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Old 08-19-2008, 04:23 AM   #1
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Default No Krausen

I have something odd happening right now...

I relocated over the summer, I haven't brewed since Memorial Day. Up until Saturday, that is.

I brewed a 10 gallon batch of my UP Ale, 2-row, Carapils, Crystal 20 and 40, and a mixture of Magnum, Hallertau, and Amarillo hops. I pitched Safale 05 directly from the packet. I had an audience, forgot to rehydrate.

Anyway, both 6 gallon carboys began bubbling by the next morning. My basement is in the low 70's this week, and the carboys have been about 75 degrees meaning a pretty fast fermentation.

The weirdest thing is happening though. There is almost no Krausen. There is about 1/4" of foam with the usual brownish gunk on top, but not the usual thick layer. And this fermentation has been going so fast that it has considerably slowed down after 48 hours. What is going on? I have done many similar batches, and I usually have gunk in the blow-off tube with 5 gallons fermenting in a 6 gallon carboy.

Has anyone ever seen this before? The only thing that I can think of is that I didn't clean out my mash keggle before using it. I though of this mid mash and washed out my HLT and boil keggles. Maybe some oil had somehow gotten into the mash keg during the move? Maybe, but I think it is unlikely.
This is also the first batch I have brewed in the new house. The house has a well and a water softner. Can water type influence the krausen? Is my beer going to be lacking head?

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Old 08-19-2008, 10:48 AM   #2
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ive had a couple brews with little krausen. DONT WORRY. If its bubbling its making the good stuff.

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Old 08-19-2008, 08:46 PM   #3
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Trade ya.. I think my barleywine has blown off a quart since Sunday.

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Old 08-19-2008, 08:48 PM   #4
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It will probably develop into a full krauzen over the next couple of days...the foams usually the first step.

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Old 08-20-2008, 03:49 AM   #5
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It will probably develop into a full krauzen over the next couple of days...the foams usually the first step.
Actually, I checked tonight, 72 hours into fermentation, and my SG has hit rock bottom at 1.012. At least I hope it has. I am seeing about 1 BPM in the airlocks. The beer started out at 1.050. Any lower than the 1.012 and I am going to start to think that there is an infection or something.

Still no Krausen. It tastes OK though. I should have added more hops. My leftovers from 2006 are starting to lose their zing. I do taste some husks. I am using a direct fired keggle with a false bottom for a mash tun, and I recirculate while heating the mash from 153 to 168. Somehow, I got some grains to plug my control valve, and I heated the bottom of the mash too much. Live and learn I guess. Too bad this was the second time in a row for this problem, but I couldn't taste it in my IPA. Hopefully this turns out OK as this was made for some BMC fans at deer camp.
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Old 08-20-2008, 04:00 AM   #6
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i'd worry more about temp control. try to get down below the 70s and you'll get a much cleaner beer

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Old 08-20-2008, 04:35 AM   #7
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i'd worry more about temp control. try to get down below the 70s and you'll get a much cleaner beer
Yeah, I know. I moved from a house with a 50-65 degree basement to a house with a 70+ basement. At the old house I had an old 22 ft^3 broken freezer with a space heater in it. I am afraid I am going to have to invest in a big freezer for this house. But, would warm fermentation temps have and effect on Krausen? I should have blown trub out of my airlocks!
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Old 08-20-2008, 05:37 AM   #8
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nah, it happens. is this the same as a beer you've made before? different yeasts? different temperatures, different ingredients, etc. can cause strange things to happen, but no matter what dude, if it tastes ok...you're gold.

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Old 08-20-2008, 05:57 AM   #9
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As far as no krausen goes, crap happens. My basement is also in the mid 70's range, and I've found (rather harshly on a lager) that getting a large laundry tub and filling it with water works wonders. For my lager, I had been rotating frozen bottles about every 12 hours or so, and had a wet towel "insulating" the top of the carboy. One day I went down ready to change the bottles and checked the temperature; I couldn't believe it. It had somehow gotten to 40F. Way off for my particular strain (Cali), but it goes to show that it works extremely well, even for 12 hours.

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