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Old 10-13-2006, 10:06 PM   #1
bobbyc
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Default Barleywine Fermentation, oh my!

I just started fermenting a 1.092 OG Barleywine atop 2, yes 2, California Ale yeast cakes from a pair of 5-gallon stouts I just racked to secondary. Fermentation began within minutes, soon making my airlock sound like a hyper cricket (first impression, go with it). Anyway, I quickly fashioned a blowoff tube on my 6.5 gal bucket with a rather small diameter tube... maybe 1/4". Question is this: should I worry about this thing clogging up? If so, what's the most likely scenario with the bucket? Lid pop-off? Blow-off tube pop-off? Sides split?

I'll be watching this one closely for the next day or so.

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Old 10-13-2006, 10:16 PM   #2
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Most likely scenario is that the bucket will explode, sending razor sharp shards of plastic flying in all directions at an unimaginable speed. Your house will be destroyed and it will kill you and all life within about a half mile. Let us know how it tastes!

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Old 10-13-2006, 10:32 PM   #3
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a 1/4" tube will not do the trick. I would recommend placing the fermenter on a large piece of plastic or in your bathtub with a pint glass over the airlock hole.

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Old 10-14-2006, 12:09 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BrewmanBeing
Most likely scenario is that the bucket will explode, sending razor sharp shards of plastic flying in all directions at an unimaginable speed. Your house will be destroyed and it will kill you and all life within about a half mile. Let us know how it tastes!
That would be an amazing story to tell. Especially if I still had a shard of palstic embedded in my thigh when I was real old. I could tell the story to scare the grandkids.
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Old 10-14-2006, 12:13 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bobbyc
That would be an amazing story to tell. Especially if I still had a shard of palstic embedded in my thigh when I was real old. I could tell the story to scare the grandkids.

And you wouldn't even need to worry about setting off the metal detectors at airports! That's so cool.
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Old 10-14-2006, 05:44 AM   #6
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Same thing happening to me tonight. Barleywine too (OG 108). Pitched a giant starter (1gal made w/stirplate) & fermentation was almost instant.

No prob though, I setup a 1/2OD blowoff tube - never had any problems with clogging before - so I'll be good, right?

Checked in on it an hour ago (pitch +6hrs.) - barleywine krausen dripping down my bucket onto the floor (carpeted floor). Sweet. The tube got clogged with some crap & krausen was escaping down from the edges around the lid (I guess they don't seal perfectly, luckily for me).

Threw the pail in the shower with a couple inches of water in the bottom, from two rooms over I can still hear the thing oozing out the sides. I'll probably lose a gallon of awesome barleywine too b/c of this - shoot.

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Old 10-14-2006, 01:22 PM   #7
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Mine has been fermenting for about 17 hours now, and I've only cleaned out the blow-off tube once. It seems to be settling down a bit now, so I think I'll be good. No barleywine lost... sucks that you're losing some.

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Old 10-19-2006, 04:51 AM   #8
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I had a glass carboy explode (thousands of pieces!) a few weeks ago because my blow off tube was too small (1/2). I now swear by 1.25" outside diameter (1" inside) tubes for blowing off. They fit perfectly into the top of a carboy, no need for a stopper and no worries about clogging!

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Old 10-19-2006, 09:40 PM   #9
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My BW krausen got to the neck of the airlock, maybe an inch from contaminating the airlock, and stopped. Lucky...

That was the closest I've been to a blowoff, unless you count the starter for my last brew---put it in a 1L growler, left for the day, it proceeded to kasplode all over my spare shower. Wheeee!

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Old 10-19-2006, 10:10 PM   #10
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With the volume of CO2 coming out of that thing, the only good a tube does is directing the mess. You don't need an airlock as long as it is blowing like that. Once it slows down, then you can start thinking about stuff getting in.

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