitching on a 1.085 OG Double IPA recipe. I used a starter with two packets of Wyeast 1056, but noticed a 24 hour lag before any airlock activity. For 14 days, the primary has been bubbling slow and steady with bubbling every other second, not vigorous, but not that weak either.
I took a FG reading today thinking that I would go ahead and transfer to the secondary if I was close. I am only at around 1.028, I need to be at or around 1.016. I have never had such a slow and steady fermentation. I did not transfer and I still have activity, but I have my doubts that I am going to hit my FG number.
?? - Is there anything I can do to boost this fermentation and hopefully hit close to my FG number?

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Old 01-22-2012, 04:41 PM   #2
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1.016 would be 81% attenuation and that yeast's range is 73-77%. 1.022 might happen. Pacman yeast is about your only hope for that high an attenuation.

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Old 01-22-2012, 06:46 PM   #3
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Would it make sense to pitch the Pacman yeast at this point? Assuming earliest delivery I could get would be Thursday, day 18 of Fermentation?

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Old 01-22-2012, 07:50 PM   #4
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Just wondering, how is your aeration? Do you use yeast nutrient at all?

I brewed a belgian with an OG of 1.128 and it went down to 1.010 in 5 days. We made a 1 qt starter with one smack pack of WLP500. Fermentation took off in just 3 hours. After 2 days we threw in two spoon fulls (very scientific measurements i know) of distillers yeast and 3 days later we had a fully fermented belgian.

My point being that we made sure to aerate like crazy! Also the starter we made had been going for a day and was fully fermenting like crazy.

Like david said, you are already at 81% attenuation which is 4% above the 77% limit for your yeast. You may want to pitch some new yeast (that can handle a high ABV) but you have created a quite hostile environment for your yeast soldiers.

Good luck man

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Old 01-22-2012, 08:14 PM   #5
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What's the temperature of your wort? You maybe able to get a few more points by placing your fermenter in warmer spot.

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Old 01-23-2012, 12:29 AM   #6
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Took 4 weeks for my1.085 doppelbock tocomplete. Pitched PacMan ale yeast at 58F ( near bottom of its range) and let it rise slowly to 64.F low temp n high gravity just takes time. Worth the wait tho

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Old 01-23-2012, 05:49 PM   #7
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OK. The Full Story and Details.

I made the starter with 2 packages of Wyeast, and refreshed it once. However, the starter sat dormant at room temperature for two weeks due to circumstances where I was unable to brew (home remodel). So, the starter hit a point of high krausen activity and then tapered activity until it was inactive in that two week period of time. The morning of brew day, I refreshed the yeast with another starter mix approx, 1.050 OG of water and extract, with yeast nutrient.
- I added yeast nutrient to the boil at 10 min remaining
- I aerated, but for only like 30 minutes with the 2 micron stone
- Temperature has been pretty steady around 68 degrees.

Right now I am taking my time. However, I figure if I were to repitch, I might need to do it now. Is this something you would recommend? Also, would the PacMan yeast give off any odd flavors to the brew?

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Old 01-23-2012, 06:16 PM   #8
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As far as attenuation. I am currently closer to 62-65% when this yeast strain is more in the 73-77% range.

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Old 01-24-2012, 06:10 AM   #9
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What does your recipe look like? That's the biggest question. Those AA numbers are gross approximations, at best. The starter that sat out forever didn't help matters, though. How big was that final starter you made?

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Old 01-24-2012, 04:05 PM   #10
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Final Starter was 1L in size. When I refreshed the dormant starter, it was easy to toss out the inactive liquid and leave the yeast slurry in the bottom. I then added the refreshed starter wort to the 1L Erlenmeyer with yeast slurry in the bottom.

NOTE: I still have constant airlock activity this a.m. and have done nothing but wait.

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