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-   -   Bottle conditioning - ZERO carbonation - suspect infection? (http://www.homebrewtalk.com/f35/bottle-conditioning-zero-carbonation-suspect-infection-190426/)

lone_wolf 08-11-2010 09:30 AM

Bottle conditioning - ZERO carbonation - suspect infection?
 
Brethren,
I've read a number of threads on issues with carbonation and conditioning but feel my situation is enough a variation on the themes to warrant a fresh post.
close to a fortnight ago i (flip top) bottled a extract+steeping grain brown ale that was showing some real promise by the end of a stint in the secondary.
I've sampled two bottles recently (as I say close to 2 weeks in bottle now) and both are DEAD flat. As additional insult, the flavour has definitely changed to something sharper and more cloying.
Some context -
-> I bottled straight from secondary.
-> I primed using carbonation drops in each bottle, so even stevn sugar distribution
-> bottles + bottling tube were sterilized carefully with specialized brewing sterilizer solution
-> I notice that in contrast to all the other batches I have done, there is NO yeast residue in the bottom of the bottles.

I'm totally confused - is it possible that there was a bug in the spigot which was transferred into each bottle, and either ate the priming sugar I reserved for the yeast / or killed the yeast or both? That might explain the change in taste
However, my last of sediment indicates I just don't have enough yeast to start with, but I find that hard to believe and that wouldn't explain change in flavour either
Dear God help me

nebben 08-11-2010 01:02 PM

How long was your beer in secondary before you racked it into the bottles? Have you confirmed that the gaskets are in good condition, and allow the bottles to hold pressure in the first place? What was the starting gravity of the beer, and the end result prior to bottling?

malkore 08-11-2010 10:34 PM

most bottle infections result in gushers, not flat beer.
you said these are swing tops...i'd guess they aren't sealing anymore because the bales are stretching.

ShortSnoutBrewing 08-11-2010 10:37 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by malkore (Post 2211379)
most bottle infections result in gushers, not flat beer.
you said these are swing tops...i'd guess they aren't sealing anymore because the bales are stretching.

This was going to be my response almost exactly. Specifically the part about gushers vs. flat beer.

Yooper 08-11-2010 10:41 PM

I would consider that maybe two weeks isn't long enough- particularly if the beer is being kept at cooler temperatures. Make sure you are storing it for at least three weeks at over 21C.

lone_wolf 08-12-2010 09:30 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by nebben (Post 2210037)
How long was your beer in secondary before you racked it into the bottles? Have you confirmed that the gaskets are in good condition, and allow the bottles to hold pressure in the first place? What was the starting gravity of the beer, and the end result prior to bottling?

Thanks Nebben, the beer was in the secondary for a week before I bottled - I typically leave for a fortnight in the secondary, but decided to bottle early only because samples were showing some promise (made sure gravity had stabilised of course)
I have quite a bit of confidence in the quality of the gaskets - bear in mind this is only my fifth brew and carbonation has been perfect in all batches since (on same bottles)
OG - 1046, FG - 1012
thanks again

lone_wolf 08-12-2010 09:32 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Kilted Brewer (Post 2211385)
This was going to be my response almost exactly. Specifically the part about gushers vs. flat beer.

That is an interesting point, thanks.
As I say, zero carbonation - not even a faint hiss on flipping the lid (sniff)

lone_wolf 08-12-2010 09:36 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by malkore (Post 2211379)
most bottle infections result in gushers, not flat beer.
you said these are swing tops...i'd guess they aren't sealing anymore because the bales are stretching.

hmmm thats an interesting angle BUT I should add:
1) Same bottles produced a consistently carbonated batch about a month ago - how can the bales and gaskets deteriorate so rapidly on their own in that space of time
2) I had a little beer spare after filling 2 dozen bottles and filled a PET bottle about half way - that was actually the first bottle I opened at about a week - again - no carbonation.

lone_wolf 08-12-2010 09:40 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by YooperBrew (Post 2211391)
I would consider that maybe two weeks isn't long enough- particularly if the beer is being kept at cooler temperatures. Make sure you are storing it for at least three weeks at over 21C.

Thanks Yooper, I never start drinking a batch in anger within a fortnight of bottling and bottles are stored in a hot water cupboard (ca. 20-22 degrees celcius) for the fortnight.
I usually sample a bottle at about a week though just to check progress - and in all other cases I have noticed close to full carbonation by about a week.

MBasile 08-12-2010 09:41 AM

If the bottles taste sweeter than the hydrometer samples and there is no yeast residue, I'd say you had very little yeast in suspension and it is taking those remaining yeasties quite a long time to get through the priming sugar.


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